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(Not So) Long Walks to "Pay" With PET Bottles and Not Only – 2023 Edition – IV

Since I already wrote about November 18, I’ll start this post about the last part of Carrefour’s campaign, when it moved to Vulcan, with November 19, when I did the day’s squats, had lunch, and left just before 6:40 PM, with 33 recyclables, including the three cans left from the previous day, the seven straightened bottles left from earlier, including that one that wouldn’t be accepted, and ten bottles that granted two products. I also meant to take some fish parts that dad said that he won’t eat and two pieces of shrimp which he had brought from work, apparently after someone had celebrated their birthday, and then left in the living room, in a napkin, wanting to leave all of those for some cats, but I forgot. Either way, I had dad’s metro card, so I went to Dristor, picking up some more bottles that granted two products on the way to and from the metro station.
Even if I hadn’t taken the used ones with me, I once again asked about rechargeable batteries, and was once again told that they didn’t have any, though they had supposedly made the order and were waiting to receive some. So I moved along, using eight of the bottles that granted two products, but the machine stopped after seven, so I waited for the guy to empty it, then put in ten more bottles, including that eighth one, and then used the other machine for the three cans. However, I then noticed that the first receipt only listed six bottles, so I guess the machine hadn’t counted the one it had stopped at, and I said that I’ll put in one more, so the total will be correct on the receipts, but since there were other people in line I also said that I’ll wait and do so after they’ll be done. Then I wrote my name and number on those receipts and said what I wanted, but after four product categories I moved and also had a look on the other side, ending up asking for potatoes from there even though those were quite small while those from the side that I had picked the other products from were quite large. Either way, I then returned to that first side and asked for apples as well, after which the girl said that those should have been the last products and I agreed… Only to realize that it wasn’t right after she gave me the bag, so I started counting the categories and the guy in charge noticed and asked whether I wasn’t given the right amount, telling her to unseal the bag after I said that I was trying to remember. I wasn’t sure how to react, not wanting to cause a fuss, but she unsealed the bag, counted the categories, and saw that I was, in fact, missing one, so I also asked for cucumbers and she put in seven, though they were small. And she had also put in five red onions, though those were also small.
I received four Bianca peppers, weighing 399 grams, four Kapia peppers, weighing 450 grams, four tomatoes, also weighing 450 grams, four potatoes, weighing 503 grams, four apples, maybe Idared, weighing 666 grams, five red onions, weighing 286 grams, and seven cucumbers, also weighing 286 grams. And, after arranging in the backpack, I found a moment to put in that extra bottle, after which I filled in my name and number on that receipt as well. Then I had a look in the store, but on top of not finding anything to buy, I somehow forgot to check the prices for what I received. Between what I later saw at Carrefour Unirii, what was listed for Vulcan when I looked on-line, after getting back, and checking the day before and the next, there’s next to no chance of not having the correct prices, the only remaining problem having to do with the apples that I couldn’t correctly identify, but the fact remains that I didn’t actually check that day, in that store.
Either way, I then also wanted to go to that Kaufland, getting there close to 8:15 PM… Only to find the doors closed, and the listed closing time was 8 PM, which was strange, Kaufland normally closing at 9 PM on Sunday. So I turned around and, after hesitating a little, I decided to get back to that same metro station, getting there after also having a quick look in a Profi, entering with everything. However, when I switched lines at the next stop, I tripped on the escalator and it hurt a fair bit. There were some small scrapes, mainly on my right leg, but what was concerning was that the bone was also hurting a little.
Still, I meant to also check Carrefour Unirii, so I got off there, found another one of those bottles, and first went to the bathroom from that shopping center, also peeing while I was there and then washing the scrapes a little. Then I entered Carrefour with everything, grabbed an expiring cake, and then got back to the fruits and vegetables, checking the prices of the ones that I could find there as well and putting some disinfectant on the scrapes, since they still have those dispensers in that location. When I did that, I placed that cake and my phone on some tomatoes and my foot on the edge of that area, so not on any product or even any crate, but another customer stopped and asked how did I dare put my foot there and touch my wounds next to things that people will take to eat. I got defensive, trying to say that my foot hadn’t been on any product and that I had fallen on the escalator and wanted to use some disinfectant, but he was adamant. After staring at us for a few seconds, an employee also got involved, but he wasn’t sure what was going on and therefore didn’t really know what to say or do, so it was that guy who pretty much chased me away, saying that we should leave that area because it really was not all right and coming after me as I initially took a few steps towards the exit, though when I turned around and hurried in the direction of the checkouts he left me be. So I checked the expiring products from that area as well, then bought that cake… And after I calmed down a little I realized that the guy was right. After all, I was touching blood, which doesn’t look right even though I wasn’t touching any product while doing so and meant to disinfect my hands again after that. On the other hand, by chasing me away he stopped me from doing just that, so I did end up touching some products after touching blood, without disinfecting my hands first.
After returning to the metro station and adding the cake in the backpack while waiting for the train, I took the metro back to Dristor, and then I checked the Mega Image that closes at 11 PM, once again entering with everything. There were no bakery discounts, but I did find eggs with code one and bought five, adding them in the backpack after walking out. I considered checking the non-stop Mega Image as well, but after having a look from the door and not seeing any bakery discounts there either, I didn’t actually enter.
When I got back, at 11:20 PM, I saw that dad had taken that fish out, but not to where I’d have taken it, so I was thinking to go back out and move it if I could, but I then decided to leave it for the next day. However, the real problem hit me a moment later, when I found out that the hot water had turned off while I was out, and not just in the sense that it was cold, but that nothing was coming from that pipe. Dad hadn’t bothered to check the site until then, but he did when I asked him to and saw that the reported problem was that the heating station had no water to work with, the water company having a problem, even though we did have cold water and the heating station’s just behind the building. Either way, it was estimated that the problem should be fixed at 11:30 PM, so I gave up on the idea of heating water again and decided to wait. Then, before midnight, I added another paragraph to what little I had written before leaving and posted what was basically a placeholder for the post about the previous day… By which point that estimated time had changed to 3 AM. So I decided to wait and see, meaning to wash before going to bed if it actually will return then or, if not, perhaps not sleep at all and leave again very early, which would have also allowed me to use the metro card once again. Then I weighed what I received and tried to clean a little in the kitchen, though I couldn’t wash many things with cold water. The fact that I kept checking the hot water probably made me even slower than I usually am, so I only ate dinner between 4:20 AM and 5:20 AM… By which point the estimated time had changed to 7 AM.

Under those circumstances, I didn’t go to bed, and a little before 7 AM I did the squats that counted for November 20 and then checked again, seeing that the estimated time had changed yet again, to noon. So I just got ready and went out again at 8:15 AM, with 21 bottles, though those included that one that wasn’t accepted, so there were exactly 20 which should have been good, since it was the last day and taking more was pointless, and those included the eight remaining ones that granted two products and a straightened one that I had found on the balcony. And I first went behind the building, finding where dad had left that fish and that it was gone, so I picked up the plastic thing that it had been in and added it to the recyclables, which I had also taken, dropping them off in a recycling bin on the way to Dristor.
The starting hour for the campaign was 9 AM and people had obviously arrived right away, seeing as there was quite a line when I got there, so I first went to pee, getting in line just after 9:20 AM… And only two or three more people joined behind me until 10 AM or so, a few more coming after that, until my turn finally came, at 10:10 AM or so. Since dad had said that he had to leave at 11 AM, that was already late, and then the machine also caused problems, stopping after the first two bottles, allowing me to continue after the guy in charge worked on it a little, but repeatedly refusing the bottles that granted two products, so that guy helped me put them in until it worked, even if one or two required multiple tries, and when it also refused that bottle which had been refused before and I wanted to discard it, he managed to make it accept it as well, so I was left with one bottle. Then I wrote my name and number on the receipts and said what I wanted, receiving four tomatoes, weighing 470 grams, four potatoes, weighing 793 grams, four Bianca peppers, weighing 369 grams, four Kapia peppers, weighing 581 grams, four red onions, weighing 196 grams, four Red Delicious apples, weighing 994 grams, and four apples of another kind, possibly Idared, weighing 890 grams.
By the time I put the bags in the backpack, it was past 10:15 AM, so I didn’t enter the store at all, not even to check the prices of those products. That meant that I only actually checked in that location on the first day, for what I had received then, but I had to hurry, and at times I even jogged on the way back to the metro station. All of that effort would have been for nothing if the conductor wouldn’t have been so nice, since I rushed as much as I could down the escalator only for the doors of the metro to close right in front of me, but then they opened again and I could get on. Not that I really needed to hurry so much, seeing as dad called and said that he’ll actually leave around 11:15 AM, but since I told him that we’ll meet at this metro station, I found myself with a little time to spare and decided to rush to the bigger Mega Image, also having a quick look in a confectionery on the way.
Since I was in a hurry, I entered with the backpack, and my gloves were also in my pockets, having taken them since the temperature had been around or even just under 0°C in the morning… And that ended up making me lose a fair amount of time. I grabbed a nice expiring bar and another egg with code one, telling dad that I’ll be at the metro station in about five minutes when he called again while I was there, but the cashier reprimanded me for bringing things into the store, and while when she pointed to my pockets I just pulled out the gloves, she also asked the guard to check my backpack… And he was acting as if he didn’t understand what she meant, giving me the impression that he was trying to make it clear that he disagreed with her request, since he asked another customer about his bag, made her repeat herself, and continued with that behavior even after I told him a couple of times that she was referring to me. And after he finally asked whether he could check my backpack and I told him to go ahead and took it off, he just put his hand in it without even opening the strap and gave her a nasty look while fumbling around a little. But that just made the whole thing take even longer, and putting the backpack back on took me some more time that I didn’t have, so I then ran back to the metro station, continuing to run even after dad called again while I was on my way and told me to stop running, since he was just going past the church. In the end, I got back to the metro station before he did, then gave him the metro card.
I then continued to Obor, though I decided to use the route that’s shorter if you start from here, but obviously longer from where I was at that point. And on the way I pulled my mask down a little and ate that bar. Then I checked that bookstore, then stuffed the backpack and the egg in a cabinet and went to Carrefour, finding discounted bread and some discounted sweet pastries and putting them in the bag that hangs from my neck before retrieving what I had in the cabinet and continuing to Kaufland, where I once again meant to put the backpack in a cabinet. However, when I wanted to lift it, I grabbed it by the strap that holds it closed and it came loose, getting pulled out of the clamp. I later figured out that it had probably been sewed there as well and that seam tore, so it’s a good thing that it was that one and not the one from the other end, but at that time I couldn’t quite figure out what happened, though I eventually managed to put it back through the clamp in a way that held it closed as it was, and it’s still like that even now, since I didn’t sew that again. Either way, I then put the backpack and the egg in that cabinet, went to pee again, and entered with the bag, getting a cleaning product that I found among the discounted ones, some yogurt, and a box of two meringue tarts with ingredients that seemed fine and which had a deep discount, so the price was really nice. They expired the next day, but I didn’t mind that. Then I retrieved what I had in the cabinet, arranged everything and continued to Penny, where I left my things on the cabinets and just bought some soy, adding it in the bag that hangs from my neck after retrieving my things, since I didn’t want to open the backpack again.
I got back a few minutes before 3:30 PM, ate one of the tarts, and then used the toilet and washed, the hot water having returned. After that, I also ate a small apple, made the tea for the day, and then got some four hours of sleep, or maybe a little more than that. I think that I also took a pill, just in case, but I’m not entirely certain, and if I did, I definitely don’t know whether it was before or after the nap. Either way, at night I ate another apple, washed and cleaned as much as I could in the kitchen, dealt with my bread, and ended up rearranging things in the freezer a little after noticing that the things that were at the front were thawing again. Dad had searched for something in there earlier, taking things out in order to do so, but when I told him about the problem he just said that it must be too full, since he obviously did nothing wrong. Admittedly, I had checked after he put everything back and the door had seemed to close properly, but something was obviously wrong. Either way, despite only putting what I received that day on the balcony, leaving weighing those products for the next day, I only started taking occasional bites from lunch at 2 AM and it was past 3:35 AM when I finished, and I ate dinner between 4:30 AM and 5:25 AM, and finally got in bed at 6:35 AM. And the following night I ate dinner between 3:45 AM and 4:30 AM, and got in bed at 5:25 AM.

I managed to finish the part about these two days and post it before midnight, but before being able to say that I finally finished writing about this campaign I also have to put together everything that I received and estimate the total value, even if this time around the fact that I didn’t properly identify some of the apples means that it won’t be that accurate. And it was only Wednesday evening when I made the first edit to this post, to add the number and weight of what I clearly know I received, so including the Golden apples but none of the other kinds. And I finally added the rest in the early hours of Saturday. I just hope that I did everything correctly, because I really don’t see myself going through it all again and checking.

At the end of it all, assuming that I calculated correctly, I received a total of 38 potatoes, weighing 6.058 kg, 34 Golden apples, weighing 5.438 kg, 32 tomatoes, weighing 4.815 kg, 30 Kapia peppers, weighing 3.302 kg, 29 Bianca peppers, weighing 3.426 kg, 28 cucumbers, or 29 if you count that double one as two, weighing 1.39 kg, 24 onions, weighing 3.84 kg, 21 red onions, weighing 1.141 kg, 20 beets, weighing 5.578 kg, 14 red potatoes, weighing 1.811 kg, 13 carrots, weighing 1.452 kg, 12 squashes, weighing 4.036 kg, 12 eggplants, weighing 3.208 kg, nine heads of garlic, weighing 584 grams, seven parsnip roots, weighing 1.087 kg, four celery roots, weighing 2.167 kg, four kohlrabies, weighing 792 grams, four parsley roots, weighing 270 grams, four long red onions, weighing 244 grams, as well as four chili peppers, weighing 176 grams. Out of those, ten cucumbers, seven potatoes, six red potatoes, four tomatoes, two Kapia peppers, one Bianca pepper, one red onion and one head of garlic were added on top of what I should have actually received.
And then there are those other apples, which are the problem. The totals are simple: 53 of them, including one that was added on top of what I should have received, weighing a total of 8.908 kg. Out of those, I also know that eight, weighing 1.558 kg, were Red Delicious. Two or three others were probably Red Delicious as well, but I was never certain about that third one and I didn’t weigh them separately, since they were mixed with at least one that was probably Gala or Jonaprince. And, past that, I’m guessing more and more. 16, weighing 2.767 kg, were probably Idared. Four more, weighing 702 grams, seemed more likely to also be Idared, but I was wondering whether they might have been Jonaprince or Jonathan instead. On the other hand, five, weighing 586 grams, were probably Jonathan, and there were three more that were quite certainly Jonathan, but one that seemed to be Gala was mixed with them and I didn’t weigh them separately. And four, weighing 491 grams, might have been Gala or even Fuji, but I was uncertain about that. Four others, weighing 651 grams, seemed more likely to be Jonaprince. And I didn’t make any notes about four more, weighing 681 grams, so whether those were Idared, Jonathan, Jonaprince or Gala, I have absolutely no idea.
Considering those uncertainties, the total value can’t be perfectly accurate either. Still, assuming that I didn’t make mistakes, it comes to the surprisingly high amount of about 335 RON, with a small margin for error, no more than a few RON. Of course, that value is calculated according to Carrefour’s prices for each product on the day that I received it and plenty were certainly cheaper in other places on those same days, but this is how I’ve been calculating this and it’s the fair way to do it, since it’s their campaign and they gave away those products.

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