I watched the deliverymen unload our new dryer from the back of their van, and as they lowered it to the ground I saw one of the most marvelous things I could have ever imagined. Struck breathless, I ran to the stairs as they began hauling the heavy appliance to our door, and I asked, with a little too much excitement on my face and in my voice, “Can I keep the box????”
If you have tried to find appliance boxes lately, you understand my enthusiasm. When I called local stores that sell large things, I was generally greeted with the same answers: “We shred the boxes as soon as they come in,” and “Companies don’t use boxes to pack large appliances much anymore—they shrink wrap them.” My favorite, of course, is the proverbial, “Call back and talk to [the appliance guy] on [insert day of week here]—maybe he can help you.” Of course, [the appliance guy] was never there, or if he was, he had no idea what I was talking about. I soon gave up my crusade to find the Holy Grail of pre-schooldom, the multi-purpose appliance box.
If I had known that I was going to get the box with my dryer, I probably would have sprung for the dryer a lot sooner, like at the beginning of summer when I really needed the box for my toddler French class. That would have saved my new pants from their disfigurement, too. But, as they say, hindsight is 20/20, and I have the box now, so I plan to cherish it and use it for all it’s worth—we’ll start by spray-painting it red so that we can pretend it’s a barn. Then what? Maybe it will be a school bus or a post office—it could even be a cave. Then, when the time comes that our dear box cannot hold another coat of paint and it is too feeble to stand, we will use it to cover the ground so that we may spray paint the next box, if we are so blessed as to need a new washing machine.