Monday, December 10, 2007

Going Postal

I just put three packages in the post and breathed a sigh of relief. One of the side effects of the new job and all the travel is that the time I have for - well, for everything - is greatly reduced. My old job was so centrally located that it was easy to pop out for twenty minutes to run errands - not so much where I am now. So I've been worried about Christmas shopping, gift wrapping, finding cartons for mailing (Husband's help here was outstanding - he was lugging large boxes around downtown Fredericton by hand last week), and finally about getting my Christmas packages in the mail - to my family back in Newfoundland, where delivery can be agonizingly slow, and to my best friend and her family in Ontario. Well, I'm a fraction late by my own personal deadline of getting things in the post the first week of December, but still, things should get there by Christmas, God willin'and weather permittin' as they say back home.

I've been remarkably fortunate with finding everything I need in Moncton, and that's no accident. I mailed the packages from a Post Office counter located inside a pharmacy which was open later than a regular post office, and which I located online through Canada Post's website. I used Mapquest to create a map of the pharmacy's location and stopped by after work. I've used the web to find a nearby grocery store, a bookstore, and a branch of my bank. For that matter, I used the web to find the room I am typing this from. When I needed help with a prescription I would normally go to my doctor in Fredericton for, I looked up after-hours clinics in Moncton, found one nearby, called for an appointment, showed them my New Brunswick health care card, and voilĂ  - done. I know, online, roughly two days before I set out on my Fredericton-Moncton commute if there will be foul weather, and how I should adjust my travel to avoid it.

All of this I could have done before there was the internet - but think of the staggering amount of research that seems like, now, in retrospect. Phone books and phone calls and dialing 411 and libraries and asking at a dozen gas stations and tracing routes on maps with highlighter.

Sorry, no, there aren't any flying cars, and breakfast doesn't fall out of a replicator at your voice command, but still, guys -

welcome to the future. Our future.

I like it here. A lot.


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Blogger Sherwood Harrington said...

At the risk of generating yet another "what we have to be thankful for at this time of the year" dealie (which would cause me to lose my membership card for the Curmudgeon Chowder Society)...

True, no flying cars. But more than the wonder of the internet makes up for that. Medical marvels abound now that weren't around a generation ago: marvelous pharmaceuticals, routine availability of artificial joints (there have been three titanium knees walked into Ft. Harrington, for example), and cochlear implants are just a few examples.

And there are wonders beyond the information media and the medical that make this a time of great blessings.

Yes, ronnie, this is a good, good time to be. I can't think of a better one.


2:06 a.m.  

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