I had already waited and waited and waited.
I had a feeling that they might come that day.
And on that day, I waited and paced and waited some more, watching the clock for the approximate time to arrive.
I knew the window of opportunity I had, give or take 15 minutes.
I knew that if I didn’t catch him, to beg him to just hand it over, that I would have to go elsewhere to pick it up the next day. I had already waited long enough – waiting another day would just NOT DO.
Who was I waiting for?
The mail carrier.
And what was I waiting for?
A box of books - and not just any old books.
My author copies of “Not Your Mother’s Book....On Being a Parent” (Publishing Syndicate, LLC) were enroute in the mail, and I was itching to get my hands on them. Two of my stories were published in the book, and I couldn’t wait to see them in print!
And I knew if the box was too big to fit in to the mailbox, the mail carrier would leave me one of those package-pick-up card-things to retrieve the box from the post office - the next day.
And I couldn’t let that happen. I knew if I was standing right there as he sorted the mail into the mail slots, I would have that box in my greedy little hands faster than he could evade a postal-carrier-hating dog.
So I waited and waited. I kept running up to the mailboxes to see if was there – nope. No mail carrier.
Then, while diligently working on The Next Great Bestselling Novel, I heard a truck. And whaddya know? It was the classic red and white Canada Post truck - in front of my house!
Out the mail carrier ambled, carrying my really big box in his arms.
I jumped out of my chair faster than he could lope up my front sidewalk and flung open the door. I couldn’t believe he was actually bringing it right to my door! He must know I’m famous – that’s why!
“Hi!!!” I giddily sing-songed, trying not to jump up and down. He must have thought I was nuts (most people do, so this was not a big deal).
“Package for Lisa....” he started.
“Yes, that’s me!” I interrupted, all but tackling him for the box in his hands.
“That’ll be $25.10 for Customs...” he said.
Queue the sound of a needle scratching along a vinyl record.
“WHAT?” I screamed? (I didn’t really.)
“What?” I kindly, politely exclaimed in a lady-like, professional manner.
He glanced down at the accompanying paperwork.
“Yup, sorry to say, there’s a Customs charge of $25.10.”
Queue the sound of my shoulders slumping so hard I swear I dislocated a shoulder.
He took in my dislocated, shagging shoulder and said, “I’m really sorry about this – it really sucks, I know.” At least he was compassionate about it all.
But I swear he held it away from my desperate, quivering body, as though worried I would grab it and dash back in the house before he could collect.
Not only was I astounded that I had to pay anything at all, never mind that much, but I had no cash on me.
“I don’t have any cash. How about a cheque?” I brightened, smiling wide. I hoped my charm would do the trick.
“Nope, sorry - no cheques. It will be at the post office for pick-up tomorrow, though!” He tried to sweeten the moment with that consoling fact.
Um, the box is here, right now, in my front yard – I want it NOW! Not ‘tomorrow.’ I miserably whined in my head.
So with shoulders still slumped, I took the package-pick-up card-thing from him (I ended up getting one of those after all), and could only quietly watch as he walked away - carrying my box of books.
I turned away. I couldn’t bear to watch it go back in his truck.
And then he drove away.
It was awful. Talk about a kid being teased in a candy store. Or a dog teased with a bone. Or a.....
It was all too much for my famous self. I went back in the house and slumped around, waiting and watching the clock AGAIN, because I knew that the package would be ready for pick-up after 5:30, not TOMORROW.
So later that evening, after a stop at the bank and with package-pick-up card-thing in hand, I scurried to the post office just a few skips away. I held my breath as I handed over the package-pick-up card-thing, and.....there it was (big sigh of relief). I paid my dues then grabbed the box faster than the post office clerk could give me my receipt.
MINE! ALL MINE!!!! I wanted to cackle.
But my lady-like, professional, famous self would never cackle like that.
Not Your Mother’s Book....On Being a Parent (Publishing Syndicate, LLC, October 2013) has 68 light-hearted and funny stories about parenting and raising kids. Two of my stories, “Lessons Learned from Apollo 13” and “Saved by American Chop Suey” are featured in this new book that can be found at www.amazon.ca