Our Paper Route

Every morning Joel’s phone alarm goes off about 3:00. He shuts it off and gets dressed and goes and picks up the papers at a nearby convenience store. I haul myself out of bed, knowing that if I don’t, he gets more of the workload. I pull on my snowpants and a sweater. We come down to the kitchen. I often have a small glass of warm milk for my tummy. He brings in all these packages of papers anywhere from 4 to 9 depending on how many inserts there are, and we spend the next half hour slipping them into bags. There are around 160 on Mondays through Fridays and about 15 more on Saturdays. We stuff them into a greenhouse crate we used to use for grasses and cloth shopping bags. I get a little bottle of water with soda in it, again for my tummy(!), and between 3:30 and 4:00 we head out into the night. Most of the time we have the roads to ourselves. We see lots of bunnies and today I said, “Let’s count them!” and we saw only one more in the next hour! They must have heard me. I think we saw a fox one night. Lots of times cats are on the prowl. As we start no one is up that we can see, but as we get into the farms there is the occasional barn with lights on and we know that the day has started there as well. There are a few customers that we deliver right to the door as they are unable to get it otherwise. At one place I get out and walk up to the porch and Joel delivers to the next house and turns around and comes and picks me up. I get a little powerwalk in then! We do a lot of driving through farm country and then head back to the developments. One place we both get out and walk down different sides of the median, so that is another breath of fresh air!  We deliver at apartments near our house and unless someone spells out exactly which one it is, it is almost impossible to find the right one in the dark. There is one neighborhood I call the fruity neighborhood because it has ‘Apricot, strawberry, raspberry. lemon and date’ for names. At the end of one row of townhouses a man signaled to us and told us never to back up in his parking space again. Joel doesn’t usually, but this morning it was empty and it is a tight little parking lot and there was that space, because the guy was at the end of the lot waiting for us to come out. He told us a different paper carrier had run into his car and refused to pay for the damages, so he has a sore spot. At another development there is a woman who is a midget. I have seen her from time to time since we moved here. But she is out walking by 5:00 in the morning. She startled Joel one time. Another time I saw her and said, “Hey, you’re up with the paper carriers!” And then relized my voice must be pretty loud in the dark and quiet neighborhood!

We finish and come home and make our coffee and have our breakfast and read our Bibles. Sometimes Joel makes a fire. Then he walks to work and the day is begun! I try to stay awake and then take a nap in the early afternoon. then I’m perky when he comes home and he has been awake for a long time and would just like a shower and a nap! And then some supper. We try to be in bed by 9 at the evening so we can do it all again the next day!


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