vintage

We had clambered across another coffee rock after sauntering up the beach, Campbell leading the way. Yet here we were sipping lattes later and from across the room, we look at him through the wrong end of the long telescope of Time. Knowing to others he may be invisible as he has obviously surpassed seven decades. Yet we know him to be fit and alert, seemingly still in his prime.

Whilst others his vintage are left to rot in a home, oft forgot. What does that say about a society that discard their elders. Who lack respect and interest to access their wisdom gained from experiences. Who overlook their collective intelligence and keenness to contribute.

Yet grandkids are often foisted on them regardless of their health. The perfect free babysitters for those too busy to visit … covid stole too many their well-being neglected!

Written for Monday’s Prosery prompt at dVerse.
Kim hosts today, asking us to include the line “From across the room, we look at him through the wrong end of the long telescope of Time” in a piece of flash fiction, exactly 144 words in length. The line is from D. H. Lawrence’s poem 
Humming Bird.

37 comments

  1. Covid has stolen much, or rather the leadership that neglected the seriousness of it when it first came knocking. We have a friend who was set to travel with another out of state to see family. But in then end was told no not at this time… Who knows when certain family members will be allowed to see them.

    I know of another who hasn’t seen her mother since the first lock down… and calls won’t help as the elder has sever dementia.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. We are dealing with 2 deaths – our friend’s mother who “beat” COVID but died from congestive heart failure at 92, and a church choir member who at a young 57 was taken ill and died in a span of 5 days from the evil virus. Modern society has moved away from multi-generational homes and relegated the older family members to impersonal living arrangements. My grandmother made my mother promise not to put her in a home. Grandma lived with us until her death. My mother is 88 and living with my sister – and a promise was made and is being kept. I only hope my sons will keep the promises made.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. The elderly still stay with family here, Kate but you know too well some of them are not treated well. Though during these times it is such blessing to be with the family. I know of so many friends and cousins who are taking good care of their elders.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. I think that many have lived apart for way too long. Thankfully there has been a summer when we may meet outdoors where it’s safer, but now as winter comes we need to separate again. I just hope for this to pass… and it will we just have to have patience.

    Liked by 3 people

  5. I sometimes wish that others had more empathy when it came to taking care of elders. Hopefully this Covid situation will become better soon. It took a whole year and more ….

    Liked by 2 people

    • we’ve had an enquiry here that clearly demonstrated the govt had NO strategy for nursing home crisis eg pandemic. So it was noted, discussed and we continue in the same vein, no plan … let them die without adequate medical attention! That’s called extermination …

      Like

  6. I’m afraid this is all too familiar, Kate, the elderly left to rot in homes, and what you say about them being free babysitters. Although I would love the chance to look after my grandson who is too far away. I also agree with Bjorn that many have lived apart for way too long. Summer did allow us to meet outdoors, but some people did not observe social distancing and now it’s all kicking off again, especially over here in the UK.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Powerful important message, SweetKate! Thank you for sharing this!
    Pre-Covid19 we visited senior care homes a lot just to visit with and help the residents there….LOTS of volunteer projects we could help with. They loved when Cooper was with me! 🙂
    We offered to both of our Moms that our home was open to them (after their husbands…our Dad’s died). They both were independent and wanted to stay in the area they had lived for many decades…where their friends were, their social groups, their churches, etc. But they always knew they had a home with us if they needed it. My mom lived to age 97 and my MIL to age 95. 🙂
    (((HUGS))) 🙂
    PS… Campbell looks to be in fine form!!! 😉

    Liked by 3 people

    • knowing they had a fall back plan must have eased their minds Carolyn 🙂
      You have longevity in the family so you should be around for a few more decades 🙂
      he is indeed …

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Kate, My sister and I will never regret looking out for our mother, a retired nurse, as she aged. She had Alzheimers and did need care for the last few years of her life. 🙂

    She was in an independent living center five minutes from me. I took her out to lunch, brought her to my house to for Sunday dinner, watched old movies with her, took her shopping and on long drives in the country. We visited the farmers market and fed the horses and goats. She enjoyed ice cream there and bought the candy and gum she remembered from her youth. Her church held services at the independent living center every Sunday.

    I attended classes, parties, and special events held at her residence. My daughter went to the independent living center to have lunch with her grandmother on her days off. My sister, who lives in another state, managed her affairs, and I met regularly with staff to oversee her care. Just because a person is in an independent living center does not have to mean they are forgotten or neglected. Of course, some residences for older people are better than others.

    Sadly, your post does accurately describe the lives of some older people. I hope their children will pay heed to what you say. All the best! Cheryl ❤

    Liked by 2 people

    • thanks for sharing how you kept your mother involved … too many just leave them there … it’s woeful. You would have noticed others didn’t get the same level of care as your own mother … thanks Cheryl!

      Like

  9. I like your plug for us older guys!! Seems during between times of the rat race, children are not encouraged to revere their elders as much as they should. By the time they do… they are gone!
    Great post Kate.

    Liked by 2 people

  10. I’m not even that old, but I’m already invisible. Our culture worships youth, but all life has value., and all have something to contribute. The wrong end of the telescope of time is an apt description. (K)

    Liked by 3 people

  11. In Asia, sending elders away is the height of dishonor. I am very happy our society is this way. As for the pandemic, we all suffer every day because of incompetence of those mandated to handle it. This could be so much better. It breaks my heart every day.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Such a good post Kate! My mother is almost 87 years old and still lives in her own house. I am happy that I have been able to take her where she needs to go and run errands for her, but she has liked having her own house and garden. Covid 19 has been terrible on the elderly who want to see all of their family and friends. The more interaction they have with others via phone calls etc. the better. Every age has something beautiful to offer. It is unfortunate that not everyone sees it that way…so much is missed on both sides.

    Liked by 3 people

  13. A good reminder to revere our elders and appreciate them while they are still here. My grandmother died just a year ago and I treasure those memories. I am glad she passed before the whole covid-19 ordeal. She did have to be in a home for a while but her family was always there visiting.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Being 73 myself Kate, this piece really spoke to me. He is a fortunate man to have you in his life. And you were fortunate to have him in yours. This was touching, And very well written.

    Liked by 2 people

  15. Like many of your readers, this touched my heart and spoke to this time in my 80+ years on earth. When you have your health, the love of your life still with you, and friends/family who reach out, a faith that pulls you forward and blesses you, then you have everything. Look at me through the wrong end of the telescope… that’s ok. Just when you look, see the youngster in me, and don’t you dare call me “old!” You took the prompt and ran with it, {{{Kate}}} – God bless you!!

    Liked by 1 person

  16. ahhhh pandemic has really changed the lives of so many and sadly, our elderly members of the family are the ones really getting the most isolation, even among small family gatherings now.

    Liked by 1 person

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