Weird Jobs I’ve Done – The Break Up

Story 2 – The Fall Out after the Bad Break Up.

Weird Jobs - The Break UpNo names or specific locations are mentioned in this article.

This is the story of what originally presented itself as a simple removals job, but ended up being an incident of damage control where I became the unwilling mediator between two quarrelling parties.

I was asked to collect some boxes of personal belongings from an address in one of Dublin’s neighbouring counties and deliver them to another address a few miles away. Everything went without a hitch at the pick-up point, I got paid and I went on my way to the destination.

Finding the actual house to deliver the boxes to was potentially difficult, since houses in the countryside in Ireland don’t have proper addresses, i.e. an actual house number. But the customer gave me GPS coordinates, a map and a aerial view Google Earth image of the property. With these I could be fairly certain I was at the right address.

However, when I arrived there was seemingly no one home to confirm this. But I was told the GPS coordinates were exact and the Google Earth image did seem to exactly match the shape of the house, the driveway, the garden and even specific, unusual things in the garden, such as a trampoline. So I was fairly certain I had the right house.

That said, I still had no way of getting the boxes into the property. I called the customer and told him no one was there and he said it was fine to leave the stuff outside. I asked was he sure since they might get wet. He was sure. Some alarm bells began to go off in my head. Something was off about this job.

Well, I did what I was asked, and left all the boxes at a side door, got back in the van and started to drive away. Just then, I noticed a puzzled-looking woman in my wing-mirror approach, flailing. I stopped and got out. She asked what was going on. I told her I was asked to leave these boxes there.

Then I began to doubt the accuracy of the GPS coordinates and the Google Earth image. I asked was this an image of her house, in her opinion. She said yes, it definitely was, but said she didn’t know what these boxes were and why they were being delivered to her. I told her I was asked to collect them and bring them there and leave them outside even though no one was answering the door.

She then asked who had asked my to do so. I told her the name of the guy and suddenly it was clear she knew who I was talking about. She indicated this was just the kind of thing she had come to expect of this person. But she said she was not expecting any delivery and I’d need to take it back and he’d need to organise delivery properly.

I asked if she knew who these boxes belonged to. She said the person they belonged to no longer lived there and that the stuff would need to be taken away and delivered to this person at an agreed time.

I called the customer and he said that I should not take the stuff back, that I had done what he had paid me to do, that I should just drive off and not worry about it. He certainly was not prepared to take the stuff back again, let alone pay me to bring it back.

To just drive off was something I was not prepared to do: not from a business standpoint, nor from a moral decency standpoint. I told the property owner that I had been told to just drive off, but that I would not do something like that because it wasn’t fair to her. But I told her that the customer was not going to take the stuff back from me, so that if I had to take the stuff away again, I would have to take it to a dump or a charity shop. I would have to offload it somehow, since I need the van space for my next job, which was in Cork, and I was on a tight schedule.

At this point the property owner had calmed down and conceded that the boxes would need to remain there, but asked for my number so that the owner of the boxes could arrange with me to move the boxes again to her new address.

So thanks to my own calm and considered approach to the situation, I was able to resolve the issue amicably and drive away without any bad feeling between the property owner and myself at least.  The same could not be said about her feelings toward my customer.

My guess is that my customer and the owner of the boxes had been in a relationship and living together, then they had a bad break up and the owner of the boxes had left without her belongings. My customer kept them safely for her, but he did not want the hassle of seeing or speaking to her again, and did not know her new address, so he asked me to bring her stuff to her Mum’s house. He just wanted rid of them without the confrontation.

Just a theory…

Funny situation though. At least I got out of it without any damage to my reputation.

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