Today I stayed home from work in order to await the delivery of my bike. (The short story behind this is that I went on vacation last week to a rural area where there would be no traffic and no hills, so I shipped my bike there in order to get some riding in before my triathlon at the end of this month. What gets shipped out must get shipped back, and a $1300 bicycle isn't something I wanted sitting out on my front stoop all day long--so I had to stay home and wait.)
FedEx policy is to deliver between 10am and 6pm, so I knew the bike could arrive literally anytime during those hours. However, the previous pickups and drop-offs had all happened before 1pm, so I was hoping that the timing would be the sam this time.
Alas, it was not to be. The bike finally arrived around 3pm, at which point I dragged the thing up to my apartment and began reassembling it immediately.
Now, the bike was originally packed by someone much more knowledgable and experienced than myself, and although I was able to reassemble the contraption when I arrived at my vacation destination, I then had to repack it into its box after only having watched the disassembling process once. To my own credit (and that of the equally unexperienced people assisting me) we got the bicycle apart and into the box successfully. The question was: had we packed it securely enough to keep it from being damaged in transit?
From what I could tell as I took pieces out of the box, it had arrived in good shape. I encountered a few snafus as I put it back together (screwing the handlebars on backward, for instance), but nothing major . . . until I went to screw in the seat post. There was no screw to screw.
Again, to my own credit, I didn't panic. (Which is surprising for someone who stresses out frequently about minute details.) I collected my wallet and prepared to go out to the local bike shop and try to buy a replacement screw. However, I had an empty bike box taking up most of my living room, so I decided to take that down to the trash first. As I carried it down the steps, I thought to myself, "Wouldn't it be nice if the screw fell out right on my doorstep?"
When I got outside, I took a look around, but the screw was nowhere to be found. I stomped the box apart and began to head back into the apartment when I saw some clumps of pet hair littering the hallway. "T___ won't be happy with me if he comes by and sees this," I thought to myself, so I stopped and grabbed the dustpan. I began sweeping with the broom, and lo and behold, there was the screw!