Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Patio Table Woes

I'm going to stray off of my usual food post today.

A couple of years ago we re-built our patio and built a new one at the other back entrance of our house. For the first time since we moved in here in 1983, we actually had the need for patio furniture.

I looked at several stores before I found what I wanted, and I wanted this set badly. All-weather wicker, a nice 4' diameter, glass-topped table and 4 very comfortable chairs. Being a thrifty sort, I decided to wait for it to go on sale even though that decision would mean that we would not be able to eat on our new patio until the following summer. No matter. I wanted that table and chairs, it was too expensive, and I had the time to wait.

By mid-September I had been visiting this store weekly for almost 2 months, watching the price go down, but it never went low enough for me. Two weeks later, Christmas decorations filled the space that the patio furniture had taken. I asked the salesperson and was told that all of the stock had been returned and there was nothing left. I was absolutely crushed.

The following spring, I started to look again for a table and chairs for the patio. I found nothing similar to the set I had fallen in love with the previous summer, in fact, I found nothing that I liked period!

Out on errands one day, I wandered in to the store where my dream patio set had been. Nothing jumped out at me, and I started out of the store. As I walked down the aisle, I looked up past the lawn mowers and... there it was! Table, four chairs, all by itself near the doors that led to a back storage room. Leftover from last year, shuffled around in storage, it was still in good shape and 70% off the listed price!

I couldn't buy it fast enough. I also bought a big ol' cover to keep the sun from deteriorating the "wicker" and an umbrella. Jack and I have used this table and chairs over and over. We also bought a black metal set for the larger patio, but I didn't like it as much.

This year, we brought out the "wicker" set last week. I brushed the cobwebs off and got the chair cushions from their winter storage place in the basement. Yesterday I set up the umbrella, and we ate outside for the first time.

This morning, it was beautiful and I opened the umbrella so that it wouldn't fade in a "fold" pattern. The wind whipped up a bit, but I didn't think anything of it. Until I heard a crash. And my heart sank.

The wind, blowing from direction which it rarely does, lifted the umbrella which, in turn, lifted the table, and they all turned over. The umbrella was fine, the glass top on the table shattered.

I cannot describe how bummed I am!

It took over an hour to clean up the mess, and there are still tiny bits of glass in the cracks between the stones that I cannot get without tweezers (and I don't have that much time on my hands!). Worse, I called three different glass shops and the least expensive one quoted me $250 to cut a replacement. We paid $350 for the entire set.

Can we use the table without the glass top? Probably. Crumbs will regularly have to be vacuumed out, and it will have to be covered all of the time we aren't using it to keep pollen, dirt, etc. from settling in the "wicker". But it looked so nice with the glass top. *sigh*

Reminder to all of you who are assembling your outdoor spaces for the summer-- keep an eye on the wind and always close your table umbrella when you aren't using it!


KristiB said...

My chairs always end up in the pool a few times during monsoon season.

You would think I would have learned to put them away when there's a storm brewing. But no, it never fails, after a storm I look out the window and the chairs are gone. Luckily they're made of all weather material. I would have destroyed wicker.

Kitchen Queen Victoria said...

Kristi, hmmmm... monsoons?!?! ;) What makes me mad is that I am usually fairly good about being prepared for storms but I'm just not in that mode yet this spring. *sigh*


Karen said...

OH MY!! That is unbelievably sad. I can't believe you waited all that time, found the deal of a lifetime, and then came the crash.
I'm really sorry...

You know's truly a beautiful patio set. I know you'll enjoy it even without the top.