Been there, done that


OK. I can now say that I’ve been to IKEA.

I can also say that it’s highly unlikely that I’ll ever go back.

I knew it was trouble when we drove into the parking lot and saw cars waiting impatiently for parking spots that didn’t exist. I was ready to high-tail it out of there, but Viv was just as calm and collected as could be. I’m never that in need of something that I have to wait for a parking space. Medication, maybe. But not housewares.

But we persevered and then trekked the many yards to get to the entrance. Where, once inside, we were swallowed into a sea of inhumanity. THERE WERE PEOPLE EVERYWHERE!!!

I’ve noticed lately that I’m not too fond of crowds. So this was not the ideal spot for me. Everywhere I looked, I saw another human being. Of every shape, size and age imaginable. Some crazy people actually had children with them. The horror! I was delighted that I hadn’t brought Devin. He was playing happily with Viv’s kids while her husband watched them. It can’t get any better than that.

For some reason, we continued onward, grabbing a cart and hitting the elevator. We were whooshed to the second floor where we had to maneuver our cart around more mobs of people just to find the aisle. I immediately spied the kids department, the one place I wanted to visit. So I was thrilled. But Viv was scolding me for not following the arrows. The arrows? There are arrows on the floor to direct traffic. For real. And I was somehow committing a great sin by bypassing those arrows. Screw it! I bypassed them happily.

I secured one item, for $5.99. A toybox for Devin’s room. Topped with a cheeky turtle. The rest? Ha! Who can even check out the merchandise? Every time I saw something interesting, my view was immediately blocked by another human being. Where had all of those humans come from? Who knew that Canton, Michigan, contained sooooo many humans?

So I was done. $5.99 is a bargain. One item is easy to carry. I wanted OUT! Viv, on the other hand, was back to lecturing me about the arrows. Somehow she bullied me into following the endless arrows around twists and turns and display shelving, as she commentated the entire way. “Look at that cuuute bunkbed!” “Oh, I love that book shelf!” “Isn’t that chair so great?”

This went on for what seemed like miles. Miles of wood and plastic and veneer and metal and corrugated cardboard. Until we finally came full circle and arrived at the elevators again. Down. Down to the check-out line. Well, not until we tramped around another floor of merchandise. The check-out line was at the end of another marathon session of arrows. Through dishes and glasses and placemats and candles and rugs and picture frames and plants. Plants? Yes, plants.

Along the way I, well, ended up with a few other items in my cart. For a total of $40.57. But I wasn’t happy about that shopping. No, sir! I may have some new placemats and some very cute juice glasses, but I suffered. A lot.