Living in the “Northeastern Plains” of Colorado I have learned how really lacking my knowledge of Colorado is.
I have to say that while I was ACTUALLY born in South Dakota, we left when I was a toddler. My knowledge of farming, ranching, animal husbandry (I know what that means now, and it isn’t teaching the horses to carry out the trash!!.) was VERY lacking.
As I passed thru the hussel and bussel of Denver, past the shopping centers, past the fast food places, past any signs of civilization. I thought it can’t be that bad. I mean I had spent my whole life in Colorado, well all most. The mountains, the skiing, the convenience stores that stay open all night!
The lack of my education came first in a little town called Haxtun, Colorado. Just over 1000 in population. They have 5 churches and not a single BAR!! More about that later!
Moving from Englewood, Colorado – a suburb of Denver, was quite a shock! Culture shock is putting it mildly! Before I moved I asked the lady that I was leasing from it they had a hospital. Her reply? “Well, yes we have a nice hospital here.” It is time to mention that the hospital I am use to is Swedish Medical Center, in Englewood. I really didn’t have a choice on where I went so I grabbed the apartment. The first time I came into contact with Haxtun’s Hospital was a rather abrupt and sudden breathing problem. My asthma was going full blast. I didn’t have a car so they called the ambulance for me. Note to self: if you live in a small town and an ambulance shows up at your door so will every neighbor for MILES around. The long and the short of it is, the ambulance took me the four blocks to the hospital. The nurse on duty, had taken a blood sample, no I don’t know why, (I think that they started an IV and just decided “WHY NOT?) but he beat us to the hospital with the blood. I think it was trying to get the ambulance turned around with all of those people there. I hid under the sheet that they gave me.
Besides the shock of everybody in town standing on my sidewalk wondering if they would see some blood, or maybe a dead body! OK, a little overly dramatic but there they were! Staring. The ambulance pulled up to a glass door. I thought maybe we had stopped for coffee or something. This can’t be the HOSPITAL!?!?! But it was. Maybe the question I should have asked was “What kind of hospital do they have in Haxtun!” The door that I was in front of looked like a nursing home. Guess what? IT WAS!! Their idea of a hospital was a nursing home, with a clinic attached. Thus began my 15 month stay in Haxtun. I became very familiar with the clinic, the ER and the doctors that seemed to rotate thru like a roulette wheel.
I have to say that the ambulance, left going where ever ambulances go when not in use. The asthma treatment was working and I felt much better. The doctor on duty said that if I wanted to I could go home. The idea of having an ambulance come to take me the four blocks seemed to them the ideal way to get me back…. I decided I felt good enough I could walk, the entire 4 blocks. They gave me a card with the emergency number on it. REALLY!?! The way home at 2:30 AM included a stroll past the convenience store. I thought it would be nice to have some soda or maybe even an ice cream. Well, it would have been nice if they had been open. The convenience in their convenience store was that it stayed open a whole HOUR after the store in town.