Postage Stamps

Recently, I bought a card to send to a good friend of mine who lives in Denver, Colorado.

Shirley was diagnosed with double cancer about two years ago. A melanoma and breast cancer. The melanoma was removed early on and she has been through every treatment possible for her breast cancer including double mastectomy and rebuilding. She thought she was through it all.

She wrote a tremendous, courageous blog journal of her experiences along the way. Throughout, she was so stoic and strong and she maintained her sense of humour. I was inspired, as were many of her friends around the world.

Then, about three weeks ago, her daughter, McKenzie, posted on her Mom’s Facebook page. That, in itself, is most unusual. No matter how down Shirley was, she would always create her own blog and Facebook posts. McKenzie revealed that her Mom had gone into a Rehab Centre (like our hospices in Great Britain), with a recurrence of her melanoma.

So I bought a nice card to send to Shirley. I deliberately chose a card with an English scene which is blank inside so that I could write a personal message for her.

When I went to post it, the lady at the counter put an Airmail sticker on the front and gave me the stamp to lick and stick. When I looked at it, it was like this….


I thought, “That’s inappropriate!” Shirley is American and may never have heard of the British comedy show, Dad’s Army. She may not get the joke. What a thing to send to somebody in her circumstance.

So I went back to a counter to exchange the stamp. Different counter. The lady said that she couldn’t exchange it because that is the only £1.45 stamp. She said that I could go to the automatic self-service area and get a blank sticker stamp to that value, so I asked her for a refund. She said that she couldn’t do that either. The supervisor arrived and told me that I could get a refund, but I would have to go to the counter where I’d bought the stamp.

So I queued again and got back to my original server and asked her for a refund. I explained the situation. She told me that it was alright because she could give me a £1.45 stamp with a different picture. I said that her colleague told me that wasn’t possible. The supervisor arrived and told me that this server had different sets of stamps.

Great! I couldn’t be bothered to discuss. I took the new stamp, which looked like this…..


Well! You probably know what “Beaver” can mean in American English!

My immediate thought was, “If Shirley notices this stamp, she will laugh.” It would make me happy to make Shirley laugh. She deserves it.

About Lance Greenfield

Blog: email: I published my debut novel in December 2014: Eleven Miles. My second novel went live in February 2016: Knitting Can Walk!
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