In pursuit of Duplo

August 11th, 2008 at 5:42 pm by james

The girls love Duplo. Did I say love? I meant adore. They build castles and houses and boats and cars and trains and keep themselves busy for hours. A castle might create a week of imaginative play – if MGW and I don’t destroy it at night to ensure more construction play tomorrow.

So, as you might imagine, we’re on the look-out for Duplo deals. Since pink Duplo has pretty much vanished (why did they discontinue the castle series?) we keep an eye on the second-hand market too. About the middle of last week Michelle picked up an add in the local online listings for Lego (R500/box, choose your own bits) and a bag of Duplo. We duly called and made an appointment to visit.

We went on our Duplo hunt by way of the midwife’s offices for a regular check-up. It was my first with this little piglet and all’s well. We then wound our way to the Duplo house, which we had both imagined as a shop/closing down sale of some kind (probably due to the volumes of Lego ostensibly in play).

We pulled up outside a cheap block of flats and looked at each other, this didn’t look good. There’s no.way kids were being raised with Lego in there. We had an appointment, though, and like to feel we’re of a certain class so headed bravely in. There were no numbers on the units, so we just sort of floated about looking vaguely quizzical until the guy popped his head around a corner and said “Hi”.

I think he may have been taken aback by his heavily pregnant visitor, because he asked us to hang on while he got the stuff for us to look at. A couple of minutes later he seemed to have changed his mind because he invited us in. It was immediately apparent that we weren’t going to be buying anything. Entering the dingy entrance hall it was clear that he and his mate had used the couple of minutes to drag hard on a couple of cigarettes to try to disguise the thick clouds of dope smoke in the flat. They were wasting their time and we were walking down a dark corridor in a stranger’s house to a drug-lair-cross-dubious-goods-emporium.

I had never seen a real-life sitting room that was so obviously full of articles that had, um, fallen off the back of a lorry. MGW, to her credit, made a show of looking carefully through the barrel-bag of odd bits of Duplo, some of which looked as though they’d spent the best part of their life buried.

Me, I was yelling “SWIM DOWN, NEMO, SWIM DOWN” and “RUN.AWAY” by turns.

“Well, I don’t think that’s worth the money you’re asking,” says my wife.
“Oh, OK, bye then,” says the bloke and we’re out the door and off.

We think we’ll buy new. Pink’s overrated as a colour anyway.

One Response to “In pursuit of Duplo”

  1. sarah cox Says:

    you guys really are much more polite than me. I’d have given that place a REALLY w-i-d-e berth!!

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