Busy days

This morning, before I began dealing with  “security” companies that protect Apple products, I thought I knew what I was doing.  I helped David with his HP products earlier this week, a nightmare because he can’t remember much these days.

I don’t know which of us is more clever, he who blithely uses his laptop and desktop computers without a concern for hacking, or me who wants protection from would-be invaders. No one in their right mind would want to hack us.  We are boring and have little money.  However, I understand there are hackers who do these things out of pure spite. People envious of Americans, or just evil.

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Below, Grandaughter Rita with Chris and Christopher.

Connie and the girls off on their own adventures, our Thanksgiving was just us. I don’t do a turkey and other foods anymore. We had slices of Quiche and soup, lobster bisque for him and pea soup for me. We had a pumpkin pie earlier in the week but it was gone by Thursday.  And we had turkey slices last Sunday.

Holidays are difficult for us.

Years ago on holidays we attended a gathering of AA and Al-anon friends, but they have moved away or died. That’s the problem with friends. Especially in this area.

At the dentist’s office this past week, I spoke with an older woman, a Ms Gandy, who lives in a retirement home up the road.  I asked her about life in the facility, and she said all her friends in the home kept dying.

The retirement facility built many new apartments, but the people who moved in all came from one nearby town and had formed a clique so there was no making friends there.  Who would have guessed that a retirement facility could be like attending a new high school.  Some things never change.

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David and I finally got outside yesterday and raked leaves, picked up debris from the high winds two days ago, and trimmed the dead peony tops. We made a big pile of leaves in the street and filled the organic wheelie bin with mildewed peony tops and dead branches.  As luck would have it, the truck that collects organic material came by when we were finished. One of the fellows on the truck is quite nice and always pushes the wheelie bin back to the house.

About half way through the work, David began moaning and I asked him if he was ready for the retirement home.  No, he said, and began raking vigorously.

                                       ***

All that outdoor work and reading my new book by Andrea Wulf, The Invention of Nature: Alexander von Humboldt’s New World, cheered me enormously. Von Humboldt was the first to put two and two together and describe the intricate web of life, i.e., humans and the environment.  In 1800, Humbolt, the first ecologist, deduced that humans, particularly Europeans,  had affected the natural world negatively as they exploited the vast riches they “discovered.” Below, titi monkeys like those Von Humbolt found in South America.  Note, they don’t have prehensile tails.

 

 

24 thoughts on “Busy days

  1. Definitely, cultivating new friends seems to be much more difficult when older, and after I became a widow, a fact I was surprised to discover since my life hadn’t lacked for friends. But the last ten years or so before my husband died, he had maintained contact only with a few of our distant friends, as my friends and family were moving, dying or both, life was such I didn’t have time to develop new local friends. Must have been some sort of a marker timeline and the world changed for opportunities for meeting new potential friends. As an older gregarious east coast friend, now deceased, once wrote me, “There are no friends like old friends” who had surprisingly to her, found the same to be true, when her husband was ill, then she became a widow.

    I’m quite comfortable with holidays on my own — focusing on how to enjoy myself “living in place” and solely on my own, establishing what I can access for my needs as they develop — especially since family so far away and closest friend here some distance away, too. Feel very much in touch with all, thanks to this digital world we live in now. No danger of suffering from too much togetherness with family in the same house or city.

    I can attest to the existence of hierarchies, cliques, status, etc. that exists in even the best of retirement communities as I’ve provided services in many. Think a 90+ relative entering one twenty years earlier was able to integrate much more easily than when family convinced her to move nearer but to another state. Best to make such moves when younger, more active, as there seems to be less socialization or more complications to communicating to make new friends such as due to hearing loss, visual issues, decreased alertness/memory/processing for some — just too much bother for some.

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    • You’ve touched on the eternal dilemma, as we grow older, making connections becomes more and more difficult owing to physical limitations. And living with someone doesn’t guarantee you will have a “built-in” friend as often they become more and more incapacitated. Gettting older isn’t pretty no matter how much Hollywood, or these days, Bollywood, pretends otherwise.

      I’m happy I have always been something of a loner, it makes growing older a bit easier. Besides, I live with dogs and parrots, and eventually, I will adopt an old cat. David is very fond of the outdoor birds.

      My best friends are books, always have been.

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  2. We think living on the Big Island of Hawaii is extending our lives, both making them potentially longer and giving us better health. Our children are eager to visit us, too, not surprising!

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  3. Thanksgiving was out. Lots of AA meetings before and after. I am so very sorry about David’s friends and memory. It makes it harder on you. Back in the pool here today. I feel so much sharper after an hour walking in the warm water. Hugs.

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  4. we are away from family for many holidays, by our choice. People ask me often if I don’t miss family Christmases. I say yes sometimes, but I would miss them even if we were near family (in the nostalgic way we occasionally miss the times when our kids were small) … but then we come to our senses and are glad they are grown and strong and have their own traditions.

    When she was 100, my Aunt told the hardest part of growing old was surviving other people. She wanted to live though (and did for five more years) because she wanted “to see what happens next”.

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  5. Mom keeps telling me her friends have all died and she doesn’t understand why her younger sister would pass away before her. In the 8 years we’ve lived here, two of her neighbor friends had to move to the mainland to be with their children so they could be cared for. I feel so sad for her, but she’s grateful we’re around so that’s nice.

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  6. My mother always lamented the loss of her friends, as one by one they disappeared. Her circle got smaller as she lived.

    The baby is a little boy already!

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  7. Yes, that losing friends thing is a hardship of growing older. Holidays aren’t hard for Terry and me, but unless the kids are here or we go there, we do little celebration. I’ve never been big on holiday celebrations or even birthday celebrations.

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