The chair that got away

Let the weekend begin! My landscape: ice water with Bountiful Basket lemons in good ole southern mason jar; laptop, and waiting for me later, my reading chair by the breezy window. Ahhh. Did you hear that sigh, Madison County?!

This weekend is one in which I’ve anticipated since June. Georgia summers are hot, no surprise. But in mid-September the humidity and heat breaks into the loveliest fall seasons anywhere. Temps lower to the 70s during the day and 50s at night. The air is clear and bright. It’s refreshing and wonderful to be outside again.

That is what is predicted by meteorologists for this weekend. I can’t wait.

It’s a Bountiful Basket Weekend, so that means going to get the Basket Saturday morning, and then returning home to wash it all and process it. I soak it all in the sterilized sink in tepid water with a cup of vinegar mixed in (to kill bugs or germs). By process, I mean storage for lengthier life, and cooking the rest right away.

A new second hand store has opened up an eighth of a mile from me, and is on the street I go down to pick up my Bountiful Basket. If you’re from RI this store is like Job Lot and if you’re from Maine this store is like Marden’s. If a truck carrying Nike’s crashes on the highway and the boxed get damaged but the shoes are OK, they can’t really sell the clothes as new, but they will sell them in bulk at a reduced price and off the booty goes to the 2nd hand store. Like Amazon.com Warehouse Deals. Inventory changes daily.

I am not a shopper nor a consumer and I strive to “want” very few things that I don’t “need.” But last Saturday I stopped in on my way home just to check it out. It would be good to know if there were useful things in this nearby store that I could buy inexpensively. There was the usual jumble of new clothes, 20lb bags of non-clumping litter, small kitchen appliances, expired cereal or candy in bulk, and in the back, some furniture.

I have a nice dining chair at my table where I spend a great deal of time. It’s Italian, so that equals pretty and well-made. It’s about an inch too high though, and the circulation gets cut off behind my knee. I compensate by wearing one-inch flip-flops so my feet rest ergonomically at the floor, but still, it’s a good chair just the wrong height for the table and my legs.

In the 2nd Hand Store, I saw some chairs. There were nice upholstered chairs for $30, which is a terrific price since upholstered furniture is expensive. I hesitate to buy any kind at any yard sale unless I know the person, because I’m convinced the chair will be infested with rats or bugs. In one lonely corner I saw a dusky gray Lexan or Lucite chair that had no legs, but runners.

I sat in it. It feels like the glass slipper when it went on Cinderella. I sank into it and it was both sturdy but comfortable. I knew that I knew it was a good chair. It wasn’t marked with a price but considering upholstered living room chairs and recliners were listed at $25 or $30, I suspected I could grab the chair for $15 or even $10.

Then I talked myself out of it. “You already have a chair. What will I do with the chair I have if I get this chair? I have no room for more furniture. Skip the chair. Make do.”

I went home. I thought about it Sunday. I regretted not getting the chair. I have only felt that way once or twice. Because consuming things means they’re consumable, and my life is eternal, I usually don’t stress about making or not making purchases. But this one nagged at me.

I looked up the type of chair it was and to my dismay I discovered that it was an Ikea Tobias Chair, selling for $100-125. They apparently are much beloved and highly sought after. I KNEW it!

IKEA photos

They were closed on Mondays so I had to wait until Tuesday to go back. The chair was gone, as I suspected it would be. Someone else was not as dumb as I was and nabbed that thing up right away.

Losing out on that deal, and a really comfortable chair, will haunt me forever. Sometimes my frugality and my practicality comes back to bite me. And a good deal on 20lb non-clumping litter just doesn’t feel the same.

Happy shopping and happy weekend!

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One thought on “The chair that got away

  1. My first thought about the chair – and what you can tell yourself to soften the blow – is that it might have gone for more, if someone in the store knew what it was. Let's just assume it went for more. 🙂

    If that doesn't keep the chair from haunting you, remind yourself of all the other junk you've saved yourself from by being frugal and rejoice in that instead. 🙂 It does help.

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