The Swedish Experiment

What happens when you take two people and put them into a warehouse-sized maze full of home wares they need to purchase, yet in a building that lacks natural light and clocks? Also add into this little experiment the fact that they have to AGREE on everything that is purchased without maiming each other? Well, 15 hours later they’re a lot poorer, probably a bit fatter and definitely a lot crazier.

It may seem hard to believe, but the Mr. and I spent about 15 hours total over Friday and Saturday in Ikea. Over the course of these two days, we ate two waffles with vanilla sauce and cherries, one green jello dessert, one pudding with cherries dessert, two salmon dinners, a meatball dinner, a pasta dinner, four hotdogs, a salad with fresh mozzerella & tomato, french fries. We had several side portions of squabbling, too. We also drank 5 glasses of soda, two bottles of bionade soda, two cups of coffee, an alcohol-free beer and a large bottle of water.

At noon on Friday, it all started off well enough. Our first priority was to order a wardrobe for the bedroom. Sounds easy enough, and it should have been since we first visited Ikea to get an idea of what we wanted three months ago…and debated long and hard on what to get back then. At the time, we  decided on this with the intent to go back and purchase it when I returned from the US:

But on further reflection and after spending an inordinate amount of time staring at the bedroom walls, I came to the conclusion that something that dark might stand out too much and look strange in our bedroom. Because here’s the thing: the ceilings of our flat are all very high, about 12 feet high, to be exact. And our walls are all bright white. So somehow, a dark monolith taking up an entire wall set against bright white walls that go up 12 feet just wasn’t adding up. Plus the bedroom doesn’t get a lot of natural light anyway, so it’s always fairly dark. I told the Mr. my thoughts on the wardrobe, and after only a short discussion he said he didn’t have the energy to think about it anymore and was happy with whatever I wanted. So we left for Ikea on Friday and figured ordering the wardrobe would be fairly straightforward. Ha! It never is.

We get there and find the wardrobe I thought would look the best in the room:

We drew up our design for the interior. But then, somewhere along the way, the discussion about color began AGAIN, and after about two hours of hemming and hawing (partially over lunch), the Mr. came to the conclusion that he simply couldn’t live with a white wardrobe for the next 20 years. And I came to the conclusion that I simply didn’t care anymore – I’d be happy with whatever; it was too exhausting to think otherwise. So back to square 1:

We went to the counter to place the order. The salesperson then informed us that we couldn’t order the black Pax system with one-half of it mirrored, as planned. Uh oh. So we asked about the white Pax system above, and whether we could order it with one-half of it mirrored? Nope, no can do. She suggested that perhaps we’d like to consider ordering a wardrobe with doors that open out instead of the sliding style, as these can be combined with mirror doors? Truth is, we talked about all this back in April and decided we weren’t interested in ordering something with doors that opened up; we (i.e. the Mr.) really wanted sliding doors. But at the moment, after we had spent hours and hours debating which unit and what color to order, after we had gone back and forth on what would look best, while we were standing at the finish line of finally getting this damn thing ordered, desperation set in – we just caved. The woman showed us our options and she quickly started helping us put something together a little like this:

Not exactly like what we had designed, but close....

Suddenly, the project we had labored over deciding and agreeing on for literally months looked totally different in the wake of 15 minutes. We placed the order. Sure, it wasn’t we had planned to order, but I was happy with it.  That evening, however, the Mr. stands in the bedroom and says “I’m just not sure whether something that dark will look good in here.” Oh, dear lord. So on Saturday morning, we went back to Ikea. It took customer service about an hour to figure out how to cancel our original order, place the new one and reschedule the delivery (which they very kindly did for us as a sort of “exception” to the usual rules), but we finally got everything sorted and ordered our new wardrobe:

Perfection, at last.

We also bought side tables for the bedroom, a couple bathroom towel racks, a huge purple rug for the guest room/office, bedding, pillows, and LOTS of Ikea cookies and candy. I love the samples they have sitting out everywhere, but it is dangerous, my friend….

Anyway, last night the Mr. started putting together one of the bedroom side tables. He cheerfully told me that maybe he could work on putting together something every evening until it’s all done, when he promptly sliced his thumb on his right hand pretty deeply. He washed it with cold water, and we slapped some expired Neosporin on it and a band-aid. Thankfully, the wardrobe isn’t being delivered until Thursday, so we’ve got a few days before the flat is completely taken over by flat-packed boxes. And then the real fun can begin….


About bittenbythebug

I love travel and have always been fascinated by other cultures. Back in 2004, I began my life as an expat in Edinburgh, Scotland. Fast forward 5 1/2 amazing years later to 2010 and the new chapter in my expat adventure: Würzburg, Germany.
This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to The Swedish Experiment

  1. Bonnie says:

    Hooray for Ikea! I do think you two will need to have some alcohol before you start deciding about the kitchen…

  2. cliff1976 says:

    Was your soda Lingonberry? That’s always my choice when I’m there.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s