DEAR HARRIETTE: I have a neighborhood friend who visits his mother for three months at the beginning of the year. He is a nice guy, and we look out for each other. For the past couple of years, he has asked me to gather his mail and send it to him at the end of each week. I did it at first, but now I realize that this is a big responsibility. I don’t want to let him down, but it is too much for me to handle -- at least responsibly. My life got a lot busier with my own issues, and I have forgotten to send out his mail several times. I know that’s not right. What can I do? I don’t want to disappoint my friend. -- Not a Mailman
DEAR NOT A MAILMAN: Guess what? There is an easy and efficient solution here. Your friend can get the postal service to forward his mail to him directly for a specific period of time. It is extremely easy to do, and your friend can even handle it online. For a fee of $1, he can have his mail held, packaged and sent to his temporary location. He can have the mail redirected when he returns. The USPS will also bundle the mailing in an organized once-per-week shipment through Priority Mail, though the fee for that is higher.
Contact your friend and let him know the situation. As much as you want to help, you have not been able to be as reliable as in the past. Recommend that he use the Postal Service to deal with his mail, as it has a system in place for this need. For more information, go to: usps.com/manage/forward.htm.Read more in: Friends & Neighbors | Etiquette & Ethics