Essay: Post Office Cure
A cloud is following me around today, casting a shadow on my life. I feel lonely and discouraged—but when I try to figure out why, nothing comes to mind. In an effort to get out of the house and out of my self, I take up my list of errands.
If I cannot cure my gloom, I can at least get groceries and buy stamps. I stand in line at the Post Office and look at the other people, wondering if they are happy.
“Can I help who’s next?” It’s the friendly postal clerk and I hurry to his window.
“I want a sheet of stamps,” I say, “the Alaska ones.”
”We’re out of Alaska,” he says, “How about Oregon?”
I nod and open my wallet as he continues. “Anything else we can sell you today? “Packing tape? Bubble wrap? Teddy bears?”
“No, thank you,” I say. “But you’re a good salesman.”
“If I were a good salesman, you’d buy a teddy bear,” he says and I have to laugh.
And as I hand him my money, I notice that the cloud has lifted. I’m back in the world again, feeling connected. And I wonder if people behind the counters all over town know how much we depend on them—and not just for stamps and groceries.