THE POSTMAN ALWAYS RINGS TWICE

He was sweating. His back ached. His arms couldn’t carry the heavy parcel much further along the pedestrianised street.

4300, 4301, 4302… Almost there.

He didn’t think about the walk back to the start of the street that awaited. His car was parked outside house No.1.

4376. He had made it. He dropped the parcel and slumped on it, catching his breath, letting his muscles recover.

He rang the bell on the gate.

No answer. Please God, no.

He tried again.

And again.

Sonuvabitch.

He took out a slip and checked the box: ‘Delivery attempted. Will try again tomorrow.’ He popped it in the mailbox and despondently picked up the parcel.

4376, 4375, 4374…


the-gate
Copyright Jean L Hayes

Written for Friday Fictioneers hosted by Rochelle Wisoff-Fields (more details HERE). The idea is to write a short story of 100 words based on the photo prompt (above).

To read stories of 100 words based on this week’s prompt, visit HERE.


STATE OF WAR squrere

AMAZON.COM     AMAZON.CO.UK     INDIA       CANADA      AUSTRALIA   

SMASHWORDS          BARNES & NOBLE         KOBO      BOOK DEPOSITORY

GOOGLE BOOKS      ALSO AVAILABLE ON APPLE BOOKS

TRILOGY FULL REVIEW

78 responses to “THE POSTMAN ALWAYS RINGS TWICE”

    1. It’s a tough job being the delivery man on that street 🙂

      Like

  1. Who knew delivery drivers were more important than footballers?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Don’t worry, normal service will be resumed shortly.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. The world we live in, on-line purchases and interminably long streets. Nice take, Iain.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thanks Sandra. Only in America have I found streets going up to No. 4376, but I’m sure they exist elsewhere too.

      Like

  3. Brilliant. You wrote the story I attempted but failed at. I just couldn’t find the words so went in a different direction. I’m glad I did, because this told it better than I could 😀

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thank you, too kind. Look forward to reading your story.

      Like

  4. Dear Iain,

    You made me feel it all: the heat of the day, the weight of the parcel and the frustration of the delivery man. Well done.

    Shalom,

    Rochelle

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Rochelle 🙂

      Like

  5. Note to self, bring trolley! When my delivery arrived, if no-one was here they would just leave it by the door, and take a picture of it as it didn’t need to be signed for. Who would be to blame should it go awol? Weren’t happy with that at all, so made sure we were home all day!! good post

    Liked by 1 person

  6. They should have an option to call the customers before attempting any delivery. Poor guy.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s good exercise for him, and a good honest living!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Well, this made me laugh.
    I don’t know why, but I felt he was a miserable sod!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Aren’t all delivery people? You have to laugh…

      Like

  8. Damn, he’s getting fit!
    Some days are about pushing crap up hill. 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. For him it seems it’s most days! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  9. An emotionally unstable delivery driver?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. We’ve never had one who looked particularly happy to be honest 🙂

      Like

  10. Oh my goodness, Iain. This is beautiful. The count back down is pure genius.

    Wonder why the poor guy didn’t drive the package up to the house. Was he carrying mail, used to walking his route? And in the USA, package delivery is done without contact these days. No more friendly greetings, chitchat, signing for the box. COVID has changed us all.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Same here Linda, although I don’t think the UK has many streets that go up to the 4000s, that’s definitely more a US thing. I made the street pedestrianised so he couldn’t take his car – using the writer’s privilege to make the story work!

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Of course. I read that without really seeing it. Yes, writing is just about the ONLY thing in my life over which I have total control 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  11. Car parked at No.1. Oh no!
    He should first call and then attempt delivery.
    Here, they do that!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Some do that here, but it would ruin my story!!

      Like

      1. Just after reading your post, I read about a postman who trekked 15 km everyday for 30 years, to deliver letters in a remote area. He retired last month.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. I bet he needs the rest!

          Like

          1. He surely does.

            Liked by 1 person

  12. I feel sorry for the guy.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. He is the sort of guy who would just moan if you gave him sympathy 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Still it’s a hard job.

        Liked by 1 person

  13. I could feel that frustration.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah, it could be a good metaphor for a lot of struggles.

      Liked by 1 person

  14. I sympathise. My delivery guys have to climb 70 steps to my door and I bet they hate it when I’m absent!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m sure you wouldn’t pretend not to be in just to see their reaction, would you Keith?!

      Liked by 1 person

  15. Poor chap. I could feel his frustration and fatigue. Nicely done, Iain.

    Susan A Eames at
    Travel, Fiction and Photos

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Ha! My delivery person would have tossed it and ran. 🤣

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Mine too – a lot of them do! 😉

      Liked by 1 person

    1. When we went to the shops ourselves? I don’t see those days coming back anytime soon.

      Like

  17. I’m always home for important deliveries. 🙂 Great take on the photo!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you – nothing worse than missing the delivery person!

      Liked by 1 person

  18. Poor man. His frustration comes across very vividly in your story.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Good one. I wanted to add, “and that’s when he pulled out a gun (America, right?) and ended the story.” enjoyed it and all the comments.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Bill, no guns this week!

      Liked by 1 person

  20. Maybe he should ask for an easier route. Unless he just gets tired no matter what.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think he would always find something to complain about! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  21. Oh dear! He needs a Segway with a trailer 😉

    Like

  22. Bet he gets in his 10,000 steps.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Definitely good exercise – better than a desk job like I have!

      Like

  23. He actually seems to have a pretty good attitude about it all.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think he’s resigned to it 🙂

      Like

  24. Looks like the planners of that street didn’t quite consider everything while planning their pedestrianised utopia…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Less cars, better for the environment. Just don’t order anything heavy online.

      Liked by 1 person

  25. At least he got a workout 🙂 Just kidding! You described his angst very well.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah, good exercise. Thank you 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  26. He’s more concientious than those postmen who leave a note saying. ‘Left on front porch’, take a photo of it, and scarper/

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I wonder how long he will take such pride in his work!

      Like

  27. Time he got something to cart such parcels to their destination.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Good idea, I’ll let him know 🙂

      Like

  28. if there was any consolation, there were no dogs chasing him. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  29. I might feel bad for the guy if he couldn’t just drive. If Sisyphus had a crane, he wouldn’t be out there pushing that boulder.

    Here they don’t always ring at all. I go out for my hike the next day, and there’s a package on the porch. If I lived in a different neighborhood, it might not be there that long.

    Liked by 1 person

  30. Oh my, so well described I felt his pain and weariness. Poor guy!

    Liked by 1 person

  31. Noooooooooooo

    This is hilarious ! That poor package delivery man.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Some days are just like that! Thanks Laurie

      Like

  32. This was VERY realistic! I could literally feel his poor arms aching! 🙂
    In my building (though it is not at all a pedestrian street … ;)) we tend to buzz the delivery and parcel persons in for each other. Because by the time the UPS or USPS or FedEx people lug stuff out of their truck, onto the cart, up the stoop, to buzz the outer door … well … it is just sad if they’ll have to do the whole thing again another day. So, they know to buzz some other bells if the addressee isn’t in … Small kindnesses all around.
    Poor dude in a LONG LONG LONG pedestrianized street. May I suggest a hand-cart? 😉

    Like

  33. Oh dear! I guess sometimes the postman has no choice but to ring twice. Good story Iain. Can definitely feel his pain.

    Like

  34. I think the guy would have had more luck counting pollen grains under a microscope … as long as he didn’t sneeze!

    Like

  35. I feel for the postman and his repeated attempts, I thought the Postman always rings twice 😉

    Like

  36. There has got to be a better way to do that. Like throw the package over the gate and if they want to fire you good luck finding someone else. I mean…. That would be wrong.

    Like

  37. I felt his weariness, so well depicted Iain.

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: