I get such a thrill when a stranger does you a big favour so here is the story of our postman who made my day this week. With so much happening at work, so many long-standing colleagues being made redundant and so many leaving presents for everyone to buy I thought I could slip quietly away in to retirement without anyone noticing. But my lovely and generous colleagues had other ideas and sent me a retirement present I will always remember, a beautiful Italian leather album with beautiful cream textured pages interwoven with tissue. This is such a lovely thing to own and perfect for creating a memento of sketches, postcards, tickets and other memorabilia from our next big trip. But how this perfect retirement present reached me is a tale of a postman who went above and beyond the call of duty.
You may recall I have been working from home since the summer and I have clearly continued to provide such efficient administrative support from my home-base that some of my colleagues never even noticed the change. I work for a national organisation and my colleagues are dotted around the North-west and the Midlands so communicating by email and telephone has always been the norm. This week I received an email from a colleague in the West Midlands that mentioned I should expect a parcel that day; however when I checked where it had been posted to found it was on its way to the ‘old’ office that is now closed up and empty. After an initial panic, he emailed me the receipt and I could track the parcel and so could see it was on its way to this abandoned office. Armed with the receipt I walked to our local Royal Mail collection depot to see what would happen with the parcel. After a long back and forth negotiation with supervisors they were happy [or at least satisfied] that I could collect the parcel from them, even without the failed delivery card, if I provided ID and headed paper from the old office [thank goodness I have been using this as scrap paper].
Back at home there was a knock on the door at lunch time. The ‘old office’ is near to my home and we share a postman. I often pass the time of day with this postman both at home and at work and he had noticed that I was one and the same person [I have an unusual second name]. He had arrived at the shuttered and deserted office with my parcel, noticed who it was addressed to and put the parcel back in his bag to bring round to our flat later on his round. He presented the parcel hesitantly, clearly worried about whether he had done the right thing, but I was over the moon. I am so grateful for his thoughtfulness and quick thinking and amazed that even in a big city like Salford it is impossible to be completely anonymous.