good grief

Overheard at the post office today, when writing out addresses and phone numbers on an express letter to Australia, sending the document S#2 has been waiting for now almost a month:

(Disheveled fashionable lady:) How can I send this as cheap as possible?

(Post Office clerk:) Well, there are a few ways, but let me figure out what you want.

(DFL:) I have to send this off. I’m not thinking straight. I just lost my brother.

(POC:) So did I! When did you lose yours? What happened?

(DFL:) Just last week. He had a stroke and fell down the stairs. Just like that. What happened to yours?

(POC:) Cancer. 57 years old. Just about a month ago now. Oh let me help you do this cheaper. I can give you a better rate, at least today.

(DFL:) Thanks. I can’t think straight. I just have to get this done. Was it a stroke?

(POC:) No, cancer. I’m sorry for your loss.

(DFL:) Thanks. I’m sorry for your loss, too.

And then I had to step up to the counter to finish sending off my letter. Do I say something? I felt like perhaps it was intruding, but if I didn’t, that would be even more rude.

(Me:) I couldn’t help overhearing your conversation. I’m sorry for your loss.

(POC:) Oh! I shouldn’t have said anything to her.

(M:) What’s the point of living, if we can’t share things together, even hard things like that?

(POC:) Thanks.

Have a nice day.

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4 responses

  1. Thank you for the lovely post. And thank you for the wonderful approach that life is for “sharing thing together, even hard things.” I have been a personal recipient of this from you, and I am most grateful.

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