A Diamond’s Eye View of the World

a multi-faceted look at the middle east, and the middle west

adventures in shipping: DHL and a Genius For Men

Posted by adiamondinsunlight on February 5, 2007

This morning I received a call that I had hoped would come today.

My parents, as always graciously picking up the pieces of my US life while I am abroad, had DHL’ed a set of airplane tickets to me at the end of last week.

I had initially wondered where to have them sent – my gym? a friend’s office? the closest university? – but my friend A. said: its a courier service. Have your parents address it with directions to your flat here, and include your mobile. DHL will call you when the tickets arrive and will bring them to you.

Brilliant! I said. As a New Yorker, I love home delivery.

I also love the Beirut DHL – though this love is due less to the company itself than to its felicitous office location (well, perhaps less felicitous these days) . It sits across the street from Sa7hat al-Najmeh, the heart of Beirut’s reconstructed downtown, and … just next to a spa for men.


When today’s DHL call came, though, it went differently than I had expected.

Please, tell me, the woman said: where is your address?

Hmmmmmm, I thought. Somehow the address my parents wrote – building name, floor, street name, local landmark, neighborhood – must have become separated from the package itself. Lucky thing my mobile number wasn’t lost as well.

I gave her my address; she took it down and said: can you be there at 4:00?

Of course, I replied, thinking: You have no idea how boring I am on Mondays. I will be home all afternoon, writing a lecture and doing laundry. 4:00 is fine.

Great, she said. We will be there at 4:00, a little before or a little after.

At 1:52, my doorbell rang.

Hello, said the man in the DHL uniform, I am here with your package.

And a lovely and most welcome package it is, especially since my address appears on it in full. Twice.

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