Your surprise. Here is Dale our resident Old Codger. He is home again. His daughter came from California to bring him home from the Old Folks Home. He is endlessly grateful to the folks at the retirement /rehab home and is so relieved that they were able to help him get fit enough to come home. He has lived on this spot almost a hundred years. His objective was to get back home.
TonTon about wobbled his bottom right off with excitement to find his old friend back in his accustomed place of residence. He carefully moved through the house ’til he found the old man and then threw himself at his feet. I took the camera when I visited and asked him if I could take some photos so that you all could see that he was finally home safe and sound. He was more than happy to sit for you and then blown away when I told him how many people have been reading about his struggle to overcome his badly broken leg and get back home. Why. He said, referring to all the comments and best wishes and grinning.
We thought about this for a bit and then I said. I think that you bring us hope. They wanted to cheer you on as you beat the odds and worked your way back. I still cannot find the right words. I guess in a world full of rotton stories it is heartening to see stubbornness overcome sense and win. The old man who picks up his walker and walks after falling and smashing his leg to bits is a kind of miracle. He went to the right place, worked with the right people, ate the right food and did the right work and succeeded.
Well, he said, smoothing his hair, I don’t expect a marriage proposal. He has a slight midwest drawl to his words which raises his vowels, holds them and bounces them down to the end of each sound. There is a musical quality to his voice. He is at his best when being ironic. He will tease. And he misses nothing.
I will tell them you are rich, I said. He lifted his head and laughed.
He called his dog up to his knee. TonTon raised his head from atop Dales shoe. You know how to get around me don’t you, he said to TonTon as they positioned themselves and turned to the camera.
I told him how many of you have been following his progress since mid February and he was really chuffed. It has been a long harrowing road back to mobility. And you all have followed through with him.
His bed is in his downstairs office so he will probably be reading the blog today. Safely back home in his parents house on his grandparents land with their furniture, his hundreds and hundreds of books and his ancient computer. This is not a home one leaves easily. This is a house that needs its Patriarch.
And as Dale said to me yesterday, we will find a way to make it work again. Though I won’t be going up those stairs for a while.
Did you eat a good breakfast Dale? What we really should be looking for is simple nutritious meals that people with limited mobility can prepare at home. That he will want to prepare himself. I am not convinced about the level of goodness in TV dinners. He does not want his food delivered. He prefers to feed himself. But walking with two hands on a walker and carrying a plate of food to the table is incredibly difficult. Picking something up off the floor. Carrying a coffee to your chair by the TV. Unpacking a box. Finding a lost book. He and I will be working out systems to manage all this. So he can thrive while living alone. Just living is not enough- a person must thrive. But, like he said yesterday, we will find a way to make this work again.
He loves ribs and pizza. And chilli. Sweet and sour chicken TV dinners out of their separate compartments. And tomatoes. And junk food in bright orange crinkly packets, which he offers to me just to see me curl my lip and say Not in a Million Years!! He is fierce about his independence. This is a good thing.
I will take him fresh milk and eggs and cake three times a week. And tomatoes, John picks at least one a day now. Everyone needs an old person. One way or the other. Paid or unpaid. Easy or not. Just regular. Make sure you can visit on a regular schedule. It is a committment. A good one.
Good morning. It is 5.30 am. Time to carry the buckets of hot water to the barn and get ready for the milking. Have a lovely day.