I’m feeling sad at the lack of Christmas cards this year. Dec 25th is fast approaching and I have no festive cards to display. One reason is the Postal Strike which has messed up, clogged, bollixed up, and paralysed the departure and arrival of mail. For four months we’ve either had no mail deliveries whatsoever, or – more recently – sporadic deliveries of wodges of postal items, some of which date back as far as August. I’m writing this post in mid December. I suppose this is proof that somewhere, in one of the vast Postal Mail Depot Warehouses, wekkers (South African pronunciation of the word ‘workers’) are unenthusiastically delving into the mountains of mail that have formed veritable mountain ranges within the warehouse.
Recently a picture was circulating on the Internet, purporting to show the interior of a Mail Depot in Joburg. When I looked at the photo, I wanted to weep. Mail was spilling down to the floor, from overloaded metal racking. The floor was a sea of envelopes a carpet of mail, on which were scattered plastic crates. Each crate was stuffed to overflowing with mail items. The piece’ de resistance was the shot showing the doorway to the Mail Depot. The roller shutter-doors were rolled up and letters had blown randomly over the tarmac into the yard … Like I said, I felt like crying when I saw the picture. I’m a lifelong supporter of the postal system: letters to friends and family, penfriends far away; magazine subscriber; recipient of bills; mailer of parcels and cards on birthdays; and latterly, a keen member of the international postcard exchange called Postcrossing.
To sum up, I’m missing the usual display of Christmas cards: the bright reds and greens, the cards with sparkly glitter, all the kitch Santas, ho-ho-ing, the Star of Bethlehem cards, the whole jolly lot. But notwithstanding this, there’s a fair amount of Christmas cheer surrounding me, plus a couple of delightful unexpected gifts and I’ve found Pannetone (which I adore) in Food Lovers’ Market, so yes – Christmas is here. But my local Postman had better not knock on my door and ask for a “Christmas Box”. Not this year! No way.
Wishing all my readers a happy and peaceful Christmas, and a New Year filled with health and happiness.