Tuesday, July 21, 2009

mail box saga

Yesterday when we went for coffee we noticed a big post propped against our fence (on the inside). Hmmmm. Where could that have come from? Oh!! Our mail box is gone. There it is down the road on a funny looking metal post along with the Cowboys' mail box. What's going on here? Who moved the boxes and why, and when? I didn't notice that when we came in Sunday. Must have been done by the construction guys. We drove to it and Gma opened it to see if she could reach it ok. She could but it sure wobbled on the skinny metal post. Looks kinda flimsy to me.

Called the Post Office to see if there was a reasonable and logical reason for moving the boxes. The post mistress had no idea about what I was talking. They have no regulations for where you place your box or what you put it on. The box does have to meet some standards and has to be far enough off the highway for the carrier to be off the road when putting the mail in the box. She suggested I call the Highway Dept. I did, but no one answered. Good luck with getting them to move it back.

Gma didn't say much about it and said she'd ask Dan to move it back. I thought those who moved it in the first place should put it back. They didn't bother to ask if we wanted it moved. It's quite a bit farther for a 101 year old woman to have to walk to get her mail if she ever has to when I'm gone. Although Arlene always brings it to her door when I'm gone. Actually it wouldn't hurt me to walk further for it. However, that's not the point. The point is they moved our possession without asking and for no apparent reason, at least not to us.

This morning at coffee Gma asked Edward if he had a post hole digger on a tractor. He does and would move the boxes back whenever she gives him the ok. She told him "those idiots moved it". She also said she'd ask Dan what he knew about it before we did anything. When I went into the post office I stopped in the office and Arlene was there. She told me she knew why they moved it. Apparently the highway dept has a regulation that there has to be a 10 foot approach to the box and a 10 foot exit space. The boxes are then placed in the middle. They are on the metal post because it has more give if someone runs into it, and it is less likely for the box to come off and go through a windshield. The post will break away. Also when the snow plows are working the snow bounces off the metal and doesn't make a drift. So it isn't a postal federal regulation, but it is a highway federal regulation. Probably based on some politician's idea of safety and convenience that has never used a rural mail box or even been anywhere near one, or lived in a rural area. But I guess it is sort of logical and possibly reasonable. Depending on your point of view. I can accept the explanation, but I don't have to like it. Gma said it might be logical, but it wasn't reasonable. They could have started the approach sooner so the boxes would have been in the middle where they were instead of moving them. Arlene said we could probably call Rick and he might have them moved back to across from our driveway, but then her approach wouldn't be 10 feet, but she would have room to be completely off the road. She didn't mind where it was or even if there were two separate boxes. The way they have it now both our box and the Cowboys' box are on the same post. The highway moved all the boxes on the route. On another of her routes they moved all the boxes to the right side of the road. So we aren't the only ones being rousted. It's a highway thing. Great! And they never tell anyone they are going to do it, not even the mail carriers or the post offices.

The box has been in that particular spot for 40 some years and not been a problem, now all of sudden its a safety hazard. Somebody did back into it last year and squashed them, but that's the only incident in over 40 years. The snow plows have never run into it in all that time. The construction guys poured asphalt on the road and along the approaches to all driveways and along those mail box pull outs without hitting any of them. They had some pretty big machinery too. The boxes were moved after all that was finished.

I guess it's Gma's call now. She can get someone to move it back or not. I have an explanation for who and why. I kinda feel if we move it back and some dingbat hits it we will get sued because it isn't "regulation". Someone will hit it just because they can and it will be our fault. I can just see that one coming.

Does everyone in the country have to have a mail box problem? Is this the "in" thing for 2009?
Good Grief!!!


  1. Funny how you can get a mailbox moved without notice, especially when it hasn't caused problems in over 40 years, but we can't get school bus stop signs put up around here.

  2. I'm sure they'd never know if you move it back. They moved the boxes and marked it off of their "to-do" list. They won't notice for another 40 years! Hope you can get it moved back soon. They'll never notice.