Postal Hostage

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Why is going to the post office always an ordeal? Customers are angry. There’s always misunderstandings and never enough help. Does this happen to you?

It was 8:15 AM and the post office had been open for 15 minutes. I figured there would be no line. Although I could have used the self-service kiosk (which had no line at the time), I wanted to ask the postal worker a question. Bad idea. Upon entering, I got in line behind two people. There was a woman waiting to be helped at the counter and another woman in front of me.

“Where are all the people!” complained the elderly woman in line. “This post office used to run flawlessly. I’m 80 years old and lived here almost all my life. Now there are never enough workers and I’m lucky if my mail gets delivered by 5 PM. They just don’t care anymore. I guess I’m so grumpy because I still haven’t had my breakfast. I bought a roll from Cait & Abby’s and it feels stale but they told me that’s the way it’s made–crispy on the outside and soft on the inside. Feel it!”

I felt it. It was hard. “Yes it is a shame service is so bad. I might just use the kiosk. I just wanted to ask them a question,” I responded to Mrs. Postal. I looked over and now the kiosk had two people in line. Darn it!

“That’s a nice engagement ring you have!” Mrs. Postal pointed at my left hand. “I don’t wear mine anymore. I’m widowed. Rings are so different now. Why don’t women ask for a house instead? In my day, you kept it simple. Is that a princess?”

I couldn’t remember the cut of my ring and I was distracted because I wanted to get out of line (which had by now doubled in size behind me). There was still no postal worker at the counter and this nice old lady was holding me verbal hostage!

“Um, I think it’s round . . . Actually, I never demanded a diamond ring–I’m not very flashy.”

“Well my wedding dress was $35.00 when I got married.”

“Wow!” I replied.

“It was a different time then. My daughters wedding cost me a fortune. . . HELLO! Is ANYONE there? We need help out here! All I want is a book of stamps! I can’t believe this is taking so long!” yelled Mrs. Postal.

While she was yelling I ran out of line to the kiosk. There was only one person in front of me. Finally a postal worker came out as I was creating labels for my two books I was shipping to a TV show.

Mrs. Postal was furious and continued, “Are you the ONLY one WORKING right now? Where is everyone else?”

While I was leaving she was at the counter finally, fighting about the selection of stamps (or lack there of).

It must be hard being a senior citizen now, knowing the type of service you USED to receive “back in the day.” Luckily, my generation is already used to indifference and bad service!

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