Saturday, November 13, 2004

Flipping Out

The other day Yaacov and I bought two sets of duvet covers and sheets. I thought the ones we picked were really nice. When I got them home and put them out on the bed, I decided really didn't like them in the room. I needed to take them back.

I really didn't want to go back to the store by myself. My Hebrew is not good and I didn't feel "empowered" to make the exchange. In Israel, you can't get your money back. You just get a store credit or exchange. I walked to the place where we bought them and rehearsed the Hebrew on the way there. It is a 30 minute walk and the two sets of sheets got heavy after a while in the hot sun!

I got there and the woman that sold them to us was there. She was also working with another lady. They said that they wouldn't take back the sheets. This was totally ridiculous! We didn't wash them or use them. I put up a good argument (even for Israeli standards) but they finally said the they were simple workers and not the manager. If we wanted to exchange them, we'd have to see the manager. She would be in on Sunday.

So, I had to walk all the way back home with the damn things...and then go back on Sunday (the first workday in Israel) and talk to the manager.

I felt bad after this. I got really angry with the women. I got really angry with Israel for being a place where customer service isn't part of the culture. I was pissed that I had not been able to get the job done.

Accept the things you cannot change.

The women may have just been workers and might have gotten in trouble had they accepted the return. (If they said this in the beginning, I might not have freaked out on them.) There was nothing we could do about it. But instead of getting all bent out of shape, why not let it go? I have always looked at people who say to me, "Just let it go" as if they were from outer space. In the past, I had no idea what that means. I am beginning to understand.

Letting go for me needs a physical action. Next time I get angry like this and there is a situation that I can't do anything about. I am going to do something for myself that feels good...like eat ice cream, go to an art gallery, read a book, have tea, do yoga, ...something positive to "let go".

There's no need to take all of those bad feelings and spread them around to other people.

When you're feeling bad, it's a sign from your soul that you need a little lovin'. If there's nobody around to help, well, you just have to love yourself.

(PS: We finally got them to exchange both sets of sheets. Since the new items we wanted to exchange them for cost more than the sheets we originally purchased, we ended up spending 100 more shekels...or about $20!)

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