Tallahassee is a smallish town. We only have one real mall and even the Macy’s and Dillard’s at that mall have pretty generic merchandise. Generally, I don’t have real high hopes for cool stuff here. Imagine my surprise when I happened upon the Utrecht store in town. I had seen it a couple of times before and decided to stop in and see what it had to offer.
There was no fountain pen ink but they did have dip pen sets and calligraphy (India) ink. They also had a wide variety of Rhodia and Paperchase products. *Full disclosure* I don’t like Paperchase products. I’ve been told that they are fountain pen friendly but they are just too ornate and fiddly for me. Rhodia on the other hand are sheer perfection. I am pretty much exclusively into the orange. I occasionally buy a black Rhodia product but always regret it and end up wishing that I had purchased the orange. The paper is gorgeous and sets off my fountain pen inks beautifully. Even though I’m left handed and often smudge inks that dry slower on Rhodia paper, I still love the Rhodia brand. I generally buy my Rhodia pads from Brian Goulet at Goulet Pens but thought that I could avoid shipping charges by buying from this store. Alas, that is not to be.
How to put this? The staff at this store is straight up crazy. The first time I entered, they were threatening some random student who was upset that the store wouldn’t take her credit card since their credit card machine wasn’t working. They told her to come back in two weeks. Two Weeks!!! So I went in today, hoping that they had this fixed and walked past a girl about to make a delivery. She shouted as she left, “I can call him Sam or Douche! Which do you prefer?” on her way out. The other lady was trying to get her to call him Mr. Something or Other but clearly that wasn’t working. I almost left right there but was willing to do some extra work to get my Rhodia. So I bought a 4 x 6 case and a smaller (don’t remember the size case) and refills. On my way out I noticed that the refills I’d bought for the 4 x 6 case were in fact 5 x 5. So I tried to return them. Tried being the operative word. I was asked for the pin on my debit card several times. All along I asked if I was being double or triple billed. Finally, I was given my refund in cash but I have no security that I haven’t been re-billed for these items. I left. When I spoke to my mom just after leaving she asked that I never go back… and check my card for the next few days.