Thursday, March 1, 2012
A small observation .
A patch of eczema on Wilfs throat . A side effect of the Cortisone . To the vets for some ointment . The waiting room crowded. In the corner an old , very French, couple fussing over a Golden Retriever . The man in beige car coat, beige trousers, brown shoes , green tweed hat. The invisible uniform of the eighty year old. The woman asking how long the wait will be . Like all old folk they're early . An hour early . The prim Parisienne alone on duty . '' I know you have an appointment but you'll have to wait until I've seen all the others ". The 'all' emphasized . Stentorian.
The senior vet arrives . Unscheduled . He goes straight to the couple. Strokes the dogs hair. Puts his hand on the mans shoulder. '' Why don't you bring your van round to the back door ? ". ' But we're parked in front '. '' Yes, but it'll be easier afterwards if you park at the back ". All suddenly clear. They've come in together with their dog for the last time . The old man starts to cry. Silently . Everyone in the waiting room looks at their feet.
The vet shepherds the couple, and the Golden, into his office . A minute later he's out again , car keys in hand , moving their little white Citroen to the privacy of the back lot. Direct access from his office without coming through the waiting room . The van still there when I get the ointment from the Parisienne and leave.
The difference between a qualified vet and a great one.
Just a small Thursday morning observation on life in France .