Friday, 11 July 2008

Fizz fuss

Well, the fizz is here - a very generous gift from Helen, my Dad's wife.
As I said some month ago here, it's come from Cairn o'Mhor, who make marvellous Scottish fruit wines - not just the thick, sweet dark fruit wines, but lovely dry bubbly oak & elder - a locally-produced, interesting alternative to champagne and with lots of lovely overtones of the British countryside.
Getting it across all that picturesque British landscape, however, involves the wonderful world of delivery companies. Now, this is where I cease to be able to engage with the ethics and just get stressed about which companies are most likely to lose/break my stuff. In my fairly extensive experience of online shopping, DPD are great, and actually have that rare thing, an online tracking system that works. Home Delivery Network aren't bad. I've never had stuff from UPS, I think, and hope this remains true as both it and the horribly chaotic DHL have fairly dire corporate ethical records as well.
But unfortunately Cairn O'Mhor use Amtrak, which is without doubt the worst of the pack. They give you 2 shots at being in (because obviously we're still in the 1950s and a good little housewife is always home) and then they charge you for any subsequent deliveries. The other option is that you can go and collect it from their depot - which, in the case of Manchester is out in an industrial estate on the very far outskirts of the city. So, obviously you have to have a car - especially if you're lugging 4 cases of wine. And if you want it redelivering, you, the intended recipient of the parcel, can whistle for it - for some bizarre reason the sender has to arrange this. So more hassle for the poor lovely and very helpful Donna at Cairn o'Mhor.
But, after a merry-go-round of phone calls and emails, the wine is here - with 2 bottles broken, all the other boxes soaked, and interesting little cuts appearing on my arm and hand. The boxes are all in my (very small) living room, with various makeshift protection devices to make sure the cats don't clamber all over them and get covered in glass snicks too.
Maybe I need to go and open one of those bottles, just for a little taste...

1 comment:

Jess said...

Hey Sarah, try TNT, they work for me..

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