Walking on the beach and breakfast at Crabby Bill’s in Indian Rocks Beach, Florida.
I was raised in the mid-west and have lived in New Mexico for over 50 years, so the beach has always drawn me.
My wife’s family lived in Largo, Florida and Indian Rocks Beach has been a place she has been familiar with for over 50 years.The attraction has rubbed off on me.
Our life there is simple. We rent a condo overlooking the beach, we rent a car through Costco, we use Uber, we go to the library and frequent consignment stores. We have wi-fi. Good restaurants are within walking distance.
My morning routine is what makes my day. I wake-up early and walk a mile and a half on the beach to Crabby Bill’s, a restaurant/bar that awakens at 7:00 AM. It is simple, indoors and outdoors, and caters to different customers depending on the time of the day. At 8:00 AM there is a smaller more mature crowd. At noon and in the evening they serve great fresh fish and beer at long communal tables.
Prior to breakfast is a stop at the CVS Pharmacy next door for the New York Times, a habit I have even in New Mexico. (Today, the first time in years, they didn’t know what I was talking about when I asked for the NY Times.)
As an aside, since old people always have something wrong with them, don’t forget that CVS Pharmacies have a “Minute Clinic.” They can handle all sorts of minor health problems; and, if nothing else triage you and get you more help if needed. You can get a place in line on-line, but I have always found them to be quick, helpful and professional. Why go to an emergency room unless it is an emergency?
I read the times while eating the All American Special with crisp bacon for $6.00. I then walk a mile and a half back to the condo; hopefully with a new blog topic.
Fresh air, great breakfast and the news by 9:00. What could be better?
Health care must be automated. The geezer is no longer able to remember what to do as far as health care is concerned. He must rely on systems that automatically make sure that he gets the care that he needs. In addition, he needs a mentor to have a health care power of attorney so that there is a third-party checking up on the geezer.
The following can be scheduled or fixed so that little or no thought is required.
- Dental appointments – Every six months.
- Primary care/physicals at least annually
- Flu shots – annual
- Social groups – at least weekly
- Day care – as required – transportation will be needed
- PACE – Program for All Inclusive Care for the Elderly is a Medicare and Medicaid program available to Medicare recipients where available that includes everything you need from Adult Day Care, nursing home care, drugs, to hospitalization. In Albuquerque it is available and should be checked.
- Pill box – As many pills as old people seem to take, some organization is necessary. The geezer can’t deal with a bunch of bottles. I need the pills to be sorted by day, so that if I can figure out what day it is, I can find the right pill; maybe!
- Telephone speed dial – cellular – I can’t remember phone numbers; so I put the few I need on speed-dial.
- Life Alert – I will fall. I need someway to call for help if I can’t get up. However, I find that most people forget to wear them when needed the most; like, in the shower, or getting the morning paper in the snow.
- Identity bracelet – weld shut – use super glue to lock it on the wrist. Old people have a special ability to remove bracelets, much like criminals in monitored release programs.
- Door alarms – if a spouse/partner has dementia, you want an alarm/lock on the door to alert you when they leave or to keep them from leaving. The escaping spouse always leaves when you are in the bathroom.
- Neighbors – The best protection comes from neighbors who keep an eye on you.
- Urgent care centers – A better source for minor problems and triage, than waiting for hours in an emergency room.
- Refrigerator Instructions – Tape your meds list, doctor’s name, “Do Not Resuscitate notice,” people to notify list and other information for Emergency Responders. The refrigerator is where they look.
- Canary Home Security System – This is a cheap camera that you can put in your home so that your mentor/kid can check on you with his/her cell phone. It also beeps if something unusual occurs. The videos are kept for 24 hours so that you can monitor them. Just remember that this is a privacy invasion and no one wants to look at a nude 76-year-old.
I read a lot about elder health. I get a lot of ads and a lot of advice. When I put it all together, I come up with about ten things that I should, and can, do. These are almost universally accepted, free and as near as I can tell, will do you no harm and probably a lot of good.
The amount of each of these that you do is up to you. Even a little bit helps. You can add to the list, but then it becomes cluttered.
How and when you do them is up to you.
The whole idea is not to live longer, but to live better.
- Drink water
- Drink wine, not too much
- Have friends; be a friend
- Think outside the box
- Avoid processed foods
- No clutter
And watch as I attempt to reduce old age to a series of 3 x 5 cards.