I read an old folk’s magazine, figuring the articles are aimed straight at me. The main thing I pay attention to is news of scams. Some scams are invasive enough to hit the newspapers, but I might miss them there. Within the last month I read about a delivery con game. A truck pulls up to your house, and the driver tells you he has a package for you that needs a signature. He is wearing a uniform that is similar to that of a major carrier. If you ask, he tells you why he is using an unmarked vehicle. You haven’t ordered anything, but you see a box and jump to the conclusion it has your name on it. I forget the explanation he gives for needing your credit card, but it’s almost plausible. He scans your card with a cell phone, gets your signature, hands you a box, and leaves quickly.
Fast forward to the day John left to go to the train club. I was reading the newspaper in the kitchen, and my phone rang. The man said he had a package for me that needs a signature. Immediately red flags went up in my head.
“You are here?” I questioned. I realized I was using my hard voice, one that was very unfriendly to my ears.
“Yes, in your driveway,” he replied.
I had ordered something that I didn’t expect until next week. I knew my credit card had been charged, but there had been no notice that it had shipped. John didn’t tell me he had ordered anything, which wasn’t unusual. In panic mode, I couldn’t remember the details of the scam. Should I call a neighbor to come out and witness this event? No, there wasn’t time. Go out there and be wary. Don’t sign anything in a hurry.
The truck was painted in the colors of FedEx, and the man was holding a device that was not a cell phone. So far, so good. Oh, my! The box he removed from the truck was suspiciously big enough to be a computer. The nice man explained that he called me because there was no car in the driveway, and he didn’t think there was anyone home. He could very well have peeked in the garage, too, and not seen a vehicle. I fell all over myself apologizing, and said, “There have been scams about deliveries needing signatures.”
He smiled gently and said, “I know.” It was nothing new to him. I signed his gizmo, took the box, walked sedately through the front door, and did a victory dance out of his sight. I was almost too excited to be thankful that I had heard the phone and was not still planting Sweet William seeds or taking a shower.
I wrestled a monitor from a closet shelf, hooked up the hardware, went through the start up procedure, signed into Microsoft, installed a free anti-virus application and ran it, downloaded a free word processor, installed Dropbox, and stopped for lunch. If I did nothing else, I would be satisfied. The next day I installed financial software, and I’m using the machine to write this message. This has to have been one of the easiest transitions of my life. I’m so glad I didn’t tell the FedEx man to go away.
For those who want to see neighbor Logan again, here he is playing a wicked game of checkers with John.