Once again, the local Irish mailman comes out on top.
A shipment of pastries is on its way to An Post (Ireland’s postal service) after an American woman made the foolish decision of betting against their remarkable recipient-finding abilities.
Bridget Griffin of St. Charles, Missouri, and John Collins of Carndonagh, Co. Donegal, Ireland, were discussing An Post when Collins mentioned the efforts they go to when delivering the mail, even when faced with anything but complete addresses.
As we’ve already seen, Irish postmen have delivered everything from jigsaws to dice, but Griffin found it hard to believe that mail without a full address would be able to reach its destination.
Making a bet with Collins, she promised to send a tray of pastries to the local mail workers in Donegal if her postcards were successfully delivered to a number of Carndonagh residents.
Mailing ten cards, Griffin put just the recipient’s first name, town and city as an address, making quite difficult work for An Post, even though Carndonagh is a small town of 3,000 people.
Of course, the St. Charles woman was proven wrong, as before both parties had time to properly decide on what would happen if they didn’t arrive, all ten postcards were delivered, even one simply addressed to a home that had a nice garden and marked the crossroads.
"The Grants' fancy garden between Clonmany and Ballyliffin, Ireland," the address line said.
"Thank you for your beautiful fancy garden," Griffin wrote in her message.
"It is nice to see when passing. Just wanted to say thank you!"
The fantastic feat was first noted when St. Louis newspaper The Riverfront Times were contacted by Conor Doherty, whose Dad, Albert, had received one of the postcards.
Although Albert is well-known in the Donegal locality as a former primary school principal who currently serves on the Donegal County Council and the vice chairman of the soccer club, his son was still shocked by the address managing to reach their home.
Wishing to find out who sent the unsigned St. Louis postcard, the paper called for the sender to step forward and the story of the bet was revealed, as was the identity of the local mailman and hero, Colm Doherty.
"I don't know my neighbor two houses down, much less talk to them. But there they all know each other,” Griffin told the River Front Times.
“It's a community. That's so appealing. It's so refreshing to realize there are relationships like that out there."
Amazed by the postman’s ability to deliver the cards with such little information, she was astonished at "how involved they are with each other — how everybody knows everybody" (which we’re not sure is always the best thing about rural Ireland!)
Griffin has since made a call to Claire’s Baker in Carndonagh who refused to take any payment for the pastries.
With such great people working with An Post, it makes you question the need for the Eircode zip code system introduced in Ireland for the first time in July 2015 with the aim of greatly improving deliveries to rural Ireland. Up until this point 35 per cent of addresses in rural Ireland were non-unique.
We didn’t doubt them for a second!