12/18/06 — Rush to the mailbox: Today expected to be busiest day

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Rush to the mailbox: Today expected to be busiest day

By Kenneth Fine
Published in News on December 18, 2006 1:46 PM

Janie Tucker performs better when the pressure is on.

She's a last-minute Christmas shopper and, this morning, joined the crowd at the Goldsboro Post Office branch on Cashwell Drive to ensure packages for friends and family arrived "just in time" for Christmas morning.

"I get in a zone this time of year," Ms. Tucker said. "It seems like when I take my time, I forget things. But when I've got to do something, I stress myself until it gets done."

The lines at the William Street and Cashwell Drive locations said it all early this morning -- it's the busiest mailing day of the year.

And while there are no guarantees that everything sent today will make it to loved ones by Dec. 25, Wayne County Postmaster Sonny Johnson said chances are good they will.

Tisha Miles is confident her packages will make it to her daughter and grandchildren in New York by Christmas morning. She waited until the last minute last year and didn't have any problems.

"We'll just have to wait and see," she said. "I always tell myself I'm gonna send them early this year, but it never happens."

Johnson said it is common for people to hold off until time is almost up -- that's why he brought in an extra crew to work the lobbies and "handle the heavy flow."

"We expect to see real heavy traffic all day at both stations," he said.

The crowds will contribute to a parcel volume 30 percent higher than normal, he added.

Joshua Taylor blamed the recent heat for his procrastination.

"I haven't really been able to get into the Christmas spirit," he said. "I drive to the mall with the A/C on and have a hard time convincing myself it's the holidays."

Sheila Marshall was behind Taylor in line at the William Street station and agreed.

"This is just my first load today," she said. "I'm hoping being here right now will put me in the mood to finish my shopping and get back here before they close."

Johnson said Goldsboro's post offices will close at 5 p.m. And don't be intimidated by the lines, either -- if you make it through the doors while they're still unlocked, you have a chance.

"If they're here when the doors close, we'll serve them," he said. "For as long as it takes."