Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Lost and Found

At the height of my allergy problems, I went all out in our house - bought dust mite covers for all our mattresses and pillows, had an air purifier shipped from the States (even with shipping we saved around US$200 over buying one here), started soaking our bedding in hot water before washing (no hot water in our washer), rolled up carpets, and even went so far as to take down some of our curtains.

Erik wasn't so down with the curtains being, well, down. After a few days we rehung them. However, it happened to be around the time that our maid, Lisa, came, which meant we were simultaneously cleaning out the small room off our kitchen to be her room. After we hauled a great deal of stuff off to Salvation Army, we looked around and realized that the curtains from the playroom (now Megan's room) were gone. We talked about it and came to the conclusion that we must have given them away.

I went to the Salvation Army with the intention of buying back our curtains, but was told that most of what is donated is sent out of the country. Makes sense. Singaporeans aren't big on used goods. So for months we had a curtainless window, until a few weeks ago, when I decided something must be done before everything in the room had faded to white from the tropical sun.

My first option was Spotlight (think Michael's or something other large fabric/craft store). I took the measurements in, found similar material, and got a quote on having them made (they are the kind with pleats so they are harder to find pre-made). I was told, "$391" unless I got a Spotlight card and got "less 20%" making them just over $300. You know that feeling where what someone has just told you makes you want to hurl, but you just smile and politely them you'll think about it? I have that feeling so often here.

My thoughts turned to pre-made curtains. A quick glance told me I'd be spending about $220, but I'd have to figure out a way to hem them because they were all too long. I needed better measurements, so I put it off.

Then today, I had to get a box of wrapping paper off the top of Ethan's wardrobe. That's when I noticed a box with the label, "Additional curtains (bathrooms, playroom)" and I thought, "Could it be?" Sure enough! There were the curtains! Now what's amazing to me about this situation is the number of times Erik and I lamented the loss of the curtains, and how much it was going to cost to replace them, but never once did those conversations trigger the memory of putting the curtains in a box and actually labelling it. He's not going to know me when we're 80, is he?

Here's my assessment of that: Erik is SO good at everything in his life, if he didn't have at least one area in which he didn't shine, he would be unbearably capable.

Can you imagine my chagrin if I had actually replaced them already?

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