For many years I had a Post Office box in Seattle. I opened it in 1999 with a friend. We shared the box for a year or two, and then she decided she did not want to use it anymore. We notified the Post Office, and I continued to use it.
When I opened a Post Office box in Hoodsport for our distillery it was time to close the box in Seattle. I took my keys to the Seattle Post Office. The records were checked, and I was told that I did not have the authority to close it.
I spoke to three Post Office employees, who all agreed that I had been the only one to use it for the past 11 years. Nonetheless, they held their ground and followed their rules. My friend had to be present to close the box.
My friend travels extensively, and I did not know when she would be in Seattle to close it. As I no longer needed it, I wanted to turn in my keys. I asked for a receipt for the keys, as lost keys incur an additional cost. Not possible. The Post Office employee who gives receipts was not there that day. No one else had the authority to give me a receipt. These are the rules of the Seattle Post Office.
We had hoped to be open and selling our products by Labor Day Weekend. Instead, on that weekend we opened our doors and worked with the electricians as work on the distillery continued. It was a sunny weekend. The sunlight came in through the open doors. The locals stopped by and gave us encouragement.
I was reminded of Hoodsport Days this past July when we opened our doors, but just to show people the distillery and hopefully sell a t-shirt or a shot glass. The shot glasses were on display, but it was not easy to read the words on the glass, so I put coffee from the day before into the shot glasses, and added a little water. It looked pretty good. I remember a tall man, who must have been very thirsty, ask if the shot glasses were samples. I explained what was in them. He said “Oh, okay,” and drank it in one gulp. Surprisingly, all he said was, “Thank you.”
The Fourth of July in Hoodsport is a fun event. There is a street-fair, an auction, a town crier and, best of all, fireworks.
I do not know the source of the town’s display of fireworks, but there are fireworks stands just a few miles away on the reservation. I love the names of the stands, such as PyroMama and Illeagle.
My favorite stand has a more traditional name, the Finish Line. Every year I buy sparklers that are about 3 feet long, and are quite festive. They are wrapped in paper ribbons, and when lit have several different color phases. I share them with family and friends year round.
I love my sparklers. They are made of wood, and do not burn my fingers like the metal ones I remember as a child.
After spending some evenings with us, my older son told me that he is going to write an article for the AARP magazine about the elderly and the joy of sparklers.
He can do that. As for me, I am going to think about whiskey recipes to dedicate to my sparklers.