Today was a banner day for me. I got new rugs for the kitchen. I had gone with hooked rugs the last time, but they are not practical for the kitchen. They just need washed too often. Or maybe I'm a slob. Who knows? This time, learning from my errors, I got three rag rugs, things that can easily be tossed in the washer and dryer and back on the floor in no time flat.
We came out of the store, and it was a lazy afternoon. We ambled down the road to a farm to price the sweetcorn. 50 cents an ear, just like everywhere else, but they were big, freshly picked ears, We got 7 ears.
Headed back down the highway, I said, "Do you want to go for a walk?" Out of the blue, Tim said, "I want to go up and see Ray,
I was a little surprised. Back when Tim and I first met, 25 years ago, we were both working at a factory. He had two friends, Ray and John. After Tim and I got married, Ray and John came over pretty regularly for supper. Being single, they liked a homecooked meal and the men liked to blab about work.
The factory closed down, and we all went our separate ways, on to different jobs. John got a girlfriend. He died of cancer some years back. Ray never did get married, He came close once, but in the end, he's just a hermit at heart, an affable, bearded, shy fellow. I wondered why he popped into Tim's head. Seriously. I hadn't seen Ray in years.
When we pulled up in front of his little house, there was no car in the driveway. "He's not home," I said.
Tim said, "His car might be in the garage." He got out of the car and knocked on the door. He waited a while, and then returned to the car. We had begun to back out of the driveway, when the door of the house opened. I wouldn't have recognized Ray. He's lost 1/3 of his body weight. But his voice was the same. So was his laugh.
He invited us inside. He's been sick. He hasn't been eating well. I think it is one of those situations where he needs to eat more because he's losing weight, but he's too weak to fuss about cooking and so he doesn't eat, which has him losing more weight.
I listened to him talk and I was horrified.
We had a nice visit. He still drives, and he's coming to supper.
We drove back down that hill, sober, lost in our own thoughts. It was a shock to think that something like this could happen to our old friend, living his quiet, hermit life, wasting away.
There are many things in life that we cannot fix, but we can make sure that he is fed.
That is sad. Is there not some cheap subsidised food delivery organisation for people in his situation?ReplyDelete
I am not sure. Ray lives pretty far out. I haven't had time to assess his needs or to check to see what's available. I have a pot of what will become sausage pumpkin soup in the crock pot. It is thick and creamy and healthy, and I'm going to make some biscuits and send it up with some cinnamon butter. Tim can deliver it all while it's still hot. We're doing some work on a roof today, but if I have time, I want to put together a custard for him.Delete
Before my carer started cooking my meals I bought f ive meals a week from a local company like the one Andrew suggests. The other two days I usually had a baked jacket potato which I would stuff with something like beans or grated cheese or (my favourite) quick fried streaky bacon fried to a crisp. I would make enough salad to put with it and keep it in a container in the fridge. I would cook the potato in the microwave and just crisp th skin under the grill to save on the long cooking in the oven.ReplyDelete
Right now, his biggest problem is that he's lost so much weight his dentures no longer fit. He's also awfully weak. I am sure that once he gets his strength back, he'll be able to do a bit more for himself, but right now, he's in what I consider to be a very bad way.Delete
As a fellow hermit, Ray's story made me kinda nervous. Debby please keep us updated on your friend. PS That fresh corn sounded really good. 🙂ReplyDelete
We haven't even had it yet. We'll probably have some with supper tonight.Delete
How amazing that your husband thought of Ray, just when Ray needed him most.ReplyDelete
Colette, that is just the thing that boggles my mind.Delete
I hope you get to see Ray more often and you can fatten him with your home cooking Debby.ReplyDelete
Oh, we will make it a point of seeing him more often.Delete
Glad that Tim thought to pop in on Ray. You might pick up some "Boost" or "Ensure" for Ray as it can give him extra nutrients and calories when he feels too tired to cook. Your homemade food will be a life-saver for him, Debby.ReplyDelete
That is amazing to me, as well. Probably the most amazing thing. We went up today with a container of hot pumpkin kielbasa soup and another of split pea and ham, some homemade biscuits with some honey butter (made using butter that Maddie churns) and jello to add to his fluid intake.Delete
Tomorrow, I'm making potato soup and tortilla soup. It's a nice way to get a few soups put in the freezer for a quick meal in the winter for us, as well.
This is one of those byproducts of our modern times where neighbors don't check on neighbors anymore. I miss those days when you could count on somebody dropping by if you hadn't been seen in awhile.ReplyDelete
We try to be that neighbor. Sometimes it bites us, but we do try. We consider it our duty to be mindful of those around us.Delete
Debby, I wish there were more people in this world like you and Tim.ReplyDelete
Mary, also from PA.
Mary, I'll bet that you are that person as well.Delete
Well it's a good thing you stopped in! I hate to say it, but left to my own devices I might be a bit Ray-like. I'm not great about bothering with food.ReplyDelete
If you lost a third of your body weight, Steve, you'd just about be invisible.Delete
Is there an underlying reason for his weight loss? He is lucky to have you and Tim. With all those soups I'm sure he will be gaining weight in no time.ReplyDelete
He does have a couple health problems. I am not sure we have the full story. We don't need to know. He, however, does need to eat.ReplyDelete
How fortunate. Keep us posted.ReplyDelete
Interesting that your husband thought of visiting someone with whom you'd not been in contact for a while. Makes one wonder about unknown forces at work. Nice that you are able to provide him some assistance when he apparently most needs it now.ReplyDelete
I always know that you are going somewhere when you begin to set the scene, whether it is in place or tome or both.ReplyDelete
I seem to remember a few posts where you and Tim are helping people. Blessings to you for that. I can be hermit-like myself, but I never, ever forget to eat!ReplyDelete
Has he just been regular sick or does he have cancer, diabetes? That's an awful lot of weight to lose. Glad that you'll be feeding him, although probably not as glad as he will be.ReplyDelete