Thursday, June 23, 2011

Country Folk and Their "Issues"

Disclaimer: Any resemblance to actual events, locales, organizations, or persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental.

Dear Mr. Mailman,

     Maybe you and I got off on the wrong foot. I know that sometimes I forget to stand my outgoing mail up in the box, or fail to raise the flag, or even inform you of my up-coming vacation plans. I understand the spot you are in working for the federal government and all, but out here in the country, mailboxes share the responsibility of delivering goods to us. You are part of the USPS. We country folk are part of the JBNDS, or the "Just Being Neighborly Delivery System".

     In the summer, a mailbox doubles as a neighborhood delivery system, sans the postage. A large enough box can hold a couple of dozen farm fresh chicken eggs or a basketful of sun-ripened tomatoes. It can hold the still warm-from-the-oven cinnamon rolls that the neighbor placed in the box as payment for the honey she received the day before. It's a convenient place to leave a note for the farmer who is in the middle of haying his fields, and a mailbox is just the right size to hold a  bouquet of dandelions that a 10 year old boy might want to surprise his momma with.

     In the winter, a mailbox is great way to dole out those last minute Christmas cards. And it keeps the fancy government "decorations" off the front so one can actually enjoy the pretty stickers that the kids decorated the envelopes with. Of course, the no-postage cards usually have a tray of home-baked Christmas cookies attached to them, and really, it's the only way to guarantee a before-Christmas delivery what with the last minute rushing and all. (It also shaves a little time off your already busy schedule!)

     I realize that mailboxes were only meant to house mail that has gone through the proper channels. But out here in the country, a mailbox is like a big, metal present just waiting to be opened. See, we're pretty excited to see a truck or tractor pull up next to the mailbox. Us country folk know that it is unlikely we'll run to the box, only to discover our neighbors have left us with bills or late notices for the 'lectricity. It's just as unlikely that they'll have dropped off their junk mail for us to plunder through. The anticipation of what goodie might be waiting is almost too much to bear as we make the long walk to the box.

    I understand that to city folk, leaving something other than mail in the box might be considered a criminal act. And having seen those teensy, tiny wall-mounted boxes, one would be hard-pressed to fit anything other than a couple of envelopes into them anyway. I'm supposin' it might leave a mess if the wrong thing were to be stuffed in there, hence the reason to impose such rules regarding the contents of said box. But I don't live in the city. Nor do I have a teensy, tiny wall-mounted mailbox. I have an extra large box, to hold an extra large amount of tomatoes, and I purchased it with my Mister's very own money.

     As a citizen of this here country, I appreciate it when criminals are prosecuted to the full extent of the law. But, I don't think you are aware of what constitutes a criminal offense out here. A teenager taking a baseball bat to my mailbox would be considered a criminal act. A person using the mailbox as a dumping ground for his/her empty Starbucks cup, would be a criminal act in my book. And as any up-standing, true-blue, country person will tell you, it is downright criminal for anyone to leave their extra zucchini's in a neighbor's mailbox. It just ain't considered neighborly at all! Real country folk know to leave extra zucchini's inside a stranger's parked car at the grocery store (and RUN!) anyway! I will support you prosecuting those dastardly zucchini dumpers as far as the law will allow!

     What I don't consider a criminal act is when the paperman, of whose job is a lot like yours (minus the health benefits and 401K), places my newspaper inside my mailbox, while it's raining.

     We country folk just call that being kind.

     But because we appreciate you Mr. Mailman, we have listened. And we have conformed. Maybe not willingly, but it is done.

You may not know this Mr. Mailman, but gone are the days when the local newspaper provided a box for the paper. Also gone, is the ability to purchase a box from the local hardware store. So, Mr. Mailman, we built our own country kind of paperbox from a drain pipe, a cap, 2 screws, and leftover spray paint. For free.

I understand the rivalry between delivery systems, but since the mail vs. paper dilemma is now resolved,  I'd really appreciate it if you could just scoot the mail towards the back of the mailbox tomorrow.

This farmgirl is expecting a delivery of honey from the JBNDS and I'd hate to get honey on my mail.

Sincerely, Me

P.S. If you find a steaming cup of cocoa in the mailbox on our first snowy day of winter, that's for you Mr. Mailman. But maybe we should just keep that between us.☺

This post is linked to Farmgirl Fridays.


Farmer's City Wife said...

Priceless :).

Patty said...

:) I LOVE it!!! I live in the country, I have a tiny little homestead, ... and a P.O. Box.
...but now I want a mail box more than I did before, which was a lot. Then the note passing from my kids to the neighbors could go both ways! :)

Happier Than a Pig in Mud said...

Loved this! And, fresh honey sounds wonderful:@)

Mountain Home Quilts said...

Some city folks never learn.....

Brenda said...

Loved this. We have lived in our home for close to four years after living in the city for close to 30. We have replaced the mailbox twice and now have a camo colored strap holding it on. It has been knocked off by the plow truck and by careless drivers. We have bought the largest, heavy duty mail box that we can find and still it will not stay put.

Lady Hawke said...

When I read this I laughed out loud. I have had my own issues with the US Postal Service. We also, just put up our new oversized mailbox. Hope it stays put. Thanks for the laugh and giggles.