But will it get there in time?

Aug 30, 2022 | 0 comments

Postcard of Oysterville Post Office Outside and Inside

Today is the day that Anna’s purse should get to Seattle.  Fingers crossed!  I’m not sure how the situation had developed on her end — She was in Oysterville at the Red House with her two little ones, scurrying to get back home to 1) close on a house she and her husband had bought sight unseen (a story for another time but more logical than it would seem) and 2) to catch an early a.m. flight out to Canada — ” just a day trip — business related.”

Anna is a landscape architect, wife and mother of two, and one of my wonderfully vivacious second-cousins-once-removed.  I love her to pieces and would do anything for her, but her phone call on Sunday posed a challenge of flummoxing proportions.  “I’m on I-5 on my way home,” she said, “and I just realized that I left Oysterville without my purse.  Could you possibly send it by overnight mail?”

I hope I didn’t say anything quite so crass as “Overnight mail from Oysterville?  Surely you jest!”  But my thoughts were a-whirl.  Our mail goes out at 1:30 in the afternoon.  It goes to Portland to be sorted — even if the letter is bound for Ocean Park or other points on the way. Overnight to anywhere seemed out of the question… She told me where the purse was, assured me that she had her passport at home so her trip to Canada was not a problem but…

I reached out to my friend Mark, recently retired Postmaster at Long Beach, and asked if there was a way.  He suggested I send it priority mail via the daily Long Beach mail run to South Bend.  It seemed the best chance.  So, Monday morning bright and early, I went to the Oysterville Post Office, Anna’s purse in hand, to get the right size priority mail box.  There, I ran into the dreaded Postal Bureaucracy that we don’t often see in our little community.

Mark Scarborough – A Chinook Observer Photo

Our new Postmaster is being trained and when her trainer (who apparently knew everything) heard my plight she said (with great authority) that the proposed solution wouldn’t work.  “The new Postmaster at Long Beach won’t put your package in the South Bend mail. Period.”  End of discussion.  She said I should send it, as usual to Portland by the more costly Priority Express  and it would get there by Tuesday.  “Guaranteed.”

I took the package to Long Beach where there was no question at all about including it with the mail to South Bend.  I don’t know if Anna’s purse will arrive today or not but I do know that there are helpful, reassuring folks in this world and those — even among our postal workers — who feel obligated to convey gloom and doom.  I’m so glad that Mark’s replacement at Long Beach seems to be following his tradition of kindness and encouragement. And I’m so glad he is my friend, no matter how this saga turns out!


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