When we moved from Arizona, I thought my days of “rescuing” the newspaper were over. So not true. I still have to take in the newspaper first thing in the morning, which currently means around 5 a.m. These days, however, all I have to do is open the door and pick it up—providing that it’s there, of course.
Arizona was a different story. Prior to escaping from the desert heat, we spent almost fourteen years living in a small apartment complex. Hoping to discourage door-to-door solicitors and other perceived undesirables, The Powers That Be fenced in the property around 2006. Until then, the newspaper delivery guy (NDG) dropped the newspaper at our back door. After the fence went up, NDG was literally on the outside looking in.
Other Half (OH) was most unhappy. He just couldn’t do without his morning newspaper. So I called the circulation office and told the customer service representative what NDG would have to do in order to keep OH from cancelling his subscription. I wasn’t too hopeful, but the CSR went for it, probably after considering the decline in newspaper sales.
For the next four or five years, each weekday morning around 6 a.m., NDG wheeled into the unfenced part of the driveway, leaped out of his SUV, and lobbed the newspaper over the exit gate where, I suspect, it ricocheted off the neighbor’s bedroom window.
Each weekday morning around 6:15 a.m., I trudged out to the parking lot and picked up the newspaper. On weekends, NDG had the courtesy to show up at 7 a.m., which was great, because I had no intention of getting up early on those days to rescue a newspaper that I suspected wasn’t worth the price of the subscription.
The newspaper usually was right where it should be. But maybe ten or twelve times a year, it went AWOL. Most of those times, I’m sure it wasn’t delivered for some legitimate reason. Maybe NDG got sick halfway through the route, maybe he ran out of newspapers, or maybe he was on vacation and the substitute NDG didn’t have a clue as to who got a newspaper.
At other times, I’m fairly certain that another tenant grabbed the newspaper. Why? Well, some days I’d hear someone walking through the parking lot, or I’d hear a car stop and a door slam before the car drove out of the yard. And then, when I went out to pick up the newspaper, it wasn’t there.
When the newspaper goes AWOL here, in the land of better weather, I figure it’s just an oversight on the part of the current NDG. Maybe he’s on vacation. (I’m fairly sure it’s a he because the newspaper is delivered around 4 a.m.) Or maybe he’s sick. Or something.
And, anyway, this is a 55-plus apartment complex. I’d really like to believe that 55-plus persons ceased pilfering newspapers years ago.
But then again, who knows?