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We had a bit of a challenge this month in response to the United Parcel Service strike. First, we had to find an alternative to our usual method of shipping book orders. We're using the U.S. Post Office, and insuring the shipments so we can be sure you get what you've ordered. We're trying to send book orders to clubs well ahead of your show dates, so you'll be sure to have the books in plenty of time. Regarding the impact of increased workload on the postal system, our subscription department is as concerned as you are about the magazine being delivered on time we hope yours got to you as usual, but if it was a few days late, keep in mind that our U.S. Postal Service is a little swamped these days. Hopefully, the strike will be just a memory by the time you read this letter, and reliable, timely deliveries will once again be the norm!

For those of you who call our office, we have a new 'voice mail' system. This will enable you to leave messages if you call when the office is closed during the evening or on weekends, rather than getting just a ringing phone if it's after hours for us here in the Eastern time zone. We recognize there are many people who don't like hearing recordings or leaving messages with machines, but there are probably as many who like to know the phone will answered whenever they call. Not only should the new system provide for greater customer satisfaction, but we've also found it to be a sort of employee morale booster, as we're all having fun playing with these new telephone 'toys' on our desks. It's really an experience to compose and record your first voice mail message! Here's hoping we all get used to voice mail soon.

The month of October finds the advertising department gearing up for the 1998 Steam & Gas Show Directory. If you're the contact person for your club or organization, you should be receiving a packet of listing and advertising information by mid-October. If you get the information, but are no longer the contact person, please pass it along to the responsible party. And, if nothing at all has arrived by the end of the month, please let us know we don't want you to miss out on a great opportunity to promote your club's show activities!

Enjoy the tricks and treats in this month's magazine!