DEAR SUN SPOTS: I’ve seen you help others, so I’ll give you a shot.
I live out in the boondocks and enjoy the solitude. My question has to do with receiving mail at my house as opposed to my roadside mailbox.

It’s about a quarter mile away from my home. I am totally disabled and unable to drive or walk to the mailbox. Even though I instruct delivery services to deliver to my front door, only packages too large to fit in the mailbox make it to my front door, and there are plenty of those.

Is there any way I could receive my mail on my porch? I’ve checked with the post office and they said no. Even though they cleaned out my mailbox last week it still is collecting mail. There’s nothing more annoying than knowing an item I’ve been waiting for is only a short distance away, but to me it might as well be miles. Any ideas would be greatly appreciated. — Frank, no town

ANSWER: I’m surprised and disappointed that when you called your local post office, they didn’t tell you that you can indeed request “door delivery.” You’ll need to write a letter requesting this change and attach a statement regarding your disability from your health care provider.

I found the information here:

“Hardship” or “Medical Problems” is defined as an illness or handicap which would present a physical challenge for an individual to retrieve mail.


The doctor’s statement should indicate you are unable to collect your mail from a curb or centralized mailbox because of your disability. Both your letter and the doctor’s statement must be sent to the post office that delivers your mail. Final determination on whether door delivery will be granted will be made by the post office.

Your letter with the attached doctor’s statement should be addressed to: Postmaster, United States Postal Service, (your city, state, and zip code).

Any approval will be temporary and further information can be obtained from the local post office.

It sounds like you could really use some general help above and beyond getting your mail such as getting groceries and going to appointments. I also suggest that you talk with your town office. They can direct you to some assistive services if you are willing to accept the help. If you have Medicare or Medicaid they may be able to give you assistance as well.

You can also contact 211 ( for guidance and service. Let us know what happens.

DEAR SUN SPOTS: Your readers have really stepped up! I have received aluminum pie plates from so many. These plates can be dropped off at the Berkshire Hathaway Home Services Northeast Real Estate at 473 Center St. or at Kristi’s Café at 767 Minot Ave. in Auburn. The Ronald McDonald House appreciates Sun Spots readers! — Mary Ann, no town

ANSWER: Mary Ann has been collecting aluminum for Ronald McDonald House in Portland ever since I can remember. Pop tabs and anything else made from aluminum are taken to the participating recycling center and exchanged for money that is used to offset the nonprofit’s expenses. Please donate your aluminum items. It’s a little gesture that adds up!

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