I saw Clara at my door with an aide “Are you ready to go Annie?”
“Yes, ready and willing. You lead the way.” We walked past the day-room to the two big doors. The aide punched in some numbers and then pushed the doors open. The elevators were right there and we went up to the second floor to a big room. There were many tables and chairs. People were coming in and filling up the tables pretty quickly. We each got two cards and token markers. “Clara, I haven’t played bingo since my children were young. I loved it then.”
“I’m sure you’ll love it now too. If you win, you’ll win candy or a trinket whatever you pick.”
“How fun” I said laughing.
When all the tables were filled, we started. I won’t bore you with the details but let’s just say I had a very good day at the bingo table. I won four candy bars. I think that was pretty good for my first time. I’ll probably save them for the grand-kids.
When the aide came to pick us up Clara told her to take me on a little tour. I followed her pushing Clara in the wheelchair. Most of the place looked like where I was living. Each wing had its own day-room and visiting room. I found out the whole place only has about 200 residents. The reason I picked it was because it was a smaller place. I didn’t want to feel like I would get lost and I certainly wouldn’t have to worry about that here. I was shown where the social workers, activities people, and other personnel worked. It was a circular building and in the center was a beautiful courtyard. The mums were still blooming and I bet it looks gorgeous in the summer with all the fall flowers.
When we started going back to the room, I noticed a Mrs. Maria Baker outside one of the doors. “Clara, would you mind if I stop in this room? This is my daughter’s friend’s mother.”
“Sure go ahead we’ll wait for you.”
I walked in. “Hi Maria.”
“Yes that’s me” she said with a slurred speech.
“I don’t know if you remember me I’m Annie Dunkin. My daughter, Julie, and your daughter were good friends.”
“Yes, I remember. In fact, Sally just left and mentioned that you were here. It’s nice to see you again.”
“It has been a long time. How are you doing?”
“All things considered, okay I guess. I’m in a wheelchair all the time now and I still have slurred speech but luckily, I’m still getting therapy and I’m hoping to improve. At least I can use both arms now.”
“Then it’s all good.”
“How are you doing? Sally says you have Alzheimer’s. I’m sorry to hear that.”
“Me too but I’m trying to adjust to that fact. I’m taking some medicine that’s supposed to help slow it down.”
“I hope it works for you, Annie.”
“It was nice seeing you Maria but I’ve got to go. Perhaps you can get one of the aides to bring you to my room and we can chat some more.”
“Okay, it was nice that you stopped by Annie.”
“That was short.”
“I didn’t want to keep everyone waiting.” We headed to our wing and they were already starting to serve lunch.
“Clara, I think I’m going to head to my room for a while. I’m still stuffed from breakfast. I’ll see you later.”
“I’ll see you later, Annie”. I headed off to my room.
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