samedi 6 mai 2006
Today I went to the large post office downtown, as I had to do an actual "important" thing- deposit two American dollar checks. (now please keep in mind that this is the same place where I did the exact same thing a few months ago). After a thirty minute wait (which is always amusing because the French just do not do lines. They do not. They refuse. They wander in and tell someone vaguely to guard their place, then they go off and sit and wait. Or else a mom with a toddler in a stroller comes in, walks right up to the front of the line and glares at you until you let her go ahead of you.)
La Poste cannot figure out if wants to be a bank or a post office, so it does both ineffectively. Americans, please do not whine about stamps going up several cents. It is still in my opinion one of the cheapest, most efficient postal systems in the world. Sending the same letter costs twice as much in France and packages are much more.
Point 1: inefficient. There are no slips or forms out in the waiting area, so everyone must wait until they get up to the teller to fill out their deposit slips, customs forms, whatever. They could put them out front, but then people might steal the forms! Why, I don't know.
Point 2: dirty. There are automated stamp machines, which are great. However, the stamps are the peel-off kind. There is no trash can to put the backs in, so they are all over the floor. I would think that the postal workers would find it easier to put a trash can or at least tape a grocery bag to the side of the machine rather than sweeping up the litter every night, but I guess not.
Point 3: long waits. Mainly because of the first reason, but also because of haphazard lines, and not very many tellers.
Point 4: when a package arrives, they will never leave it in the mail area on the ground floor of building. If you are not there, they will take it back to the post office and wait for you to come pick it up. But instead of right then filling out a You've got a package! slip and leaving it that day, I think they mail it to you or something. I have gotten slips that say that five days ago they tried to leave a package and that I could have picked it up four days ago. Sure glad it wasn't important!

So, back to my experience today. When I finally got to the front, I explained what I wanted to do. Nope. Can't do that. What do you mean? I have done it before, right here! Nope. We don't do that. We have never done that. You have to send it into the central office. Okay, so you want me to send two large amount signed checks by mail? Yep. Sigh.
I came back and talked to Alain, who agreed that we would just have to do it that way, and get it certified.
So I went back to La Poste across the street, and waited again in line. (20 minutes). I got to the front and just to see what would happen, said that I wanted to deposit two American checks. Oh sure, no problem. The lady filled out the slip and sent them on their merry way. (There are ATMs, but you cannot deposit money into them.)

So now you see why most of my french dreams take place in La Poste, trying to explain something to the clerks and I just can't make myself understood.

0 commentaires:

Blog Archive


Favorite Posts