So, award for worst service – quite possibly for the whole year as I cannot imagine this can be topped – goes to the Victoria branch of House of Fraser. I went in there yesterday to buy a small wheelie suitcase... It went like this:
Me: “Could you please tell me the price of the largest one of these? (proffering case) I’m going to buy this but I need a bigger case too”
Gormless salesman: “It’s on the shelf”
Me, patiently: “You don’t have that size, just the label which says it goes up to a larger size”
GS: “It’s probably a bit more expensive, like £20 or something”
Me: “Do you have a system where you could look it up for me? Maybe if you put the code in for this case, it would help you find the whole range?”
GS: “Nah, it just says we’ve got 4 of these in stock”
Me, giving up: “Okay, never mind, I’ll look it up on the internet. Could I have a fresh one of these rather than the one from the shelf then?”
GS, instantly: “That’s the last one”
Me: “But you just said you have 4....”
GS: “The system sometimes doesn’t update for 24 hours”
Me: “But it’s Monday morning, and you are in an area which doesn’t get much traffic at the weekend, are you really saying you’ve sold 3 of these this morning?”
GS: “Funny, innit?”
Me, to self: Not really.
Do you think there’s a dragon in the stockroom and it’s just too scary to even go in there?
This joins my past favourites:
1) Russell and Bromley when I took back my extremely expensive Superga plimsolls when the rubber edge had perished after only a couple of wears; they told me I had obviously been “scuffing my feet”. I pointed out that I was not, in fact, 7 years old. Nor had I been for some time.
2) L K Bennett where I witnessed a woman taking back her boots from which the high heel had broken off. She was told that the heel was “not an integral part of the boot” but a “fashion item”! I left swiftly, abandoning my intended purchase.
Well, off on this work trip now up north; let’s just hope it doesn’t jeopardise any future US career.