During those reflective moments, I counted my blessings – family, health, and – friends. There’s ”PAUL, the letter carrier,” one of the folks to has to work through it all. I got this picture the week before the snow- remember the 20 degree daytime temperatures?
Paul said he layered up and forgot about the temps as best he could- until I slowed him down and reminded him with that unforgettable, orginal line: “IS IT COLD ENOUGH FOR YOU?” (dolt!) This former pro-football-practice player makes a mad dash through my Newport News neighborhood every day. And though he appears to be a “young buck” PAUL is the epitome of the romanticized, iconic, “mailman” of old…
“Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their apointed rounds…”
According to Wikipedia, that inscription is found on the James Farley Post Office in New York city. I understand it came from a quote from Herodotus’ Histories and referred to the courier service of the ancient Persian Empire:
- “It is said that as many days as there are in the whole journey, so many are the men and horses that stand along the road, each horse and man at the interval of a day’s journey; and these are stayed neither by snow nor rain nor heat nor darkness from accomplishing their appointed course with all speed.” (trans. A.D. Godley 1924)
But, wait, there’s more! In 2001, according to Wiki, the USPS created a t-v commercial edited to Carly Simon’s song “Let the River Run.” The commercial aired after the September 11 attacks and the anthrax mailings. There was no announcer, just the text:
“We are mothers and fathers. And sons and daughters. Who every day go about our lives with duty, honor and pride. And neither snow, nor rain, nor heat, nor gloom of night, nor the winds of change, nor a nation challenged, will stay us from the swift completion of our appointed rounds. Ever. ”
That’s Paul. If you’re in my neighbor, his zone, don’t blink.You’ll miss him. He’s that fast- and always focussed- Git-r- dun! And he has the greatest attitude around. Except for that hat! Grrrrr.