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Meet James, a postman for Canada Post

11 Dec 2020

If there is one thing we’ve learned this year, it’s to appreciate the hard work of our essential workers. As some parts of our society have shut down, others have forged ahead to keep communities on their feet.

James Diuso, a Montreal postman of 13 years, is one of these unsung heroes. “Around Christmastime and the holidays, we start working weekends. It’s nice to get that smile. For us, it’s a parcel. For the person on the other side, it might mean the world to them. It’s just beautiful to see people happy.”

With this year’s massive shift to online shopping and the debut of the holiday season, James and his fellow postal workers have gone the extra mile (literally), resulting in a cordial and collaborative atmosphere at work. “At the post office,” James says, “a lot of coworkers have pulled their weight and offered their time. We really work great as a team.”

Shopping is not the only thing that people will be doing online this holiday period. When it comes to celebrating Christmas, James acknowledges that this year will be different than it has been in the past. “We’re not the biggest family, but our close family on my mother’s side lives in Saint-Bruno. Since I was a kid, we’ve been going there. I don’t think the trip to St-Bruno is going to happen this year, so we’re going to try and do things online.” 

But, despite not being able to see his friends and family in person, James claims this year has brought him closer to those he cares about. “Before this, I would do a lot of texting to get in touch with people, but now it’s more about calling and FaceTiming. It feels good! Seeing them and asking how they’re doing.” 

When asked what his favourite part about being a postman is, James does not so much as hesitate: “Honestly, it’s being out there with the people. You’re always in contact with them, whether it’s your clients or people waiting for the bus or people on the street, you’re so used to saying hi or giving a smile. Then suddenly, there was nobody!”

With people shut away in their homes, James has been delivering happiness from door to door. For the safety of the communities they are serving, James and his fellow postal workers often leave packages on stairs or outside, but on many occasions, the opportunity for contact presents itself. “I ring and they open the door. Sometimes it’s just a few seconds, but the smallest things can make you happy. Anything helps, you know? You could hear it in their voice, saying thank you.”

“And that’s what I like about this,” James continues. “It’s kind of like we were separated, but we all work together.” In regards to any experiences that might have marked him while on the job, James has one thing to say: “It was beautiful to see how people respected people in the smallest ways.” When asked if he delivered any Simons packages, James laughs. “Ooooh yes! Simons parcels are very popular, and I thank Simons every day for that.”

To James Diuso and all of our nation’s essential workers, we thank you! 

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