Yesterday I was on the phone with two different Customer Service people. One Company is a delivery service which I will not call by name but refer to as “Brown.” The second Customer Service person worked for an excessively big e-commerce site named after a large river in South America which I will refer to as “River.”
The first call was to Brown. I was actually trying to find someone who could tell me why the status of a claim I had filed over a month ago, due to their error, had not gone any further than a “Being Investigated” status. Brown had shown the package as delivered and left at the back door on a specific date in June. First, we do not have a back door and second, we like most people in June had been home and going nowhere due to the pandemic. You see, we didn’t have to get out much because we actually had toilet paper and paper towels! Yea Us! So, I had filed a claim online, but I will spare you those grisly details.
I went to Brown’s website to try and find a customer service number to call to no avail. What did “pop” up was a virtual assistant, ready to assist me. If you have ever dealt with one of these fabulous wonders of virtual technology, you now have an idea of the roller coaster ride I had just gotten buckled into. If you have not, you have truly been blessed.
The virtual assistant asked what I needed help with and when I typed what I needed, it responded with “Did you mean?: ‘this question’ or ‘ that question’ or another two or three more questions” that were not in any way relevant to the information I needed. I then tried to “dumb it down” only to have it respond again with the “Did you mean this?” or “Did you mean that?” I answered with a No, No, No, No. Then I then typed “talk to someone”. And up popped a toll-free number. Oh, Yea again! It is amazing what small joys can come from the internet!
After that, this piece of virtual crap had the audacity to ask me if the Virtual Assistant had been helpful. To this I answered “NO” again. By this time, I have said “No” so many times I was reminiscing back to my children’s toddler years and was questioning whether or not I really cared where the d&!#n package was. Virtual Assistant then wanted my advice on how they could improve their system, and I typed, “You are on your own!” and shut down the web page. It kinda felt like hanging-up on ‘em! Woo Hoo!
By now I had to have another cup of coffee just to get inspired to call the number. But I did and the recording was so glad to hear from me that it gave me a whole list of ‘what numbers to push for this’ and ‘what numbers to push for that’. Again, the descriptions behind all the button pushing didn’t really fit my query. So, I just closed my eyes and pushed a button. Then I listened to music………… It was almost like the toddlers had gone to bed for a nap…………
Sooner or later a Customer Service person came on the line, but his voice was so foreign and so quiet, that I could barely understand him or hear him. I had to ask him to repeat himself again and again. I’m sure he was thinking, “This old bat can’t hear a thing”. But to defend myself, my children would tell their friends, “She has eyes in the back of her head and she can hear a mouse fart, so whispering around her is not an option, she will hear us”. And not much has changed since then except that the eyes now require reading glasses.
So, after a bit of painful conversation, Mr. Customer Service knows what I am looking for, but he must put me on hold. More music. Now I’m thinking……I need a nap and the coffee is gone. But just a while later he does come back on the line with a jubilant and slightly louder voice, and says, “The package was delivered to C&!#y C!#er at 1481 Wrong Street address in my town. I sighed and reminded him that I had already told him the delivery confirmation had said this, and that it was not my name or my address. Long Pause………More music, no coffee, no nap.
Just so you know, this is all because I purchased an item from China.
He’s back, and he’s now telling me that when it came into the United States, the River picked it up in Sterling, VA and they are the reason the name and address were entered incorrectly and I needed to call them. I’m looking at the same information he is, again. I asked if he had their number and he gave it to me. Why does he have their number immediately accessible on his desk? But at this point I’m amazed that it has taken this long to “pass the buck”.
I tell him that I saw that, and when the confirmation had a person’s name and address in my small town, I actually looked them up online, and after two numbers (one wrong one) left them a message on their voice mail about the package. I even went by their house, but no one was home. I looked on their back porch, because unlike me, they actually have a back door, no package. The person who lives at this address did call me back and we had a pleasant chat and after talking to this person for 10 or 15 minutes I found them to be very genuine and I was convinced that they had not received the package.
I then asked Mr. Customer Service to please let me know if my case had been given to the driver here or looked for at Brown in Sterling, VA. His answer, was of course, “I’m really sorry ma’am, but I have no way to know this.” So, after all this, he doesn’t know any more than I do. I thanked him for his time, and he apologized again, and I told him to have a nice day. I did hang up on him, but in a nice way. Bless his heart.
The reason that I am so hell bent on finding this package is because it is a gift for my 4 year old granddaughter that was purchased for her birthday when she was 3 and now she is 4 and her birthday has come and gone. You must know that I feel like such a SUCKY Grandma. Can’t even get the kid a present in time for her birthday. So, you see I’m really in a bind to find this package which is a slide for her playground set that her dad built for her. I had bought swings and those were installed, and the other grandma had bought climbing handled thingies for her climbing wall and they were installed and all that was missing was the SLIDE. Bad, bad, sucky Grandma!
CALLING THE RIVER……….
So, I dig up the fortitude to call the River at the number Mr. Customer Service at Brown has given me, and I get a recording, of course. Evidently though, he has given me the correct department because they asked me if it is a domestic shipment or an international shipment. So here I am trying to figure out if they mean right now or where it came from originally, so I push the button for domestic thinking that maybe we’ll get to the bottom of this Sterling, Virginia, name, and address problem.
This nice lady comes on and tells me her name and wants to know how she can help me. I tell her that my problem is: I’m trying to find out what happened to my package at the River in Sterling, Virginia . She tells me that she must look up my account, so I give her my email address, spelling it to her slowly, and she says it doesn’t come up under that email address. I said “well it should,” so I gave her a second email address, spelling slowly for her again, and she says again “it doesn’t come up under that…….OH, OH…….wait a minute…….YES, YES, it does.” Phew! Okay, I’m starting to think we may be getting somewhere.
Now she wants to know what the billing address is, so I gave her my daughters address because she’s the one that pays the bill for “River” Prime and after repeating it three times, she finds my account. Now we’re back to “how can I help you?” I tell her what the problem is again, and she asks, “what is your order number?” I tell her I do not have an order number. She says, “Well, did you buy it from Amazon?” I say no and she says, “Then why are you calling here?” I’m trying not to tell her what I think of her customer service skills, and I say, “Because it shows that when it reached the United States you, The River, had it in your possession in Sterling, Virginia and I am trying to find out why the wrong name and address was put on the package.” So, she says hold on just a minute, and you know the rest…….more music. Although, at least it is different music!
She is gone for a while and when she comes back, she wants to know what website I purchased it from and why I don’t have an order number. I tell her that they never gave me an order number, that I had to file a claim with PayPal just to get a good tracking number, and that I had tracked it from China to the US, and from when Brown picked it up in Sterling, Virginia and to all the places it had gone until it showed delivered, but not to me.
I gave the web address of the company where I purchased it and she says, “it doesn’t pull up anything” and I say, “Tell me about it!’ The website has been taken down. Then she asked me what the seller’s name was, and with that information she is going to look to see if they have an account with that person’s name. On hold…….more music.
She comes back. No such account. I tell her that this situation really seems to be a third-party purchase. And she informs me that they do not do that. She wants to know if I have tried to contact them and I tell her yes, I have emailed them directly, I have emailed them through PayPal, and I have called four different telephone numbers and I still don’t have any more information than I started out with. She says, “that’s because River never had it, because we do not do third party shipping“. I told her I know you have told me that already. But ask her to please explain why Brown’s confirmation number states that the River had custody of it in Sterling, VA. She says, “I don’t know ma’am, but the River does not do third-party shipping.” So, I ask her are you telling me that my Brown confirmation number is bogus? She says, “I don’t know ma’am, but we do not do third party shipping.” Then she asks if I have the confirmation number and I say “yes, would you like to look it up too?” She asked me if I will give her that number and I do, and she puts me on hold…….more music.
When she comes back, she says that the number is in their system, but it is from two years ago. I say, “So now I have a bogus Brown confirmation number and it is outdated by two years. Am I to assume that you think this confirmation number, and the email, and the copy I have printed, is a figment of my imagination? And if you do, let’s not forget about PayPal and Brown because they believe that this is a valid confirmation number also.”
And she says, “I don’t know ma’am, but the Riv”…….and I scream, “STOP, STOP, STOP, STOP, don’t you dare say that again, I heard what you said ALL FOUR TIMES. What is happening here is that YOU ARE NOT listening to me! I am only trying to find a package that contains a Birthday present for my 4-year-old Granddaughter” (thinking I might at least get some sympathy or compassion or something.) And she says, “Hold on just a minute, I will talk to my Supervisor” and click…….more music. And I’m thinking right now what they need is another button to push for “Music that Calms the Savage Beasts.” But I wait.…….
I’m wondering if she really is talking to her Supervisor, or if she has taken a bathroom break for a good cry, or if she’s actually on her break, gone to lunch, or has clocked out. I really don’t know how much time has lapsed, because at this point, I have lost all sense of time and I’m not even sure if I know what day it is. But at last, she does come back.
She says, “My Supervisor said that if Brown can’t locate your package, and we have no record of it, and PayPal will not pursue it any further, she suggests that you contact your Bank and dispute the charges, and that is the best suggestion we can offer.” …………I’m stunned! This is probably the most concrete sensible thing I have heard all day! I’m pretty sure I was speechless because she asked more than once, “Are you still there.” I said yes.
And believe it or not, her next words were, “Is there anything else I can help you with?” I’m sorry, but I had had enough by now, and my mouth responded before my brain kicked in and I said, “Are you f&!#ing kidding me?” And I hung up. There was no sense in blessing her heart because I’m pretty sure she may not have one.
After all these dead ends you would think I would write it off, but you don’t know me if you do.
ON TO THE BANK……….
The first thing I did was get online with my bank and dispute this transaction.
THE SEARCH CONTINUES……….
Then not being able to control myself, I searched in Google for another slide. Couldn’t find one locally. I ventured out into different websites that had playground equipment. Most of them had slides, but they were $200-$300. I found one website that actually had a phone number and I called them to see if they had this slide available and then asked what is your location? The gentleman on the phone acted as though that was a strange question but said that they were in Minnesota. He said that they are so far behind he couldn’t even give me a date as to when I would receive the slide. So, I thanked him and searched again.
Lo and behold, the Home Depot pops up with this cute little yellow slide! That I can order online! And pick up myself, in person, at Home Depot ! I threw all caution to the wind and ordered it. It will be here in approximately 4 days. Not only that I have already received a shipping notification that the little yellow slide is on its way to the Home Depot store! Where I’m picking it up! Myself! No Shipper! Just Me! I can hardly express my joy!
All I know is that I am exhausted, and I hope I never, ever, ever, ever order anything from China again.
…………….till next time, One Crazy Lady ♥♥♥