The area in which we live is definitely rural, but I never considered it wilderness until suddenly, after 20 years of receiving packages from every known delivery service, we can’t be found. We have disappeared.

We get notes saying a post office package was “undeliverable.” Undeliverable? It’s not raining or snowing. There are no civil protests or traffic jams. No massive reconstruction projects. Personally, I think they didn’t even try to deliver to us. What happened to the packages? In the last two weeks, almost $600 of Amazon deliveries have had to be refunded to us and the same items ordered elsewhere.

I’m sure this means something, but what? Have our roads been deleted from maps and GPS’s? Has Uxbridge been banned from Mapquest?


I grant you that we live surrounded by woods. We certainly have a good deal of wildlife. Critters include fishers, raccoons, rabbits, squirrels, flying squirrels, deer, skunk, chipmunks, coyotes, and foxes. In the air we have eagles, hawks, woodpeckers and every sort of garden bird. In nearby waters we have ducks, geese, herons, and divers — and some of the biggest snapping turtles you’ve ever seen. Nonetheless, these creatures are not crowding our highways or driveway. They live in the woods and unless you have feeders, they have no interest in you.

Oh look! I found a few seeds!

We have paved roads. Even a traffic light! We have a grocery, a couple of banks, hairdressers, and a really big lumber yard. Until recently, all of these made us a town that was still on the map. We aren’t huge, but we are not wilderness. In this same Blackstone Valley we have probably a dozen small towns, fire houses (with fire trucks, too!).

We have police (not many, but enough). We have post offices and drop-off and delivery areas for UPS and Fedex. You can get your nails done — or you could have, back in the “old days” before March 2020 — or get a tattoo. There were two dry-cleaners and a floor installer and TWO places that framed pictures.

Yet still, no one can find us.

It’s amazing after living here for 20 years and getting daily deliveries that suddenly, we don’t exist. A bit startling, too.

Categories: Animals, birds, Blackstone River, Daily Prompt, House and home, humor, Marilyn Armstrong, Photography, woodland, Word Prompt

Tags: , , , , , ,

13 replies

  1. Well, now, that’s way over on the the inconvenient side of the chart when you not only don’t get the package but have the hassle of getting a refund and reordering. If it was just one company like, Amazon, you could add specific directions on your profile that might help, but if it is a town wide issue maybe it could be delivered to one of their hubs or whatever they call them and you could pick them up there. Even that is way over on the hassle side, and who needs more inconvenience added to the virus. 🙂


  2. It’s probably a new guy/gal. I almost accepted a package for someone else on Saturday but saw the name before the guy disappeared. It’s for a new development I think so Google maps just shows the postcode as a field (in the UK the house number plus postcode identifies a single house).
    Wrong name, wrong street, wrong postcode. At least the house number and town were correct, I think he just drove around the village until he found a house with “15” written on it.


    • Mostly, I think they are just lost. Out in the rurals — you probably know this anyway — it’s hard to see house numbers or the houses because they are hard to see behind the leafy trees. If you don’t know the area — and all the “new” people don’t know it — it’s hard to find specific houses — and even when you DO know the area, it’s VERY easy getting lost. We are always lost. Of course we DO have a large white sign with our number on it by the road, but it’s still easy to miss. Too much foliage.


  3. Probably a procedural error at Google Maps. One of the tech interns accidentally deleted the GPS coordinates for Uxbridge. They will never admit their error, and what Google says goes, so I guess you will always be stuck in the twilight zone. But at least you have the critters…


  4. It is stran ge. Most of the things that I get delivered to me come via Australia Post parcel delivery. All mail for Sisters Beach gets delivered to the local store and we go and collect it. My Amazon parcels go there too, I’m not sure who they use, Australia Post or a courier service but I’ve had no problem so far even though this place is so tiny that the shop is literally all we have. Uxbridge sounds like a decent sized town and even though you are not right in the centre of town you ought to get deliveries.


  5. Even living in suburban Orange County, CA, for the first time ever in 30 years, I had no mail for two days in a row this week. When I called the PO, I reached a recording saying they were having difficulty delivering mail due to covid-19. Apparently they are stretched thin, and had one or more too many carriers out on sick leave!


  6. That is so weird. But, it sure sounds like a beautiful place to live.


  7. I think Bret Harte wrote about this in “The Outcasts of Poker Flats”


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