Wednesday

Never on Sunday


Dear Sellers,
What I am about to tell you is a true story.
Early in my career I took a listing on Christmas Eve. I was so excited I could hardly stand it. This house was going to be the easiest house to sell, ever. I mean ever. I told the sellers as soon as the holiday scene is done, "we're going to hit the ground running!" Cute as a button (thought you'd appreciate the stereotype) 1.5 story bungalow, hardwood floors, crown mouldings, dry basement. Piece of cake. I instructed the sellers "to clean as if your higher power is coming to visit or Martha Stewart, whichever scares you more." "Get some soft music tuned in on the stereo and I'll turn every light on." I was excited. The sellers call me, they'll be home for only a moment after church, then head to the mall.

I showed up with my basket-o-booties, stat sheets, tent cards and my name tag all shined up.
My sign was out front with flags tethered from the yard sign. Man, I am selling this house, TO-DAY! I plug in the keypad and let myself in the side door. Then it hit me, like a wall...tuna, tuna salad smell seeping under the door into the kitchen. I opened up the door and now add about 76 degrees to that smell. I wigged out. What is that? Where is it coming from and why is this happening to me?! In the sink, I find a plate with leftover tuna salad on it, in the dishwasher, two more plates with residual tuna salad stuck on them, and the caked can on top of the garbage. Ten minutes to opening bell, I fly into action. I turn the heat down, hurry, start running the water for dishes, open the door. Quick like a bunny! I scurry to find a candle. No candles in the kitchen-not even a match, I run upstairs and check the bathroom, nothing. I run back downstairs. I quickly wash the dishes, including the ones in the dishwasher and set the garbage can outside behind the house. I walk back in-tuna smell everywhere. It was stuck in that house, stuck in the carpet, stuck in the upholstery, I mean everywhere. The second floor smelled like there was an open face sandwich under every bed. Get downstairs!
People are walking up the driveway. Big smile, firm handshake. "Hello!" The first couple said, "Wow!-smells rank, dude." Well thank you for stopping!
The second couple comes in right on their heels and won't even check out the second floor-they laughed and kept their feet moving. "Won't you please sign in so I can prove to the sellers that I worked today?" She did so hesitantly, while plugging her nose. I knew it was going to be a long shift. I didn't think it could get any worse until a nice young couple showed up with a toddler. This couple mistakenly came to the side door and let themselves in. They no sooner got their shoes off when the toddler waddled right through the kitchen into the dining room and bent over. I thought he was going to untie his shoes, nope, couldn't be that lucky. That little fella began to methodically point and shoot vomit in three different directions onto the Persian rug. I went white. The mother startled, quickly jumped into action. Mom gathered him up and handed him off. She said her little boy "hates the smell of tuna," as the dad hauled him outside. She said, "We found out the hard way at my sister's house when he had the same reaction." A whole roll of paper towel was spent cleaning it all up. She was so embarrassed she apologized her way right out the door. I slumped in the chair, drained of all energy, waiting for the hour to end. As, I packed up my pony show, the next voice I heard was a jolly Mrs. Seller, "So! How did the open house go?"