Monday, October 19, 2009

We Actually Deliver The Dead As Well

Yeah, yeah, another Postal anecdote. What can I say, I've had a few interesting stories accumulate over the past 14 years on the job...

Back in Roslyn Heights, a fairly affluent suburb on Long Island, New York, I never had my own route. My job was to cover 5 different routes on their rotating days off. Consequently, I would only see each route once a week. Even so, I would start to pick up little nuances about each route here and there.

One particular house had a fairly decent sized dog that would always bark loudly as I walked his cul de sac. His house happened to be the last one on that relay, so I would hear him barking at me, over the noise from my Walkman (remember those, kids? Told you I've been doing this a long time), for quite a few minutes before I got to his house. He would run up and down the yard alongside the house, happily barking away, I think somewhat upset that he was trapped behind this fence while I was outside able to roam free and have fun.

So one week, I must've made it about halfway thru that cul de sac before I realized that I hadn't heard "Cujo" (I never did know the dog's name) barking. While I did think that was unusual, I just figured they were out for the day, or he'd been taken to the vet for a check-up, or a trip to the park, something innocuous like that.

Fast forward to the next week when I was on that route again, and this time I had a Registered parcel for that house. A Registered item is one that needs a signature from the recipient. The box was slightly smaller than one that could hold a football helmet, so I could fit it in my bag.

Again, as I walked the cul de sac, I noticed the lack of annoying, but happy, barking. As I approached their house, I reached into my bag to get the parcel out. As I stood at their door, I started to write up the parcel, and this was the first time I'd noticed who the sender was.

As the woman of the house opened the door, I asked her if this box that needed to be signed for contained what, or who, I thought it did, as it was from a local pet mortuary. She wistfully confirmed my suspicions. You see, the Registered parcel I was delivering to her contained the ashes of the recently deceased "Cujo". I offered my condolences, and as I walked back to my truck, I turned the volume down a little on my Walkman.

Blog Post Soundtrack: watching/listening to the Rangers lose to the Sharks

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