“Hails, do me a favour and post this letter,” said The Sister the other morning as I was leaving for work.
“Hails, do me a favour and drop this key in to the estate agent on the way home,” said Zed the other evening as we were leaving work.
The Sister and Zed should really think about what they’re saying and who they’re saying it to. Why is it that the simplest of tasks inevitably sends me into a spin? I drove home from work, receiving a helpful text from Zed on the way, reminding me about the key. I found the building, parked, and went to the door with the envelope containing the key. No one answered, so I dropped it into the mail box on the wall and returned to Rio the Clio, where the sight of The Sister’s letter on the passenger seat reminded me I had to find a post box on the way home. Singing along to my CD, I drove on, congratulating myself on the surprising ease with which I found somewhere to post the letter just a few hundred yards along the road.
Still singing, I nipped out of the car, and was about to drop the envelope into the post box when I noticed that The Sister had rather annoyingly forgotten to affix a stamp. Not only that, but upon closer inspection it became clear that she hadn’t even had the presence of mind to address the envelope. Several pennies dropped slowly and alarmingly before I retreated to the car and drove hastily back to the estate agent’s to retrieve The Sister’s letter from their mail box and replace it with the envelope containing the key given to me by Zed.
Not that this was an easy task. You’d almost think that those things were designed to stop people reaching inside to remove the mail. It was highly unfortunate that a member of staff chose to exit the building at the precise moment when my hand became firmly lodged inside the mail box.
“Err, can I help you?” he asked in some surprise, as I pulled frantically at my trapped hand with my free hand.
“Umm… I hope so,” I replied, slightly embarrassed, my hand beginning to throb quite painfully. “My hand seems to be stuck in your mail box.”
He stared at me, perhaps wondering if he should call the police.
“Why?” he asked eventually, making, I noticed, no effort whatsoever to assist me in my plight.
“Because the slot is too small,” I told him wryly. He did not seem to be a fan of sarcastic humour, judging by the look on his face, so I quickly tried to minimise my craziness. Which was difficult, as I was trying to extract my hand from inside an estate agent’s mail box at the time. “I came to return your key for a showhouse,” I explained, flustered. I waved the envelope at him. “But I had a letter to post as well, and I accidentally put the wrong envelope in the mail box. And when I tried to swap them around, my hand got stuck. And then you came out and found me doing this.” I made one last frantic bid for freedom, and my hand emerged intact.
The man looked uncertainly at me, took the key envelope, and, without speaking, selected a key from the bunch in his hand. He opened the mail box and removed my letter, which I accepted with as much dignity and poise as I could fake. “Thank you,” I said humbly. “Have a nice night.” I could feel his eyes boring into my back as I walked in a most dignified manner back to the car.
I try so hard to lead a normal life.