Gordon, our heroic postman was making his rounds a little later than normal on Wednesday. There had been a power cut at the sorting office. Gordon and his colleagues had had to navigate in the dark to their delivery piles. They were aided only by mobile phone torches and one head torch which had been appropriated by Ethel and was therefore no help to anyone else as she was only 4 foot 2 so the beam shone well below anyone else’s eyeline.
But Gordon was nothing if not adaptable and he set out on his rounds as cheery as ever.
As he made his way up Davis Row, he realised he was catching up with a lady pulling a shopping bag on wheels who was popping things through letterboxes ahead of him.
“Hello” he said perkily as they met on the path at number 7, “Lovely morning for a delivery”
“Oh yes” she said, “But I’d no idea it was such hard work! Claire.” She introduced herself. “I had some time on my hands and I thought I could do with a bit of extra exercise, so I volunteered myself this month. But I’m shattered already and I’m not half way done.”
“I’ve been at it a few years now. It’s alright once you get used to it. What are you delivering?”
“It’s the Parish Newsletter. You know the one with all the fêtes and the full results of the allotment jam competition and the phone number for Gerry at the church hall?”
“Ah” Gordon said “I don’t live here but I think we have a similar thing. Many more to do?”
“I’ve been at it hours” she said despondently “I’ve had my fingers trapped by springy letterboxes, I’ve had dogs launch themselves at my hand as I’ve pushed it through and I’ve bent down and up so many times I’m quite dizzy.”
“You get used to it. Honest! And then you get some really good letterboxes and it makes all the horrible ones worth it”
“I’d no idea until today there were horrible letterboxes. I’m now wondering what mines like! I’ll have to check later.”
The two continued on their way together companionably with Gordon very nobly tackling the most bitey-looking options and Claire chatting away beside him. They turned into Green Acre Drive and he heard Claire give a groan. “Flats” she whispered, “Not flats! Not stairs. I can’t face all those stairs!”
Gordon’s eyes twinkled as he held open the door in the first block of flats. “you wait” he said.
Claire’s eyes lit up as she saw a bank of letterboxes at the back of the hall. “Oh!” she gave almost a squeal of delight “they’re all together! Look at that!” and she merrily stuffed a newsletter into each slot. “this” said Gordon “is the delight of posties everywhere. A multiple letterbox. A thing of beauty and ease for all concerned. Your face quite made my morning! Stairs, pah!”
“I’ve never been so pleased to see a, “multiple post box”, you call it? Oh, what a treat. Would you like a Jaffa Cake?”
Gordon certainly did like a Jaffa Cake and gratefully accepted before saying he needed to press on and keep up the good work. “Oh yes. I will, thank you. Once I’ve done another 20 I shall have earned a second Jaffa Cake” and she trotted out to the next block.