A few posts ago I was talking about being freaked out at creepy deliveries and Gypsy commented, "When I did this job a few years ago, I would get on the c.b. every time I got in the car for a delivery. If I had to go to a bad neighborhood, I would tell someone the address I was getting out of the car at. They knew if I didn't check back in within 8 minutes they needed to call the cops and my store, in that order. It made me feel tons safer."
So I decided to try an experiment to see if I felt any better about some of my deliveries. When I get to a delivery I don't feel comfortable about, I'll text a designated buddy with the address and how long I think it'll be until I check in. Then I'll check in when I get back in the car. If I don't check in that person would try texting me and calling me and if I didn't answer would notify the cops and my store that I am in trouble. I realized that even though this takes more time than the original suggestion, it will still be a lot faster than waiting for the store to realize I'm gone. In fact, I would be willing to bet that the store wouldn't realize I'm gone until the end of the night when they've sent almost everyone home and I'm still clocked out on a run. It might even be longer than that, it might be until they're closing the store at midnight and they realize I'm still clocked in. The thought of being missing for three or four hours before someone knows about it scares me and depending on the manager that night the urgency of the matter might or might not be communicated to the police. I know that my buddy knows that if I don't check in, something is wrong.
Anyway, I wasn't sure when I'd have a chance to test out the new system, but on the last delivery of the night I was getting sent out to an industrial area. Not only was it an industrial area at night, but when I got there I had to drive through a gate (which could easily be closed behind me), up a long unlit driveway (who knows how many rocks I could trip on if I was running), through a cluster of cars (with lots of places for people to surprise me), through a group of drinking men (who didn't look all that upstanding), and into a large metal building (which probably has a floor drain) to get to the office where a woman paid for the pizza (and tried to steal my pen twice!). I was glad that I had the system in place because it made me a little less scared. I was still nervous and cautious, but my fear wasn't as high.
I came out with $23 off of 7 deliveries, a pathetic tip average of $2.18.