Monday, December 06, 2004

Human Kindness Is Overflowing

Life As I Know It...

I had one of those experiences today that just has to be shared. As everyone except hermits living in caves knows, lines everywhere increase in length this time of year. The Post Office is one of the worst places to try and get in and out of right now. I made my daily lunchtime walk to the PO to get the mail and had to maneuver around a couple of women addressing their packages to even get to our box. There was a package slip in the box, so that meant I had to get into the line for the main window.

Our PO is split into two small rooms. One has the boxes and the other has the counter (main window). In the main window room, there are two tables where folks can get their stuff together. One is in the back of the room and the line usually extends past it, even when there are people standing there addressing mail or getting packages together. There was one gentleman at the table trying to shove a bunch of stuff into an envelope that was way too small to hold it all. Then there was a gap, and then the end of the line. I stepped past him and got into the line, only to hear a really disgusted “Excuse me,” behind me. Turns out dude is trying to stand in line and get his stuff together, even though the line had moved at least three feet from where he was standing. I wasn’t in the mood to argue, so I let him in front of me, thinking evil thoughts the whole time. I mean, who gets in line when they haven’t even gotten their crap together?

Well it turns out his stuff won’t fit in his tiny envelope. So he turns to me and says “You can have this space after all.” (You have to imagine a real pissy tone, like he was still miffed because he thought I tried to cut. But, hey, I get my shit ready before I go to the PO, you know.) He got out of line to look for another envelope.

There are still five or six people in front of me and one guy behind me now. We have this great postal clerk at our PO. Keith and I get a lot of packages because we do a lot of mail order. Whenever we pop up in line, it’s usually to pick something up. So, whenever she sees us, she’ll go to the back and get our stuff, if she can. Well, someone stepped up to her counter still filling out address labels. (What is it with people these days? Some day, I’m going to end up in line behind someone still trying to wrap their presents.) So, she left them there for a second went to the back and came out with two packages. She called out our box number and another one.

The guy behind me and I stepped over, grabbed our boxes, thanked her, and left. We went from the end of the line to out the door in just a few seconds! I consider it karma for being polite to the clerks and always being prepared before I get in the line at the PO.

As we were leaving, the other guy said “Nothing like personal service.” I told him I was just glad there was someone else at that branch who got so much mail the she knows him on sight. I was also glad there were two of us, just in case the envelope-stuffers and label-addressers started to riot.

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