The U.S. Postal Service is running as usual.

Sort of.

Steve Kingsley, postmaster at the Bronson post office said, “Packages have gone through the roof.”

He’s also noticed an increase in the sale of stamps.

“Teachers are keeping in touch with students with letters and postcards,” Kingsley said. “It’s so wonderful to see teachers letting their students know they care.”

Rod Bailey, postmaster at the Quincy post office, agreed about the boxes.

“Mail volume is noticeably down, but packages have grown," Bailey said. "It’s not as heavy as around Christmas, but it’s close."

Usually this time of year is their slow time for packages, he said.

The trend of more packages has been growing in the last decade, Bailey said. When he started as a mail carrier they would deliver eight to 10 trays of letters and magazines in a day. Now it’s more like two or three trays.

“We used to have a stack of magazines as tall as you are,” he said. “Now it’s a foot or two.”

But beyond the normal trends, currently people are taking seriously the stay-at-home mandates and ordering online.

The problem is that mail vehicles are behind the times. They are still built for letters and sometimes carriers have to return to the office because packages don’t all fit.

“But it’s pretty manageable, Baily said. “All the employees are in good spirits. They’re happy to be essential workers and to get out of the house.”

Tom Timmer, postmaster at the Coldwater post office, agreed.

People are trying to avoid getting out to go shopping, he said.

“Packages take more time,” Timmer said. “It slows them down, but it’s working out OK.”

Rather than slide some mail in the box and drive on, the carrier will likely have to take an item to the door.

In Coldwater, they are working with a full staff and have been given permission to hire some additional staff to help with the package volume.

“To make sure we don’t have any delays,” Timmer said.

On Monday, the Coldwater post office looked busy with a line of cars going through their parking lot. But it was for the CAMA food distribution in the lot beyond them.

“They asked permission, but it’s a city parking lot, not ours,” Timmer said. “It might have had a minor impact on our customers, but it was only a couple hours. And we don’t want to get in the way of anything good happening for our community.”