The mailbox at the corner has disappeared. I wonder whether it was taken against its will or whether it went willingly. Maybe an aerogram came along and said, "Let's fly to a different corner." Perhaps you looked in the sky and saw it--an unidentified flying mailbox.
I still write mail the old-fashioned way--with stationery, envelope, and stamp. I like walking to the post office to send letters, see the stamps on display, and pick up packages.
A couple of years ago, when I had to choose a new bank, the sales rep tried to entice me with online banking. "No more waiting in line at the post office," she said. "No more buying stamps."
I said, "But I like buying stamps. And I love the post office."
Her face looked as crestfallen as mine had, when she suggested online bill pay.
Over the years I have made waiting in line into a game. At my post office, customers get a number. When mine is called, I shout it out. I yell, "That's me." Everyone cheers. Once, the number matched my age. I felt lucky, like I had won the lottery.
I also have developed rapport with the clerks behind the counter. They laugh when I shout, "That's me." They ask how I'm doing and what I've been up to. They admire my stickers, rubber stamps, and colorful markers adorning the envelope.
Had I known that the blue mailbox would disappear, I would have paid my respects. I would have said, "Sorry I didn't use you as much as the others, but I appreciated your being there. Goodbye, good luck, and thank you." Then I'd drop my address inside, just in case the mailbox wanted to write from its new home.
Causes Eva Schlesinger Supports
Center For Young Women's Development
Alameda County Library Foundation