Archive | April 2016

There is no time……

Sillky Red Hat, MSQRD, 2016

We do  make time for laughter

A friend I like very much, and would love to see, called this week to suggest we meet for lunch. I was pleased. Between her calendar and mine, we were unable to find a day on which we were both free. No time to get together right now. Trudy and I decided we’d like to see “The Jungle Book’, playing now in local theatres. For two weeks we’ve been trying to find an afternoon on which we both can make it. It hasn’t been possible yet. All three of us are retired….



‘There is no time, no time,

Me Big eyeballs

Rafi visited and took hilarious photos

Not even for a kiss,

Not even for this,

Not even for this rhyme.’

These lines were in a poem our class memorized in grade four. I don’t remember who wrote it, but I’ve never forgotten this part. The author must have been, like me at present, in her golden years. It is so true….

crying funny

Rafi has an app

I thought I was busy when I was a wife and mother of three, with a full-time job, plus being busy with two dogs, one cat, a gopher snake, a rabbit, three chickens, two birds, a lizard and a garden — which held much-loved plants the kids sometimes gave names to. I used to think that after the children grew up and went off on their own — hopefully each one taking part of the menagerie, my life would be simpler.

That time is here. I am comfortably ensconced in an apartment, my only living responsibilities the few straggly plants which refuse to die from neglect. This was to be the well-deserved, less-rushed phase of my life; a time for reflection and repose. After years of driving children to and from classes I’d have given my eyeteeth to attend, I would, at last, have time to pursue my own interests. Ha! Double ha!

me superman

Me as ‘Superman’ 8-year old Gabriel’s favorite

It now takes a larger investment of time just to keep my old body going. I am slower. Everything takes longer. Listen carefully and you can hear my arthritic joints creaking. Then there are all those ‘shoulds’. I ‘should’ spend some time on my Exercycle, which now sits in my bedroom taunting me. I ‘should’ do hand exercises for my painful fingers; neck exercises to retain flexibility; rotate my shoulder joints to help lessen their pain; toughen the muscles in my legs by stiffening them and lifting slowly to reduce stress on my oh-so painful knees; and if I were really good, do exercises to strengthen my core, plus ‘Kegal Exercises’ for my pelvic floor. I attend Arthritis exercise classes twice a week, was a loyal member of a weekly Tai Chi class for years until my knees became just too painful. I’m tired just thinking about all of it!

This body of mine is demanding more attention than I feel able to give. If I don’t walk each day, my stiff body rebels. I won’t even talk about the caring doctors who work hard at helping me keep it going and the time it takes for the many appointments I have with them.

rafiw:beard funny

Rafi with a beard thanks to the app


How do they do this? .


Afternoon naps, which used to be a treat, have now become a necessity.  Zzzzz. Then, there is my determination to reform poor eating habits and lose weight, meaning I must take the time to prepare decent meals. I’m exhausted by it all. Its absolutely hopeless.

Retired friends often say they don’t know how they ever had time to work. There was a time I didn’t understand what they were talking about. I sure do now.

However, we always find time for laughter.


Now Hear This!

me, 2016

at my desk

My right ear has refused to hear anything since my early fifties. It is so damaged that hearing aids couldn’t help. Meanwhile, as the years have passed, the hearing in my one operative ear has diminished. A hearing aid was in order and it does help — somewhat.

Most difficult for me are noisy environments, like restaurants or gatherings where there are many people and sounds. My oh-so capable audiologist, Grace Shyng, with more letters after her name than Heinz has ketchup, recommended I try a Phonak ComPilot with a RemoteMic.


Phonak ComPilot around my neck

My children tell me I’m technologically challenged and I agree. I didn’t grow up with all


My idea of modern devices

these modern devices, they intimidate me and it takes me time to learn how to deal with them. Grace, Head of Audiology Services for the ‘Western Institute for the Deaf and Hard of Hearing’ here in Vancouver, (a non-profit organization serving our province for over 60 years) was clever enough to realize this. Thus, instead of overwhelming me with all the things you can do with the RemoteMic, she started me off slowly.

Grace set it up and taught me how to use it so when people speak close to the mike, their voices are transferred directly into my hearing aid. The set can also be used for television, phone, or FM receiver, but I don’t yet know anything about those possibilities, nor would I be able to handle all of it right now.

Rafi with mike

Son Rafi wearing the Phonak RemoteMic

I want to share, however, how much I enjoyed using it while my dear son, Rafi, visited last week. Rafi has a soft voice and although he has always been patient with me when I have asked him to repeat, with the ComPilot and RemoteMic, it was not at all necessary.

Besides Rafi majored at university in ‘Broadcast and Electronic Communication with an Emphasis on Audio Production’. He teaches an ‘Audio Production’ class to high school students and understands more than I ever will about these things.

He kindly took the time to help me understand some of the things I would have known had I bothered to read the directions in the ‘User Guide’. (Yes, I’m guilty of putting off such things — maybe because I doubt I’d even understand them.)

Possibly, the reason I struggle so with hearing is that I only have one working ear, I’m not sure. But I am certainly grateful for this additional help and want you to know about it. I rarely recommend anything in this blog, but this has been so fantastic, I would be remiss not to share this experience with you.

Happy hearing….