Flowering Discontent, Part 3

, , , | Right | March 30, 2021

I’m a florist. An individual calls us. He’s a little bit brusque but not what I would call rude. Yet.

Customer: “I want to send flowers to someone at the [Our City] hospital.”

Me: “Sure thing! Are they at [University Hospital] or [Hospital Chain]?”

Customer: “Uh, [University Hospital].”

[University Hospital] is HUGE, and the different sections have numbers and names, along with the specific room numbers. It’s not necessary for us to have the patient’s location information, but it does help.

Me: “Do you know what section of the hospital she’s in? It’s okay if you don’t, but I’ll take it if you do.”

Customer: “I have the room number. It’s [number]. Wait. No. It’s not [University Hospital]. It’s [Hospital Chain].”

Me: “No problem; we’ll send it out.”

Customer: “What was that room number?”

Me: “[Number].”

Customer: “Uh, yeah. Yeah. That’s right. Okay.”

Our delivery driver takes the flowers to [Hospital Chain] and calls us from there shortly after. She says patient information has no patient by that name. No problem. These things happen. My boss calls [University Hospital]. They don’t have her, either. Usually, when we run into this, it’s because the patient has been discharged. I call the customer back.

Me: “We checked at both [Hospital Chain] and [University Hospital] and neither of them have her listed as a patient. Is it possible she was discharged?”

Customer: *Getting irate* “Well, that’s impossible, because I just talked to her daughter, and she’s sitting right there with her.”

Me: “That is very strange. Could I double-check to make sure we have her name spelled correctly?”

He checks. We do.

Customer: “What’s the room number?!”

Me: “[Number], but having a room number, unfortunately, doesn’t help us if they have no record of her being there at all—”

Customer: “I gave you her room number!”

Me: “The issue is that the hospital says she isn’t a patient there. Could you ask her daughter—”

Customer: “She’s there!”

Me: “I’ll do some more digging and let you know when I find out what’s going on.”

I hang up, nonplussed, and see my boss with an odd look on her face.

Boss: “You know… she might be at [Hospital Chain] in [Neighboring Town a half-hour away].”

Me: “No way. How could he not even know what city she’s in?”

Boss: “I bet she is.”

Me: “I’m calling them.”

I call the hospital in [Neighboring Town] and, lo and behold, the lady he’s trying to send to is listed as a patient there. I call him back to tell him this. Of course, he’s extremely grateful to us for going the extra mile and making all these phone calls to make sure his order gets taken care of… right?

Me: “Hey, I called [Hospital Chain] in [Neighboring Town] and it turns out she’s actually down there! We can easily forward your order to one of our other shops in town and they can still deliver it to her today, no extra charge. Should I go ahead and do that?”

Customer: “Well. I was dead sure she was in [Our City]. Are you sure you didn’t just make that up?”

I admit I am struggling to maintain my chipper customer service voice.

Me: “Nope, I called the hospital in [Neighboring Town] and she’s definitely there! We’re going to forward your order unless you’d rather we didn’t.”

Customer: “You do that. But I’ll be calling her daughter.” *Click*

We forwarded his order. He never called back. My consolation prize for being called a liar for no reason was knowing how completely stupid he must have felt when he found out I was right.

Flowering Discontent, Part 2
Flowering Discontent

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