Reading this blog here, you likely missed the vitriol that erupted on the Cruising World site when I last wrote about Canada. Of course, the post was tongue-in-cheek, but that escaped some. Check out the comments…
|The girls hanging with our resident swan.|
There is also a resident harbor seal.
A single, simple holiday card: standard size, less than an ounce. Do you know what it costs to send that thing from Canada to the U.S.? C$1.05! Do you know what it costs for someone in the U.S. to send the same holiday card to a friend in the Great White North? $.85. That’s quite a discrepancy; now you know why you’ve never received a holiday card from a Canadian.
But forget international rates. In Canada, sending a letter domestically costs C$.61—and next year it’ll be C$.63. Yikes! You gotta love our U.S. first class domestic postage rate of $.44. These poor Canadians have it rough.
But consider that the U.S. the postal service lost over five billion dollars ($5,000,000,000) last year (and they'd have lost more than $10 billion had Congress not allowed them to postpone an annual payment to a health benefits fund) and that they’re begging Congress to increase the postal rate and cancel Saturday delivery. (And as Rueters reported in August: “Lawmakers, who have said they are committed to helping the Postal Service become profitable, left last week for a month-long recess without reaching an agreement on postal legislation.”) In Canada, taxpayers are not going to have to bail out Canada Post because it earned a net income of over C$281 million in 2009 and it’s closed Saturdays. (And it’s not as though Canada Post has it easy. It delivers to a larger area than the postal service of any other nation, including Russia, where service in Siberia is limited largely to communities along the railway).
Sure, U.S. fiscal responsibility is
nowhere to be found, but what’s a cruiser to do? Well, I stood out in the cold
rain yesterday, soliciting passengers boarding the Coho for their ninety-minute
trip to Port Angeles, WA. I clutched a Ziplock freezer bag stuffed with over a
hundred Robertson holiday cards, each displaying the 44-cent forever stamp. After a
few passengers made me feel like a terrorist or drug smuggler asking them to do
something illegal, I finally found a sympathetic crewmember in the terminal to
agree to drop them in a mailbox Stateside for me. That’s practically money in
the bank—that someone’s going to have to pay back someday.