OCTOBER 25 — The last thing I expected after requesting a Shopee refund was for a courier to be calling me at 6am, then honking at my gate an hour later.
That, it seems, is what you get when your parcel gets sent to the wrong place and instead of taking responsibility, the delivery person was trying to, in his words on WhatsApp, "settle things".
The problem with wording like that is I had no idea what he wanted. Did he mean fisticuffs?
Had he magically found that parcel he had somehow managed to send to the wrong person despite my having changed my mailbox and number to be so visible at night?
I had no desire to deal with early morning confrontations so I turned off my phone and went back to sleep.
Shopee did refund me and tried to explain that the delivery person did "not mean anything by it" but then, how was I supposed to know?
If a strange man turned up at f***o'clock in the morning at your gate, wouldn't you feel disturbed?
It was bad enough that Shopee had taken two weeks to deliver my iron supplements but now I had to deal with the clueless delivery person from hell? No thanks.
Speaking of nightmares I've been trying not to spend too much money on my new collecting hobby by looking at secondhand items on Carousell.
You would think that Carousell sellers would understand how the in-app payment system worked? Well, one seller didn't and wanted me to direct transfer instead and I got annoyed and cancelled my order.
What happened next? Well, he started sending me threats, showed me screenshots of my address and pictures he found of me on Facebook then said he would beat me up.
I was annoyed and searched him out on Facebook and told him I knew who he was but he seemed unperturbed by it and continued to send me threatening messages until I blocked him.
What did Carousell do when I showed them evidence of his behaviour? Nothing.
It didn't matter that I had evidence. It didn't matter that he threatened actual physical harm. Carousell did nothing. Not even a suspension, not even a warning.
The foulmouthed ill-tempered person is still online and probably still being an ass to prospective buyers on the platform and Carousell does not seem to have any sort of regulation in place in cases like this with my only recourse being to block him.
It didn't feel great to get an email that basically said, well sorry to hear, that's too bad, you can just block him, you know?
At least in the likes of services such as Grab you will have the details of your driver/delivery person but they won't have your details though they will still know where you live.
Still it's sobering to realise that in my complacency about the ease of transacting online I was lulled into a false sense of security.
Unless I was to move to a tiny mountain, stop shopping online and correspond only via carrier pigeon, it would be hard to prevent people from knowing where I live unless I decided to not use rideshares or shop online.
In future I think I will try and choose the drop off option where I can collect a parcel from a designated point if I use Shopee and also no longer choose the option of delivery if I ever buy from Carousell again (unlikely except from sellers I've used before).
I hope people learn from my example and consider forgoing the hassle that pretends to be a convenience of delivering to your doorstep, by just choosing a neutral dropoff point instead.
Especially if you are, like me, a single woman living alone (even with housemates) being safe is better than being sorry that you might have just given your home address to a serial killer.
* This is the personal opinion of the columnist.