Last year I attempted to mail a package overseas. It turned out to be a nightmare…
The parcel left the country on 28 November 2013 (I confirmed with the local post office despatch)
By the 27 December 2013, it had been returned to me… a speedy-around-the-world-trip LOL. I was disappointed, frustrated etc… etc… I first debated whether to leave it at that, or pursue the matter further. Sometimes it's just better to leave these kinds of things as is, because you will simply hit a brick wall… at every turn! I decided to take action…
I filled in an official form of enquiry and prepared myself for a loooong wait. Surprisingly, it was attended to quickly.
Wonders never cease.
According to my post office, the parcel, which was destined for Florida, was sent to Jamaica, New York. So I was curious and asked Mr. Google. Apparently, there is an area in New York called Jamaica. But it still didn't make sense, because according to my limited geographical knowledge, New York and Florida are opposite ends… am I right?
I waited for news from the enquiry. The lady at the post office said that if the fault lay at the other end, then I'd have to pay again and re-send the parcel but that I would be reimbursed thereafter… or something to that effect…
You've got to understand that I was excited, simply because there was COMMUNICATION. Somebody, somewhere, was looking into the matter…
On 07 January 2014, I received a letter from the South African Post Office Customer Services: "… we forwarded an enquiry to the postal administration of the United States and you will be duly notified of the response."
On 24 February 2014, I received another letter from our post office, which was dated 29 January (it took almost a month to get to me… from down the road, literally…)
Anyway, this is what it said: "The postal administration of the United States responded stating that they are unable to confirm reason for return of item. Please provide copy of postage receipt to process refund of postage. The US postal service will be held liable for the refund. Fax the receipt to…….. blah blah blah”
My comments to the intended recipient? I quote: "Ha! I won't hold my breath… First off, nobody can confirm a reason for the return of item. Secondly, I waited almost a whole month to get the update… makes me wonder – who really cares? But I have the receipts and paperwork, so I'll fax the documents through. Maybe… just maybe I'll get a refund and then I can try and post the items through… again…"
On the other end, the intended recipient replied: "No worries Michelle! So sorry it's been such a pain. I did get a letter from US Post asking if I ever received it and I replied that I didn't but that was weeks ago. Get your money back and don't worry about sending. Ok? I love that you tried but its all good! Donate my gift to someone nearby. A student maybe. That'd make me happy."
End of that story.
Meanwhile, on the 15th January this year, a parcel of books was on its way to me (or so I thought). This was a collection of 4 paperbacks SIGNED BY THE AUTHORS, which I had won as part of a Facebook Giveaway/Promo in October 2013. I talk about it HERE. By February 07th, there was still no sign of the parcel. The lady at Postnet informed me that some of the postal service employees had been on strike from the previous week (that would be roughly beginning of Feb.)
A glimmer of hope prevailed… that explained why I hadn't received the package. February came and went. Early March, I enquired again, and was informed that the the strike was over, but there was a back log. The glimmer of hope was fading… fast!
To date? Still nothing.
I wonder what on earth could have happened to it? I mean, it has to show up SOMEWHERE… doesn't it? *sigh*
And I don't know which scenario is worse – the round trip package or the wayward parcel…?
and just for laughs…
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On a brighter note, I'm excited to share the cover of a new book by Annalisa Crawford. It sounds like my kind of story…