Editorial – Missing the Vet

Editorial for Jan. 21 discusses some of the differences between life in a city and a small mountain town.

Since moving to Fernie, it has been a change of pace from living in Vancouver. That’s to be expected, as one is a bustling cosmopolitan centre and the other is a quiet community nestled in the mountains. And while there are many benefits to a slower pace, I can’t deny there are some things I miss about the city.

When people ask me why I miss my city lifestyle, my answer is trivial: I miss going grocery shopping at 11 p.m. It was always my favourite time to shop for food, as there were less lines and I wasn’t likely to run into anyone while stocking up on Teddy Grahams. It was soothing and therapeutic for an odd reason.

However, I have noticed other services and amenities that I increasingly miss about the city. Upon returning home from Toronto last week, I noticed that my cat had an open wound that she kept licking by her left hind leg. Her normally feisty demeanour was replaced with a docile one, and that’s how I knew she needed to see a vet.

I looked on Google, which told me there was one in Fernie that opened at 8 a.m. I woke up early, corralled my cat into the carrier and took her to the address I wrote down, only to discover it wasn’t open – and it hadn’t been for eight months. I took my moaning cat back home, making me slightly late for work and rather annoyed that there is no vet in town.

In a city as active and pet loving as Fernie, I found this hard to believe. And when a service closes, it would be easy to update their website to inform people of that. Leaving it active makes newcomers hopeful and potentially late for work.

My annoyance increased later in the week as I couldn’t find another service that would be available at any mall in the city. Over the holidays, I accidentally smashed my phone screen while at the ski hill. I have been researching how to get it fixed in the Elk Valley after a friend told me of a service in Sparwood. All of my attempts to call the business number went unanswered, leaving me to broaden my search to include Cranbrook.

Cranbrook does have a service, but it costs double of what the industry average is and they are not open on weekends. I would have to take a day off of work to get my phone fixed.

When moving to Fernie, I was fully aware that I would be giving up some luxuries of city life and gaining the unique mountain town lifestyle. However, I have become painfully aware of certain services that are missing from this area. I’m sure my cat is aware of this too.