I knew we had bargained well, but I didn’t realize the full extent of our score from last October until I sat down to write today’s post. Grab a drink, and let me tell you the story.
By the end of the summer I’ve pretty much had as much yard sale fun as I can handle. I like a good deal and all, but thank goodness for winter when Saturdays are mine again. I can head to the gym, read a book, or get caught up on the never ending list of things to do around the house. Even still, there’s this impulse to follow any of the signs taped to lamp posts and stop signs indicating a sale is in process while we’re out and about. We can’t help it…like a moth to a flame you know?
It was a cool and breezy day and an estate sale sign caught Whitney’s eye while we were on a local errand… probably for toothpaste on sale somewhere. We seem to go through a lot of that around here. Anyway, I decided I’d stay in the car while she went in to see what there was to be had. Most of the items were furniture, exercise equipment, and odds and ends. Nothing that we really wanted or needed.
On our way out, we noticed a nice looking gazebo in the side yard. I was sure it was one of those hollow aluminum ones but Whitney thought it might look nice in our yard so bopped back inside to see if it was for sale. The proprietors said that they were taking bids on it, so Whitney jotted down her phone number and a lofty bid of $50.00 for the piece and we left.
About 2 hours later she got a call from a gentleman who said that she was the only bidder for the gazebo but that they couldn’t let it go for $50, because it had such a higher value. He then asked what was the highest we were willing to go. With one hand over the receiver she mouthed the predicament to me and I emphatically shook my head no. I wasn’t paying more than $50 for something that we didn’t know where we’d put, would be a hassle to transport, and was probably made of some cheap material anyway.
Seeing some hesitation, he asked if we could do$75 but I held firm. Whitney was dying inside. She felt like at $75 it was a steal of a deal, but I couldn’t justify it. Sadly, she got off the phone, a bit disappointed that this one wouldn’t be happening. I tried to assure her that we didn’t have the money for it anyway and that if it were meant to be he’d call back – they were moving after all, and I knew they probably didn’t have any other offers if they were calling us in the first place. $50 is better than nothing right?
What happened 10 minutes later? Whitney’s phone rang again, this time I could see her eyes light up as she was told that it was hers, but we had to come and get it that day. We showed up with our $50 and a screwdriver to take it apart – but to our surprise, we needed a socket wrench and a lot of muscle to get it taken down and transported – the whole thing was solid wrought iron and weighed a ton! I couldn’t believe this! Surely this had to be hundreds of dollars worth, no?
We bundled the kids in the car and raced against the sinking sun to get it taken down and disassembled. Each piece was incredibly well built and very heavy. Once at home I moved the pieces into the garage until this last Saturday when we had some good weather to put it up.
We chose a corner in our side yard that almost looked like it was built for this gazebo, complete with a rounded retaining wall. This particular corner never was one I really liked, but now that this is up, I can’t stop looking at it.
It’ll look lots nicer once we get some plant life around it, complete with some climbing wisteria -but I think it’s a vast improvement to the little corner already. And thank goodness to some awesome neighbors that helped me put it back together, it was quite a chore and I’m sure I wasn’t the only one with an aching back and pinched fingers.
I just looked up the prices for something similar online, and really, this was a score – seems like well-built wrought iron gazebos go for thousands of dollars. Thank goodness we decided to stop on that day in October I tell ya!
Have you grabbed anything that turned out to be more valuable than you thought from a yard or estate sale?
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