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Rainy Day - The Thin Edge of Dignity

Rainy DAy








Views from inside an Assisted Living Facility


It’s raining. Ech!  I shouldn’t grouse; it was bound to happen. It is October, and it is Oregon: it always rains in Oregon in the late Fall and Winter. I’ve lived here for fifty years;  I should be used to that.

I am. I used to glory in it. I loved to ride my bike into a wind that pushed me back, that sprayed water into my face. I wore my yellow Gortex rain suit, covered my helmet with a yellow rain protector, encased my feet with rubber galoshes, protected my eyes with ski goggles. Whee! I’d push the pedals down hard. . .

But now I sit in a wheel chair, staring through the window, looking remorsefully at the rain drops bouncing off the puddles.

“We need the rain,” they say. Who’s “ we?”  I counter; who’s “ they?” Not me!

But, I have to admit – “they’re” right. “We” do need the rain.

For the past few weeks, the air quality has been bad enough to warrant wearing a medical mask. Smoke and haze from numerous forest fires have pervaded the skies. And it’s been unusually hot.

We need rain.

But rain for me – a wheelchair bound resident of an ALF – means BOORRINNG! I can’t roll off to the friendly, gloriously smelling warmth of a coffee shop, nor twist between the rain drops and wheel to the library, even scoot to Fred Meyer for needed shopping items – mostly incontinence products. (I’m 84 after all.)

Dick Weinman is an AARP volunteer and an ALF guru

[Photo: Robert Miller]

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