Posted tagged ‘country doctor life’

A Day Back at Work/Upcoming Shows

September 15, 2011

        My first day at work was great fun. I saw several of my favorite patients, took their history, and did my best to commit their personal saga  to memory and then pass it on to the doc of record for the day. It was old home week; all hugs and handshakes, high fives and homegrown tomatoes. Maybe a small town southen doc ain’t glamorous but is sure rates high for emotional satisfaction. My role is different for now, but at least I am there. Besides, where else can you get two docs for the price of one? 

        My Rx is working. I am feeling better and up to a few music/book shows a month.

        This Saturday at 2:00 I play with Al Dunkleman at the Boiling Springs, N.C. 100th birthday celebration. This is an all day festival and we play from 2:00-3:00. There will be other local and regional bands playing too. I love festivals. My daughter will be in town. She was raised on ’em so she and my wife will be there too. Y’all come out- can’t beat the price. (it’s free) I assume there will arts and crafts and vendors and good food; usual festival fare.

        And don’t forget Doyle Dykes will be at Shelby Music Center this Tuesday September 20th. There is a twenty dollar coverage charge for him but as I indicated a couple posts ago, he is more than worth it.

        Hope to see you out to support live music.

Dr. B


An Average Weekend in the Life of a Country Doctor

June 19, 2010

        Old Doc’s still rocking along.

        Friday I got to tell a young mom her biopsy result was not melanoma, but just a mole. Don’t forget your sunscreen, kid. I dang near cried. I worry over those ragged dark moles. 

        I sat in last night with a swing band at the Winery. It’s two doors down from the Kingdom Hall of the Jehovah’s Witnesses. You can’t miss it. Go by Harvey Memorial and take a right at the Crystal Sea of Galilee Fish Camp, then left at Vernie’s picking barn. Turn in by the split rail fence on the little gravel road. You’ll see a bunch of grape vines there. It’s as close to French as you’ll find in Harvey County. (Polly Voo Who?)

        A favorite patient drove herself to my gig, and even got up and danced one tune. She came up to speak. “Doctor, did you know it was my birthday?”

         “Well, Happy Birthday. I hope I do half as good as you.”

        She said she had to drive home before it got too late, but I could forgive that; she just turned 90. I wish I could take credit for it, but I’m sure it’s because she picked out good ancestors.

        I’m booked with Irish singer-songwriter Al Donnelly today. It’s the Farmer’s Market gig and old man Turner will have those homemade fried pies I love so much. 

        The Farmer’s Market is right there at the court-square. We have one of those southern squares where the Bermuda grass is lush and green and there’s a white-washed brick courthouse. A lonely solider stands guard in the shade of the old oak tree. His rifle has rested on his shoulder since I was a little boy. As a kid I always imagined he’d jump down and defend us. I’m thankful he hasn’t had to fire yet.

        There’s a WWII Memorial on the west side. My uncle died in France. I always go by and read off his name and wonder why I have been so fortunate and so many were struck down so young.

        I might mow some grass before it gets too hot. Tomorrow I’ll ask for forgiveness for any and all mistakes I’ve made, wipe the slate clean, and go try again. 

        For the most part it was a good week, though. I didn’t have to tell anyone their mama died, and no one turned up with cancer. I’ll take that luck and run with it.

        I hope to make a formal book release announcement very soon. I wish it was today, but with the kind of week I’ve had it’d be wrong to complain.

Dr. B

Thy Burdens are Greater than Mine

March 24, 2010

        The life of a country doctor is different.  There’s not a whit of glamour in what I do.  When you don’t wear a tie because it can get stuck in the wrong place as you try to screen a 350 pound human being for colon cancer and worry the distraction might cause you to miss a case; well you might be a country doctor. After near three decades in that routine when some fool on television in a suit pontificates about his expertise in primary care health care delivery it amuses me. 

        But overall, I just don’t see I have any real burdens, at least compared to my people.  When you see someone who has measured the distance from their ear lobes to the ground and is concerned they are three millimeters whop-sided it makes you realize people have all kinds of troubles. Many of them can’t be fixed by pills.  My broad shoulders are a bit stooped these days from years of burdens, but I carry on. In my prayers that’s what I am told to do.

        I saw a lady like that the other day. I had to take a break for a minute and play my office guitar. The song was “Thy Burden are Greater than Mine.” Her burdens were greater than mine for sure.  All I could do was listen and hope it helped a little.

Dr. B