So I helped someone move today. I've got to remember to stop volunteering for this, but after four episodes I show no signs of stopping. (I'm kidding.)
She, a friend from my university's drama group, needed to move a mattress and a dresser that wouldn't fit in a car. She was in a bind at the last minute, because the arrangements she had made earlier fell through. So I figured my stepfather's van wasn't as good as a truck but we might get the dresser in it and tie the mattress to the roof rack. Much to my relief, it turned out the mattress (and box spring!) fit easily in the van, despite its being said to have been a double. It took two trips with the van and additional cars, but we got her moved!
Anyway, getting back to the tying the mattress to the roof, even though it ultimately didn't happen, the thought that it would be necessary created a lot of drama. Today's Labour Day and most larger stores are closed, and my friend texted me this morning saying she couldn't make it to Canadian Tire in time last night. (Oh noes!) I start to panic inside. I envision either a walking party (for 20+ blocks) with the mattress, or holding it down on the roof with our arms out the windows. Frightening, frightening.
When I got on my way, I checked at a whole bunch of stores... Valufoods, Farmer Clem's and Needs (all in Hammonds Plains), a store in Birch Cove that once was big on hardware but has since moved to an organic food model, and a Shoppers Drug Mart, all without success. I felt like Sam Gamgee, wanting rope when I didn't have it.
A tip about the store in Birch Cove came from one of my Grade 12 English teachers (I took that course three times too), and they did have some hardware, and even two different kinds of rope sold by the foot. I was just about to text my friend and say that our rope problem had been solved, but then I figured I'd better ring it up first. So I say to the cashier, "OK, I'd like 30 feet of the thick stuff. Where do I start?"
"Uhh... I don't even know if we're open for that today. You could try Rockingham Hardware... but I doubt if they're open today."
They weren't. In retrospect, I probably should have insisted on measuring and buying the rope, but I didn't. Luckily it worked out best that I didn't.
I made several other stops, and finally, while trundling down Robie Street, thinking that we wouldn't get her mattress moved today, it possessed me to go into the little Indian grocery store just south of North Street. Who knows what odds and ends they'd have, right?
I looked around the tightly packed, busy store, and what should I see hanging from a hook on a rafter but one package of clothes rope! Some days it's nice to be tall. So I bought that, but in the end I was more relieved not to have to tie anything to the roof at all. It was my stepfather's van, and adding something like a mattress to a roof is a great way to attract (police) attention.
Anyway, a successful day!