Saturday, April 21


Every Saturday afternoon I spend with Rosie. She lives nearby and I usually walk over sometime between 2 and 2:30. After I arrive we sit and chat for an hour or so; we talk about her health, about what she’s been doing during the week. Then she calls a taxi and we head off to the supermarket where I help her do her weekly shopping. After we get back to her flat and put the groceries away, we sit down with a giant cup of tea each and a jaffa cake or two. And she tells me tales of her life. She’s a fantastic story teller and has had an incredibly rich and interesting life.

Rosie is 88 and was always very active and independent. But when she moved to Brighton 10 years ago, she became quite depressed when, for the first time in her life, she felt that nobody actually needed her. She started feeling useless; a burden on her family, on society. She still takes a daily anti-depressant and something to help her go to sleep at night, and usually when I call during the week and ask her how she is, she answers “not very well, dear”. And there are times when she opens the door to let me in, when I can tell that she is indeed quite down. But I like to think that she enjoys our visits as much as I do.

Rosie suffers from severe osteoporosis; she is almost completely deaf; she is registered blind; both her hands and feet are badly twisted from rheumatism, rendering them almost useless at performing simple tasks like opening a jar, or getting through the impossible plastic wrapping that covers most food items. Things I do mindlessly, can take her the best part of an hour. In many ways she is a prisoner, both in her body and in her flat.

When I called her after I returned from Istanbul on Tuesday, she told me that last Saturday she was robbed in the supermarket. Someone distracted her and while her back was turned, his accomplice snatched her purse from her bag, which was lying in the supermarket trolley.

How anyone could do something so cowardly is beyond me. I feel absolutely furious. At 4’8” she is clearly deemed an easy target. She is quite unsteady on her feet and walks with a cane. “Pick on someone your own size”, I feel like shouting. I still want to throttle them.


Biby Cletus said...

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Warm Regards

Biby Cletus - Blog

La Cubana Gringa said...

Ooooooooohhhhh! Stuff like this really really chaps my ass. It will never cease to amaze me how mean and inconsiderate people can be! Poor Rosie!

Vanessa said...

this kind of thing makes my blood boil!
i'm so glad that rosie has you in her life.

BlueJude said...

I'll throttle with you!! How awful! And how lucky she is to have a kind friend like you. Too bad there isn't more kindness in the world!

edvard moonke said...

doesn't it make your bosom swell with pride that we live in such a well-mannered and caring society?

oh and I can't open jars either... should I do some press-ups?

Tori said...

It is wonderful of you to be a companion for Rosie. What an outrage.

Lacithecat said...

Damn them! Ugh!

My grandparents are the same age and I often worry about them and someone showing up to the farm ... doing something crazy.

Gladly they still have each other, but if not - I would want them to have someone like you are to Rosie. I think that is so amazing.

Concetta said...

Come by for a visit. I'll put the tea on.


MAHIMA said...

this is sad.
old people, people ith disabilities are ften taken as easy targets for robberies. my granmom was robbed in the hospital last year while she waited in the waiting room for my grandfather to regain consciousness.
two young men came, asked if she's had something to eat and meanwhile the other took away her purse.
one would tink even the averagest of people has a heart, some sensitivity.
but its sad tat those who are vulnerable in one way or other are always easy targets for those who dont care beyond the buck.

Ariel said...

Random acts of cowardice. I can only think that the person who robbed Rosie was in a very desperate situation. Still inexcusable though. This is so sad.

Sacred Suzie said...

Oh that is so awful! Poor Rosie. She sounds like an absolute gem of a woman and didn't deserve that one bit.

daisies said...

that is so horrible ~ stuff like this really makes me angry ... grrrr ...