It happens once a year, it takes place at our local rural (one-clerk) post office, and it’s as inevitable as rain that it’ll occur simultaneously to The Peanut Gallery bringing in tubs of the last holiday orders to be mailed before Xmas.
I’m talkin’ Tomato Day … and if you have no clue what THAT means, you likely don’t live rurally.
It’s a years-old tradition for local Crystal Clarity Tomato Farm to thank their customers with a special jar of home-farmed tomato sauce straight from the fields (uh – the tomatoes, not the sauce) at Xmas.
All 100 customers.
You may think 100 customers is a drop in the proverbial profit bucket; but when it comes to Tomato Day – it’s simply overwhelming.
Picture it: 100 packages lovingly hand-lettered, each holding a single fragile jar of sparkling sauce.
Each requiring special postal attention and handling. By my calculations, that’s at least 300 minutes of work (…find X, where X = 1 jar x Y [3 minutes].)
100 packages evoking discussion of local history and color, eccentric customer personalities, satisfying gossip, and hours of delightful reminiscence during the careful handling process.
TPG invariably walks in with his (comparatively paltry) unexciting two whole tubs of JUST enough mail orders to provoke the “you’ll just have to wait” response from postmistress Roz, who by now is literally knee-deep in Tomato Sauce.
A little knowledge, however, is a dangerous thing: should any of our customers complain of tomato stains, for example, we’ll know exactly whom (or, more specifically, what) to implicate in the matter:
Tomato Day holiday festivities at the local Valley Ford Post Office.
It’s the happening place to be, pre-Xmas!
And – HAPPY TOMATO DAY!
PS: And, let it be known that there has NEVER been a tomato stain on any of our Xmas shipments – thus supporting the fact that those 300 minutes of postal processing is TIME WELL SPENT. TPG.