Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Peas in a Pod

My inagural post is of course, one about complaining. I hope it doesn't set the tone for the whole blog, but I needed to get it out somewhere.

I occasionally use the grocery service Peapod. For those unaware, it allows you to order groceries online and have them delivered to your house. I'm also a big user of Amazon Prime for things that are harder to find or more expensive locally, so the UPS and FedEx guys know my house well.

Peapod is different. They will lure you in with "FREE DELIVERY" and things of that nature. Where I live, the grocery store paired with them is Stop and Shop. I don't mind Stop and Shop so much, we have a "Super" one in our town and while it is close, we are a one car family and I don't drive. I'm working on this but even so, Keenan doesn't get back from work until 6:30 and the idea of carting an infant around a grocery store doesn't exactly appeal to me right now.

Having groceries delivered seemed like an ideal solution, especially since I am still in the post-op recovery period after my c-section to get my stubborn kid out. I sat in my living room and looked at the ad online and added things to the Peapod cart. I saw an ad for "30 cents off gas" if you bought six items in a category and there were things in the category we normally use, so I added those too. Stop and Shop does gas points - some stores, like mine, have gas stations and they are also partnered up with Shell gas stations to offer these discounts. You get a point for every dollar spent and 100 points equals 10 cents off gas per gallon. I try to be frugal and spending $100 isn't unheard of for groceries in my house but I try to keep it lower than that, so when one of their "X cents off gas" deals pops up for items I actually use, I go for it. Keenan drives about 50-60 miles round trip to work so any money saved on gas is nice.

After sending the login info to Keenan to go over the list, we checked out and I agreed on a delivery time. Unfortunately it was on a day he was working late and wouldn't be home to help me put the groceries away. I figured I could handle it as long as the delivery guy brought the items up the stairs for me since we live on the second floor.

I didn't have free delivery and paid $6 for that. I did, however, get a dollar off because I use "direct check" - linking my bank account to the service. My total was a little over $85. I didn't get a ton of items but I did get things we needed.

Keenan and I agreed on a $3 tip and I set the cash aside on a shelf so I'd remember when the guy came.

A text message arrived the next morning updating me on my delivery window - they'd be there between 6:30 and 8:30PM. I went about my day and the kid was asleep just after 6. Great, that way I wouldn't have a crying baby and a rowdy dog to deal with.

I heard the delivery truck pull up and put the dog out back, shutting the door so she couldn't get through the dog door. I waited at the top of the steps and the doorbell rang. The downstairs door was unlocked, but the guy was just standing there. It's pretty clear that there are steps that go up, but it was also clear that he had no desire to open the door. I figured "maybe it is policy not to" and slowly went downstairs in my sweats and t-shirt.

When I opened the door, he stared at me and I greeted him. He looked around and started grabbing the bags he'd set on the outside steps and looking for somewhere to put them. At this point I realized there'd be no help from him getting things up the stairs, so I moved over and told him he could set things on the steps. I'll admit to not using Peapod a lot but every time I have in the past, the delivery guys have always offered to bring whatever I ordered up the stairs for me. I typically decline as I'm stubborn but the one time I needed it, the guy just did not seem interested in doing anything.

I still tipped him, because hey, he probably makes ten bucks an hour and he did bring eight or so bags up my driveway, but I wasn't too thrilled about attempting to carry probably more than my ten pound weight restriction up my stairs. I did manage to do it but only put the "cold stuff" away and left everything else out while I went to shower.

Oh it doesn't end there. Nope.
A couple days later, I was REALLY excited to eat some strawberries and kiwi. Fresh fruit was a big craving of mine while pregnant and unfortunately after the pregnancy, I haven't had much of an appetite. I'm breastfeeding, so obviously eating is very important to fuel that and while I'm not eating bad food, I do have to force myself to eat a lot, so really wanting something was surprising in a good way.

No sooner did I grab the carton did my face fall. There was a big splotch of mold on the bottom. Many four letter words came out of my mouth when I looked at the top and saw a huge patch all over a nice juicy strawberry in the center of the carton as well. The kiwis were okay, but dammit. I tossed the strawberries in the trash and walked into the bedroom to complain to my sleepy husband.

I wish I could say this is the first time this has happened. I get that someone else is shopping for me and they are probably trying to get their oldest produce rotated out but I feel that is like sticking it to the consumer. I am kicking myself for not checking things but I don't even know if there would have been recourse if I had seen the condition they were in when the guy dropped them off. Could I have refused to take them? I don't know.

Either way, I won't be using Peapod again. Between the unhelpful delivery guy and this latest produce incident, I guess I'll be carting around an infant and a husband to the grocery store.

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