Thursday, August 15, 2013

yet another trip north, part 3

We took TO's mum [MIL] out for lunch, to the Commercial Club Carvery. She pushed the food around on her plate, confirming a suspicion that as parents age they reverse roles with their children. MIL had always had a healthy appetite, but I suspect she is, like Aunty E, becoming a bit tired of late.

Aunty E and TO's mum on a picnic last year

TO had a tiny portion of something [the lap banding works], while I might have said I ate like a pig had I not seen the people around me taking advantage of the all-you-can-eat rules. At least I only take a small taste of those things I like… one snow pea and a small button mushroom from one salad and, oh, look, is there anything as yummy as a small piece of burnt baked pumpkin?

At the next table, a chap who didn't look overly huge hoed into three - count them, three - heaped plates of roast, fried rice and an assortment of other not so goodies. These he followed with three plates overloaded with pav, ice-cream, sponge, lemon meringue, on and on.
He came second in the race, only to his son? at least 160kg, who ate much more, garnishing each of his first three meals with a couple of slices of pizza.

The older, smaller chap coughed and ahemmed relentlessly throughout. How does someone who eats so much so fast stay so thin?
TO, not admitted to the school of medicine at the age of 41 because the cut-off age was then 40, is a frustrated GP at heart.
Her explanation of the smaller, older man’s appetite and size was sad.

As it says in the Gaviscon ad, if symptoms persist see your doctor.

MIL's fingernails had become Guinness World Record talons: A community volunteer visits the Jindera hostel at regular intervals, painting the nails of female residents. It’s a great thing to do, but perhaps she is prevented from trimming or cutting because she lacks a TAFE certificate and/or personal liability insurance.

TO cut her mum’s nails back quite a bit, but is not a manicurist and they were still too long, but after TO's attempt they were rough as well.

MIL was always proud of her appearance and, if the photos are anything to go by, deservedly so.
Day 2 in Albury, we packed her into the car and headed off for Centro Lavington where the local nail franchise people pampered MIL enormously.
Her nails were trimmed again [twice], Mrs Marshed, filed, buffed and cleaned, and her cuticles pushed back. Her wrists and fingers were massaged. Lacquer was applied to her nails, then two coats of polish in the colour she chose, and more lacquer.

Total cost, $25.


Uncle D, TO, and TO's mum last week
[couldn't find a picture of a camera to hide TO's face]

If baby boomers are ageing, their parents are heading towards ancient.
At what point should we stop actively intervening when there are major health issues? For me, this is not a dollar issue – the health of oldies is a reasonable investment if the active intervention is warranted.

It's certainly hard to assess someone else's quality of life when we can't read their mind. TO puts a lot of energy into finding ways to enjoy time with her mother while she can. With the manicure it was about the journey and feeling special, not the pretty pink nails at the destination.

MIL does not remember visits, but she still seems to enjoy them.

Some years ago I worked with a woman [mid-thirtyish] who went to visit her grandmother twice a day at the local hostel. Someone criticised her, saying it was ridiculous to visit all the time when her grandmother had no idea who she was.
"But I know who she is," my workmate replied.
It was a nice thing to overhear.


  1. I find it is not so easy to get down and cut my toenails but how does my mother at the age of 79 still paint her toenails?

    1. Having gained far too much weight in recent years I've discovered the toenails must be brought up to the mountain, no point in the mountain going down to the toenails at all.
      But yes, I'm astounded sometimes to just see who can paint their toenails.

  2. I like the sound of your workmate FC.. and MIL's manicure, she might not have remember having it done, but she would enjoy seeing her pretty nails :)

    1. The workmate had a special attitude, non?

      And MIL luuuuurved being pampered.