So, where did we leave off in the Saga of the European Books? I believe we were waiting for customs clearance. Well, the good news is, customs cleared the books! The bad news is: Everything that happened after that.
I expected the books to arrive yesterday, and they did, sort of. One box instead of 13 boxes from the shipment arrived. STRANGE. But, okay. I call FedEx, ask where the rest of the books are. Apparently there's a problem with the shipping manifesto and it was done incorrectly by the shipper. They've escalated the issue and someone will get back to me by end of day. (SPOILERS: No one got back to me by end of day.)
Meanwhile, I open the one box of books I have. Excitement! But then, disappointment. The books are badly damaged. Of the 39 books in the box, only 5 are not damaged. At this point a zen-rage state overtakes me. I very methodically document all the damage and send it to the printers, expressing my frustration and disappointment. I get a response to the damage photos that says, "Oh, that's very bad." It is very bad, Annie, it truly is. She says she's working on it. Then asks to see a picture of the box. I send it. I also send an email with errors I've found on closer inspection. I don't get a reply.
Today, I call FedEx again. I find out that one of the boxes of books is at the right depot. One of the boxes has been sent to the wrong depot. The others are all still at Stansted Airport and no one knows why. They're going to call me back. They don't. A couple hours later, I call again. They tell me the same thing as before but they're pretty sure it's all gonna work out and I should have all the boxes by Monday.
But wait! A second box of books has arrived! I open this one, expecting it to be just like the first and I was....not wrong. The books in this box are also damaged. Friends, I'm not unreasonable, I know sometimes damage happens in transit, but a) that should be after I send it out because I'm just a regular person who doesn't ship books for a living b) almost every single book had all four corners bashed in, or the covers bent and scuffed, the pages bent out of shape. It was almost comical; I would've laughed had I not been in full zen-rage mode. Instead, I sent photos of this damage, and the boxes, and an email asking what my options are at this point, because I need to have this sorted ASAP.
I get an email from Annie's boss, Joe. He says, "What's your phone number?"
Joe calls me. He says he doesn't understand a lot of my complaints so he needs me to ship him some of the damaged books today where I've pointed out all the problems so he can see and check with the printers to see if I'm being unreasonable. He asks if I've ever printed books before. He tells me he can't fix this problem in two hours. He tells me I need to relax. Dear, reader, I hadn't even said anything, all I've done is answered his questions. And remember, I'm in zen-rage mode. I'm cool. I'm collected. And he tells me, "You need to relax."
He asks me, "What do you need for this to be fixed?" I said, I need the books. All these books are shipping out to people who've already bought and paid for them. He asks me, all of them? I tell him, yes, Joe, all of them. He says, "That's not good." So I said, well you can just give me a refund and I'll get the books printed elsewhere. He tells me not to jump the gun. Send the books to him, get them to him asap, and we'll figure this out.
And that's where we are now. I've sent the books. I'm waiting to see..oh wait! I just got an email from Joe. Ha! He's going to be in NYC from Monday to Wednesday so he'll get to this on Thursday. Course he will. *zen-rage intensifies*
I am so sorry this is happening. You have all been so so patient with me, and things keep cocking up. Hopefully I'll be able to ship at least some rewards out with the few books that aren't damaged. And hopefully for the rest a solution is found as soon as possible.
Thanks for being so understanding while I deal with this!