Fun and Games in La Poste

Oh! You wouldn't believe the laughs I had in the Post Office yesterday! 

Well, okay, that's a slight exaggeration, but the man behind the counter and I bonded quite well!

You see I'm taking part in a blog swap, organised by Creative Chaos, and my swapee is Elaina over at A Little Bit Country. Elaina lives in New Zealand, so I prepared a fairly light package for her, rejecting seeds as NZ is strict about what goes into the country, and a book, as being too weighty. I took it to the PO, and the man slid it (or rather, tried to slide it) into a sort of slot-like contraption.

"Too thick for a letter", he said. "It will count as a package. That will be 28€"

Squeal! 28€ is quite a lot more than the contents are worth... I'm really not sure about this.

Well...he said, you could try squeezing it a bit to make it thinner. 
Which is why, after a quick consideration of the contents to ensure there was nothing breakable, I was sitting on a seat bouncing up and down on the package.

We remeasured it. Getting better, but still not sliding into the measuring slot.

I know! he said. Scotch! (No, thanks, it's a bit early in the day for spirits..I thought before remembering that "scotch" is the French equivalent of sellotape. A brand name that has become the common noun) 
So I leant heavily on the package while the PO man wound sellotape round and round the parcel. Success! Cheers from us both when the measuring slot accepted the parcel. It was still not cheap, but it was more in the ball park of what I was expecting to pay for postage.

Then only the customs forms to negotiate - new rules for sending stuff from France to other countries meant that forms had to be completed in duplicate - same info on both forms - how much do you say handmade cards are worth? Do you write exact cost or round it up? Oh! Doesn't France love burearocracy!?

Finally I finished and left the parcel and its contents in the hands of La Poste. It was only as I was walking home that I remembered that was actually something in the package that was, if not exactly fragile, at least possibly breakable if caught at the wrong angle. Let's hope my flabby backside or the combined weight of me, a PO worker and yards of scotch aren't the straw that breaks the possibly-breakable-thing

(No, Elaina, I haven't just sent you an empty box!)


  1. I've given up on sending parcels...the cost is ridiculous!
    Jane x

  2. Don't the French love their bureaucracy?! I had a similar thing here in UK when I wanted to send a weeny lightweight pincushion as a thank you to a friend and it was going to be too fat to fit the slot but with much pressing and yards of Post Office Sellotape we managed to get it flat enough to fit through the slot. It is just too complicated these days to send anything by post and even a card can sometimes fail at the first hurdle if it has a decoration on it!

  3. Oh well done! The PO wanted to charge me 3 for sending a tiny jiffybag containing a baby's bib because it wouldnt go thru the slot. I jumped up and down on it, and saved myself £2!!.

  4. Your post made me chuckle...certainly a novel way to reduce the cost!

  5. Ha ha, that's so funny!!! I recently sent two parcels- one was a TITCHY item sent in a jiffy and the other, an ENORMOUS holdall bag sized one and they cost the same!!!!!!!!!!!!!x

  6. I'm with Jane postage is too expensive .........

  7. Ha! That is hilarious. I thought New Zealand was the only daft country that had a slot size thingy for mail. Packages thou are another thing - boy your postage is a killer price! Glad you liked the swap.


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