Translation:I am going to the post office with a letter.
The problem is, many of the English translations given are idiomatic, not word for word literal from the Japanese expression...it needs to be more consistent...just saying! I actually tested completely out, although I never learned kanji...but saw some areas I'm weak in, as I learned Japanese by ear, not books...but I am considered fluent, and my husband of 45 years has never learned English, so I still speak it every day
Perhaps my memory is rusty, but my understanding of "motte ikimasu" is that it connotes carrying while going, and thus "I carry/am carrying a letter to the post office" would be a logical idiomatic translation. Obviously you would not translate it literally as "I go to the post office having carried/while carrying a letter" because that produces a very awkward English sentence, but it reflects the grammatical tie between "motte" and "ikimasu." It's nitpicky, but recalling Japanese class "I am carrying a letter to the post office" feels more correct and yet still fairly natural. Thoughts?
It's not the present progressive form. The present progressive is the combination of the -て form with いる, not the -て form by itself. The literal translation of 持って行きます would be "I carry and go" or "I go while carrying". The -て form is a little bit like the -ing form in English which is used with "to be" to make the progressive, but it's also used for other purposes