They Made It Physical

, , , , , | Working | October 28, 2019

(Back in the 90s, my parents volunteer as treasurers for their community pool. Each year, the pool has to be inspected by the state before it can open. As the pool is only open from May to September, normally the inspection office will send a notice to the PO box saying when they will be around to do the inspection and someone with a key will meet them to let them in. One year, as opening day approaches, my mother begins to get nervous as she has been checking the PO box and no such notice has arrived. The pool cannot operate without the inspection, so after having no luck getting through to someone, she drives downtown and marches into their office.)

Inspector: “We sent someone down there but no one was there to let the inspector in.”

Mom: “Right. Because we didn’t know we had to be there. No one sent us a notice so that we could let them in. The pool is only open three months out of the year.”

Inspector: “We sent the notice.”

(They go back and forth on this. Mom checked the PO box diligently so she knows nothing has been sent.)

Mom: “What address did you send the notice to?”

Inspector: *flips her computer screen around so Mom can see it* “We sent it here.”

Mom: “That’s the physical address! There is no one there when the pool isn’t open, which it says in the notes.” *points to another area on the screen*This is the mailing address! It clearly says that on the screen. Not only that, but I also see that you have six phone numbers you could have called if you needed someone to let you in.”

Inspector: “Look, ma’am. We sent the notice. We sent someone out. You weren’t there to let us in. That’s not our fault.”

Mom: “Do you not know the difference between a physical address and a mailing address?”

Inspector: “I know the difference, but—”

Mom: “Good. Then set up another appointment for the physical address right now for any time before Memorial Day weekend when the pool is supposed to be open. I’ll be there myself to let them in.”

(Mom got her appointment and left. The week before the pool opened, some volunteers went over to the pool to clean and found the inspection notice stuck in between the gates.)

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