Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Should I Laugh or Merely Shake My Head

My sister has been trying to send my birthday gift to me since my birthday in mid-June only to meet with one obstacle after another.

She is disabled and somewhat homebound. She doesn't own a car, but when the weather is good she can ride her bike, although she much take it easy and rest periodically. So, anyway, she ordered boxes from the post office - not the free, priority mail ones, but the plain kind you have to pay for. Here's a shocker....the post office charged her credit card and then promptly LOST her boxes, claiming they were actually delivered to her because their records showed the boxes indeed delivered.

Once she got that staightened out (after about two weeks), she found a used box, sealed the gift inside and went to the satellite post office closest to her. Closed. She went back two days later, package in hand. The postage machine was out of money to make change and she didn't have the exact change.

Last Friday she hit the jackpot! The satellite post office was (1) open, (2) the postage machine was fully funded, and (3) the package was finally on it's way.

Before I continue, I'd like to explain how our post office works. First, it's not like FedEx or UPS. When packages from those two companies are delivered to my house, generally they are left on the front porch and the delivery person rings the doorbell to let me know they've been here. Not so with our post office.

Our postal carrier delivers mail to our mailbox out in front of our house, probably just like yours. If she delivers a package, it's left on the porch, but we don't get the courtesy of a doorbell...ever. If she delivers a registered letter (and we've had some lately to advise us and our neighbors of public hearings), she will get out of her vehicle, walk to the front door, present the Return-Receipt card for signature and then hand over the letter. We find out later that there is additional mail in the mailbox that she didn't bother to bring to the door with her. We have learned to check our mailbox every day, whether she brings something to the door or not.

So what happened today? I had a meeting and errands to run in the afternoon. As I backed out of the garage towards the street, I noticed a package on the front porch. I pulled back into the driveway, put the car in park, set the emergency brake and walked to the porch to pick up the package. On top of the box, written in large letters in bold, black ink: "OPPOSITE SIDE UP"

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