Sunday, February 17, 2008

Here's to the little guy...

I go to a teeny, weeny, small-town pharmacy. The kind where the pharmacist, who is the owner, has his kids' graduation pictures propped up on the glass counter. They have a couple of each thing in stock, not 457 each of 12 billion items. The storefront is glass from top to bottom and the automatic door (one person wide) is kinda slow to open, probably because it's old.

I didn't go there at first. I went to Stuff-mart, like the rest of the lemmings. But I hate Stuff-mart, and not for those reasons I hear a lot. I hate it because it feels dirty and dingy and seems poorly lit. (My husband does lighting for a living, so I'm somewhat sensitive in this area.) Poorly-lit translates to me as unsafe and dirty. Anyway, I think I went to Stuff mart for a prescription one time. It was at night, when poorly lit shows itself at its best, and there were about 100 people in line and the pharmacy helpers were wearing computers strapped to their wrists, in a borg-like way.

Now I love Star Trek, a lot. Captain Picard was the coolest, handsomest bald guy, ever. But the borg deal was pretty intimidating. So there I was in the poorly-lit, dirty store, waiting with 100 other yutzes for my kid's med, being waited on by a minimum-wage borg. I didn't like it. I remembered that the little pharmacy in my little town had a drive-through window and a sign that said free delivery and I thought I should at least try it.

When #3 was born she didn't gain weight the first month, probably due to the fact that I did not eat enough because I wanted to prove I was super mom and could lose weight fast, home educate my children and breastfeed a newborn. Bad plan, bad results. Well, the pediatrician wanted to give her some straight zinc supplement, I think, because she also had a lot of rash on her body. The pharmacist at the little pharmacy could get it made up faster than Stuff mart, so we went there.

So I kept going there. #3 has to taken an antibiotic every day until after her surgery in May, so I have been going there monthly for four+ years now. They recognize me when they see me at the window and usually don't ask my name. It's good to be infamous.

The reason for this whole posting is to say that yesterday, after I had called in a refill for #3, I totally forgot to pick it up. She takes it at night, so I didn't think about it until almost 8 pm, long after the little pharmacy closed. I know, I know, Stuff Mart would probably be open, but wait until you hear this...I called and left a voice message on the emergency pharmacy line, groveling and begging to be able to pick up #3's medicine, ANYTIME this weekend that would work and Mr. Pharmacy owner called me back within 5 minutes and offered to meet me this morning, Sunday morning, at the drive-through window at 10 am. No problem, he said.

I had a strong hunch that he would do this for me, because a couple of years ago, out of the clear blue sky, Handyman had a kidney stone. Absolutely unexpected, and when the hospital sent us home with pain prescriptions on a Sunday morning, I called and left a message asking if I could get one filled before the night began, since Handyman had gotten no relief from the first three doses of morphine at the hospital, and I was afraid to be without any meds that night. Mr. Dave, the pharmacist/owner had called me right back and met me there that afternoon, opening up just for me, for a $9 prescription. I have not forgotten that and I probably won't. I don't care if I never get a $4 generic, Mr. Dave has my business as long as he has his. It's just one of the great things about small towns, and about this country.


Between the Trees said...

Amen! and Amen! Boo Stuff-mart! :)

Strawberry Lane said...

Great story. Something comforting about knowing you can count on someone like your pharmacist. To him you are a person, at Stuff-mart you are a number. Big difference!