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8.29.2005

Friends in Strange Places

Four years ago, I began using a post office in a urban/downtown part of our fair city. It was on my way to Ju's school and it wasn't usually very busy. It was there that I met a postal clerk named S. She was always polite, very helpful, didn't seem to mind answering my many postal questions and generally far more cheerful than any other postal clerk I had ever encountered. After a few trips, I started intentionally going to her "window", even if it ment waiting a little longer. She was such a happy person...and let's face it--I need all the happy people I can get in my life...even if it's just at the PO.

When Ju left that school and that PO was no longer "on my way" I still went there whenever I had the extra time, just to see her.

Fast forward to last May, when we bought our house and shifted to a new community about 6 miles from our old area. Suddenly, my old post office was way out of the way and there's another branch less than 2 miles away. Reluctantly, I started using the new one. One day, a few months ago, to my great delight, I went to my new post office and there was S sitting behind the counter! Now she's there regularly and we've had many conversations since. She remembers my name and always seems glad to see me. I guess I find this remarkable because so few postal employees are this way. She knows about my scrapping habit as she has helped me mail several pages off to magazines for publication and several contest entries. She is kind to my children and she gives them a sticker once in a while. She knows my husband who visits the PO several times a week and has handled my mail occasionally, especially the production of The Scrapbook of American Spirit. She knows I hate those boring flag stamps. We've discussed crafting and her cool purse made from a license plate. As weird as it sounds, I would almost call her a friend...even tho I don't yet know her last name.

Last week, Joal had a reason to visit her window and in the course of their conversation, she mentioned to him that she's a Stampin' Up! demonstrator. (Not in a solicitous way...just that she collects Stampin' Up stamps.) He knows enough about what I do to recognize the name of this major stamp company and make the connection. He joked with her that he probably wouldn't share that tidbit with me...as it would end up costing him money. She laughed. Of course, he came right home and told me. (He is such a good husband!)

This doesn't surprise me at all. Stampers and scrappers tend to be a friendly bunch! I've said that a thousand times as it's played out in my life a thousand times. You know that cliche'...some of my best friends are...well, it's true. Some of my best friends are stampers and scrappers.

So today, I went to the PO. Sure enough...she was there. We talked about stamping and Stampin' Up! quietly, so as not to bug the people in line. Shhh. I'm hoping to continue to build this friendship, as surprising as it is. If I've already learned one thing from it...it's that friends can be discovered in the strangest, most unlikely places, if we only take the time to look.

3 comments:

Debby said...

You are so right! I don't have any of these currently that are this close, but I have always made a special effort to smile, chit chat and thank anyone I meet, especially those in a customer service type role. I guess because I just feel like there are so many who go through the motions and treat them as part of the process instead of a person with feelings and a life outside of the job they are performing, that even if I'm the only one that day, at least they got a kind word and a smile from someone! I say, keep it up sister!

Anonymous said...

Have you seen the Disney postage stamps?? Mom

Lynette said...

Sarah - I love reading your posts. You have a great way of writing - the flow is very peaceful to me and my day! On friendships - some folks I think of often and consider friends are people I have never met face to face, but are contacts I make through business and I love it when I just "connect" with someone on the other end of the phone. Even though we might only talk on the phone twice a year, we always have to spend time catching up and finding out what is going on with each other. Life is funny that way - and in a GOOD way. Lynette