Thursday, August 27, 2009

Thursday Feature: Reviews & Interviews - How My Book Didn't Get Here Yet, So I Imagine a Roadtrip to Dollywood

"Mail Chute" Image from Wikimedia Commons
Image file is in the public domain in the United States

I had hoped to have a very special book review this week, but instead I'm going to rant a bit about my experience with it being shipped via DHL.

I got a gift card for my birthday (thanks, sis!) and went online to get the aforementioned book, plus another one I wanted to read. I also renewed my B&N membership. All in all, just getting the order done was cumbersome with much back and forth and restarts. Perhaps more my problem than B&N's, but really, their order entry site could be easier to use. Anyway, I got free standard shipping for some reason, so I selected that.

Finally, all done and confirmed, I just need to wait for the delivery. Free standard delivery, they say, takes 3 - 8 business days. I made the order on the 17th, today (as I write this the night before posting) is the 26th. That's 7 business days for the books to reach California from Kentucky - which they've done, though I don't have them yet - I'll get to that in a bit.

In that amount of time, I could take a leisurely drive to Kentucky with a couple of day long stops, because, remember, they didn't count the weekend, so it has actually taken 9 real days, so far. I'd have gotten a chance to check out the sights in Salt Lake City, then I think I'd have visited Mt. Rushmore, seen a bit of Chicago, maybe even visited Dollywood before I turned around to come home...perhaps that's what the DHL driver did - and I say driver because it certainly wouldn't take 10 days by air-freight to have gotten here.

Image by Brian Stansberry. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 3.0 License.

To be specific about the routing, it took two of the days for the books to reach the DHL hub in Kentucky and the rest of them to reach Union City, California (this morning) where, and this is what stunned me, at 6 am this morning, they hand over the package to USPS to deliver. Union City is 24 miles away. I could have driven there at lunch (it's even closer to where I work, maybe 15 miles) and picked it up faster, but instead the Post Office gets to haul it the last 24 miles down the road and that, of course, means they will take it somewhere to be sorted first, so it didn't get into today's (the 26th) mail. *sigh*

It will probably show up tomorrow. It just befuddles me. Next time, I either can't care about how long it takes or pick faster shipping.

While this 'review' has nothing to do (at least directly) with beading, although the book I'm waiting on does, there is a valuable lesson (well, for me). I've never had a complaint from anyone I've shipped anything to when I use USPS Priority Mail. It moves much faster than you'd expect - I've heard tell of things getting from coast to coast in 2 or 3 days. It's easy - you can get the boxes free (they'll even deliver them to you), do the postage online and track the progress, too.

I'm hopeful I'll have the book in plenty of time for next Thursday's review.

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