I can't believe I've done it. I always swore I never would. It's just so unlike me. I don't know what came over me. However, here I am having crossed the threshold. Last week, I gave in and bought something from a door to door salesman. Even my daughter was incredulous. "What on earth happened?" she asked. "You always say no and shut the door on them." I do admit that I am pretty skilled at this and can even make short work of those trying to offer me nine steps to heaven or enlightening literature.
What did happen then? Perhaps it was my tiredness after a day of work that made me sluggish and slower than usual to react in my normal way. Maybe it was the fact that any interruption was welcome to save me from refereeing the children's mealtime. It may well have been that on opening the door to the young guy, I found that he made a big effort to be pleasant even though this was probably his umpteenth call of the day and he was surprisingly presentable. What can I say? I am a sucker for a man in a suit. (Although you'd think I would have learned my lesson on that one given my divorce from a suited man!) You should see some of the specimens we get knocking at our door. They look more suited to appearing in mug shots on Crime Watch than being the faces of successful companies. He informed me later on in the conversation that he had gotten a haircut and removed his earrings to look more presentable. Bless him; his parents must have been so proud. He also told me how he'd been beaten up at the age of 15 and ended up in hospital for a broken jaw and arm. For the life of me, I can't seem to recall the relevance of this to our conversation. Good job that hadn't been his opening line or he would not have ended up perched on the bottom of my stairs, taking my details. Credit card details, not my phone number!
So, what did I buy? I'd like to tell you it was something useful like a vacuum cleaner because I am in desperate need of a new one but no, it was nothing so practical. I signed up for a subscription to LOVEFILM. Oh yeah baby, we can watch movies all the time and work our way through all the box sets of shows that we have missed. The kids were thrilled! Had their mother actually agreed to more TV? What was I thinking? I hardly ever watch TV as it is. How on earth am I going to find time to watch more TV? And whilst my kids aren't exactly couch potatoes, do they actually need more time in front of the box? Perhaps they might find something educational to watch? Wishful thinking I dare say although recently they have been keen to watch clips which prove the existence of underwater, mythical creatures. What is more likely is that they will squabble not only over the X-box, Wii or regular TV shows but also which programs they will watch on LOVEFILM.
Do you think anyone has ever bought something at the door that they are totally thrilled about? I am going to save judgement until after the summer holidays. Surely I will find time to work my way through at least a couple of series of The West Wing if I can wrestle the TV away from the kids. If not, it would appear that I can cancel my subscription at any time with the click of a button although I find this very hard to believe. No doubt I will have to read my way through 10 pages of Terms & Conditions, which are written in microscopic writing, only to find that I have signed my life away and have no way of getting out of the contract.
Excuse me now while I practise my much needed but rusty 'saying no' skills. I cannot afford a repeat of last week's, doorstep side swipe. Failure to do so may result in me buying a Timeshare holiday which can only be used during the school term, by 2.5 people, on months of the year ending in an x.