Rudy worked at the post office and I don't know how old he was - young face, graying hair, he could have been 40 or 17. Small and quiet, with a bad little grin, when I think of him I always see Teller.

So, I needed stamps. Small towns don't have stamp machines, you have to go inside to the window and talk to somebody about it, which is nice. A man whose tag said Rudy looked carefully at me. "I have just the stamps for you."

He slid open a drawer and took out a packet. "These are dancing stamps. Watch." He danced them back and forth across the counter, tappity tappity.

"They might not dance for you when you get them home. At least not right away. You must be gentle with them, treat them with great kindness. They will be nervous, being in a new place. Do you promise to give these stamps the love and respect they deserve?"

He meant it. He totally and completely meant it. It was a solemn moment. He was asking me for my word. "Yes," I said.

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