21 hours ago
Monday, September 5, 2011
Craigslist caper = troubled trauma
You know how your mother always told you that if something seems too good to be true it probably is?
This morning I checked my local Craigslist to see if anyone wanted to get rid of an old dollhouse today.
This is what I saw. Newly listed for only $100.00. Sure, it looks like a museum piece, but I have had some good luck finding dollhouse on Craigslist, so I emailed immediately to see if I could come to see it. I admit I was a little suspicious. I didn't say in my email that I wanted to buy the house. I just said that I wanted to see it. Something just didn't seem right, but the seller emailed back immediately and the adventure began.
I had to rent a car, as the seller was about 30 miles north of the city, I Google-mapped the directions, I stopped at the bank for cash. It took me 45 minutes to drive up there.
When I arrived it took four or five tries ringing the doorbell and banging on the door and about a ten minute wait for someone to come to the door. That gave me plenty of time to enjoy the fake flowers and the plastic cats that decorated the flower pots there.
Finally a young woman came to the door and took me upstairs. I wondered if I was going to be murdered, as I still didn't believe they had the dollhouse in the picture there.
Items were piled high along the route to the upper room, making me hope that Hoarders might show up to film a show there and save me from the fate that might be coming.
But no, the young woman took me into a large room and showed me a 30 year old tab and slot dollhouse that had seen better days.
It was not quite as nice as the one shown here, but much dirtier, and full of really bad broken furniture.
"What about the one in the picture?' I asked her. "That is the one I wanted."
"oh, that one," she said. "It is already sold, but I can give you this one for less than the ad said."
"No thanks," I said. "I wanted the one in the ad."
"Oh, sorry," she said. "Everyone wants that one. It sold really fast. I hope you didn't have to come too far."
I know I should have been happy to escape with my life, but I was thoroughly annoyed. I realized I had been scammed and I had paid well for the privilege. That rental car was not cheap.
When I got home I searched Google and, though it took me a while, I found the house in the picture. It was built over a period of 15 years by a man in England. I had read about it before, I realized. No wonder it had looked familiar. It sold to an overseas buyer for approximately £50,000, yes, £50,000. Not $100, and not on Craigslist.
And at any of the links below:
But . . . then again . . .
What if . . .
What if the overseas buyer lived north of Toronto?
What if the overseas buyer had recently passed away?
What if the young woman wasn't a liar and a cheat?
What if the overseas buyer's heirs are trying to clean out the overseas buyer's house?
What if I was just an hour late to make the dollhouse deal of the century?
Scammed or scorned? Which am I? And, which is better?
Is this the one that got away? Or the one that never was?
What do you think?
Posted by Shale at Monday, September 05, 2011