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  • Last modified 315 days ago (July 12, 2023)

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'Little' isn't a four-letter word

Worldwide, small towns like ours are experiencing unprecedented difficulty attracting and retaining residents.

We supposedly have too few stores, too few restaurants, limited hours, limited things to do, an excess of hustle, but not enough bustle.

We also have something else that the rest of the world needs to watch out for. The real truth is: How you gonna keep ‘em over in Paree once they’ve seen the real nature of small-town living.

A perfect example occurred just the other day. Somehow, the “press 1 for this, 2 for that” system that my mother is forced by the Veterans Administration to use to get her prescriptions paid for screwed up.

We eagerly awaited the mail, hoping pills would arrive on the day she was due to run out. But the mail, as it often does, contained more junk than joy.

A quick call to St. Luke Medical Clinic was returned in less than 15 minutes, and a temporary prescription was sent to Lanning Pharmacy for pickup before the next pill was due.

At the pharmacy, the order was ready the moment I walked in, but there was a problem. The computer at my mother’s insurance company had been down all day, and the pharmacy didn’t know what to charge.

The problem was brief-lived, however.

“We’ll call you in a few days and you can come back and pay then.”

Imagine hearing those words from Walmart, Walgreens, or another of the other big stores that wall themselves off from customers like cattle ranches watching so many head of cattle pass through a stockyards corral.

Our communities may be small, but that’s not all. What they lack in population and sometimes in amenities, they make up for in ways the big city simply can’t.

— ERIC MEYER

Last modified July 12, 2023

 

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