19 August 2010

The Parcel

I was all of a tizzy this morning. Looking back I can’t remember which calamity came first but I’ll take it slow and go through it step by step.

It was six thirty in the morning. I had washed my hair the night before, a practice that leaves my hair lifeless and in need of desperate help. This means I have to damp it down, then plaster it with mousse to give it body, and style it with the hairdryer before it gets a chance to ‘set’ … a daily routine that produces wrath on anyone who interrupts the procedure especially, as was to happen today, when I was due to meet new faces at a new venue and wanted to look my best.

After plugging in the hairdryer, I climbed onto the high stool and adjusted the mirrored cabinet doors so that I could see both front and back through the mirror on the back wall. This procedure has to be done speedily because of having hair that dries too fast.

Then the doorbell rang.

I didn’t know people were up at that time let alone calling at houses.

My Guy was in the garden feeding the birds so I had to answer it myself.

Falling off the high stool, forgetting to put on my glasses, I struggled to unlock the door (I couldn’t see!). There stood a post lady holding a parcel. I assumed it was for Guy since it seemed to be terribly official and he’s in the habit of receiving terribly official parcels (updates for his Tax Books or something else to do with the Accountancy Profession.)

The post lady had a hand-held gadget that I had to sign. ‘Write on the screen,’ she said, holding out a pencil, or should I say stylus.

I peered, wondering what screen she was talking about (remember the non-glasses!). She held up the gadget and pointed to the square at the top. I signed. Nothing happened.

She admonished me, saying ‘You didn’t press hard enough.’

I tried again.

Still nothing.

‘Sorry but you’ll have to press harder.’

Well, bearing in mind my arthritic wrists are especially painful and half way to being useless first thing in the morning I felt I was doing an adequate job even holding the pencil … or should I say stylus.

Eventually, lady keyed in my name, then told me to do a squiggle on the tiny screen.

I was happy to do that, but deep down I was cursing the whole thing because my hair by this time was dry and spiky and would need damping down again.

So I struggled in with the rather large parcel, which I put on the kitchen counter, shouting to Guy that there was a parcel for him in the kitchen and tootling off back to the bathroom.

In the process of climbing back on the high stool (think bar stool and you’ll get the picture) I knocked the hairdryer onto the floor whereupon the little plastic bit that switches it on and off fell to the floor.

This was a catastrophe and the final straw.

Talk about panic stations! They lasted until Guy could find the right tool to repair the dryer.

I went back to work on my hair in the bathroom!

‘What about your parcel,’ shouted Guy.

‘It’s not my parcel,’ I retorted.

‘That’s funny,’ he went, ‘it has America written all over it.’

OMG. The penny dropped, it was the parcel I’d been waiting for.

Another problem arose at that point. Although I didn’t know it previously, my sweet and generous friend adores bubble wrap and Sellotape and the two went together beautifully, each one sticking to the other as if they were romantically inclined.

Suddenly impatient to get the parcel open, I grabbed the scissors… quite forgetting the wrists would strenuously object. However, I persevered and managed to create a large enough hole to separate the lovebirds. Only then could we (yes, two of us) wrench the two apart.

I won’t elaborate about the contents, suffice to say that I was overwhelmed by them, and I just HAD to write about the start of my day which, according to Guy, he'd described to his park walking buddy as ‘all hell being let loose first thing this morning.’

Thank you, my dear friend. You will, of course, have received my reply, but I thought I should let the world know about the havoc caused when the post lady delivered your parcel in the small hours.

Is it time to go back to bed yet?


  1. Oh Val....what a start to your day!! I love the photo of the hairdryer...reminding me that our current (electricity) and yours are different...looking at the plug...and I especially love the photo of the artistic!
    It seems that signing for packages are the same there as here...that 'electronic' screen is one that is almost impossible on which to write...and once one writes one's name, impossible to read. :)) Your story is a delightful one to read. Thank you for sharing it.
    I hope that you have a good day and that the contents of the package made the bubble wrap/tape wrestling contest worth the effort!
    Again, I smile...:)

  2. The hairdryer breaking is my worst nightmare, which is why I have two! I love bubble wrap, popping it is so theraputic. :)

  3. haha. hell a parcel...hope the rest of the day is well val. smiles.

  4. Like Akelamalu I have two hairdryers. The crack of dawn hair performance is all too familiar to me. I thought that I was the only one with hair like that. You are not alone!

  5. A morning surprise parcel..??
    Hope you enjoy with something inside the package..
    Love this post!

    Wishing you all the best, Val!!

  6. Oh I don't like mornings that start like that but your day seemed to work out well. How nice to receive a parcel....loved your photos my friend.....:-)Hugs

  7. Hello Valerie:)

    What a terrible morning.I never realised fixing hair is such a difficult job.Climbing on a high stool to do it is like doing an acrobatic exercise. I just can't imagine that women take so much trouble to do up their hair.

    When we are preoccupied with something as serious as your hair,it is quite possible that we don't bother about other things including the parcel.

    But it is something of a puzzle to me as to how Guy came to know it was your parcel.Intuition, clairvoyance,extraordinary sense of perception.I wonder what it could be.It is a mystery to me.

    I hope the remaining part of the day went well.

    Lovely writing Valerie wherein you have so beautifully portrayed the feelings,thoughts,actions, worry about looking good and to add an element of surprise which is really an icing to the cake.The photos make the story realistic. I enjoyed reading this interesting incident.

    Have a nice day Valerie:)


    OMG, Valerie...that was hysterical! Not only are you a wonderful writer, but a comedian as well!

    And I have to agree with Akelamalu...I love bubble wrap. Popping it is so theraputic!

    POP! POP! POP!

    Hope you had a great rest of your day!

  9. That was an eventful start to your day Val. You would be a great candidate for one of those "reality TV" programmes!


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