Ikea. I always dream of going there but leave curiously unfulfilled. I have visions of all of these inexpensive but designy items that I imagine will make my home Martha Stewart worthy. Yet once I am there I am disappointed by the shabbiness of it all and hardly buy a thing.
Yet still the promise remains so I will rarely turn down a chance to go there since being carless, the occasions are few and far between. This weekend, when T. suggested a quick jaunt on our way back from T.'s birthday party, I readily agreed. What on earth was I thinking? Sunday night at Ikea is the last place to take a preschooler post birthday party.
Poor Izzy hadn't had any proper food all day. Before leaving for the party, he had a quick lunch of carrots and a cream cheese sandwich. After that it was party fare galore, including enough juice to equal his usually weekly quota, along with cupcakes and fruit salad. By the time we left, Izzy was sufficiently sugared up. It was five o'clock on Sunday evening. The only place we should have gone was home.
Instead I forged on with the Ikea plan. I found myself watching as T. wheeled Izzy, slumped in a carriage, as he munched on some granola bars in my bag. When those were gone, I knew I was doomed. It was nearing dinner time and I had no other provisions. The cafeteria there holds no appeal so I wanted to wait until we got home.
We had gone to look at only two things. When we checked out it was past 6:30 and I was kicking myself for dragging poor Izzy along.
Little did I know that when T. purchased her item, we would need to wait for nearly an hour more for it to emerge from behind the scenes. That would mean we were stuck without dinner, at dinnertime, which for me is a tragedy.
You may already be aware that near the check-out area in Ikea there is a small fast-foodish outpost. I figured I would check it out briefly. The only thing I deemed acceptable were some dark, very crunchy Swedish crackers and some kind of bitter fizzy juice. T. was egging me on to purchase what she considered to be plump, juicy hot dogs but of course you all know that was simply NOT an option.
While T. stood awaiting her sofa-bed inside (and sneaking a few juicy hot dogs) Izzy and I went to wait outside and were lucky enough to have a bird's-eye view of planes landing at Newark airport, which entertained him, along with crackers and juice, for most of the hour. Izzy was so calm and patient throughout this he deserved an award. We didn't get home until eight o'clock and even though he is usually in bed by that time, he insisted on eating some leftover bok choy and tofu, while I tried to wash Spiderman from his face.
Izzy was hardly worse off from the wear and tear of the ordeal. I, on the other hand, was ready to collapse. Oh but I did manage to get some lovely glass water bottles for a very reasonable $3.99 each. I hope they will stave off any Ikea yearnings for a long while to come.