Monday, September 29, 2014

The Hunt for Boots . . .


Every couple of months we use the excuse of going to the mall to make a family day out of it. We shop till we drop and then go have dinner. Saturday was one of those days. Both of my girls needed new boots for winter. I thought it would be a good idea to get out early in the season so they would have a nice selection in their size. My older daughter has a small foot, so they don’t order too many shoes in her size. My younger daughter has a popular size foot and that size tends to sell out fast. I thought I came up with the perfect strategy to shop for boots before the rest of the world figured out winter was around the corner. We all have a job on this mission. My daughters pick out and try on the boots. I offer some petite criticisms on the boots and the situation. My husband carries the boots.

First stop is at JCPenney, where we have had luck before. My younger daughter finds two pair she likes and wants to try on. I take them up to the clerk. Problem. There is only ONE clerk in the whole department who is trying to get several customers shoes while tending to the cash register. We put the boots down and decide to look elsewhere and/or return later. Off we go to Steve Madden to check out their boots. Both my daughters find a pair they like after four or five sales clerks ask us if we need help. No shortage of help here! As soon as they find boots a clerk is right there to go get them each a pair. My younger daughter is lucky, they have her selection in her size in stock. My older daughter is not as lucky. They do have her size, BUT it’s the display pair which we can clearly see is scuffed up and scratched. She doesn’t want to pay $200 for damaged boots and I would kill her if she did. The salesperson says it’s a popular style and it’s flying off the shelves. She wants to give her 10% off the display pair to make the sale. My daughter says no, it’s not worth it. So the clerk comes up with a plan B. They will call other stores and see if one of them has the boots in stock and then they can mail them to the house. Fine. I mention to the clerk we do not want a display pair from another store. They call around and finally find a store that has them. My daughter hears the salesperson say are they the “display pair?” because the customer has a problem with our display pair being scuffed. Now my daughter is annoyed that they are making her sound crazy and also because I told the salesperson we don’t want a display pair from another store. After twenty minutes the transaction is complete and the boots should be here in a few days, hopefully undamaged.

Now we return to JCPenney, and it seems they have a second clerk on the job in the shoe department. We find the boots my daughter liked and ask for them in her size. The short, black pair fits fine, the tall gray pair seems impossible to get on and the zipper sticks. I talk her out of getting the gray pair. It takes her long enough to get ready for work without spending an extra 20 minutes trying to put on these boots. Besides, I have a feeling the zipper will break in a week’s time, so we leave with the one pair. We will return in a couple of weeks or so and try again. But, seriously, it shouldn’t be so hard to get boots in September!

To complete this “boot” mission, we end up at The Cheesecake Factory, where we all enjoy a nice dinner and some family banter. Then we order a couple of slices of cheesecake to go. Now we are all satisfied.

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