In our little village of Salado we have a major event every day except Sunday. Every morning, just after 10:00, the mail has been distributed in the boxes at the Post Office. At that hour the entire population rushes to the parking lot of the Post Office that is about the size of my den. It looks like the landing on Omaha beach on D-Day. It’s a spectacle to behold. The city should charge admission.
Since Salado is somewhat of a retirement community, the average age of the combatant in the Post Office invasion is probably around 102. They saunter in and out of the facility. Many are lucky to find the way back to their vehicle. Most plaster a cell phone to the ear after returning to their car. No one looks as they fire up the motor and back out of the angle parking places. Many will just start the car as they read the days mail. These cars have the backup lights on as if the occupant is ready to leave. But no, that’s just a ploy to fake you off. One never knows when those folks are going to decide to put their car in reverse and blast off. Also, I never know the mood of these people after reading their mail or looking at a bill that may have been higher than anticipated. The news could have been bad, and they are ready to take it out on whomever is in the way. Rear view mirrors are never used and arthritic necks make turning around too painful; so the driver just backs out, totally unaware, in their senile state, that there is another soul on the planet. If you happen to be the one waiting for a space, you are busy praying that your life will be spared, and that your car will escape major damage. All the cars seem to back out at once and another wave is ready to move into the slots. Everyone is handicapped, so those markers have little meaning. Horns are blowing and brakes screeching.
To make matters worse, service in the Post office is by non-smiling government workers who have service as a very low priority. I usually make a dash for my PO box and exit like I’m in a relay race. Some folks use the PO as a place to visit their neighbors and this adds to the congestion.
The congestion is made even worse by the exit onto main street. The letter drop box is located at the exit, so the cars pile up behind the person checking each envelop before depositing it in the box.
It’s truly a war zone and extremely hazardous.
I have started sneaking off the porch just before bedtime and going to the Post Office under cover of darkness. Most of the citizens are in bed by that time and the wreckage from the day’s activity has been cleared from the parking lot. I would like the mail delivered to the house, but my dwelling is located on the wrong side of the street. I would have to put a tacky mailbox in my neighbor’s front yard across the street. For now I’m doing my night run and paying all the bills electronically from the porch.