Musings of a Dinosaur

A Family Doctor in solo private practice; I may be going the way of the dinosaur, but I'm not dead yet.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

No Need to Lend a Hand

I have a patient who works in a supermarket. She tells me stories of little old ladies slowly going up and down the aisles, leaning on their carts, always needing help with this and that because they don't walk so well anymore.

Except on weekend mornings, when the bus for Atlantic City (and its casinos) comes to the supermarket parking lot. Watch how quickly they clamber aboard -- no help needed at all.

6 Comments:

At Fri May 25, 11:35:00 AM, Anonymous HCN said...

I think this kind of relates to your previous post.

The little old ladies I encounter are usually at the swimming pool. They are either being very slow in the lap lane, or hanging out in the other part floating around and talking (sometimes while waiting for the water aerobics class).

A few do need assistence, but seldom ask for it. This includes one with a brace that is a reminder of her encounter with polio, there are couple with walkers, and one who is blind. Yesterday I accidently knocked over one lady's cane when I was getting out of the pool.

But what is very different are the conversations in the locker room. This is where you learn all sorts of fascinating things... like about one lady's grandchildren living in Israel, another lady's reading material she has to judge for a sci-fi/fantasy writing contest, one who sings with the "Raging Grannies" group and experiences a couple had as university professors a couple of decades ago.

I really like the little old ladies at the swimming pool... and I hope I am still going to the pool and be one of them in a couple of decades.

 
At Fri May 25, 12:35:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, anticipation of an outing and having a good time is a motivator for all of us, no?

For a lot of older people, it's a long and tiring trek to get around the supermarket. Plus they are having to look for items on the shelves, bend down or stretch to reach for things, get jostled by younger and more impatient shoppers, and so forth.

I hope someone will be patient with me when I get old and not begrudge me a trip to Atlantic City (although I hate to gamble and will probably become a recluse with a houseful of cats).

 
At Fri May 25, 12:54:00 PM, Blogger Lynn Price said...

Oh,heck, I can be seen dragging my butt around Costco like I'm on my death bed. I hate shopping as much as I hate ingrown toenails. But mention that we're flying to New York, and I'm the one packed three days ahead screaming at everyone to hurry up.

Which reminds me; I'd better start packing...

 
At Fri May 25, 07:41:00 PM, Anonymous RJS said...

Sounds like the types who walk just fine to the door of the store, and then start limping once they get inside and absolutely MUST have their OxyContin YESTERDAY because if they don't they're just going to DIE.

Then they limp out, and proceed to walk with a normal gait to their cars once they're out of the pharmacy.

Weeee!

 
At Sat May 26, 03:20:00 AM, Anonymous HCN said...

Ooh... not the folks like me who if given anything like OxyContin or Demorol or any other narcotic... which tend to retch and vomit because these meds make us sick to our stomachs.

I believe this is a case of selective memory. Think about those who seem to be headed to the casinos, but forget about those who are experiensing post-polio syndromes.

Why do you not see these as interesting people?

People who have lived through intersting times?

Okay, it is confession time... in the period between college orientation and the start of freshman classes I lived with my mother's cousin. She lived near the university, and was almost two decades older than my parents. I spent the last part of summer after high school in a retirement village. It turns out that for one 17 year old brat... that these were very interesting people!!!

Several had lived and survived the Holocaust... Others had dropped supplies over European towns (thankfully, or my hubby's grandparents would not have survived)... and others were 20th century homesteaders in the far Northwest.

Don't "dis" the elderly.

Because, unless you intend to die early... you will join that particular demographic!

 
At Sat May 26, 03:44:00 AM, Blogger AzRN said...

too funny. i'm always so tired and dragging tail in the morning when i have to go to work, but give me a day off and i'm up at the crack o'dawn with plenty of energy to do "my" stuff...lol

 

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