Monday, April 06, 2009

Ol' Man Wishum

One of the great events for me during the overwhelming mont of March was a retirement party given to me by my co-workers. This party comfortably filled the Silver Spoons Catering facility in downtown Montgomery. It was a great event from my perspective and I can't tell you how much it meant to me for so many to spend $23 for a meal and to see me made fun of. There were a few from my past life in the Montgomery Post Office and the retired supervisor and her husband from Wetumpka also attended. It also meant a lot for my supervisor, Ken, his wife, and daughter to attend. Interestingly, when Ken went through the Associate Supervisor Training program, I was his on-site trainer. So I got to train the supervisor I worked for during my final years at the USPS. All my kids and spouses/boyfriend were there as was my mother-in-law. Of course, LaWanna was there as she has been by my side, cheering, through the entire transition. It was so much fun! My good friend, Jimmy Rushing, served as master of ceremonies and did an excellent job. He had secretly contacted LaWanna for several of my more embarrassing stories from 37 years of postal service. Some liberties were taken with the telling, but it was very funny. One of the highlights for me was the presentation of a framed certificate that proclaimed I am now an "Honorary Rural Carrier". For those unfamiliar with the strange world of the USPS, rural carriers and city carriers are two separate species. Rural carrier's routes are evaluated each year and they are paid "evaluated times" whether they hustle and finish early or goof off and work late. So if they want to visit and laugh in the office, no supervisor runs to crack the whip. For city carriers, every minute wasted is money wasted so any talking or unproductive time get attention immediately. Because of these differences, I would often say "I should have been a rural carrier" when I would hear laughter and loud conversation from their end of the office. Now I am one--sort of. Another great feature of the part was rural carrier Michon and her husband and daughter dressed in formal evening wear singing throughout the evening. The family in involved in musical theater often and did a great job. I really appreciate the amount of work that night and for many nights leading up to it. One of the songs was a re-write of Old Man River. The version they sang had to be written by a USPS insider, but Michon's husband protected her career by declaring that HE wrote it and she had NOTHING to do with it. Get the tune for Old Man River in your mind and check these lyrice;


The part was fun and ended with the hosts having LaWanna and me swept away in a stretch limo. Actually, that was not the end for me. My generous co-workers gave me a gift card to Bass Pro Shops and on Wednesday of last week (my first day of retirement) I used it to purchase a shotgun for turkey hunting. Thanks Wetumpka friends!

4 comments:

Lerra said...

It was fun! And the food was YUMMY. And all-you-can-eat! :-)

Jamey said...

Some people wait their entire lives and sometimes never see the impact they've made on others. I'm sure it was nice for you (to humbly) see how many people you've touched along the way.

Amanda Mae said...

Hey Mr. Wishum! I'm not sure how I came upon your blog, but I think that you used to be our mail carrier?! I grew up on Fairfax, and lived there until 1996. If you were our mail carrier, I have to say that you were always so kind and cheerful!! Anyway, congratulations on your retirement...I hope every day is joyful and relaxing for you :o)

Roxy Wishum said...

Wow, Amanda! It is really a small, small world. You are correct, I did deliver in Lakeview Heights for years. My wife and I still live in that neighborhood. Thank you SO much for taking the time to leave a comment.