Sunday, 16 June 2013

09:43 – It’s been pretty hectic for the last couple of days. We were without power from Thursday afternoon until Friday evening. A couple hours after our power came back on Friday evening, Frances called to let Barbara know that their dad was in pretty bad shape. We drove down to Hospice and ended up staying all night. We were expecting Dutch to die during the night, but he held on. We finally left and got home around 8:00 yesterday morning to let Colin out and give him some attention. Then we headed back down to Hospice yesterday afternoon and stayed through the evening. At this point, Dutch is basically gone although he’s still breathing. Barely, and sometimes he stops for a while. My guess is that one of these times he just won’t start breathing again.

At this point, I think Barbara is going to stay home and wait for a call from Hospice. There’s nothing she can do for her dad, who’s not awake let alone alert. If she does go down to Hospice it’ll be to support her mom. Right now, Sankie is at Frances’s and Al’s house. It’s Sankie’s decision whether she wants to sit over at Hospice waiting for Dutch to die, but we’re encouraging her not to. She’s 85 years old, and it’s very wearing on her. Right now, she’s terrified about what’s going to happen after Dutch dies. Sankie has never lived alone in her life. She married Dutch in 1946 right out of high school and has lived with him for 67 years. She’s terrified at the thought of living on her own.

Barbara and I sat and talked with her last night. Her dream is completely unrealistic. She wants to find a little house in a little town that has everything within walking distance. She’s thinking Ozzie & Harriet in the 50’s, with local grocery stores and butchers and green grocers and druggists a few steps from her door and a downtown main street packed with shops and small restaurants run by friendly people that she’s known for years. Barbara and I pointed out that the world isn’t like that any more, even in small towns, and hasn’t been for 50 years or more. We also pointed out that she already has the closest modern equivalent to that where she is now, at Creekside retirement village.

6 thoughts on “Sunday, 16 June 2013”

  1. I want what Sankie wants. With Ricky Nelson singing in the background.

    Instead of what we have these days: malls that are many driving miles away; maniacal drivers, both genders now; nearly constant background cacophony of hip-hop and shitty American rock and pop; and spy cameras and drones in the sky. Only thing we got back from the Fabulous Fifties so fah is that ciggies are popular again, apparently.

    Seriously, that must have been a rough couple of days; hope today and your week ahead is better.

  2. Same from me.

    That IS what life is still like in Germany and a lot of Europe, though. Lots of smaller stores in easy walking distance for everyone. Even in Strausberg—which is rural,—nothing was more than a 15 minute walk or ride on the Strassenbahn–which was good exercise that I no longer get.

    New laptop in the house. It is an Asus N56VJ-DH71 with 16gb RAM. Not happy that the only choice for video was nVidia. With AMD owning ATI these days, I guess you cannot expect any other CPU/motherboard-maker to buy a video card from the competition. Video is nVidia GeForce GT 635M 2GB DDR3, which has known problems with Linux, but people are getting it to work with some effort.

    This will be primarily the machine for video editing, as I slowly move away from doing everything on one computer, and break it up into different computers for different functions. It has a 1Tb 5400 rpm SATA II drive with only 8mb of cache. Will be swapping that out for the 1Tb video drive I bought earlier in the year, which has 32mb of cache memory. If I use the laptop screen, it will support 3 monitors, but I am only going to use 2 external monitors. I only need 2 monitors for editing.

    The possibility still exists that this machine will not work acceptably for video editing; the Asus Ultrabook failed at that. If this new one fails, there is a guy in Kentucky just outside Cincinnati, who custom builds laptops for video and audio. The video model runs 3 grand, however. He builds them for operations that edit video in the field, rather than returning to a central office location for editing.

    If it does not work out, the new Asus will replace my current 7 year-old Asus laptop as my main machine. The old Asus would still be an acceptable machine if it could accommodate more than 3gb (2gb of working) RAM and multiple monitors. That 7 years is the longest I have ever run with the same computer.

  3. Like OFD, I wish life could be as we imagine it should be for Sankie’s sake. Reality intervenes.
    You and Barbara will do the best one can, and that’s what you can, have and will do.

  4. Here we do still have a local butcher, a local bakery and a local veggie/fruit vendor – but they are no longer within walking distance. The three mentioned above are all within 3-4 miles, but that’s not something an 85 year old is going to walk with shopping bags.

    And the writing is on the wall – the baker intends to hang on until retirement, same for the drugstore, but both know that no one will replace them. Can’t say for sure about the butcher, as I don’t know him as well, but I expect he’s in the same situation.

    It’s a problem. I do my best to support these little local businesses, because I like the feel it gives the town to have them, but just how much of a surcharge should one be willing to pay? 10%? 20%? That’s really not enough, and lots of people simply want the convenience of getting everything in the same store.

  5. Wow, 67 years of marriage. That is a long time. I’ve been married for 31 years (at age 21) and barely remember single life.

    Barbara is honoring her father by living her life. As a father, all I want is for my kids to live their lives and be happy.

  6. Suburban Sydney still has places with local shops and restaurants but they are slowly disappearing. They are relentlessly being replaced by “high” rising buildings (Flats? – here called units) up to 6 floors and shopping centres (small malls). It will still take a while for all of them to disappear.

    The waiting game is tough on all the family and friends. I gather that at least there is no pain involved in Duke’s case for which, I think, everybody should be grateful. My thoughts are with you.

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