Cool Jobs: Postmaster offers refuge for hikers

Friday - 7/16/2010, 10:08am EDT

Rosemary Allen, Postmaster, Hot Springs, N.C.

Click below to hear the interview

Download mp3

Rachel Stevens
Federal News Radio

For most people, going to the post office feels more like a chore than a homecoming.

But Rosemary Allen says the people who come into hers become like an "extended family."

Allen is the Postmaster in Hot Springs, N.C. along the Appalachian Trail, where she says many customers are hikers that she feels an almost maternal desire to take care of.

Her interesting work experience is why Allen is featured as a part of Federal News Radio's week-long special series, Cool Jobs in Government.

The Appalachian Trail is a stretch hiking paths that crosses 2,178 miles. And Allen says it attracts outdoors enthusiasts from all over the world.

She says talking to the hikers and hearing their tales is one of her favorite parts of the job.

"Sometimes it'll be a little hard to understand each other, but they'll tell their stories about things that have happened on the trail, or different animals that they've seen."

The hikers often have friends or family members who send food and other necessities for them to pick up from Allen's post office. She says this makes many people enthusiastic about reaching her.

"Some of them just dig right in and start eating what they've got in their package."

But Allen is more than just a connection between hikers and their families. She says they kind of become her family, too.

"I've got children that love to hike and do those sorts of things, so I sort of look at these people as extended family. I just try to take care of them."

Stay tuned all week for the latest in Federal News Radio's Cool Jobs in Government series. Read about all of the featured jobs by clicking here.

See the entire Cool Jobs Photo Gallery by clicking here.

Rachel Stevens is an intern with Federal News Radio.

(Copyright 2010 by FederalNewsRadio.com. All Rights Reserved.)