Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays the nearly 10,000 letter carriers in Maryland from their appointed rounds.
But not yesterday.
"We did the best we could, but we didn't get a whole lot of mail out," said Thomas Leeper, manager of distribution operations at the Main Post Office on East Fayette Street.
"I would say, because of the weather, turnout was real light."
He and others in the sprawling downtown facility said they felt like they were in a "ghost town" for most of the day. On an average day, millions of pieces of mail make their way from East Fayette to postal patrons across town.
Delivery to post office boxes, Mr. Leeper said, was unaffected yesterday, but home delivery was another matter.
While Mr. Leeper didn't know how many of the city's nearly 2,000 letter carriers made it to work during the storm, he said those who did had trouble getting to people's mailboxes.
"Safety is our number one concern, and, if they couldn't make it, they didn't deliver," Mr. Leeper said.
Mail delivery yesterday in the Baltimore suburbs also was sporadic at best.
"They did attempt delivery where it was safe to do so, but, to say the least, delivery was difficult," said Monica Hand, a regional spokeswoman for the U.S. Postal Service. "I can't say that in all situations that delivery was attempted."
The number of mailboxes left empty yesterday was not available from postal officials, but, with most neighborhood roads snow-covered and unplowed, Ms. Hand said that, unless you live on a main drag, a postal worker probably didn't get to your house.
If you're one of the thousands of Marylanders left with an empty mailbox, don't worry -- the post office will deliver again tomorrow, weather permitting, of course.
"If you didn't get it on Saturday, you'll get it on Monday," Ms. Hand said.