I bought my son Charlie and daughter in-law Tara some Christmas jammies , reasoning that if they could not join us in person for the holidays, at least they could join us in festive flannel.
Then, I cheerfully sent them off, 25 days before Christmas.
Feeling no pressure at all, thanks to my uncharacteristic postal promptness, I idly checked the tracking and noted that it had landed in the Metro New York Distribution Center.
Four days later, my package remained there.
I filed an inquiry.
The next day, I saw that my package was in transit and my hopes rose. Alas, it remained in transit for six whole days and then landed back at the Metro New York Distribution Center.
I filed a second inquiry.
I requested a phone response and the next day I received a call. We exchanged lukewarm pleasantries and then got down to specifics.
I asked about my package.
“It’s here,” the gentleman assured me. “It’s in a bin and when that bin gets full it will move on.”
“It’s ‘been’ there 10 days,” I said.
“Right, well we only guarantee priority mail.”
“I did send it priority mail.”
“Right. Well we only guarantee overnight delivery.”
I thought about throwing him a Seinfeldian line, “So, you know how to charge for priority service, you just don’t know how to deliver it.” But, it seemed like the reference might have been lost on my bored, script-reading friend. Also, I was pretty sure it wasn’t his fault my priority package was stuck in a bin. And, I was distracted by other Christmas challenges.
So, I let it go. I called and reordered the jammies and chalked it up to an overworked delivery system.
Two days later and two weeks after I sent it via a three-day guaranteed delivery, my original package arrived.
Such is the nature of holiday mail. I get it and I am very grateful for the steady stream of delivery services that have been criss -crossing the country for us, especially the ones transporting life saving vaccines.
I’m really only telling this story because I also recently received a very creative heads up from a company, warning me that a different present I had ordered might be late to arrive.
It was a package haiku and it charmed me completely.
I’M ON MY WAY
(A Haiku by your order)
Through the lonely mail
I travel in search of you
So we can be one.
How great is that marketing? So, with one day to go until Christmas, I’m feeling very impressed by American ingenuity and humor and looking forward to whatever this holiday brings.
Merry Christmas, friends.