After years of happily making-do with the freebie sunglasses I once got--one from a Gift-With-Purchase and another from an optometrist--I got my first pair of Big Girl sunglasses a few years ago. It was a splurge that made me feel happy and guilty in about equal measure, but one I thoroughly enjoyed nonetheless.
One day this past winter, I switched out my usual small shoulder bag for a tote, which I left on a dining chair. Soon it was moving, which could only mean one thing: Lickity was inside.
This was not a surprise. We've known now for years to check backpacks, bags, and purses before going anywhere, as such places are among Lickity's favorite hiding places.
What did surprise me was my sunglass case, the next time I pulled out from my tote. It was completely, thoroughly mangled.
In The Big Scheme Of Things, This Is Pretty Small Potatoes, we can all agree. Still, I felt vaguely uncomfortable everytime I reached into my bag and pulled out a case with teeth marks. And so I went to Ebay to try to find a replacement case, to no avail. Finally,on my yearly trek to Arizona to visit my Dad, I popped into the Scottsdale Nordstrom and made my way to the accessories counter, where I haltingly explained that I had bought my sunglasses at the store a few years before, and while they were still holding up great, there had been a little mishap with the case, which involved my cat, long story, but I was wondering: did they have a case I could buy? I took out my case and set it on the counter. The sales associate--her name was Julie Dahms--gazed down at the clawed-and-gnawed markings for what seemed like a very long time, before turning around, opening up a drawer, and sliding a beautiful new Coach sunglass case across the counter. "We don't have any Dior cases for sale," she said. "But you can have this."
I took my glasses out of the mangled case and put them in the Coach case. It was a perfect fit. "Great!" I said. "How much?" And to my utter astonishment, she said: "Free."
I don't recall the explanation--that they weren't carrying them anymore, or it had been a promotion--but whatever the case, I was so completely floored and grateful. It would have been hard enough to find a case to buy that would fit these particular glasses. But to get one--so cool!--for free! It was just such a nice and unexpected thing.
This past week, in need of some accessories, I was able to call up Julie for a consultation and an order. Next month, I'll be doing a Good Guys list of retailers and service providers, and Julie (and Nordstrom) is on the top of that list, but I didn't want to wait to tell this story. This time I was lucky, but there usually aren't Julie Dahms around to wave a magic wand and make pet-generated damage go away--for free. A good deal of agrravation can be avoided by providing appropriate products and places for your pets to vent their energy and chew, chomp, claw, gnaw, and climb to their hearts desire, which will be the focus of the next post.