|Seckford Almshouses, now a residential home|
We go to visit an old friend now in a residential home. She has her own small flat, kitchen and sitting room and a few of her own things. It is a far cry from the colourful collections of pictures and china and photographs which were in her own house and of course has no garden. She had a wonderful overflowing sort of garden, English and full of roses and delphiniums and of course a lawn. She knew that it was time to move when she alerted the family, put the house on the market and booked into an old converted almshouse very near where she had been brought up as a child. This was our first visit to her since her move and once we had also dismissed the thought of her house and its loveliness and settled in to chat, we found so much of the person exactly as ever. Not so tall now and a bit more dependent on a stick, her sympathy and way of listening and her wonderful breaking into an almost schoolgirl giggle revealed that nothing about her had really changed. We asked about life in the home and especially what entertainments were provided. She giggled and told us about a group of lady belly dancers from Felixstowe who, with quite a lot of belly, had come to demonstrate the delights of belly dancing. We wondered if they were looking for recruits! More giggles and then we asked about the old boys who might be in the home too. She said that they had all pushed their wheelchairs right to the front of the room to better see those Suffolk beauties and their bellies. She also told us about the Elvis lookalike who had entertained them and been most convincing. One of the senior residents there said how much she had always wanted to see Elton John so he must have been very good. Our friend said how amazing it was considering he was just the postman from Bealings in his normal everyday life.
Old age may not have many delights about it or not many obvious ones but seeing this old friend did help us to see that giving up on some of the duties and responsibilities of life didn’t mean stopping having a sense of humour. So, don’t give your sense of humour up for Lent
This post was originally posted on the You can meditate too blog.