So we went to IKEA last night and dropped 1,100 Euros on furniture for our new pad. Couches. Dining room table. End table. Rug. Bed. Mattress. Bathroom rack. Entertainment center. Our place is goign to be an IKEA model home.

The thing is, we were supposed to eat at the restaurant, then go shopping and take our restaurant receipts with us, and they would deduct it from the bill. Cool right? Free Swedish meatballs and ligonberry sauce, hooray.

Except that half the Netherlands was also there waiting in line for their free meal. So we decided to shop first and try and get the discount second. Ehhhhh. Thanks for playing. Buh-bye.

It took two and a half hours to get everything, and then enter in each of our four pallets worth of stuff item by item into the system to schedule the delivery. The place closed at 9:00 and we finished at about 8:50.

Plus, we missed the last bus back to the train station and we didn’t have any way of calling a taxi. So, Ann put on her best ‘lost child’ face and asked at customer service if there was any way to find a taxi service, and the woman standing in line next to her offers to drive us to a train station!

Deciding to keep the good karma going I took my receipts from dinner and handed them to some appropriately tall Dutch guy telling him that they would take 12 Euros off his bill if he gave them to the cashier.

The good karma keeps on rolling.

So, I’d just like to say a warm thank you to Fred and Marysa, who dropped us off at the Zuidplein subway stop. Even though Marysa told us that the place was always in the news because of the murders, we got to the Central Station unmolested and got home much quicker than if we had been waiting in Barendrecht for a local train.

Let it never be said that the Dutch are unfriendly or insensitive to those in need.

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