Friday, January 14, 2011

UPS Basic, ColourFix Suede and Revised Mallow

I don't know if you can really see any difference but I followed Dors' advice and darkened under the petals some more,  I'd said I'd probably have to do a bit more glazing and I did.  Thanks, Dors, I'm always concerned about overworking and, while I probably could go even darker, I think I'll leave it for a few days and see what it needs then.

On another subject, I still haven't received the order I placed with Jerry's Artarama and it's a week today.  Since the order comes out of a warehouse in a city only 60 miles from us, it's kind of aggravating.  Since I noticed that their free shipping was through UPS Basic I decided to find out what exactly that is. 

I found that UPS, FedEx and other shipping companies are taking advantage of a program with our postal system where they can become "consolidators" for US Postal Service mail and qualify for very reduced mailing costs.  Since mail order companies were shunning UPS (& FedEx) because of their very high shipping fees, the shipping companies could reduce their costs and fees and win these mail order companies back by becoming USPS mail consolidators.  It was a win-win situation for both the mail order companies and the shippers but it's a real PITA for their customers and our local mail carriers!

It seems that UPS/FedEx picks up packages at the mail order companies and ships them to the local hub where their drivers pick them up and take them to the local post office.  Then the packages are taken to their final destination by the local mail carriers.  They say it saves money because their drivers don't have to drive all over rural areas for one delivery when the postal carrier is doing it anyway.  That does makes sense but why not just ship USPS to begin with?  Why can't mail order companies negotiate with the Postal Service for a reduced rate when they ship so many packages or something?

My order shipping confirmation included a tracking number for both the UPS leg of the journey and another one for my local post office.  From those tracking numbers, I found that my packages sat at the UPS hub (a city about 45 miles from us) nearly 3 days before it was put on a truck to take it to the local post office.  A friend in business locally informed me that the local UPS driver has been on vacation and the substitute drivers have been very slack so I guess it doesn't surprise me that the packages weren't immediately taken to the post office.  As a matter of fact, I'm not even sure the packages will even be taken to the post office even though they're supposed to be on the delivery truck.  While I was researching this so-called "service", I found that it seems to be up to the drivers as to when to deliver the packages to the local post office!

I know, I know - the shipping was free and I shouldn't be complaining but I only ordered from Jerry's because of it's proximity to me plus the Jerry's website said that delivery would take about 2 - 4 days!  And I also know that our ice storm was probably a factor as the UPS hub city was hit very hard and normally doesn't even see such weather.  It just seems that if the UPS truck from Raleigh could make it to the hub, trucks could make it out also.

Anyway, researching the UPS Basic service was very interesting reading.  So, now I'll know next time not to order if the company offers only the Basic shipping or unless I'm willing to wait several more days than I've waited in the past!

Maybe I'll eventually get my ColourFix Suede paper - if & when I do, I'll let you know how I like it!


sue said...

Yes that definitely helps the petals to 'pop' ... well spotted and suggested Dors! I thought it looked good before Jan, but now its even better!

Bummer about the delivery ... I hate waiting for deliveries ... when I order new arty bits I want to play with them immediately!

Jan said...

Me too, Sue!

Debra Babcock said...

This is exquisite Jan! Well done.

Jan said...

Thanks, Debra!