Thursday, February 12, 2009

The Hint Bricks

Further to my post earlier in the week about daycare.

I didn't write about it in that post, but the "things that make you go hmm" have added up over the past week or so.

First strike was when I found out the daycare centre in question was closing for a month in July. Now, I'm assuming this is because they want to give their staff some holiday time, and I have no problem with that. No, the problem is in the fact that I need to make an assumption at all, rather than being told upfront. There is no information anywhere - on their website, their extensive parent manual, the contract that they have people sign when registering for care - that there will be a 31-day closure over the summer. The contract goes so far as to list all the year's statutory holidays, with the clause "I understand that I will be responsible for finding alternate care for these days". But doesn't mention being closed for an entire frigging month. I have a problem with how underhanded that is.

Second strike was when the manager of the centre let two weeks go by without calling me back about "the February spot". I wasn't overly pleased with that, but I was willing to let it go.

Third strike came yesterday. I called and left a message since the manager wasn't in, and when she called me back later that day, this was the entirety of our "conversation":

Her: Hi, is this Laura?
Me: Yes, it is.
Her: Hi, this is (manager) from (centre).
Me: Oh hi, thanks for calling back.
Her: So, are you the Laura who left a voicemail or the Laura who left a message with my staff?
Me: No, I left a message with your staff ... with (name) I believe.
Her: Oh, okay. I just have messages from two different Lauras and wanted to make sure I was speaking with the right one!
Me: Yep, makes sense.
Her: So yeah, I'm glad that follow-up is working well around here today.
Me: Yep.

Then right around the time you'd expect her to say, "So, how can I help you?" or even "Why did you call?" she instead said, "Well, thanks for calling!" and HUNG UP.

I stood there, stunned, for about five minutes, wondering what on earth had just happened.

That was, um, strike three, I guess.

But this is Gwen's daycare. And I love that child a ridiculous amount. And so I gave them ONE LAST CHANCE and called back a couple hours later, even deciding that I would pretend the previous conversation never happened, to allow the manager to save face.

Me: Hi this is Laura Buechler, I'm calling about the waitlist, we spoke a couple of weeks ago.
Her: Oh yes we did, didn't we! Oh how funny, I just talked to another Laura this afternoon.
Me: Oh yes, that was me actually. But we didn't really get a chance to talk.
Her: Oh?
Me: No, you just thanked me for calling, then said goodbye and hung up on me.
Her: Oh, well, I must have gotten cut off then.

I don't know about you guys, but I don't really go around sprinkling "goodbye"s into my conversation just in case I get randomly cut off. And then don't bother calling people back. But maybe that's just me.

So, she denies that she hung up on me and doesn't apologize. Fine, whatever. But then, THEN, it turns out that "the February spot" has disappeared and that she has no openings until September.

The hint bricks, as my sister pointed out, are mounting up. This daycare is not the one for us.

I've just spent an hour at the Nanaimo kijiji site replying to every single ad for daycare. Hopefully something will come up.

1 comment:

reepicheep said...

I've got to say... no matter how much you love her, or rather *because* you love her so much... I would run, don't walk, the other way. I would not trust these people to take care of my dog let alone my child if they can't even answer the phone or speak normally even when nailed down.
What if something happened to her during the day and you wanted a straight answer. You'd be all like: "um, did she hurt herself?" and they'd be all "what? Which Laura are you? No."
"But she has a big bruise!"
"That didn't happen here."
"She was fine when I left her!"
"What? Who are you? Goodbye!"

(hope that's not too flippant) :)

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