Moving to Florida: Frustration and chaos, but Daughter’s smile overshadows all

Never has there been such turmoil, such change, such incredibly demanding work. My family’s possessions are scattered: A full storage unit in Florida. A stuffed PackRat trailer stashed in Cherry Hill, NJ. A truckload of possessions at our current home, waiting to be emptied from the house and move to somewhere in Florida … ?
In the midst of chaos there’s a bright light, a gem reflecting outward from the muddle.
A little backstory: Daughter has ingeniously manipulated an ancient iPod into performing modern marvels — texting, face time, youtube, music, gaming and more. She received the palm-sized unit several years ago from an older cousin, who had outgrown it.
For Daughter, her iPod has been a lifeline, especially as she prepares to move to Florida and say goodbye to all of her friends.
Tragedy strikes: Wife sends me a message yesterday saying Daughter dropped her iPod, shattering the screen. She is crushed. Inconsolable.
We’ve talked about when it’s appropriate for Daughter to get her own phone. We have rules — enforced strictly — about online activity. Her Mother and I agreed it was time, considering how she’ll be leaving her friends behind.
Our funds are in short supply right now, with the move and costly house repairs.
I looked for a refurbished phone — futile (unless you wanted to bid in online auctions). I priced new phones at the Big Box stores. At my third stop, I found what I wanted. Guess what: You can’t simply buy a (Verizon) phone off the rack. I had cash from my birthday burning a hole in my pocket. I was ready to pay cash. Nope. The patient clerk explained it to me, three times. I already had a (Verizon) plan. I explained I had just moved here, didn’t know much about the area … Argh.
Then, something good happened. He directed me to where I could find a REAL (Verizon) store, not one of those storefronts like my first stop. Gave me the directions and the phone number. (The next day, I called the store and spoke to a supervisor and complimented the young man.)
I followed his directions, parked and walked in the (Verizon) store. Bada-boom, bada-bing. Free phone Not too big, not too small, not too fancy. All I paid for was Accessories — screen protector, top-of-the-line case, sim card. Assigned Daughter her own phone number. Attentive, hands-on service. Listened to me. Answered my questions. Less than $100. Gave me her business card with instructions to call if I encountered ANY billing problems.
There’s a one-day window late next week when I’ll get to see Daughter. With all this moving stuff, I’m here and she’s there.
We’re both looking forward to seeing each other, even if only for a short time.
But I’m the lucky one. The look on her face when I give her this phone: Priceless.

3 thoughts on “Moving to Florida: Frustration and chaos, but Daughter’s smile overshadows all

  1. Great story, Charlie, not only in the telling but also with the outcome. Such pleasant exchanges are rare in the smartphone purchasing realm.
    But I’m puzzled on one point — you’re still too young to be moving to Florida.

  2. Hang in there dad…………in time this will all pass and like will be more orderly, trust me……it will!

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