My retirement/volunteer activity for today: delivering our community association newsletter to 50 or so homes in an older part of our neighbourhood.
This was an opportunity to admire a selection of amazing front-yard gardens and boulevard plantings and to get some exercise going from house to house and up and down driveways and front steps.
I also discovered that not all "front" doors are obviously situated, and that mailboxes are governed by their own set of idiosyncratic rules. I found mailboxes at the sides of doors and on the steps, at driveway entrances and at the back of driveways. Sometimes there was a mail slot in the door, behind a storm door, which made for double delivery-effort. I gave up on a couple of houses. I stared so long at one residence trying to unmask its secrets that a jogger asked me if I was lost.
Then there was the weird stuff over which I had no control --the barking dog, for example, that startled me so that newsletters floated down behind a prickly bush up against the foundation. I was glad the ground was dry as I scrambled to retrieve them.
When all the newsletters were finally dropped off, I got to go home, and I won't have to do this again for 3 months. But imagine this as your day's work. Imagine trudging up and down all those steps and opening all those doors, prying open all those slots. The dogs that are not safely inside....
I bet letter carriers retire with way more enthusiasm than librarians.