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]