Thank you, Mr. and Mrs. Postmen
3.4 billion parcels a year, 330 million at Christmas alone: the Germans are absolute European champions in online shopping. According to "Neo Magazin Royale", a parcel carrier in this country has to deliver up to 250 parcels a day and has an average of 3 minutes per parcel to do so. We would like to take the time - especially during the Christmas season - and express our absolute thanks and appreciation to the colleagues who master this almost impossible task every day - year after year after year.
And to find out how much stress the Christmas season in particular causes in this job, we met our favorite postman Detlef for an interview. Detlef is a father of three, has worked as a courier for 23 years and has basically been part of our team from the very beginning. In an interview, he tells us what superpower he would like to have, why balloons make him nervous and why unwrapped cakes are the most dangerous goods for him.
Dear Detlef, how long have you been delivering packages?
I started out as a bicycle courier in 1995 – for exactly one summer, until it got cold. I had previously given up my job as an IT specialist and programmer. Why? Because I'm a bit of a perfectionist and computer programs aren't perfect. With my job as a bicycle courier, on the other hand, I was not only able to clear my head, but also to live out my love of nature. At that time I also liked to be on the road up to 40-50km/h. I enjoyed working independently, so I bought a car for the winter.
How do you experience the Christmas season in your job?
To be honest, I sometimes dream of simply driving away from the beginning of December to the end of January and leaving the snow, traffic jams and stress behind me. But I also have to say that although many people are more stressed, they are by no means unfriendly. Who knows, maybe I'll go away spontaneously this year ;)
What was the most bizarre experience in your time?
After 23 years on the job, I can say that almost everything is actually normal now. And then this summer I was surprised myself, by balloons. I was supposed to pump them up and transport them from A to B in midsummer. Due to the heat, my helium balloons burst every minute and I was so scared while driving as if I were in a hail of bullets - or with the hidden camera. At least I was able to deliver a dozen of them intact.
Where do you like to dream of when you're stuck in traffic?
When I'm stuck in traffic and it's snowing, I like to daydream about the warmth of the beach. Preferably to Portugal and less the Bahamas. Above 25 degrees is nothing for me.
Have you ever had to transport really dangerous dangerous goods?
The biggest "dangerous goods" that I have ever transported was poorly packaged food - a birthday cake to be precise. Unfortunately, unwrapped cakes, a stack of packages and an emergency stop don't get along very well. I ended up delivering them in a slightly asymmetrical shape. But that didn't matter, the party was a bit pissed off when it was delivered. Of course, as a courier driver, I'm not allowed to transport really dangerous goods.
What would you wish for from your customers?
Actually, my customers do a lot of things right. I can always recommend that you think about the packaging - not just for cakes.
Is there anything you particularly like to deliver?
Yes, flowers and taxes. The nice thing is that in both cases the people to be delivered are present in 99% of the cases - and get tips more often (ok, not necessarily in tax matters).
Be honest - do you sometimes find us annoying? ;)
Honestly, you are my little highlight of the evening. Over the years I've always looked for a few customers that I like to go to. It keeps me going and I enjoy it.
Which famous personality would you like to deliver a package to?
Udo Lindenberg. I would like to personally deliver something to him at the Hotel Atlantic.
What superpower would you like to have?
I would love to be able to beam myself - and not just because I'm a courier driver ;)