Though the advantage of small-town living is not an uncommon refrain, Almonte enjoys more than the traditional affection of its inhabitants. In the past I have encountered people from other rural towns who spoke glowingly of their community but Almonte exceeds the approbation of even the most popular places.
Consider for example our recent activities here. In the past two weeks following our return to Canada we’ve had a number of appointments and rendezvous – medical check-ups, blood work, vaccinations, dental exams and teeth cleanings, hearing test, booking ultra-sound examinations, renewing liability insurance (home and car), a classical guitar performance in a stellar art gallery, fine dining, plumbing and heating maintenance and of course rallying with family, friends and acquaintances. All of these events took place either immediately or nearby and universally without friction. Everyone in our respective families is located within a short drive. Likewise our favourite spots for day trips are within easy reach. While it practically goes without saying, for the sake of the record I confirm that all the essential offices – doctor, dentist, banker, accountant, insurance agent, post office, hospital and related clinics are within a spit of one another. It is technically possible to walk or cycle everywhere we need to be.
And this doesn’t include the utter delight of having the nearby golf club and clubhouse where we were this morning for the first time this season pointedly on the heels of having accomplished before noon two medical visits (annual checkup and blood work), groceries and an upscale bicycle shop attendance. It equally bears repeating that our visit to the golf club was punctuated upon our arrival by a reunion with old friends with whom we’ve happily arranged to dine next week. Not to mention our very satisfactory breakfast at the club house overlooking the meandering Mississippi River through the gnarled large trees along the shore. As always Mrs. Wendy MacDonald’s protein breakfast of eggs, bacon and sausage (and accompanying grilled cheese sandwich) was nonpareil!
Though we strayed somewhat afield when visiting our accountant in Carleton Place, there we discovered the Beckwith Kitchen which features an array of frozen prepared dinners, fresh baked goods (everything from bread to macaroons to baklava) and conveniently small portions of fresh soups and crisp salads. We left with a burdensome collection of goods!
It as though everything here contrives toward accessibility, convenience, quality and efficiency. It is an underlying theme of the town which serves to insinuate almost every occupation of either necessity or desire. I can’t but imagine what a reduction of strain it must contribute to the local inhabitants. It all combines to lubricate a sense of well-being and fulfillment. Everything and everyone is of the highest calibre; there is never a feeling of accommodation or deprivation. You gotta love it!