Friday, July 22, 2011

Stories from the deep south of Sask.

There are aspects of living in Weyburn that I do not like. There is a certain structural (I think) lack of accountability, lack of business etiquette.

Story #1:

A couple months ago I looked for office space, found a real estate agent, who showed me a small streetfront space, part of a building housing independently living seniors, right downtown. I decided to take it. I contacted the real estate agent, who said "I think the owners might be wanting more for it than I quoted you." What the..??
I asked him to double-check the cost and let me know ASAP what the new "cost" was going to be. He said, the owners are out of town. I waited patiently, for three weeks. Well, patiently for me, at least. One visit in person (he wasn't in), a couple voice mails and three emails. He never, ever got back.


It was as if he had died and fallen off the face of the earth. No reply. A  couple weeks after I gave up trying, I found out through a completely different source, my mother (who had noticed activity in the space), and directly asking the guy who is the caretaker there, that the owners had rented the space to a different party, people who were were busy jackhammering up the floor, gutting the space, renovating it to turn it into a boutique hair salon.

I could have been notified. Surely a real estate agent's job is to keep all interested parties informed about what is transpiring with a space that's up for rent. Surely.

But, in this town, I'm chopped liver apparently.

It has all turned out OK. I never found the right space, but I do have a working gig with the "big" private PT place in town, two days a week, nice room to work in, private, has a door, a window, space for my small amount of stuff, fresh laundry, someone working there who does laundry.. A bunch of tough cases to treat, no time pressure. I'm working on an application to the other big PT place in town, in the public realm this time, outpatients in a government run facility, right within/part of an assisted living facility for patients who are much higher maintenance, needing skilled nursing care. Which leads me to my second story.

Story #2:
To fulfil application requirements at place #2, I was asked to provide a police check, an immunization list, a medical certificate of health.

OK. Here we go. It's been 7 years since I last visited a medical doctor. The last time I visited a doctor, she freaked out and had checked me out for breast cancer, which involved two (not one but two!) painful mammograms, one of which was exceedingly painful and made me swear out loud. Also an ultrasound and a clinical exam. None of which turned up anything. So I stopped the relationship. I never picked up another. Until now. Because of this application requirement.

So, here I am, in a new place, no medical relationship. I picked out a Dr., which in itself isn't easy here, because they aren't listed under "physicians", here, just medical clinics are listed. Anyway, I walked down the street, found the name I was looking for, took down the phone number because the clinic was closed the day I went looking, called, made an appointment, was ecstatic to find out I could get in today.

Went to the appointment. Was 5 minutes early. Light was on inside, but no one visible, and the door was locked.

I waited until my time. I knocked on the door. Nothing. I waited some more. Ten minutes past my appointed time, I left. I went and picked up some groceries.

On my way back, 20 minutes later, I looked in the window. Now the light was off.

I was stood up again. Chopped liver yet again. I realize, being a manual therapist, that the pattern-seeking and finding part of my brain is extremely well-neuroplasticized. So I'm apt to see patterns where they don't really exist, and make erroneous conclusions from that. I'm way better at NOT doing that than I used to be. Still... I can't help seeing a pattern here: it seems to be a pattern of "Don't-have-to-give-a-sh*t, unless I know this person and my parents knew that person's parents and they all voted the same way and/or went to the same church, and/or they are the sister-in-law of my brother-in-law's cousin, and/or I owe him/her a favour."

Now I remember one of the (many!) reasons I was so eager to escape small town BS 30 years ago, where systems are inefficient and all transactions occur based on who you know, not what you know, or need, or expect, where there are no objective standards of interaction, where business ethics seem to be ... well, the most charitable word I can think of, is wobbly. This aspect, I definitely do not like.

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