Growing up, we had one of those community mailboxes at the end of the street. So we NEVER walked to the mailbox. If we didn't drive somewhere that day, we didn't check the mail. That's just the way it was.
Now we have a mailbox in front of our house. And yet, that old rule still seems to apply. Because, it could be argued, it's a long walk to the front of the yard. It's hot. It's humid. My neighbors might see me and try to socialize. All very bad things. So much easier to pick up the mail in the anonymity of your car with the A/C blowing in your face.
I know all the benefits, and still, last Friday, I decided to take that trip out to the mailbox. On foot.
I was dutifully plugging away at my work when Christie IM-ed me. "Have you checked the mail yet? :) :) :) :)"
That fourth smiley made me a little suspicious. She'd been preparing to serve a mission for our church for the past few months and was sure the mailman would be bringing her news of where she would serve.
After changing out of my pjs (don't judge), I walked out the front door to check the mail. Noticing the door was slightly ajar, and the sun was stunningly hot, I made sure to shut it tight behind me. Gotta save that A/C, right?
The minute I heard the door latch, I remembered. The handle on the front door recently broke. It didn't work. The door wasn't even locked, yet I had still managed to locked myself out (though thankfully not in my pjs). I suddenly felt like a prisoner, shaking the handle, banging on the door, jiggling the latch ever so gently so as to coax it into submission. It would have none of it.
After finding all 4 back doors locked as well (do we seem a little paranoid here?), I resigned to sit and wait. And, oh yeah, check the mail. And there it was! My sister's mission call. Inside that little envelope lay her fate. So I sat on the driveway and inspected every angle of the envelope, trying to pry inside and sneak a peek. After nearly an hour of missed work and hot heat and envelope examinations, my mom made it home.
A few hours later, with the family gathered together, we opened the envelope. Christie would be speaking Spanish and serving the people in LA--and leaving in a month to begin the 18-month journey. We laughed and cried and smiled proud.
If I could get news like that every day, it might almost be worth that trip to the mailbox.