Yesterday and today were both marked by an upsurge of traffic on the road as kids returned to school and parents went back to work. I was a little later than intended on both days and ran into delays caused by the rush hour. Today’s dark and rainy start did little to combat the congestion or lift the mood.
It did, however, give me time to think about writing and I have just drafted two new haibun. There is, no matter how dark the day, always the possibility of good emerging from it.
We now have four complaints about the non-arrival of packages. One is from Israel, which we were expecting. The Israeli Post Office does not have a good reputation. This is surprising as they generally seem to be an efficient country. I note, however, that they will forward letters addressed to God.
One is from a customer who has had his package. He then changed his story, saying that he wanted to return it as it was a present and the intended recipient already had one. That’s a shame, but not our fault. Unfortunately, we fall under the same legislation as a large company in this matter and will have to accept the return and lose money.
Another has now been waiting a month and now wants their money back. Again, not our fault, but not his fault either. We can, of course, apply for a refund from the Royal Mail but it is likely to be a case where the time spent claiming outweighs the value of the claim.
All these are irritating as we have done nothing wrong but will end up losing money.
The fourth is more annoying. We sent the wrong parcel to someone and had to send them a replacement. Fair enough. They returned the item we had sent in error. While it was being returned (slowly, due to postal strikes) somebody else ordered it. We emailed them saying that there would be a delay but that we would send it in the New Year, if they wanted to wait. They accepted this and we actually sent it to them on 28th December. It is, according to the Royal Mail, on its way. They have just cancelled it as it is taking too long. This seems a trifle unreasonable after we have done our best for them.
Sorry to give so many details of my mundane life, but future researchers may want to know about the reality of doing business on eBay. We managed to hit another feedback milestone today. We hit 10,000 feedback just before Christmas (over 10,000 satisfied customers!) and today arrived at 10,100. So, despite the erratic post we are still keeping most people happy and it is clear that most of the post is still getting through quickly.
The header picture is the Post Office 10p from the 2019 alphabet issue of coins. It was, in many ways, a disaster of an issue, with demand far outstripping supply. They were extremely rare in change and mainly being sold by Royal Mint and the Post Office at premium prices. It’s not the way to handle a new issue, as many people like the thrill of searching their change to find coins.