Tuesday, 27 November 2012

Wait a minute Mr Postman



One of the most greatest bonds is that of the Postman and the letterbox- apart from when that letterbox snaps back too hard and traps his fingers.

His name is Ian and he is my Postman. He is a family man and spends his day off with his wife, grandchildren or fishing the estuary. He is a man with salt and pepper hair, looks younger than he probably is, has knobbly knees and gets lines around his mouth when he laughs. I appreciate his politeness and good nature. We start from the beginning as he tells me how in the ‘olden days’ his business failed and so he applied to become a postman. Nineteen years later he is still content with delivering the parcels and post. It is hard to believe that this man failed at something in his life. He seemed to be one of those people who naturally succeed in everything they choose to do.

As the autumn mornings get increasingly bitter, I am in awe of the postman’s ability to wear shorts in cold temperatures. I am humorously reassured that when becoming a postman, they test your ability to withstand the winter temperatures in shorts and it is all part of the job. I imagine several postman potentials in a large freezer wearing shorts for a long period of time to pass a level of training and move onto the next- that next being to test their ability to avoid any ankle-biting dogs at the garden gate.

Unfortunately my Postman does not have a black and white cat, but a large fluffy dog. Although, his mate Pat the Postman does have a cat, which completely counteracts my initial disappointment in his choice of pet. He has never had any misdemeanours with dogs, touch wood, but after nineteen years he still finds it funny when he hears the sound of an awaiting letter-eating dog on the other side of the letterbox.

He is like my street’s very own Santa Claus. A cheery man who dresses in a red uniform, whose job it is to deliver. The only difference being he comes six days a week instead of just once a year. Something that has always fascinated me is where the letters to Santa Claus go. Sending a letter to Santa Claus is something I intend to do every year but never do. Even my Postman isn’t able to tell me where they go. I thought it was because all Postmen are sworn to secrecy, but it is because he really doesn’t know.

The Postman is one of my favourite passer-bys. I commend myself in my people-watching skills and have always observed how the Postman is never really noticed- perhaps only when he is the one to get you out of bed on your morning off. He is just a part of the everyday furniture that comes with life and I often wonder whether or not being a Postman is a lonely job, or perhaps it is the perfect job to get some peace and quiet. He says that even if he is lonely, it is never for long.

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