My life has a superb cast but I can't figure out the plot.
~ Ashleigh Brilliant

Friday, April 16, 2010

Tiny town postal pranks

I'd planned to write this post yesterday (if you're a U.S. resident, you'll probably understand why it was more germane to yesterday in a minute), but an apocalyptic migraine obliterated that plan (and pretty much everything else).
I'm still feeling a bit raggedy-assed, so I need a little light-hearted snicker today anyway...

We live about seven miles from the nearest town (and it's a
very tiny town... calling it a "town" is a stretch), and since there's no postal delivery to our address, we have to have a post office box in the aforementioned wee hamlet.

So one day a couple of years ago on my way to the bigger, more distant town where I run my errands once a week, I stopped to fetch our mail. Our postmaster is quite the prankster, and he'd pulled one of his practical jokes on me that day. When I opened my PO box, there was nothing inside it but the end of a piece of orange baling twine taped to the bottom of the box, and trailing down and out of sight into the post office. So I pulled off the tape and starting reeling in the twine. I pulled in the first piece of twine only to find it knotted to the end of a second piece of twine. So I reeled it in too. After I'd pulled about 18 feet of baling twine through my mailbox, I reached another knot, this one with a yellow sticky note attached to it that said, "Good things come to those who wait" in our postmaster's inimitable handwriting, and tied to another length of twine. So I reeled the third length of twine in as well, of course, and finally came to the end... which was taped to the envelope containing our IRS tax refund check.

I could be wrong, but I'd wager we were the only tax refund recipients to get our check in that fashion! At least that year. LOL

Here are a couple of photos of our tiny burg, though these are several years old now and it's grown a bit since. Our post office used to be located inside the old mercantile (the building on the right), till the space got too cramped and people got tired of not being able to get their mail when the Merc was closed! Now the Merc is still a Merc (with a little café inside), though the gas pumps are gone, and the old derelict brown building is still there, but now there's a real, we've-hit-the-big-time post office wedged into the space between them...

And here's another view of the greater metropolitan area ;-) which also contains a restaurant (with a bar - the oldest bar in Wyoming and the site of my 40th birthday bash, though I'm pretty sure the former is its bigger claim to fame!), a bar (without a restaurant), a volunteer fire department, and a school (undergoing expansion but currently housing grades K-12). Naturally, we try to avoid downtown during rush hour. ;-)

And though it has nothing to do with small town postal hijinks, here's another bluebird photo I just took, to send you merrily off into the weekend...

As you can see from the background, spring is still being coy with us. But no matter, today was beautiful... and a Friday at last! Have a wonderful weekend!


  1. Okay, where did you get those pictures? This sounds like a story my hubby would make up. And it not like you aren't prone to jokes. ;-)

    Loved the story of how you got your tax refund. That is funny.

    Beautiful wildlife pics as always. Glad you are feeling better today.


  2. I got those pictures off my camera, silly! ;-) (Though it was my old "take the roll of film in to be developed" style camera, pre-2004). And not a word of this story did I make up. It's all true. In fact, some of my occasional blog readers might remember my telling them about this back when it happened. I found it funny then, and it still amuses me. It's so small town, and it's so our postmaster. And my description of the town is true too. The town's side streets (of which there are, like, three!) are still dirt.

    But the description of this little town pales in comparison to my grandmother's description of Havre, Montana, where she moved when she was 16. All the streets were dirt then, the sidewalks were wooden, and the local saloon was called, "The Bucket of Blood." (Eww!) And a friend of my grandmother's once rode her horse through the batwing doors and right up to the bar where she ordered a whisky! (My grandmother's friend, that is... not her horse! Though her poor horse could probably have used one at that point, I'm sure!) When I blog about my grandmother someday (maybe next winter?) I'll tell more of her stories like that one. SHE had the best stories! :-)

    I'm glad you liked my tax refund baling twine tale! Too bad we started getting our refunds electronically after that, or I'm sure Scott would have come up with even more hoops for me to jump through!

    Thanks... I'm glad I'm feeling better too! :-)

  3. La,

    You aren't joking? I am shocked! I thought for certain this was a fish tale. My hubby has told so many I am always skeptical it appears. Honestly, I can't imagine that town. I am starting to get it, but very slowly apparently. ;-)


  4. Wyoming is hard for people to imagine if they've never been out to this part of the country. It's the least populated state, and it's full of wide open spaces (people think nothing of driving 3 hours to go to a mall!) and little bitty towns, many much smaller than the one I'm describing (which had a population of 217 in the last census, but that's everyone in the zip code so it includes people like us who live 7 miles away!) There are towns with just a handful of people living in them, and nothing more than a little post office cubby tucked into a bar or a little general store, and with great names like Wolf, Recluse, Spotted Horse, Bar Nunn and Saddlestring. :-)

    BW has delivered to people whose DRIVEWAYS are 7 miles long! (Ranches, of course). It's BIG out here! But most of the towns are ITTY-BITTY! :-)

  5. I love that prank! The town definitely screams Wyoming. We loved the isolation when we drove through it, and laughed our behinds off when we drove through this town-

    Are you familiar with it?

    I hope the migraines leave you alone now. My, they've given you a hard time lately. :( I know all too well how debilitating they can be. Here's to feeling better!

  6. Hey, Molly!

    Familiar with Lost Springs, WY? Why sure! We usually fly out of Lost Springs International Airport! LOL Lost Springs, where the mayor elected herself. I've seen photos of the sign before, but you're ahead of me... we've never been through there. We've passed near it on the interstate, and on the highway that runs south of there through Torrington. But thus far, we've missed the experience of visiting Lost Springs. Thanks for sharing your photo! Lost Springs was profiled in the Washington Post a while back, you might enjoy reading the article: Meet Lost Springs, WY (Won't Take But a Minute) The part about the census is a hoot!

    Thanks for your migraine well-wishes! The chiropractic is helping, I just need to see him more frequently. And I need to get my hands on some of that Mygrafew and see if it will help. BW and I need to make a road trip to Billings soon, I plan to look there. No luck here, unfortunately, and the local feverfew is just in gel caps! Blech. (Of course, I haven't yet checked at the Lost Springs Whole Foods... lol)

  7. The postmaster is some kind of jokster... that's a great story...I love the one about your grandmother's friend too, but are you sure the horse didn't order a whiskey too? I heard the horses are pretty tough out there.

    Itty bitty towns aside, it must be nice to be so far away from the madding crowd!

    Hope your migranes go away for good!

  8. Rose - it's true the horses out here are pretty tough. But while they enjoy a good oatmeal stout or single malt whiskey (shame on me for not using the Irish spelling!) after an especially tough day, they're mostly a pretty health conscious bunch who prefer shots of wheat grass juice. :-)

  9. P.S. And yes, crowds - madding or otherwise - are definitely not my thing! Even Wyoming is too crowded for me. LOL (And you get extra points for saying "madding" instead of "maddening!") :-)

    I see your hope and raise it! Begone, migraines, you spiteful things! :-)

  10. Certainly the horses are very wise in their choice of wheat grass over whiskey! Also, meant to say before, congrats on the bluebird was very kind of him to let you get a snap.

    Have a good weekend!

  11. You know, right after I snapped that photo the wind came up and was really gusting. Poor little guy had a death-grip on that branch and was having to flap his wings to stay on! He was really being cooperative, but I wasn't able to get another good photo of him before he said, "To hell with this, I have some nesting material to pretend to bring home!" lol

    You have a great weekend too, Rose!

  12. Whoa, you guys are like cowboys. Does that bar serve sarsaparilla?

    Sorry about your headache! Hope you're feeling better.

  13. Howdy, Mary! Yep, that's us... just a coupla vegan tofu wranglers fresh off the range! ;-) I don't know if that bar serves sarsparilla (I'd wager not), but several years ago, when I rode for a few days with the Bozeman Trail Wagon Train centennial re-enactment, a sarsparilla was exactly what I ordered at the saloon at the end of the trail in Virginia City, Montana, an historic gold-mining town ("where rowdy miners mingled in saloons with women of negotiable affection," lol). Though I soon switched to beer for the evening, the sarsparilla was very tasty as well as great fun to order ("Hey, pardner, rustle me up a sarsparilla and make it snappy!") :-)


Will Blog For Comments. :-)

Thanks for taking the time to leave yours!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...



  • THE HUMANE GARDENER ~ Nancy Lawson
  • THE WORLD WITHOUT US ~ Alan Weisman

There is still strong in our society the belief
that animals and the natural world have value
only insofar as they can be converted into revenue.
That nature is a commodity.
And that the American dream is one of unlimited consumption.
There are many of us, on the other hand,
who believe that animals and the natural world
have value by virtue of being alive.
That Nature is a community to which we belong
and to which we owe our lives.
And that the deeper American dream is one of unlimited compassion.

~John Robbins, "The Food Revolution"

free counters