Thursday, 24 February 2011

John Lewis (Almost) Redeem Themselves (Sort Of)

There's no argument that the curtains ordered from John Lewis almost five months ago and fitted yesterday are anything but beautiful. Their fitter, Peter, was everything you could want from a fitter ; punctual, polite, friendly and a very clean and tidy worker. In fact, he and the curtains were so good that we were almost prepared to forgive the John Lewis design department their lousy attitude during the long delays. Until, that is, Peter asked if we could spare him a minute. He pointed out that the custom made brass curtain pole was the wrong size. The bends were in the right place and at the right angle but the pole was about 15" short. As you might guess, custom made poles take about six weeks to be made and delivered and we were facing the prospect of another six weeks camped in the spare bedroom. We pointed out that we have a house full on Saturday night and need all the bedrooms and, after the long delays already experienced (see my blog "A Rare Case Of Poor Service From John Lewis") Peter was very understanding and arranged for another fitter to come with some spare lengths of brass which he managed to splice into the custom pole to make the curtains (and the room) usable until the replacement pole arrives. So great curtains John Lewis and a great fitter in Peter but we remain unimpressed with the design service. At the price we paid, I would have thought that a quick and apologetic phone call from someone in authority would be the least we might expect.

My car's being repaired after my moments of madness when I managed to collide with concrete so we had to miss a planned lunch in the country with some old friends today. I went instead to the local auction house to see if I could find any bargains. There were a couple of very nice lots that I was outbid on but I managed to buy a dinner service designed by Clarice Cliff for the Wilkinson factory in the 1930's at the very top of my limit. I'll post a photo here when I've been to collect it.

There was some time to kill in between lots so I had a quick stroll along Lord St which, with all the pavement cafes overflowing, was looking like a mini Champs Elysees in the early spring sunshine. It's the first day this year that anyone not wanting a quick fag would choose to sit outside and the town looked quite cosmopolitan.

Old people are not all sweetness and light as we discovered at Tesco today. The old woman above pushed in front of us at the check out and when we politely pointed out our presence to her she said "I'm with her" pointing to another old lady in front of her. The second woman pointedly ignored her and I doubt that she knew her from Adam. It was busy, there were long queues but being old is not an entitlement to jump them. We just shrugged her cheek off and moved to another aisle. Life's too short to get involved in a row in the supermarket.

We went to see True Grit last night. I loved it. It took me back to my childhood when westerns were the weekly staple. Fortunately I had been warned about Jeff Bridges' mumbling so I was extremely attentive when he was on screen. I would not be surprised if it pips The King's Speech at the Oscars this weekend. In the meantime, here's the trailer for a film due out in the autumn. It looks amazing.