If we’re going to keep seeing each other this way, there’s probably something you should know about me. I have, according to my best friend, this syndrome in which I do something making it difficult, if not impossible to go back to certain places. The “something” I do is not always the same thing, but it whatever it is, it means that I’ve either done something so embarrassing (like make a detour so that I could pass by the guy I had a crush on, only to learn that I had chocolate smeared on the ass of my shorts from driving around in the hot car eating a candy bar), shameful (walk by another crush at a different time–it might actully have been the same crush–only to learn that my skirt was tucked up into my underwear), or strident (see below) that re-entry is an impossibility.
Today I walked out on an appointment. I can never go back.
Backstory: I grew up in a family business. A restaurant. I started working there doing odd jobs when I was 11. Customers, then, were a part of my life whether I liked it or not. And one of the things I learned is that no the customer isn’t always right but you need to make the customer think he is always right (unless he insults your mother in front of you–then he is wrong. Very, very wrong. So wrong that he will be kicked out before he pays his bill). Another important lesson was to not keep people waiting. And if they were waiting you checked up on them, sold them another drink, kept them happy (kept the drinks strong).
As such, other people’s time is important to me. So important, in fact that I try to always be early for appointment if not right on time (and when I am late I feel so guilty that I could self-flagellate on the spot). And as a person who runs her own business, I take my time very seriously and so if you are a business I am going to you had goddamned well better not keep me waiting–not if you are a dentist (oh, that creepy dentist Dr. Tony kept me sitting in the chair for an hour once. Did I let him have it), not if you are a doctor, not if you are a vet, and not even if you are a hair stylist and my hair is in desperate need of a trim.
That’s right. Today, I had a hair appointment at 1:45. An odd time, I thought, and so I even called before I left the house to confirm. I was told yes, 1:45. I arrived right on the nose at 1:45 and was told to wait and that the person would be right with me.
1:45. 1:50. 1:55. 2:00. 2:05. 2:10.
me: “Hi. I’ve been waiting for a while… “
receptionist: “They’re running behind today. All day.”
me: “Oh really? I called before I left home.”
receptionist: “She should be right with you.”
me (walking over to coat rack to get my coat): “I think I’m just going to leave.”
receptionist: “Do you want to reschedule?”
me: “Nope.” And I’m out the door and in my car. As I’m backing out, I see the receptionist running across the parking lot waving her arms at me.
I roll down my window.
receptionist: “She’s ready for you now.”
me: “I’m just going to go.”
receptionist: “Do you want to reschedule.”
Okay. So 25 minutes doesn’t seem like an awfully long time to wait for most people and I feel a tiny bit precious over the whole thing. Honestly, though, if they had been more forthcoming about the whole thing, let me know that I’d have a bit of a wait, check in with me, and have something other than Men’s Health and an In Style from December in their waiting room, I would have been okay. The problem was the lack of communication and the lack of remorse. Now they have an extra hour in which they have no customer and I have ugly hair. But that’s okay. I have done my penance: I bought myself some Altoids sour apple chewing gum at the grocery store and now the inside of my mouth is bleeding (!!!).
And so now, as I sit here with my bangs in my eyes, you know the ugly truth about me and the issue of re-entry.