Monday, 8 December 2008

Mailing Medbourne

I did my bit for the Watling Valley Christmas services this morning and tromped around Medbourne delivering leaflets.

This is wonderfully therapeutic work on the whole and gives you space to think. On the whole, it's not bad being a postman, but this kind of thing does give me a great deal of sympathy for the professionals:

1. Dogs
Yes, they're great for security, but I wouldn't want to be a posty with heart trouble. The worst ones are the hounds that wait until your fingers are inserted before hurling themsleves at the door and barking madly! This is particularly annoying when combined with...

2. Really Heavy Letter Box Brushes
These are designed, of course, to keep the heat in, but they also stop the postmen pushing letters through... It can take a long time to poke your leaflet through, by which time the dog has started barking and you're wondering if you'll ever get your fingers out...

3. Flats with "Trade" buzzers
Some flats are great and they have a rack of letterboxes at ground lever - others have a single letterbox. Unfortunately, a number of blocks in Medbourne have no letter boxes at all - only a buzzer for "trade". The idea is that you buzz the door during a certain time period and you can then gain entry to post the letters through each door - which is fine as long as you can be at these flats during that magical half-hour slot - or know when it is!

4. Ground Level Letter Boxes
These are presumably designed for small people by archetects concerned about heat loss - basically the letter box is so low on the door that it's practically on the floor! While this probably has positive impact on drafts (possibly) it has a bad impact on postmen's backs...

Having done the whole of Medbourne this morning I feel it safe to say that the worst road in the whole of this grid square (for post) is undoubtedly still Kirkwood Grove - it has ground level letter boxes, trade buzzers, and numerous little closes and obstacles which make this a virtual assault course of a road. I did note this year that a number of local reisdents have taken things into their own hands (perhaps fed up with not getting any post) and have replaced their doors or put up external post boxes... It will be interesting to see if this is a trend that will continue...

So, thanks to all our postmen who brave ravenous hounds, broken fingers, back pain and confussion as they go about their often thankless task!

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