Trip To The Post Office
I had an incredible experience with the PO today. Our church decided to do a mass mailing (5000 postcards) as part of our 3:16 campaign. We got the cards and were to “drop ship” them, giving us a very cheap rate (6.6 cents per card). But living in a small town, this involved some complications. Theoretically it was simple enough – take the required forms to our local PO, get them stamped and signed, pay the postage. Then I was to take the cards themselves, all nicely sorted and boxed, to the Big Downtown Post Office in St. Louis. Didn’t seem like that big a deal – until I got into it!
It started with calling the St. Louis PO to get directions – there are several PO’s in the downtown area and I didn’t want to go running all over the city finding the right one. So that phone call (with menu and wait) led me to a person who told me another number to call. That call (with menu & wait) gave me a gal who had the same Google map I had on my computer. No help there, so she gave me another number to call. That call (with menu & wait) gave me someone who had no idea what I was talking about. I started over, and finally got the information I needed. Or so I thought.
After taking the papers to our local PO and getting the forms filled out (which required a couple of phone calls on the part of our local postal person), I headed for St. Louis and the Main Post Office. I had gotten directions to go to the Mass Mailing Dock. I did this. Went into the office and was told I’d have to wait as they were busy. So I waited 5 minutes, and when they were ready I whipped out my papers. I was told I was in the wrong place. I needed to be at the “South Dock”. OK, where’s that, I asked. She gave me directions. I went there but saw no identifying signs or marks re “South Dock”. I did happen to see a postal worker walking by, and asked him about it. He told me to go back where I started, but go to a different door. I did this. The guy there told me I had the wrong place. I should go a block down to the door by the stop sign and stay near the concrete wall. I did this, and went into a tunnel into a cavern of a building/loading dock. The guy there stopped me and said I couldn’t be there, the postal inspector was in a bad mood and I could get a $300 fine for just being on the premises. Soooo I explained my situation briefly, pulled out of the cavern, explained my situation to another guy, who called for another guy, who finally took my papers, and my post cards, and asked me if I was going to be doing this again soon. No, not too soon!
All in all it took about 2 hours of calling one phone number after another (maybe it would be quicker if I just went ahead and learned Espanol?), going from one post office to another, doing from one dock, one door, one guy to another. Next time I’ll pay the slightly higher rate and let my local PO handle it!
So what this makes me wonder is….if this is how the PO works, how great will our health care be when Obama takes over???