Canada Post Teaches Us Humility

Do you find it challenging to be funny while seething with anger?  Such is the case for me, thanks to the illustrious workers at Canada Post.  As you may recall, I had the great compliment of having Eric Akis write in glowing terms about my fruitcake in the Victoria Times Colonist.  This caused panic buying at Peppers Foods, so the nice manager re-ordered.

As the last weekend before Christmas was approaching, he asked that the fruitcakes be sent overnight, but not at an insane cost.  I checked around and decided that Canada Post’s Priority Courier service would be the best option.  I packaged up four cases (96 fruitcakes) and mailed them at noon on the 18th with a guarantee that they’d arrive at noon on the 19th.

I spent the last weekend before Christmas feeling smug about all of the successful transactions that had occurred.  Humming away, I answered the phone on Monday the 22nd to this unbelievable question: “Where are the fruitcakes I ordered?”  I felt like I’d been punched in the gut, and raced to the Internet to track the packages.

Sure enough, I saw that they were sitting in Richmond at 10:00 PM on the 19th and no further information was provided.  I phoned the number shown on their site for assistance, and then spent the next hour in a loop which ended nowhere.  Finally, I drove to the post office from where I’d mailed them, and they informed me that the tracking branch of Canada Post, the inside workers, were on strike!

The nice clerk at the post office said, “Once the strike is over they’ll refund you the courier fee.”  To which I replied that I didn’t care about the refunded fee, but was very concerned that a seasonal product had not been delivered on time to the store.  She explained that there was nothing that anyone could do.  I drove home feeling completely defeated.

The fruitcakes finally arrived on the 23rd, but as the manager said, so many people had left mad that he was worried he’d have trouble selling them at this point.  I just have to think positively, as who wouldn’t want a fruitcake to ring in the New Year?  I just read that in Scotland a fruitcake is eaten on New Year’s Day for good luck.

By the 24th I had largely gotten over the upset, as it was time to get ready for our traditional Christmas Eve.  Mom and Gerry arrived with Schwartzie, and the four of us plus them made for a happy evening of carols, gifts, food and wine.  I successfully made a Jewish dish, knishes and brisket, which Gerry loved.

Vast amounts of food were also consumed on Christmas Day as I made the ubiquitous turkey dinner with all the trimmings.  Luke has the appetite of a super model after the last runway show of the season, so has practically eaten us out of house and home.  Oh well.  That’s what the holidays are for.

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