The other day Lavie and I decided to "upgrade" the bedroom furniture in Alvis's room as an early Alvis birthday present.
Alvis picked out a cool "futon" like bed that converts to couch for her room. We also got a custom mattress that goes with it, some drapery, bed sheets, pillows...the whole nine-yards.
Although IKEA does a bang-up job of tight-packing its products, I haven't owned a pickup for many years and wasn't sure I could fit the bedframe and mattress and Lavie/Alvis in either my Saturn ION or her 2ndGen Nissan Altima...so we took both cars.
Surviving the 610/Katy construction zone
I was a bit intimidated heading out to IKEA in two cars...the 610/Katy interchange construction has rendered that whole area by IKEA a disaster zone. Fortunately I was paying sharp attention and handled the detour over from I-10 Westbound over onto Old Katy Rd then the feeder to IKEA with grace and style. Actually I will forever now use that method to get to the Houston IKEA as it avoids having to jump from the left-lanes of I-10 across the merging lanes to make the (if it still exists when done) Silber Rd exit. We went back to I-10 East that way as well, driving back Old Katy Rd and picking I-10 back up at the Washington/Westcott St overpass. Sooo much easier!
Anyway, after a long "It's a Small World" like meander through IKEA we collected all the picks and set out to load them up.
Load it Up
I managed to get the bed-frame, mattress and all the all the extras (including my multiple bags of network technician's tools and gear which I had forgot to remove) into my Saturn ION.
Lavie was stunned (I wasn't) as well as the guy looking on in amazement loading his Suburban next to me. No, I didn't have room for Lavie and Alvis when I was done, but it was all safely in the cabin, including the rolled mattress...with room to spare for the driver! Nothing outside the vehicle.
Lavie eventually persisted with allowing me to offload the mattress into her Altima for the drive back home so I could see a bit better out the rear-view window...although that wouldn't have been a problem.
There would have been no way I could have accomplished that feat with Lavie's Altima...even though it's trunk and cabin have quite a bit more volume than my ION.
Chalk it up to the Saturn ION design team
- The ION rear seats are split and can fold flat. They lay down lower to the floor than Lavie's rear fold-down seats do.
- For extra-wide loading, the ION team leave almost the entire width of the pass-through area open, from car-side to car-side and top to bottom. That allows the loading of the widest of flat packages (like IKEA has) with ease. Lavie's Altima has a oblong cutout that can handle about two golf-club bags or so width only. The whole width can't be used.
- Finally the Saturn's front passenger bucket seat can be moved all the way forward and then reclined at almost a 160 degree angle. That opens up almost the entire length of the Saturn ION from inside trunk tail to the dashboard for long-item loading.
It's all a very well designed and clever system. It's saved me a trip for a company truck or van hauling oversize network equipment out to remote sites from headquarters as well. (It can also transport a Parrot Ice machine rental nicely as well, thank you very much!)
I love my ION. Thanks ION Design Team!
I wonder if Lavie will let me upgrade my next one to a ION Red Line model?
While we are on the subject of IKEA:
Hacking IKEA (white hat...of course!)
I found this interesting blog the other day: ikea hacker
Actually it is a clever blog on using IKEA stuff (already unusual) in more unusual ways.
Now I need to decide if we will be passing along Alvis's old bunk-bed set to family members or using the nice (pine?) wood pieces to build something new....shelving rack for the storage shed maybe?
Then again, it also was from IKEA so I have it right now broken down and tightly packed away in her closet....it doesn't take up that much room....