With only ten days left until Christmas, we are down to the wire. I finished nearly all of my shopping yesterday by picking up just a few last minute gifts for our boys. The stockings now need filling. I’m pretty much on schedule, or so I thought until things started missing their delivery dates by more than a few days.
It’s been such an odd year and getting ready for the holiday season has been no different. Typically, get receive a lot of packages and send many out as well with all of our family out of state. However, this year, I am doing a fair amount of chasing down packages.
Before I explain, I do want to preface my words with a couple of explanatory statements. 1) I think everyone is stressed. Working or not, I believe that we are all functioning on fumes. We, the general public, are tired of the nine months of pandemic living. It’s grown wearisome to worry about being sick or making others sick, even if you are well. It’s been scary and frustrating and sad to know those who have become sick or even died. 2) I want to believe that people work hard to do their best at their given jobs. And, 3) We all need to be patient.
But, one of the ramifications of the pandemic is that more and more people are ordering online and workers are in short supply as they try to meet the demands of buyers. Manufacturing has been hit hard by limited supply chains as well diminished availability. Prices have increased in some instances.
For example, the price of a 2 x 4 piece of lumber was $8.80 at a local home improvement store! Wow! I’m glad we are only studding out a bathroom instead of building a whole house right now!
Tile is out of stock. Even after changing our tile choices for the bathroom addition at the cabin when our first pick was not in stock, we got a notification several days after the order was confirmed that now our second choice was out of stock as well. I do not think online systems or those who monitor them are keeping up with what has sold and what has not. Hopefully, our tile will come back into stock in January.
Packages have been grossly delayed. I ordered cards from Shutterfly on 11/29/2020 and have yet to get them. The tracking is not updated – another common thing I am finding with orders. So, one is left to wonder where your package is in terms of transit.
Fulfillment is delayed. I have placed two bead orders from my supplier in early December and have yet to receive either. One was shipped right after I inquired about it, and is now due to arrive tomorrow. After I get it, I’ll start tracking down the next order. I am grateful that I do not need the beads to complete a gift.
A card, sent via USPS, to my husband took 12 days to get from Buffalo, New York to our home in Wisconsin! At most, in the past, it took four or five days.
Several of my customers who ordered fabric masks have contacted me wondering where their package is when it did not arrive as expected. With patience, and a kind tone in my response, I’ve asked them to wait an extra day or two to see if their mask order arrives. They all have arrived, none have gone missing. But, it’s worrisome and frustrating when you pay for something and then you don’t get it.
All this comes as the COVID -19 vaccine is being transported and rolled out in the United States. After spending part of the day chasing package whereabouts yesterday, I glanced at the national news and saw the FED EX trucks leaving with loads of vaccine. It was a massive reality check. Yes, those are more important packages to deliver.
I can wait for mine.