Sunday, December 09, 2012

The road to hell is paved with soft furnishings

This morning we were in Tampines for a BMX race that I was too disorganised to enter (it helps if you have a bicycle, for starters) and so it was only natural that we visited Ikea, home of such Singaporean inventions as meatballs and flat-pack furniture.
Lately I've grown tired of the light blazing through our window when we're trying to sleep, and thought we should invest in curtains that are more opaque than a paper hankie. I've also been told by an accountant that I can write home furnishings off against tax, and there's nothing I enjoy so much as tax-deductible textiles, so we rushed around Ikea putting as many curtains, towels and duvet covers in our basket as we could justify.

When it turns out on my 2012 tax return that you can't write off face cloths, I'm going to feel a right dumbass.

Ikea in Singapore is just like Ikea everywhere else: much more enjoyable if you're shitfaced. Sadly we were both stone cold sober so there was no drunken giggling as we hunted for lost iPhones down the back of demonstration sofas. Instead, we grew enraged with everyone else in the store, who seemed to think of Ikea as a chance to dawdle and lollygag and put themselves in front of our trolley at every opportunity.

My wife's plaintive cries of "excuse me" fell on deaf ears. I started to think those two words aren't included in Singlish, but then I was sunburnt and itching for a fight. A $1 refillable cup of oversweetened ligonberry juice just doesn't cut it when you want your soul to be ameliorated. Still, we survived, heading back to Chinatown in a taxi that vibrated like the devil's own sex toy, and then passed out in bed before 1pm, before we'd even had a chance to put up the new curtains.

Which suggests curtains weren't what we need to assure ourselves of sleep; we need throbbing taxis and a quick escape from slow-moving Singaporeans. I don't know how many of those will fit in our bedroom.


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