And those who were seen dancing
were thought to be insane
by those who could not hear the music.
· Frederick Nietsche
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Our mailbox was never much to look at.

When we moved here nine years ago, it was a big green plastic tractor that looked like a toy. It leaked in the rain. The mail space was small. The crazy mail lady was constantly bringing oversize packages up to the house, most of the way. She seems to have an aversion to driving on concrete as she always stops short of the paved part, in the cold, rain, mud or whatever. Then she sits there on her wooden seat cushion and honks her horn impatiently.

Now the paved part is 40' longer. We'll see if she persists with that behavior. We might not hear her horn from that far away, especially if the windows are closed.

It would be great if she would brave driving on the pavement. I run out when she honks, usually in bare feet or slippers. Pavement would be so much nicer to walk on and its a lot closer than the gravel or mud.

It is a banner day. As I was writing this the mail lady drove up onto the driveway to deliver a package. On a warm spring day in this rural setting miles from town, she got out of her car wearing a mask and gloves. She stopped on the pavement as far from the front door as possible but it's a start.

We eventually replaced the plastic tractor mailbox with a large black metal standard-looking mailbox. It mostly put an end to visits by the mail lady, which was a welcome relief.

Unfortunately, we were still using the same old mailbox post. It was skinny, sunbaked, old and shaky.

I replaced its old loose nails with screws. That only took care of the shaky part.

From the moment we started planning the new front fence, I planned a new matching mailbox post. I wanted a stout and unique mailbox that made a statement.

The new post shares the same style as the fence, swing, and bat house, with thick cedar posts, cannonball post caps, square head bolts, and black iron details. Two 6x6 posts set in concrete, with 1/4" thick steel plates at the joints, make it solid and sturdy and it looks it. Now that's a statement!

If you are wondering why there are redundant numbers on each side, here's why.

The large black numbers on white were placed there by us when we got the mailbox.

The signs, with white numbers on blue, are new. They popped up all over the countryside within the last year. Every mailbox has one. It's kind of weird driving around at night because they are highly reflective, gleaming brightly up to a mile away. Where multiple addresses share a driveway, there is a tall pole with many numbered signs of this type in one or more columns.

The signs seem to be oriented to point toward the side of the road with the address. In our case, the number points east across the road from the post. If our house was on the other side of the road, next to the post, the number would be on the opposite side of the post from where it is now, pointing west.

The blue signs seem to be a government or post office effort to unify all addresses, kind of like when they put street signs at every country road intersection. This uninspired enumeration of all roads gives us monstrosities like the second turn north of here, the intersection of 553rd avenue and 847th road, which is of course one mile east of the intersection of 552nd avenue and 847th road.

This fantastic improvement has not stopped delivery people from dropping our packages at the neighbor's house. To be fair, there is something weird about the numbering of the houses. When they see the neighbor's house number their brain freezes like deer in headlights and they just drop their package because they don't know what else to do.