Fun with old people

This is an actual real (unedited) email that I got from my mother today (my Dad has just gotten a wheelchair):

Thought you’d be interested in our first wheel chair outing.  It was exciting to say the least but Dad and I are able to laugh about it now. I had thought we’d take an easy walk ’til I got the hang of it and so headed for 9th St and Harbor View Hospital.  I didn’t think the sidewalks were that steep that way but we’d only gone a few blocks before I realized how heavy Dad is so began to think of ways to return.  Going down hill I really had to dig in my heels but we were coming along.  I finally got down to area where I could cut across by the Town Hall and decided to go down the alley away from street traffic.  About half way down I realized I had lost control as speed became a problem. So I turned the wheel chair towards the fence to try to stop it which sent Dad over in wheel chair and I flying face down over the tarmack scraping my nose, cutting my lip but all I could think of was I now understand why so many folk at H House have black and blue faces,  By then Dad had rolled out of the wheel chair but I heard a voice asking are you alright.  Yes, I replied as I began to get up so he immediately went to dad who was trying to sit up.  We soon had Dad back in the chair and thanked the fellow for his help.  You’re sure you’re okay.  Yes,  this is our first run so we are trying out where we can go.  Do you have brakes.  Yes.  You can use them going down hill.  Anyway he was most helpful getting us squared around. So I decided on Plan B for return and continued over to the plaza where sidewalk had several openings into the park there.  The one I chose mistakenly had large cobbles so of course I got the wheel chair stuck and couldn’t push it out.  But I saw one of the homeless guys on a park bench coming over to help so he pushed Dad down to the level spot and then pointed at the walk I should have chosen. From there on back home it was a piece of cake. Thanks to two helpful men.  Restores my faith in mankind.  Dad says I didn’t get any exercise out of that.  I assured him I had.  So I told him the gym downstairs was for him to do his exercises and the wheel chair is for getting out and around.  We did find if he helps turn the wheels going up hill that helped me but you know Dad he’ll have to learn how to handle that.  I’m going to have black and blue areas tomorrow. And a swollen lip but as Dad said you don’t look bad. We were glad we had waited to have tea until after our walk! (-: All’s well that ends well.

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31 Comments to “Fun with old people”

  1. I love them. Does mom realize how funny she is?

  2. She has no idea. That’s what makes it even funnier. I love that when I called she said: “The problem with getting a free wheelchair is it doesn’t come with instructions.”

  3. :-) They sound delightful. Flip the roles and there you have my folks! And it’s so great that they can see the funny side of things….I’m remembering the kick Ma got out of seeing you bedecked in her ‘armor’! My ‘pranam’ to your parents Greta. May they enjoy many more wheelchair excursions.

  4. OMG !!! Thank goodness they are safe.

  5. Now we know where you get that funny bone from. :-)

  6. Wow, what a touching email!
    Thank God thez are safe!
    And the great thing is that the want more!
    great going folks!
    Give my luv to them!

  7. Whew, that was quite an adventure. Thank heavens they’re okay.

  8. oh my goodness!! it’s good to know they’re okay & there were helpful people around!

    your mom is funny though — and i so totally want to use her “The problem with getting a free wheelchair is it doesn’t come with instructions” line as my facebook status!! lol –may i? 8-D

  9. Your Mom sounds like a fearless character! Thank goodness they are both safe and still willing to take another ride in the wheel chair.

  10. That it ended well, we can smile. :-)

    Thank you so much memsaab for sharing this episode. I really admire your mother’s ability to see it with humour.

    And I love, looove “The problem with getting a free wheelchair is it doesn’t come with instructions.” :-D

  11. Aww! Story of my grandparents, my parents AND me – the wife takes care of the klutz husband. :)

  12. O man…glad they managed to get back safe and sound – albeit with some scratches!! Good that your mom sees the funny in this situation as well ;) All the best to them. Cheers

  13. Thank you all for your good wishes :-) They are very funny, and thank goodness for that! since it can be rough getting old! (They are 79 and 81 years old.)

    My favorite bit from the email: “Does it have brakes?” “Yes” “You can use them going down hill.” I can only imagine the story that nice man had for his friends last evening :-)

    Then when she said on the phone that it didn’t come with instructions, I lost all power of speech. I am still laughing.

  14. I love parents. Mine are khandaani pagals. I’m so proud of them.


  15. WHY doncha have a email me link ?

  16. OMG! that sounded so dangerous and so funny at the same time!! But wonderful is the ability to laugh at your own worries. It makes living a lot more simpler, I think :) Phew! So much for philosophy.

    All good wishes to your Dad and Mom.

  17. Their senses of humor have gotten them through a lot so far :-) Thanks!

  18. That was so funny! I seriously have tears in my eyes. I think Hrithik should contact them for pointers on wheelchair use for the new SLB film. LOL

  19. Hahahaaa!!!! Hopefully Hrithik’s wheelchair will come with instructions.

    I forwarded Mom’s email to my brother too, who replied: “I may stop laughing some day.” My sister and I were still giggling over it yesterday :-) Priceless.

  20. this was so touching and sweet that I feel like sharing it with my mom!

  21. Go right ahead :-) My mom was happy that it made me laugh so hard (she really doesn’t know how funny she is). She takes really good care of my Dad (he has dementia and it’s not always easy)—but he is very patient with her too as you can see!

  22. Indeed we now know where you get that funny bone from. :-)
    The people with the best sense of humour are often those who can see a funny side even to difficult situations involving themselves.
    Your mom seems to belong right there in this category.
    We are all relieved of course to know that it all ended well.

    So does your mom watch Hindi movies ?
    How about getting her to watch them – and sending you reviews ? You could then post them here, on her behalf.
    I am sure they will be loads of fun too.
    And, even if she does not enjoy the movie as such, the subtitles may entertain her. :-)

    • OMG, that is absolutely BRILLIANT to have my Mom reviewing Hindi films :) She has watched a few with me, and likes them (as appropriate)…

      She’s very busy taking care of my poor Dad who needs her 24×7…but I will ask her. And as an English teacher, the subtitles would totally entertain her :) Raja—it touches me how you intuitively understand my mother ;-)

  23. As Greta’s sister who laughed a lot too- especially after we talked to them and knew they were alright- it’s great to read such understanding comments. Getting old is not for sissies as Bette Davis (I think) said. Humor is really the best way to deal with difficult situations.

    “The people with the best sense of humour are often those who can see a funny side even to difficult situations involving themselves.”

    So true, how much better would the world be if more people understood this concept. Thanks.

  24. Raja, can I quote that on my FB page?

    • Sure, feel free. :-)
      I can tell you this is not a very common quality – most people just whinge all the time. Your mom is definitely special in this respect.

  25. I was hiking in mountains with my Mom and Dad once, and we were crossing a 45°-angled snowfield on a narrow path; I was about ten feet behind them, they were together. Mom lost her balance and fell over in the snow, and I had to go and get her because my Dad was doubled over laughing. When I got there, she was laughing too, so hard that she couldn’t stand up.

    And I had been worried that she might roll down the slope and disappear! But of course I had to laugh too. It was infectious :)

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