Not happy about the package arriving during the next snowmageddon


A package is on the way. And Iím quite upset about it.

Yes, yes, itís supposed to be delivered in the middle of a snowstorm. That isnít too exciting, or upsetting. Iím not looking forward to fetching it out of a snowdrift if the arrival of the box and the falling snow begin moving in opposite directions and overlap. But thatís a small part of it. The timing of weather and package arrivals arenít always intertwined. I do hope the package doesnít get placed in a snow drift. I hope it doesnít sit there for a while. And, it is that sitting in the snow that begins my frustrations (and the twist for this essay)Ö

When was the last time a delivery was made to your house and the doorbell was actually rung? A doorbell, a knock on the doorÖ whateverÖ with a person waiting on the other side for a moment? Unheard of these days. If there even is such an action taken, the delivery person is usually back in the vehicle and pulling out of your driveway before you could possibly open the door to your house.

But thatís just the start of it. Because my real problem is the technology involved.

Have you ever registered for any of the systems offered by one or more of the delivery services? I have. And yeah, there is a storyÖ

Terry and I ordered something relatively unimportant about a year ago. We saw something we liked, wanted to get it, and the price was right. We placed the order. But we werenít worried about getting it immediately, so we just took the free shipping option and moved along with our daily lives. Time passes.

The item wasnít backordered, but the processing was taking a day or two or three or more, and suddenly something we thought would arrive in under two weeks was now threatening three to four weeks before it showed up. We had plans to be on the road around that time, and really didnít want a bigger box sitting outside our house for a couple of days. Didnít want people seeing the box sitting there. Didnít want the box out if it rained. SoÖ

I caved. I clicked this link and that, logged in to the delivery serviceís system and started an account, then moved over to the section for changing delivery dates. And it was at that point my efforts came to a stop. There was a fee to change it.

Thatís youíre great customer service? Get me to sign up and then charge me fees for anything that I do?

I checked around the site, looked at a couple of options, and even made a phone call just to make sure I was reading things correctly. AndÖ yeahÖ

I could pay to get the date changed. I could even pay a second fee to get the date change matched up with a priority rush offer from them (not the shipper offering itÖ from the delivery service) that allowed for my free shipping package that didnít leave immediately to have the delivery sped up for my convenience.

Look, when I decide to take the free shipping option, chances are good Iím not looking to change my mind and get things moving faster after itís left the business and is in the hands of the delivery company.

I laughed at the computerÖ chuckled while on the phoneÖ and basically went on with my life. As a funny twist, the package ended up arriving after our returnÖ because it was handed off to the U.S. Postal Service for the final stretch of the delivery process, and they placed it aside due to our free-of-charge hold mail request.

But the fun continues. Iím in the delivery serviceís system now. Any time we order something that involves shipping using their carriers, an e-mail arrives. And in the e-mail is all the information I need in order to log onto their web site, open up my account and track the delivery.

OhÖ I get it. If I ran a business, where the receiving and sending of packages was involved, and there was a way to get everything organized under fewer accounts and places to check, the services involved quite likely would be a nice thing. I might even appreciate it.

For a personal order thoughÖ a home deliveryÖ it can be bonkers. After all, itís not just the carrierís personal touch e-mails. The places we order from almost always send some sort of confirmation e-mails. You know themÖ

Thank you for your order with a confirmation number

Your order has been processed and hereís the tracking information even though it wonít matter because it hasnít been picked up to start its journey so the information isnít active and you canít find out the delivery details yet

Your order has been shipped and click here for tracking information

So, yeah, this wonderful blessing of tracking my package is already available. Iím not looking to take advantage of your charges for alternatives. Stop it. Youíre annoying me. I already know that my order has entitled me to a wonderful world of benefitsÖ catalogues in the mail and sales offer e-mails beyond belief. So, yeah, the last thing I want is someone else sending along a ton of e-mails about the darn thing. Just deliver my package.

(Deep breath.)

Iíve got a package on the way. Supposed to arrive during the snow storm. I probably could change that, but it doesnít really matter. Not worth the cost. (I do wish I could log on and ask for a knock on the door with a handing off of the package though. That would be nice.)


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