Anyone know a neurologist?

My first slippery street fall last weekend was probably nowhere near as serious as I made out! But it was painful enough to keep me awake—and cause the cancelling of a visit to a Winnipeg neurologist.
There are only two of these available in this part of Canada (the other being located at Thunder Bay).
These rare doctors determine whether your general health and physical abilities are sufficient to allow you to return to driving after your driver’s licence has been suspended, either by your local doctor following an injury or because a policeman has ruled you off the road, probably following a traffic accident.
In my own defence, I can report absolutely no motor accidents for so many years. It’s downright embarrassing to be so proud of my great driving record—no accidents or even traffic tickets were ever involved.
Yet here I sit with my licence suspended, and safer road and sidewalk conditions probably ahead while my trusty old half-ton sits in storage!
I’ll have to await another appointment with that neurologist now. Meanwhile, my kids, who had paid for a plane trip and hotel room for me in Winnipeg last weekend, are beginning to find me more expensive to support than they ever were (and I don’t know yet whether that Winnipeg trip would have been rewarding or not!)
You see, some of us old-timers are a superstitious breed! Was my trip-cancelling fall a warning to me to avoid that trip?
Now I’m supposed to notify that same doctor that I would appreciate a later appointment—when I’m not altogether sure of that! This is maybe part of the penalty for residing in a smaller centre lacking neurologists.
Never in my lifetime have I been convinced that I needed the services of expensive specialists before this, especially when they are practising elsewhere.
Maybe our new addition to the local hospital will help simplify our existence here! Most would prefer not to be chased away from home to receive a doctor’s assistance!
• • •
Those monster truckloads of everything from pulpwood to soft drinks have me baffled as to how much demand there must be for so many products!
They come bullying their way through traffic as if they alone owned all the highways, and their upkeep in fuel, plus other overhead such as taxes, licences, and repairs, has to represent an increasingly tremendous part of our national economy!
Of course, much of our train traffic, large as it seems still, must have been reduced along with train passengers. But so many still pine for the old days of train travel which, with the spread of highways, would no longer be practical.
Coffeeing mornings with CNR retirees, mostly from Rainy River, I learn so many of our workmen on the rails are nostalgic for a return of our old industry and train travel generally.
Meanwhile, those pulpwood truckers must have to cover so many more miles to bring in their payloads while our forests diminish.
• • •
Local artist Cher Pruys has hung another of her great airplane prints on the west wall of McDonald’s Restaurant here. This is a painting of Gordon Melville’s plane now owned by Abitibi-Consolidated, I’m told.
Meanwhile, Connie Cuthbertson’s gorgeous outdoor scenes are shown on the south wall.
• • •
Among those few Orientals we can remember arriving in Fort Frances with their laundries and restaurants when I grew up here, the only name I can remember was Lee! This was Lee “Giddap” as we called him.
There was the Peek Inn Cafe on Scott Street and very central. There you could buy a hot pork sandwich for a quarter. Lee “Giddap” was over on Church Street, where Louis Roseman later opened his furniture store.
(Louis was the only local Jewish merchant who got into clothing sales, and may seven in total all left town for Winnipeg later).
The Chinese stayed on to some extent, and the laundrymen with their hand-wagons for deliveries were once everywhere on our streets. That was mostly before automatic washers and dryers came out.
Now there are still Chinese restaurants here but few laundries.
These two races were formerly such an intrinsic part of town living, it’s hard to believe we could ever do without them!
• • •
But say, if you want to catch up on everything from sports to business, talk to Dan Parfitt, whom I had not met in several years. Dan, a vendor who also takes on tasks like taxi driving, can give you conversation by the hour—and much of it useful!
Bothered by recent loss of his father as well as his 12-year-old pet terrier, Dan gets around very well. The tall, slim hockey fan who plays and lives close to our golf course, is a friend of my son-in-law, Thunder head coach Dave Allison, and nephew of the late Bill Parfitt, our former OPP district chief.
Dan simply has views on every topic you try him on. So if you happen to meet him, I’ll guarantee you won’t be disappointed. In fact, I’m surprised if he is not yet in politics, where I know others who can’t keep you listening so well!
• • •
It’s said that Alzheimer’s can be a recurring family disease.
This sad affliction is known to run through four generations of a local family, striking only the maternal side, so that the mother believes her mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother all seemingly inherited a loss of memory.
• • •
I have not had opportunity to ask Hubert Preston, now 96, if it’s true that he still keeps his driver’s licence! What an incredible fellow!
• • •
Checking with Gordon McTaggart brings up suggestions of others who may have started kindergarten at Robert Moore with us so long ago. He adds the names of Dick Carnaghan, Bill Marr, Jack Anderson, and perhaps Calvin Muckle.
This is really stretching the old memory muscles a lot!
• • •
The skills needed and taken for granted by most farmers I know are numerous enough to command much higher earnings in most lines of work.
The plowman, milkman, butcher, fence builder, and carpenter must be busy from daylight to darkness, and then sometimes too tired to sleep and rest up for the chores awaiting him again tomorrow—such as seeding, shearing the sheep, and gardening!
So next day it rains and the farmer gets to town to load the old pickup with what he needs to get ready for dry weather. Then he may get going on painting, but rarely fishing because that’s when his wife knows he has merely been loafing—no matter how many fish he brought home for cleaning!
Besides, now he’s way behind on all that piled up at the farm while his back was turned! Of course, that would have to be the day his cow and mare both had young ones and started fighting!

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