Your Past is Over There in the Pile

I don’t know if I should be talking about this — I don’t know if I’m tapping into a federal investigation or infringing upon 18 U.S. Code § 1703 – Delay or destruction of mail or newspapers, or just relaying an experience (and the implications thereof) of something that happened to me.

So let’s say that one day last week this “lady” received a reminder from her state’s Department of Motor Vehicles to renew her license plates for 2005. For the year 2005.  A few days later she received a bulb from Holland Bulbs, a gift ordered on March 13, meant to be delivered in October, yet never received a notice of the gift when it was first given. So this “lady” felt like a fool, acknowledging receipt of the gift she originally believed was never sent.

This “lady” proceeded to remark to her husband this strange occurrence. He, in turn, relayed the tale to a co-worker. It turned out the co-worker knew someone  working at this post office, and relayed information (which was later confirmed by dozens of people  in response to her posting an inquiry for information on Facebook) about this strange mail incident.

It turns out there was an employee of this facility who had been keeping bins of undelivered mail in their house for the past 16 years. The  purported purveyor of other people’s mail only got caught because their ex- turned them in.

I’m not making this up. And — surprise — I’m that “lady.”

I have no idea how much mail has yet to filter back to my house. One person reported receiving a birthday card from 16-1/2 years ago. Another also got a DMV notice from 2005. Another just received a Confirmation card from 2013.

I don’t know what happened. I’m not so much into the losses as I am to what others may have never received. A DMV notice from 2005 I can live with. An acknowledgement for a gift for my son’s memorial, getting a bit more personal.

But what about those who never received birthday cards and letters from someone in the service or their grandma across the country or money to help them make it day to day?

What happens to those memories?

Not being able to say thank you. Not to be able to answer someone’s card or invitation. No way to respond to letters of love sent by those no longer in this world.

Sixteen years is a long time.

I don’t care about the personal life of the person who did this. I don’t care about their ups and downs and their confusion with life. Just like I don’t care about the mental state of the man who took my son from me.

They both were wrong. Legally, socially, morally wrong.

There is no excuse for piling up bins of mail for 16 years because you wanted extra money or gift cards or wanted to get back at your employer. This thief took away the past 16 years from a lot of people in the neighborhood. And they had no right to do so.

Yet they did.

The world is such a curious place, isn’t it?



8 thoughts on “Your Past is Over There in the Pile

  1. Curious is a very kind word to describe humanity. I’d use words like depraved, evil, insidious, awful, or stupid. Maybe there’s one word that encapsulates them all. Devildiousawfid? I’ll work on it.

    Also, I’ve only been following a short time and am just now learning of your son. I’m so sorry to hear that. I can’t even imagine.


  2. This is appalling. To a lesser degree. we rented a mailbox when we first moved to Spain as we didn’t have a permanent address at first. A year later we bought a house with mail delivery but we kept the mailbox. The people who ran the mailroom/coffeeshop/convenience store were nice to us. After a few years, we started getting more mail at the house so I decided to cancel the mailbox and save a bit of money. I let everyone know and paid for one more year anyway, just in case. I let everyone know once more and then cancelled. The people who owned the shop were not happy. They did not forward us any mail or even let us know, even though we often walked by the place. Some people forgot to change the address in their records, including the tax people. One friend is mad at me because I never acknowledged her cards etc. I found she was sending them to the old address. It does cause problems if you don’t get your mail. Keeping it for 16 years is unbelievable!


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