WHY does this keep happening to me?

christinmk z5b eastern WAApril 2, 2010

I am very frustrated with seed trading right now. Okay, I started trading in the fall of last year. Everything was going wonderful. Such great seeds and traders! Gardeners are the most generous people!! But then a couple of months ago something strange started going on... I would send out my envelope and the other person would get it just fine. But their package to me would never get here. I did have one scam (the Don guy who is ripping off a lot of people on gw).

But this has happened FOUR TIMES!! The first time it happened the person was wonderful enough to send the package again, and I got it.

The second time it happened I didn't do anything about it because I had known the person from a forum and they went out of their way to get the seeds for me. And it was a large trade too...

The third time the seed trade was with a very nice newbie who was having such a difficult time with all the seed requests. They sent out a second package and I did not get it. Didn't have the heart to ask for it again.

I have just done a trade and the person got my package, but I haven't gotten hers after a week. I let her know and she was gracious in offering more.

SO discouraged right now. If all of the trades are going to be like this I don't think I want to do it anymore. It is unfair for the people I trade with to have to send out a package a second time! Hate having to make them go to all the time, trouble, and $$. I don't want anybody to start thinking I am a bad trader and trying to rip people off to get more seed :-(

Why does this keep happening to me? This isn't normal to have so many packages come up missing, is it?! I simply will not believe that the traders were dishonest (excepting that one guy). I keep an eye out when it is time to get the mail, so no one is stealing it out of the mailbox. Is something going on at the post office? What should I do?? Please help me figure this out before I hang up my seed trading hat for good. It took me a year to work up the courage to start trading. I have had such a wonderful time that I don't want to give it up, but I will if it means other people don't get an equal trade with me.

Thank you so very much for any help or advice

CMK (Christin)

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jaybirdy(5north/central Illinois)

It might be a postage issue.I Sent out a bubble envelope for an beap offer thinking one stamp was enough because it was empty.Amonth went by,I didn't get my seeds.I contacted the person and found out they never got the envelope.I sent out a second one with 3 stamps,and the next day got the original envelope back saying insufficiant postage.I had one trader who took about a month to send me my seeds;but I finally did get them.Luckily I've never been cheated in a trade and it's always worked out.I know it must be frustrating,especially at this time when we are all planting our seeds and every minute counts.I hope your traders come thru for you and if there's any postage issues that they get resolved.

    Bookmark   April 3, 2010 at 10:18AM
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christinmk z5b eastern WA

-jaybirdy, thank you so much for the advice. I didn't think about that. But shouldn't the post office send it anyway and just include a card for how much is owed instead of keeping it? I once got a bubble envelope that way from the post- with a card saying I owed 22cents.

I ended up getting that last trade in the mail the other day!!! There was something very interesting about it though...it had been stamped with "FOUND IN SUPPOSEDLY EMPTY EQUIPMENT". What exactly does this mean anyway? Could this have happened with the other trades too??

    Bookmark   April 3, 2010 at 12:50PM
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jaybirdy(5north/central Illinois)

I don't know what"found in suposedly empty eqipment" means.I think there was a sticker on my returned envelope saying how much I owed.They didn't send it anyway,and it was in limbo for about a month.I guess it would be better contacting the person you are trading with sooner rather than later.After 2 weeks if you haven't gotten your seeds that could be a bad sign.You start wondering if the person is cheating you or taking their sweet time when in reality they never got your envelope.

    Bookmark   April 4, 2010 at 11:07AM
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I had to file a complaint with the Postal Service a long time ago because I was not receiving magazines I subscribed to and small packages I should have recieved were either not arriving or were arriving with some of the contents missing. I have not had that particular kind of problem since. I am not saying someone in your PO is the culprit...just throwing another possibility out there.

    Bookmark   April 5, 2010 at 9:23AM
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christinmk z5b eastern WA

Thank you for the help guys.

-Alana, I was actually wondering the same thing. Certainly don't like jumping to that conclusion, but I can't think of any more good reasons for them to get lost. That one package got sent to me even though it had a few cents owed on it, so I can't imagine why they would be keeping the others.

If more packages turn up missing (and I know for sure it is not the fault of the trader) I just might file a complaint with the PO. What exactly is involved with that process?

    Bookmark   April 5, 2010 at 12:46PM
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Sounds crazy but you could ask who your trading with to get a DC# [Delivery Confirmation number]on the envy. maybe toss in a couple extra seed pks to them for the trouble.
but this would give you proof to the Post office they sent it and you didnt get it, could also help them to find out were your envys are going and why.
Them stamping it sounds to me like one employee getting frustrated with another for not doing their job right, I only think that cause we do somthing like that at work, lol.

    Bookmark   April 5, 2010 at 1:11PM
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I talked to the postmaster when I had my problem. I had the benefit of having a couple of envelopes that I had received with some of the contents missing that had been cut open very neatly.
If you get delivery confirmation on your trades that are large or contain important seeds, you would be covering yourself whatever the cause. I would think twice about tampering with a package with tracking info.
Good luck!

    Bookmark   April 5, 2010 at 2:07PM
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christinmk z5b eastern WA

-chrizty, that is a wonderful idea about the Delivery Confirmation code! Didn't even think of that. Hopefully (depending on the reason for the missing packages) that will do some good!

-Alana, that is freakish that someone at the post office would go and snip open your seed packages, take out what they wanted, and seal it up again! Wow...

Thank you everybody for the help!

    Bookmark   April 6, 2010 at 9:16PM
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Do you have a new mailman? Ours was misplacing mail and we wondered what else, what if there was something of higher value? Haven't received at least 3 of trades recently, so far new mailman has been ok.

    Bookmark   April 9, 2010 at 8:27AM
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dirtdiggin(8b NW WA)

Hi christinmk,

I think I was one of the ones who sent and it ended up lost in the mail. It was around Christmas and I sent it in a Christmas card with bubble wrap. There were several of those Christmas card envies that didn't arrive. During that time of year, there are many newbies in the PO....filling in for the extra workload, so I would say that's probably the reason for the lost packages then. Can't say now, but our postal service has really gone down hill.

I've been in a battle with our local postal station for almost a year now. I keep filing complaints and the local postal worker/manager/XXX I won't stoop that low...has yet to get back to me in the required 2 working days he's allowed. So I'll continue to file complaints...and one day our paths will cross...he may not like me then. If I take my time to take action, he needs to take time to resolve the issue. Not leave it up in the air.

Anyway, don't take it personally and end trading due to our "wonderful postal service". Most folks on GW know how horrific the PO service can be in different areas. I do realize that some folks only have a small amount of seeds of any given trade, but when we rely on a third party, we take a chance. Even though we pay for the service...it's still a toss up if the items arrive.


    Bookmark   April 14, 2010 at 10:43PM
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I've been burned on a few trades, but I also know that the Post Office has been responsible for a few. I didn't receive a trade last year from someone that I had traded with before and knew to be reliable; he was kind enough to re-send it again, and I sent him some extra seeds for his trouble. About a month later, I received his original package, dirty, crumpled, and covered in a red substance that I choose to believe is NOT blood. I actually sent him a couple of pictures of it, to let him know that I wasn't just angling for a second package of seeds.

So, generally, my first inclination is not to suspect the other traders, but the USPS.

    Bookmark   April 27, 2010 at 2:44PM
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