It is late Thursday afternoon and I am sitting in my clinic when a pleasant but profoundly deaf gentleman comes in to see me.
For the third time this week, he proceeds to recount how he and my grandfather used to walk barefoot to school together — loud enough for the entire waiting room to hear the story.
My patients and I discuss local issues such as the impact of mining on the town, the upcoming town musical or where my parents used to work and what they are doing now, and many other non-medical but interesting discussion topics.
This connection to the community and holistic continuity of care is one (amongst many) of my favourite things about working in a rural town.
Some of my patients were in my primary school class and now I treat their whole family.
Rural towns are incredibly supportive and inclusive of rural GPs; you can make many long-term friendships — my patients say hello when I pass them at the weekend markets.