This post is NOT an indictment of the U.S. Postal Service. It is a reminder of how quirky mail delivery has become with more and more people sending more and more packages domestically and overseas this year.
On Dec. 4, I shipped two packages to Russia. The children receiving them both live in Moscow, roughly 12 miles/20 km from each other. Because Orthodox Christmas occurs in early January, I was optimistic they’d both receive their gifts in time for the holiday.
Today, 25 days later, one package has arrived in Moscow, though it’s not yet been delivered to the recipient. The other package still sits somewhere in the U.S.
If that package follows the same path as the one that made it to Russia, it still needs to go to Chicago and Zurich before arriving in Moscow.
The parents understand there’s nothing none of us can do to get that delivery there faster. It’s the first Christmas for their little girl, so the symbolic value of being there by Christmas is perhaps higher than it ought to be.
In normal times, it has taken between 2-3 weeks to get packages from Pittsburgh to Moscow. Yes, my friends, these are not normal times.