Sour Gripes

Time Slips Away

If only I could find more time. Each year passes by in a flash even though some work days seem to last an eternity. If I really wanted to quiz or complain or just plain question the plan, purpose or reason for something of relevance to myself or other town residents I should seek answers from someone in the know. I find myself perhaps too wrapped up in my own little world, too busy to enjoy the fruits of my labours. It seems that if I ask questions or voice an opinion (perhaps not based on enough facts) to some it is as though I’m an idiot to not see “the big picture”. If I had time perhaps I could sit in on meetings or join a committee or two. (If I ever retire?)

One would have to be totally oblivious to the “Someone I Know” campaign thermometer in front of our St. Marys Memorial Hospital. In the fog that I’ll contribute to my advancing years I have wondered “What exactly are the plans for this chunk of change?” “For a lot of years did the hospital not have a huge capital fund formed mostly of bequeaths and gifts?” What restrictions are there on such monies other than they are not allowed to be used for operating expenses? Why do we have a large campaign running if we have no set goals that I am aware of? (Obviously my own ignorance).

Last week I learned that a revamped tub room was part of the plan (long past due and money well spent). One wonders how a hospital was allowed to operate without such an obvious necessity to life and dignity. Along the same line an air cushion mattress was available to my dying mother a few months ago that prevented bed sores and made her last days more bearable. It’s a pity they are in very short supply (May we have more please?). With the large occurrence of heart disorders isn’t it odd that I was told there was only one “Holter Monitor” available at this hospital. Since my father-in-law who is in his 80’s had to go to The Jennie Trout Center for a similar device I would say that perhaps there is only one here. Are these items eligible as capital expenditures?

This week I hear of a 6000 sq. addition to the Wellness Center. I understand there would be office space for rent on the second floor. I assume that has been studied as a viable income stream. I understand that any building can not necessarily be built without an eye to the future and expanded needs. I suppose that criteria was used when the main wing and the Meighen wing were built as well. Does present use and funding in any way reflect the vision and foresight of those who planned and built our hospital? I would like to see major upgrades to patient care rooms (personally meeting Superman or Batman would be cool too). Is that possible? I see all around that we are building hospitals that are underfunded (architectural show pieces). If we build who will fund? If nursing and doctors job cuts are made who will they train and for a job where? It seems that a similar situation faces us with The Pyramid Center. I trust that greater minds than mine have the matters well in hand.

REMINISCING: I saw a question the other day asking about the Jones Street railway over pass. In a book I have” To Stratford Under Steam” there is at least one picture of a Pacific steam engine heading toward JD Moore Cold Storage on James Street and the Jones street wooden bridge disassembled for repair. Since it was probably about 1959 or 60 when steamers chuffed their last I assume the flat topped bridge was repaired and replaced at a later date. I can say that in the era from 63 to 65 I took a memorable ride over the bridge in the back of a pickup truck heading west. The driver was a high school mate (from Lakeside) who was unfamiliar with a couple of pertinent facts about the bridge: It was flat on top: there was a stop right near its base at James Street. At any speed it was at best quite a ride from slope to flat and back. It was too easy to get airborne at normal street speed and almost impossible to stop on the other side. Those of us in the cab (not me)and those in the box (among those) it was scarier than any ride at the fair. Fortunately only a few bruises and sore muscles resulted. Don’t tell the kids about this stupidity! Maybe that’s why they took it out!


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