I have been a yard sale shopper since I was a child. My dad would go down the alleys behind homes in the valley and pick up enough things to bring to the swap meet. (did I just say "swap meet" oh no, my age is showing, there hasn't been a swap meet for many, many, many years now, make that one more many!) Anyway he taught me at a young age the art of negotiating, he was the king of negotiating and he knew a little about everything. So I am by proxy a pretty seasoned picker. Around the time eBay came about my dad really wanted me to start selling on there, he said it seemed like a pretty easy place to sell, he just didn't want to figure out how to do it. Well neither did I back then.
Fast forward to June of 2000 and I finally signed up, but just to check it out and maybe buy something here or there. I just couldn't waste the time it would take me to figure out how to sell on eBay, so I just kept selling in my dad's antique store for a year more. Then about a couple of months after my dad passed away I thought I should really figure this out. Well what a dummy I was it was pretty easy. My dad would have loved selling on eBay! I learned a valuable lesson, take the time to read the instructions.
I sold the odd item here and there during the years. Now let's fast forward again, it's December 2010 and I have my grandson over for a week and he's slightly bored as any 8 year old get's, so we go out to a few yard sales and I found him quite a few trinkets that young boys like to play with.
Well as we are driving down a main street I noticed that there is a Goodwill, as we are sliding around a corner to whip into the parking lot I am thinking to myself "I have lived in this city since I was 6 years old, how did I not know we had a Goodwill here, where have I been all these years". So I leave the boy and papa in the car as I take a quick walk through just to see what they have. Low and behold I found a brand new cookie sheet that I needed since mine looked about a hundred years old. I figured I better hurry and finish as the "boys" will be getting restless soon. So I scamper over to the checkout line, as I'm standing there I happen to look over at the rack with purses hanging on it, kinda in the way of the checkout line.
Sooooo as I'm looking at these purses I see a leather bag that reminds me of one I saw on Seinfeld. Now if you are a Seinfeld fan you will know right away which one I am talking about. Remember Kramer betting on the airplane arrivals and departures?? Yeah that one, when Newman came to the airport he had a leather mail bag, that bag reminded me of the one I was looking at. Okay so I flip the flap up, it says J. Peterman, my heart skipped a beat I knew this was an expensive item. I rubbed the leather and thought and thought but seeing the $7.99 sticker I was still in yard sale mode, so I put it back. (what was I thinking?!?!?!)
I then went back to the car after paying, all the way home I kept thinking how much could that sell on eBay for. After impatiently waiting for the computer to turn on, I looked up the bag and oh my! The auctions were going as high as $235. On the J. Peterman site the bag sells for over $400. My heart now started to race so fast, I couldn't get in the car fast enough and get back to GW, all the while I was saying over and over "Please be there, please be there." As I sprinted into the GW I turned and gazed upon "The Bag" (cue the bright light coming down from heaven with the angels singing "Hallelujah") .
I let out a huge sigh of relief that I'm sure everyone around could hear. So as I'm waiting in line again to pay I have a lady say she liked the bag and how much was it? I felt like a cartoon character clutching the bag and saying, mine, mine, mine. So I told her and she just nodded saying that was a good deal, little did she know how good!
After getting it on eBay the auction ended and it sold for $210, I realized the auction ended on the 26th, so everyone was done shopping for gifts, but I still made a tidy profit of $202.
BIG LESSON learned ~ Call someone to check the price on eBay! (This was before the smart phone)
Now I just look it up myself on my smart phone and I will never pass up a "good deal" because I hesitated. Have you ever left something then later realized what a mistake that was? Tell me about your item that almost got away story...