Friday, September 29, 2006

Belgium's Postal System ... from my perspective

I've been meaning to post about sending me parcels here in Belgium ... it's risky.

Two years in Turkey and every parcel arrived.
One year in Belgium and the success rate is so much lower.

The first parcel to Belgium went missing back in the winter. It contained cards that confirmed that I was a journalist working for an online travel magazine ... while working gratis due to my 'in process' status, these cards promised creditability and reassurance for those I wanted to interview.

The most recent parcel was making a short trip from France. The pickings were richer for those who imagine parcels from other places are charity parcels for themselves ... some dvds and good books were 'misappropriated' in this instance.

Snarky tone ... oh yes.

The French Post traced the French parcel to Belgium ... I believed them and began to wonder if anyone sent wedding gifts from home. If I haven't thanked you, they didn't arrive. A difficult to deal with subject ... the sender doesn't bring it up because it seems rude and the receiver doesn't bring it up because maybe they didn't send anything after taking a postal address.

Meanwhile, someone somewhere is having a hell of a good time with things intended for me.

The local Post Office was initially unhelpful.
I asked 'Can you do something? It seems that my parcels are being stolen enroute.'
She said 'No'.

I walked away but later, talking with a Belgian friend, I was told there's a form I could fill out.
I went back ... 'Yes there's a form' but they'd run out.
I asked them to get me one, please.

I'm just back from the Post Office.
Apparently there's no longer a complaints form for 'lost' international packages.
I have to make a written complaint listing:
-the home address of the person who sent me the package.
-the contents
-details of how it was wrapped
-its weight
-the precise address it was sent to (she said with a shrug, 'It may have been wrongly addressed')

'Yes', I agreed, 'probably they were both identically wrongly addressed' ... and I explained that I had very carefully copied the address from Gert's correspondence ... the stuff that regularly arrives in our mailbox.

Oh yes, another joyous moment ...


JavaCurls said...

Hi Di,

It was wonderful meeting you & your husband at Cindy's get together!! I'm so glad our paths crossed! I think you're right about how amazing things happen when you wear your "Superhero" necklace! :)

Sorry to hear about your postal service; sounds very frustrating! Hopefully, the service will get better.

Well, I'm off to browse around your blog. :) Hope to see you again soon!

woman wandering said...

Thanks javacurls, nice to meet you too. I wrote to Andrea and let her know about the superhero necklace incident here in Europe ... she was delighted :)

Anil P said...

It rings a familiar tone, this bureaucracy. Having experienced it myself, I know what it is like to "lose" parcels because someone enroute decided to help themselves to it. I hope you don't have to face it again.

woman wandering said...

Thanks Anil. I hope it's over but it seems if I can't find the problem then perhaps it's my fate here in Europe :(