Where have all my South Loop neighborhood mailboxes gone?
On a recent Sunday night I went out with a bunch of mail to mail in the neighborhood and to get a little air. I walked from Roosevelt and State, up Plymouth Court to the mailbox at 1115 South. But the box was gone. Funny, I thought, they must be replacing it for some reason. The same thing I thought when the mailbox at 9th and State disappeared a while back.
So I continued a bit north to the next one I know--at Polk and Dearborn. But it was also gone. As was the next. And the next. And the ones after that. Until I had nowhere else to go but the heart of downtown. There are absolutely no familiar mailboxes left in Dearborn Park, Printers Row or on South Michigan Avenue--from Roosevelt to Congress.
What the heck is going on? There's no Nato Summit here or anything.
A friend who was skeptical of my story--and could have sworn she saw one on the 700 block of South Dearborn quite recently--went and checked. And much to her surprise, I was right. It was gone. She asked a friend if he knew what happened to our neighborhood mailboxes. And he told her he'd heard they were being sabotaged so they were removed.
Is that true?? Sabotaged? In our quiet little city enclave? What exactly does that mean?
Or could this be a cost-cotting measure instituted by USPS wherein they are no longer obligated to pick up mail in our neighborhood?
So, do I start using the little red flag that came with my mailbox (that I have never even installed) to alert my mail person that I have outgoing mail? Well, that's pretty much a red flag, so to speak--to anyone--that I have mail for the taking in the box. Or do I mail things from friends' residential high rise buildings in the neighborhood that have outgoing boxes? (That requires being buzzed in by a security guard and some sweet-talking on my part.)
Or do I only mail things from downtown? Or from Bridgeport (which is what I have been doing)? Or should I stop using mail altogether and do everything online?
And mostly, I want to know this: why there are positively no mailboxes in a large swath of the South Loop where many stood before?
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