Our postman must be one of the busiest around. Faithfully, morning by morning, rain, hail or snow he drops our ration of letters through the letterbox. I admire his consistency. You could set your clock to him. That is, if you could set anything to anything at six o'clock in the morning.
Now I'm the type of fellow who likes to "keep in" with those who render me valuable service throughout the year. After all, it pays in the end. Take the binmen for example, if they were to take an umbrage against you, you might be left with a mountain of rubbish in the back yard. Then the coalman, if not treated to a token of appreciation might let you freeze to death instead of delivering that order which he ought to have had days before.
Now with respect to binmen and coalmen the gesture of good-will presents no problem. All you have to do is make careful observation throughout the year. Note the time of removal or delivery, as the case may be and be around at that particular time, making sure, of course, that you have the correct amount of money in an accessible position. Mind you, it does call for alertness for those dedicated souls wilI not let the dust settle before they are up and gone and the opportunity for doing good has departed.
Apart from the parting of the cash, the only problem I have is with the postman. What do you do with a man who noiselessly approaches your door at six o'clock in the morning and with great professionalism, and the dexteriday after day, year after year. Such consideraton and consistency cries out for a token of appreciation, but, the question is, how to meet him face to face and be in a generous mood at that unearthly hour. Once or twice I almost had him. There was the dark morning when I was awakened by a knock at the door. Suffering from shock I struggled to find the handle. In the darkest hour before the dawn I wrestled with the pencil and paper he gave me to sign for a registered letter. Ever since I have been thinking of organising a petition to have registered letters banned as a danger to the public health. After all, one should be brought from the blissful unconsciousness of sleep to the realities of life by more gentle means.
Then there was a morning a week or so ago when the bell rang and I discerned through the glass darkly the fuzzy outline of our friendly postman. He was all apologetic. "Please, may I have my letters back?" he enquired. "I'm afraid I have delivered your neighbour's letters to you by mistake," he explained. By the time he had thanked me and I had thanked him (for what, I shall never know) he was gone and with him my good intention. This type of thing has been going on now since Christmas and it's now the middle of March. I've come to the conclusion that I should tackle the problem at its source so I'm going to put the "fiver" in an envelope and address it to the postman and deliver it to the post office.
Recently I have been getting a large number of items from the postman. I have come to the conclusion that a lot of people want to give me a lot of things. I have had material from the Automobile Association, Readers Digest and a host of others, some of them suggesting that a new car would look well in the driveway of the manse and that I should use tile special numbers which they allotted me to enter a draw, which, no doubt, would these colourful productions.
Perhaps the letters I cherish most are those which have travelled the longest distance. With this in mind may I say to those who have written from Australia a big thank you. Your letters are a great blessing and bring back pleasant memories. Keep up the good work.
Some years ago we were on holiday in Scotland. Staying the night in a guest house we got into conversation with some people from U.S.A. They had not been to Scotland before and having hired a car I was able to suggest some places they might like to visit. We exchanged names and addresses, and would you believe it, those people now write us a letter every Christmas.
When we were away from home for three months last year, in Australia the house where we were staying had a post box at the front gate. The postman did his rounds on a motor bike. He came at around 1 p.m. each day. At the sound of his engine we would visit the post box. The really happy days were those when we had a letter from some kind soul who had not forgotten to write . Perhaps there is someone you should write to.
In the New Testament we have letters written to Churches and individuals by the Apostles. Those letters have brought blessing to countless multitudes since they were first penned. I knew a lady, who, when she became a Christian, felt obligated to witness for her Lord. Many of her relations lived overseas so the opportunity to witness by word of mouth did not present itself. She did the next best thing and wrote letters. I am sure she will not lose her reward.
Now, before I sign off, let me confess that I must be among the world's worst as far as letter writing is concerned . Many of the regrets of my life have to do with letters I failed to write.