Bread & Roses Forum

Bread => Health => Topic started by: fern hill on January 19, 2007, 04:32:24 PM

Title: Aging well
Post by: fern hill on January 19, 2007, 04:32:24 PM
I propose a thread to collect information on staying healthy as we age.

This is about folic acid and cognition.

Quote
Folic Acid Increases Mental Agility In The Elderly

Taking supplements of folic acid may significantly improve cognitive function in older men and women.

This is the conclusion of a Dutch study to be published in the Lancet.

The study was led by Jane Durga from the Wageningen University in The Netherlands.

Diminshing cognitive functions such as deterioration in memory, reduced ability to process information quickly, and reduced verbal fluency have been linked to risk of dementia in old age.

Dr Durga and colleagues followed a group of 818 over-50s for three years. Some were given 800 micrograms of a synthetic form of folic acid per day, the rest took a placebo. A synthetic version of the vitamin was used because the naturally occurring form degrades more easily, for example with storage and cooking, and that would make any results less reliable.

The scientists found that the group who took the folic acid improved on all aspects of cognitive functioning compared to the group that took the placebo.



Read the rest here. (http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/healthnews.php?newsid=61211)
Title: Aging well
Post by: skdadl on January 19, 2007, 05:13:29 PM
I believe the Dutch. They produced a landmark study on the negative effects of a particular class of psychotropic drugs on elderly people with dementia in early 2003. (It took the U.S. FDA almost two years to send out a warning on the basis of that study, and Health Canada a couple of months more. Am I bitter? Yes, I am bitter. Those drugs were imposed on my R. about a month after the Dutch study was published -- luckily, for only a few months. I knew they were bad.)

Purely anecdotal evidence, but the healthiest ninety-year-old I know walks miles every day, sees a lot of people, expresses herself with great passion whenever she feels like it, swears like a trooper, and I wouldn't be surprised if she outlives me. Piss and vinegar: don't misunderestimate them.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: deBeauxOs on January 26, 2010, 07:59:49 PM
This (http://www.nytimes.com/2010/01/26/health/research/26exer.html) will surely be of interest to lagatta and brebis noire too.  
Quote
Older women who did an hour or two of strength training exercises each week had improved cognitive function a year later, scoring higher on tests of the brain processes responsible for planning and executing tasks, a new study has found.

Researchers in British Columbia randomly assigned 155 women ages 65 to 75 either to strength training with dumbbells and weight machines once or twice a week, or to a comparison group doing balance and toning exercises.
It's never too early to start.  Though I keep small free weights at hand for ergotherapy, I think I'll look into what's available at the Champagne community fitness centre for more demanding work-outs and structured lessons.  I have used some of the equipment previously - Nautilus, for example - but not so much with the resistance machines.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on January 26, 2010, 08:19:48 PM
That is interesting. Why brebis? She young and booful.

I also have little weights for the same reason - therapy to overcome a) a bicycle accident in babble years and b) a horrible arthritic crisis all along the left side of my body, perhaps aggravated by that. I do do little routines with them, but should probably do more, although anything with the term "structured" in it makes me want to run screaming in the opposite direction. That is what I always hated about gym culture - the militaristic subtext.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: deBeauxOs on January 26, 2010, 08:34:49 PM
brebis noire will always be beautiful, in all the ways that she is, but when she was pregnant her back and her joints gave her some grief, iirc.  I think in one of her recent posts she mentions bodywork/training she's doing these days.  
Quote from: lagatta
I do do little routines with them, but should probably do more, although anything with the term "structured" in it makes me want to run screaming in the opposite direction. That is what I always hated about gym culture - the militaristic subtext.
Some of that is still there but I've registered in courses facilitated by women who deliberately are not that way at all.  Especially the ones for arthritic joints.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Antonia on January 26, 2010, 08:48:37 PM
I was a serious weight trainer -- and I do mean serious -- through the late 80s and then again from 1996-2006, when i started slacking off (and gained back a lot of weight because I have had trouble adjusting my eating down and not doing enough hard areobics.)

I still do it about 2 hours a week, maybe more. Not little weights either but not bench-pressing 80-100. More like 50.

I have to say that, for me anyway, nothing compares to the feeling if strength, energy, flexibility etc. You just have to know what you are doing to get the benefits, the high, and avoid the injuries.

Happy to show anybody around the gym.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on January 26, 2010, 09:06:20 PM
Antonia's useful post in meantime...

That is true (dBo). I had a Reiki session recently, and although that is "passive", it seemed to help a lot. Have a book on Tai Chi and Qi Jong and will be looking into more classes like that (as long as they are cheap and nearby - fortunately there are community centres I can walk to) especially for months when I can't cycle. Unfortunately few of those have anything like resistance machines, as the latter are costly. I worked out on those when I was teaching (languages, not jocko stuff) at a YMCA.

A brand-new community centre will be opening along with the eco-designed co-ops and affordable condos near métro Rosemont (a couple of long blocks south of me). It will have a swimming pool (and a library) but I don't know what other fitness facilities it will have. So important to make those available to people who can't afford a private gym.

Antonia a) I can't afford expensive private gyms or personal trainers and b) I need specific advice about how to make sure I don't damage some arthritic joints, from shoulder down. But of course weight training can do a lot of good, and doesn't necessarily entail "bulking up" (the kind of thing women of a proverbial "Mediterranean peasant" build might fear).

A government serious about public health should turn around the sorry trend towards privatisation and defunding of community fitness facilities!

Fitness columnist Jill Barker touched on this in The Gazette today: http://www.montrealgazette.com/health/F ... story.html (http://www.montrealgazette.com/health/Fitness+Canadians+getting+fatter+less/2484075/story.html)


Quote
It's been obvious for a while that Canadians are becoming less and less fit. But the government has been doing relatively little to inspire them to action. The high point of its campaign to promote healthy living was in 1973, when ParticipACTION compared the fitness of the average 30-year-old Canadian to a 60-year old Swede.

It was smack-talk that hit home. For a brief period in the 1970s and '80s, we started to take this fitness thing seriously. We got moving and managed to keep our collective weight from hanging over our belts. The 1981 Canada Fitness Survey reported that 56 per cent of Canadian adults were active in their leisure time.

In the 1990s and early 2000s, government funding decreased significantly and ParticipACTION shut its doors. Cuts to physical education were popular and the number of trained physical educators was also severely curtailed. Things weren't any better on the municipal front. Cities from coast to coast closed outdoor rinks, reduced public swimming pool hours and instituted bylaws forbidding playing on neighbourhood streets.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: brebis noire on January 26, 2010, 10:18:53 PM
I remember that brief period of fitness emphasis very well. It was being developed with a lot of enthusiasm at the time, but I also remember that cutbacks started almost immediately after the phase of building the programs and working out the kinks. And of course only after a whole bunch of people had decided they wanted to be phys ed teachers and then graduated to poor job prospects.
Once my oldest kid started school in the early 2000s, he had one hour, one single hour of phys ed per week. It was increased to two hours when he was in grade 2 or 3. One hour wasn't even a bare minimum, and two is only marginally better. And consider that many kids nowadays ride the bus or are driven to school.

In grades 5 and 6, some schools now have an optional "more sports" program, where students whose parents are able to pay the $125 fee can have more phys ed during the week - I signed up my kid this January, so he gets two extra hours of gym on Wednesdays, missing an hour each of French and Math. If I recall correctly, in their previous school, the PTA thingy had decided to divert funds to cover the program for everyone, because most couldn't afford the fee.

He's a good student, so I don't have any worries. I was offended about having to pay, but wasn't going to refuse him on that basis, because technically I can afford it. I worry more about those who can't, because that is what sports are all about today - can you afford to pay (the lessons, the equipment, the time, the transportation, the extras...)

As for me, I do yoga, at home, with DVDs or just during moments stolen here and there. I spend so much on my kids' sports and recreation that I don't have any left to take yoga classes, though I try to fit one in every few months or so.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Antonia on January 26, 2010, 10:36:47 PM
Lagatta,

Even if you haven't the money, there are many astonishing freebies online, including videos on exercises, proper form etc.

Check out Women's Health and Self magazines for example.

And you don't need weights. You can use your own body with squats, lunges, modified push-ups (to accommodate your shoulder issues), etc.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on January 26, 2010, 11:44:16 PM
True, Antonia, though I have to know how or it can do more harm than good. I was out for a lovely long walk this afternoon (did not drag out the bicycle, much as I'd love too, as the weather will return to its foul state in a couple of days, and dragging it out means two very steep stairs). And had a nasty twist of a knee - just because, mild though it is, it is so humid! Fortunately it was a false alarm and I didn't have to hobble, but it scared me because I was so debilitated three years ago.

In the socialist paradise, we'd have bike sheds!

I find magazines like Self and Women's Health thoroughly dispiriting and if I looked at them seriously the only logical course of action would be suicide: as in "I'm in training to be tall and blonde". But I suppose they do have useful content if one looks beyond their Nazi willowy Aryan blonde ideology.

brebis, I find that just so utterly awful. There was a programme on CBC about rehabilitation exercise courses for people who had had heart attacks or strokes. They all cost money, money people in my neighbourhood, my tenants' associaiton for example couldn't possibly afford. The person interviewed (think it may have been Jill Barker) did come through with a couple of programmes that were free for people who couldn't afford to pay.

Poor kids who typically eat shitty, starchy food and whose parents can't take them skiiing or even skating at it costs too much are those most in need of extra exercise. Grrrrrr.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Antonia on January 27, 2010, 01:09:18 AM
If Women's Health bugs you, go to Men's Health. The eye candy is better.  :cool:

http://www.menshealth.com/men/fitness

Just not sure if your computer can handle the videos.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on January 27, 2010, 07:32:43 PM
No, computer can't handle the videos.

I have a serious problem with the whole body fascist and "no pain, no gain" ideology of both magazines, but that doesn't mean they don't have very useful - and perhaps even lifesaving - advice among all the commodifying crap.

Which eye candy is better obviously depends at least in part on one's sexual orientation. (Though my sexual orientation does not involve screwing with 20-year-old hunks).

I had a very bad momentary arthritis scare - for about five minutes I was hobbling about like an aged woman and couldn't even put any weight on bad-side knee - then that shoulder started to hurt. Fortunately this dissipated and I was able to walk normally, at a normal speed. I was really pissed off as I'd been doing long, pleasant walks with no pain or stiffness whatsoever.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Antonia on January 27, 2010, 07:36:10 PM
There is no need to get into no pain, no gain. That's for hardcore types.

Best way to strengthen knees -- which re bugging me some days -- is by strengthening hips. Remember those sideway leg lifts we used to do a million years ago?
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on February 20, 2010, 05:09:36 PM
Found it!!

I'm 60, some days I feel much oolder. Rarely do I feel much younger, although cycling does have a tendency to invigorate me. :bike
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: skdadl on February 20, 2010, 06:01:03 PM
I know what you mean, Boom Boom. Antonia amazed me last night by pointing out that the video of Johnny Mathis I'd posted for Valentine's was probably a performance he'd done when he was 62!   :shock:  I think she's right (comparing to other vids I can find), but I stare at him in that clip and think, "Wow -- we really age at different rates." I never looked or sounded that good, but for sure not at 62.

I still do a fair amount of physical work, but I've decided that doing some things for myself is just not practical, not worth the sudden sprung whatever or extended breathlessness. And some problems do overtake you very suddenly. Things you were used to doing for yourself become kinda risky. Maybe that's not everybody, but the thought and the fact start to creep up on people in this decade.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on February 20, 2010, 06:17:47 PM
I was shocked yesterday to discover I can't keep up with a 55 year old contractor - but he's been a hard-working fisherman all his life, does contracting on the side.   I'm only five years older than him, but I may as well have been 20.  :(
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on February 20, 2010, 06:43:50 PM
That is not strictly a question of chronoligical age. My best friend is skdadl's age and she is much fitter in many ways than me (almost a decade younger) although I am not a couch potato.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on February 20, 2010, 06:53:37 PM
I've always thought of myself as active and fit, but guess I was wrong. I'm actually a bit of a couch potato, and eat far too much at night. Whatever fitness gains I make during the day are negated by my bad habits in the evening.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: skdadl on February 20, 2010, 10:15:58 PM
You know what you have going for you especially, Boom Boom? You seem to live without resentment, without anger at the past or at the hand you've been dealt by luck or fate or whatever. I think that is very unusual -- it's sure a lot better than I've done, although I try, and you are a good reminder for me. I suspect it is the most healthy attitude anyone can have, in any circs, and it's sure one of the reasons that we all love you.  :hug:
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on February 20, 2010, 10:38:14 PM
Wow... I am touched! Thanks for the kind words, skd.  :hug:  

I was born severely hard of hearing, and had a real struggle to hold on to my sanity with that handicap. By the time I retired from the Mob* on disability, I was pretty well close to to end of my ability to converse on the phone and in groups, so I grabbed the "offer" to retire with no looking back.  :age:





*you don't need to know, so don't ask. :spy:
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Toedancer on February 21, 2010, 12:29:45 AM
Quote from: skdadl
And some problems do overtake you very suddenly. Things you were used to doing for yourself become kinda risky. Maybe that's not everybody, but the thought and the fact start to creep up on people in this decade.

That is so true skdadl and I'll only be 58 in April.  I've been in a mental funk since about 4:30 p.m. about my lack of spunkiness, lack of confidence today. I fell off my bike today, well no not off, I had 4 bags of groceries, 2 on each handle (needing new basket) and I stupidly went thru the park. It was very soggy and I lost balance, soaker in left shoe, muck up left side of leg pants. I was embarrassed for myself and now my hip is sore.

So all this evening the thoughts are creeping in that I must be so much more careful and not take the usual foolish risks I took just last year. But the 1$ sale at no frills had me spend $22.00 on too many things, especially the greenish just ripening hot house tomatoes and 5 cartons of chives & cheese  eggs. Och, I'm an idiot!

eta - BB, your a good reminder for me as well.  :hug:
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on February 21, 2010, 03:30:17 AM
Toe, that wasn't so stupid to go through the park; you wanted to go through the park. Having to be so "careful" can be galling, especially since you have a hard caregiver's role which can be very wearing and wearying.

Yep, agree about Boom Boom. I'm not like that at all, I'm always dissatisfied with my life and it is not necessarily a useful attitude.

Toe, someday you must make it to Amsterdam, or Copenhagen. It is so lovely seeing people from very young to a long generation older than we are on their bicycles. One thing I really like other than the obvious health and environmental benefits is the fact that younger cyclists seem to respect the fact that senior cyclists don't move as quickly and have to take a great deal of care at crossings, although cyclists have priority over cars (but not TRAMS). Simply because of slower reflexes and some age-related decline in hearing and field of vision.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: skdadl on February 21, 2010, 06:58:33 AM
Ooh, Toe! I am sorry to hear about that skid and especially the bump to the hip. I hope the hip is feeling better this morning.

You can be ever so careful and things will still happen -- I hope your confidence is back now that you've rested (and done the laundry, argh). Being too careful can lead to accidents too. And then the world is full of other people, and who knows what one of them is gonna do?  ;)  As Dorothy Parker once said, we might as well live.

It doesn't bother me so much to accept certain limitations, although feeling vulnerable is a rough experience. It teaches you, though, how a lot of people have to cope with a world that doesn't quite work for them. I remember one of my mum's old nurse buddies telling me, when she was in her eighties, that she could do "one thing" a day -- by which she mainly  meant going out for some reason -- and she was satisfied to know that she was keeping up to that standard. I agreed with her, actually, and I was in my early fifties at the time.

So No Frills had a dollar day yesterday? Drat. I put my trip off to today because I had a different "one thing" yesterday. I should read the flyers.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Croghan27 on February 21, 2010, 10:17:58 AM
Quote from: Boom Boom
I was shocked yesterday to discover I can't keep up with a 55 year old contractor - but he's been a hard-working fisherman all his life, does contracting on the side.   I'm only five years older than him, but I may as well have been 20.  :(

As part of my Sailing to Byzantium (http://www.online-literature.com/yeats/781/): ("THAT is no country for old men.") I have found that I can do all the things (and more) that I ever could. (A congenital health issue at play here too.) - just not as often and it takes longer to recover.

On a less exalted plane a poor and old joke from a mediocre film (with Al Pacino???) where he tells about a young bull and old bull looking at some cows from a hill. The young bull wants to rush down and get fcuked .... the old bull suggests they walk down and fcuk them all.

Expanding this I find that I can accomplish as much or more than ever if I moderate my impulses and go about things in a more considered way.

I worked on an oil plant in Alberta that had four large eight story high towers. My job was mostly at the top of the towers. Naturally there was no elevator as is usual in these cases.  :annoyed:

To begin all the young folks would blow on by me on the way up to the heights. But in taking things in a mellow and more stately way, I found I could achieve their objectives in sufficient time to accomplish their (and my) tasks with all the necessary dispatch. Indeed, I became the 'go to gyu' for any tasks on the towers. In terms of the bad joke, I stopped rushing down the hill and began walking.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on February 21, 2010, 10:52:53 AM
Quote from: Toedancer
I fell off my bike today, well no not off, I had 4 bags of groceries, 2 on each handle (needing new basket) and I stupidly went thru the park. It was very soggy and I lost balance, soaker in left shoe, muck up left side of leg pants. I was embarrassed for myself and now my hip is sore.

I hope your hip is better today, Toe. That's a lot of groceries to be balancing on a bike. I have a good size knapsack witha plastic retainer inside to keep fragile items from bouncing around, but there's now way I can pack four bags in it - maybe two, at max.

And thanks for the kind words.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on February 21, 2010, 10:56:44 AM
Quote from: Croghan27

As part of my Sailing to Byzantium (http://www.online-literature.com/yeats/781/): ("THAT is no country for old men.") I have found that I can do all the things (and more) that I ever could. (A congenital health issue at play here too.) - just not as often and it takes longer to recover.

That's me - things take longer to do, and recovery time is longer.  :(

ps: loved the joke! :D   (was it from Raging Bull?)
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: brebis noire on February 21, 2010, 11:37:32 AM
The way you guys describe aging is exactly how I felt at 33 when I had my second kid.  :shock: And it's easy to imagine how a moment of inattention leading to a slip, or a stupid accident could make life slow and difficult again.

Yes Toe, you need to get a good knapsack, or even better, rig up baskets or even a trolley behind your bike for groceries. I see those once in a while and they look very stable and efficient.

This one would likely be very top-heavy.
http://www.wired.com/images_blogs/photo ... y_bike.jpg (http://www.wired.com/images_blogs/photos/uncategorized/2009/02/25/trolley_bike.jpg)
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Croghan27 on February 21, 2010, 11:38:41 AM
Quote from: Boom Boom
Quote from: Croghan27

As part of my Sailing to Byzantium (http://www.online-literature.com/yeats/781/): ("THAT is no country for old men.") I have found that I can do all the things (and more) that I ever could. (A congenital health issue at play here too.) - just not as often and it takes longer to recover.

That's me - things take longer to do, and recovery time is longer.  :(

ps: loved the joke! :D   (was it from Raging Bull?)

It was from a film about the LA Police .... the word Blue was in the name if I remember correctly. I Googled Pacino and did not recognize any of the names of his films ...

As you point out in another thread, I can make allowances for the higher digits in my age ... but 'the once fine mind' has been dulled and blunted. The memory, like nostalgia just ain't what it used to be,  :annoyed:
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on February 21, 2010, 11:48:39 AM
Toe, what you need is bicycle bags, with the weight of groceries distrubuted easily. People carry huge weights on bicycles, and while we don't have to do that in so-called developed countries, it should be no problem carrying a good-sized grocery shopping. I buy my bicycle bags at street markets when in Amsterdam. What you want to do is get your daughter to buy you a pair - utilitarian-looking, not fancy - when she is in a country where people cycle a lot.

A front basket is not very good for heavy items.

It is dangerous for people of any age to balance shopping on the handlebars.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Toedancer on February 21, 2010, 02:57:00 PM
Bicycle Bags, that's BRILLIANT and I will ask the kid. She's off to Hanoi right now.

Skdadl, the 1$ sale is on for 2 WEEKS. Find your flyer.  I'm going back Wednesday and then again Friday.
Friday I will walk thru the park and take a taxi home. My hip is much better today and I see doc tomorrow for results of ultrasound/x-rays.
I think the word 'vulnerable' catches it, I'm trying to prep myself for sweetie's long recovery. He's had many pre-op tests, painful tests on his back. There will be a team of surgeons, orthopods/plastic, for the big job which could take 24 to 30 hours to complete, prolly early summer. It is going to be complicated. Kid will be back which cheers me, and girlfriend will come on weekends to cook for me. I am also going to have to 'hook-up' the tv in the bedroom for him, (I have an xtra) for the first month and I'm frustrated with complicated paperwork, to get an electric wheelchair, as he will be weak and current one from Legion is breaking down. I hate dealing with insurance companies, I think they know I do, because my breathing changes and I speak thru closed teeth. Hee.

Yesterday I wanted my mummy, today I'm planning the spring garden. For the smell of earth, I repotted the big guys and took 2 violets and placed together in bigger pot.
The sunshine is bootiful, must breathe it all in, windows opened, next 2 days will be shit. Can't wait for the USA/Canada hockey game tonight, gonna roast a wee chicken and have some wine. Hugs to all  :hug:
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: skdadl on February 21, 2010, 03:15:18 PM
Toe, are you getting help through the CCAC? What you say about the paperwork in particular sets me off, because I really know that problem. In these situations, for some reason, the paperwork area of the brain just turns to mush. So few people understand that, but it is physically painful to try to do it on your own.

Anyway, I think that if you get a good CCAC worker (and I met good ones), you should be able to raise that issue. Tell them you need help doing the paperwork, that it really is too hard. They will understand. I wish I had said that, actually.

I really think you are entitled to a good, full-ranging talk with a CCAC person. Tell them all the things you just told us. I don't know how they decide that people are qualified, but I think you're qualified.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on February 21, 2010, 04:29:42 PM
I'm so glad you are having a bit of respite gardening - in February! and having a nice supper with a little roast chicken and some vino.

Daughter should be able to find bicycle bags in Hanoi, although alas modernity has meant many Vietnamese have switched over to motorbikes. Vietnamese cities used to be among the most cyclable in the world. They sell fairly cheap bicycle bags at Canadian Tire, though they are way overpriced for what they are and not sturdy at all. I bought my pair at a street market in Amsterdam for 7 euros...

If you buy expensive ones they get stolen; you have to take them in to shops with you which is a royal pain in the tuchis.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Toedancer on February 22, 2010, 02:07:41 PM
Quote from: skdadl
Toe, are you getting help through the CCAC?

NO, I'm not, but they are always there if I need them. The Arthritis Society is doing the bargaining with Manulife and the AS is going to make up the difference. Still though, it is a grueling procedure.

Lagatta, you know what, I think I want my zoomer separated from grocery p/u, like the 3 wheeled the Chinese use to pick up huge bundles of recycling. I'm gonna keep my eye out for one.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: deBeauxOs on April 13, 2010, 03:17:23 PM
Some tips regarding the prevention of Alzheimer's can be found in the results of this research (http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE63B5JL20100412?feedType=nl&feedName=ushealth1100).
Quote
A diet rich in olive oil, nuts, fish, poultry and certain fruits and vegetables may have a powerful effect at staving off Alzheimer's disease, researchers reported on Monday.

People who ate nutrients specifically selected for brain health had a 40 percent lower risk of developing Alzheimer's disease compared with others, Yian Gu, an Alzheimer's disease researcher at Columbia University in New York and colleagues found.

"Diet is probably the easiest way to modify disease risk," said Gu, whose study appears in Archives of Neurology. She said because there are no cures for Alzheimer's, prevention is key, especially as the population ages.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: skdadl on April 13, 2010, 08:30:59 PM
I'm sure that the healthier diet is just generally, well, healthier, especially as regards heart health, although none of that is ever a guarantee.

And it may be that the actual study is more carefully written than that squib, but a couple of obvious problems:

Quote
She said the diet likely works in two ways. Because it is rich in heart-healthy foods, it may be protecting the brain from strokes that could make it more vulnerable to Alzheimer's disease.

Unless the research has changed a lot since I was last deeply into it, this is a strange thing for a medical scientist to say. If strokes lead to dementia -- and they don't necessarily; you can live with a lot of brain damage and not technically be in the specific process that is dementia -- they lead to what is called multi-infarct dementia, itself a specific form of dementia that can be detected fairly early on while the patient is still alive through brain scans -- that is, the damage caused by strokes can be seen.

There are a number of types of dementia, and most of them can be diagnosed with some certainty before death, in various ways. Alzheimer's cannot; it is diagnosed before death by exclusion -- that is, none of the other causes presents -- and post mortem for a certainty only by a neuropathological autopsy, very few of which are done. The neuropathological description of Alzheimer's is precise, and quite different from the description of a brain damaged by strokes, although both conditions could be present, but would be described separately. I know this because I have a neuropathological autopsy report that excludes all other causes but Alzheimer's. I got it because of medical relatives who persisted in believing in multi-infarct, all evidence to the contrary. It was not easy to obtain -- there are only about a dozen neuropathologists in Canada, and the brain banks have lost their funding, or had at the time.

So anyway, I find it very odd that a medical scientist would fuzz the lines between stroke damage and the puzzle that is still Alzheimer's, even though both sub-types of dementia, once they start, progress through the same stages. All the sub-types do.

It may be that there is some connection as yet undetected between the two, but I haven't read of it, and I watch.

My second observation is statistical. (I'm not a statistician but I sometimes play one on the intertubes, having worked with a couple of very good ones.) All the numbers reported in that squib seem to me risibly small. It's a very small sample; and then "over 65" is not very helpful, especially when the study lasted only 4 years?!?

Age 65 is a cut-off date for one reason only: dementia that begins earlier is called early-onset Alzheimer's; the guess is that it is genetic since there are strong family correlations for early onset. After age 65, incidence rises broadly throughout the population with age.

So the first and most obvious question is: how old were those people "over 65" in whom onset could be detected within 4 years of their being considered healthy? I'm guessing that few of them were still in their sixties.

Then there's the 40 per cent figure. In such a small sample, given that it would already be broken down into at least two parts by someone's raw judgement of which way the diets tended, and then the incidence of Alzheimer's onset would also be broken into two corresponding parts, 40 per cent could be a fairly small number. Here I truly fail as a statistician because I don't know this kind of math, but even someone who did would need all the figures and would end up giving you a much less dramatic contrast than that 40 per cent claim appears to be.

So anyway, what can you say? Eat well for the sake of your heart and other blood vessels -- always a good idea, since the blood vessels go to your brain. Don't take up boxing. Try not to get a brain infection (search me, but sadly, I've known people who did). Watch the alcoholism (although alcoholic dementia is the one that can be reversed sometimes). Stop smoking (blood vessels again). Try not to fall off your horse or sustain any other kind of concussion (small risk, but present). Make sure to be born into a low-risk family. Die young of something else, and heroically, if possible.

Some day, we'll know, but at the moment, all the other tips are just guesses, and the doctors know that.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: deBeauxOs on April 13, 2010, 09:11:56 PM
Quote from: skdadl
And it may be that the actual study is more carefully written than that squib
Here's a link to the text published in the Archives of Neurology (http://archneur.ama-assn.org/cgi/content/full/2010.84?home).

Your definition of Alzheimer's and the working definition of AD used in the study may not be the same.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: skdadl on April 13, 2010, 09:27:25 PM
The definitions look the same to me. They both go by the DSM (whichever vol we're up to now -- I actually knew that recently, because they're working on the revision -- see oldgoat at babble). Neither stroke nor AD precludes the other -- I said that; see above. But a neuropathologist would describe them separately, as was made very clear to me by the neuropathologist.

Almost no one who is diagnosed within four years of onset is going to be dead by then, and thus available for the neuropathological autopsy, which means the researchers don't know whether they were looking at Alzheimer's, although they well could know -- in fact probably did know -- that they were looking at stroke damage leading to multi-infarct.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on April 13, 2010, 09:34:04 PM
Question: how do doctors test for Alzeimer's?
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: skdadl on April 13, 2010, 09:50:29 PM
Strictly speaking, they can't test for Alzheimer's. They test for dementia. There's a common 30-question test (I forget the name, but it's easily googled) that any GP can give. (I've heard it so many times that I can now give it.)

A certain score will be a warning signal, and lower than that is considered diagnostic, although I would say that at that point you ask for a referral to a geriatrician. There are more advanced tests, and I've been out of the loop for a few years, so I would advise anyone in situation to go for whatever is available.

At the warning-signal level, the GP will send the patient for the standard range of tests for heart and stroke problems. If those show little to nothing but cognitive problems continue, again, I would ask for a referral to a geriatrician. There are other conditions that can cause dementia, and can be diagnosed in other ways. I haven't seen that, just read about them.

Alzheimer's is the diagnosis by exclusion -- ie, none of the other causes of dementia can be identified. Only then do they say that a patient has Alzheimer's, and even then, they can't prove that until after death, when a neuropathologist finds and describes the characteristic "plaques and tangles."

It's still true that the majority of people with dementia are said to have Alzheimer's. The second biggest group are those with multi-infarct. The majority are also older women, and they often have other health problems as well -- often diabetes, but also heart problems, anything, really. For some reason, the incidence of cancer among Alzheimer's patients is low.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: deBeauxOs on April 13, 2010, 09:58:29 PM
You can't "test" for Alzheimer's.  You can test for diminished cognitive capacity, often grossly labeled dementia.  A number of medical conditions can result in dementia; Alzheimer's is one.

eta - the verbal test administered is MMSE but other physiological testing (http://www.omnimedicalsearch.com/conditions-diseases/dementia-diagnosis.html) is done too.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on April 13, 2010, 10:05:49 PM
Thanks. I had no idea. I think I'll do a quick google for more info.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: skdadl on April 13, 2010, 10:34:34 PM
Quote from: deBeauxOs
diminished cognitive capacity, often grossly labeled dementia  

No. Dementia is the recognized overall medical category. It is the name of a process, an inexorable terminal illness whose major phases can be described in some detail and roughly timed, but which may have a number of causes. (It is also true that there are endless individual variations in the way people go through the process, but the general descriptions of the phases are good general guides. In my experience, the textbook descriptions of the phases are close to month-perfect.) Each of the sub-types has its own name: Alzheimer's, multi-infarct or vascular dementia, dementia pugilistica, Creutzfeld-Jakob, Lewy's, Korsakoff's (alcohol-related), Parkinson's or Huntington's-related dementia, AIDS-related dementia, etc. I forget how many there are, but again, easily googled. Just go to the DSM.

Many people may have "diminished cognitive capacity" for many reasons and not have dementia, which, I repeat, is a progressive terminal illness. One of the first things geriatricians look for is depression -- depressed people can begin to exhibit symptoms of dementia that can easily be reversed. Illnesses that starve the brain of oxygen can produce dementia-like symptoms that are reversed by ... oxygen. Und so weiter.

People can have severe brain damage that leaves them dependent indefinitely and not progress into dementia.

The DSM is basically a behavioural manual, meant for practical use by psychiatrists and psychologists and GPs, but it is informed by neuroscience, which is where the categories of dementia were reorganized and redefined in major ways during the 1970s. Many medical people still in practice but trained before, say, 1985, still don't grasp the best available scientific understanding of the process they're looking at. That's why I advise people to ask for the referrals to a geriatrician as early as possible.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: deBeauxOs on April 13, 2010, 10:53:10 PM
Quote from: skdadl
Quote from: deBeauxOs
diminished cognitive capacity, often grossly labeled dementia  

No. Dementia is the recognized overall medical category. ...
Um, yes.  My complete statement was: ...diminished cognitive capacity, often grossly labeled dementia.

The actual term dementia when used in a medical context is precise.  It is sometimes used grossly and often gratuitously for any distracted or unusual behaviour observed in elderly people.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: skdadl on April 13, 2010, 11:25:47 PM
Before the 1970s, the expression "senile dementia" was commonly used for anyone over, say, sixty, who headed into the process. "Alzheimer's" had been studied neuropathologically early in the C20 (by Dr Alzheimer, eh?) in a youngish woman who developed dementia in her late forties, died in her fifties, and his description of the plaques and tangles became (correctly) the description of the disease, although people interpreted his study to mean that that particular disease occurred only in younger people (before age 65) and that it was probably genetically related, which early-onset Alzheimer's is still considered (maybe) to be.

In other words, they weren't connecting "Alzheimer's" with "senile dementia." (And there are still doctors around who don't.)

Only in the 1970s did a couple of researchers start to do neuropathological analyses of the brains of older people considered to have the inevitable "senile dementia" of age. They found the same plaques and tangles in the majority of cases. It seems obvious now, but it was a revelation at the time. At that point, a major reclassification of subtypes of dementia began, and I presume that continues to this day.

The neuroscience is more precise than the behavioural descriptions, but most of us can't really keep up with the neuroscience, only hope that the geriatricians will give it a try and then translate for us.

A lot of people my age and older will say things like, "Well, that happens to most old people -- they all go a little senile." Well, no. They don't. "Senile" is the word that has ceased to be useful. Most older people will have diminished cognitive capacity. I have diminished cognitive capacity, and I expect to keep diminishing. That's called aging.

But it isn't dementia. Your average charming 95-yr-old who repeats himself a lot doesn't have dementia -- he's just a little more limited than he used to be, and maybe he needs a nap.

Dementia is not just aging, and it's not just diminished cognitive capacity. It is something that starts somewhere, as though a switch had been flipped. And once that switch flips, it is a steady attack on the brain that cannot be stopped, although its effects can be described in considerable detail, and have been. It isn't just being tired and old and sometimes silly or repetitive or befuddled.

But where that switch is, when or why or how it gets flipped, even in the forms of dementia that have well-known causes -- we just don't know.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: deBeauxOs on April 14, 2010, 01:46:12 PM
Quote from: skdadl
... Dementia is not just aging, and it's not just diminished cognitive capacity. It is something that starts somewhere, as though a switch had been flipped. ...
I didn't say anything to the contrary, I was trying to express in succinct terms the notion that the term dementia is often used willy nilly, without much regard to the medical context.

You don't have to lecture me about it.

Most of the cells in the human body are programmed to be replaced by new ones when required. (Until recently, physiologists believed that brain cells did not regenerate, but recent discoveries (http://biology.about.com/library/weekly/aa102199.htm) suggest that may not be correct.) From here (http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/adventures-in-old-age/200903/our-cells-replace-themselves-why-dont-they-mutate-why-dont-we-indi):
Quote
... human cells replace themselves--and avoid mutation within one person's lifetime.

In order to replace themselves, cells need to both reproduce and proliferate. According to Pepper, undifferentiated stem cells carry the burden of initiating the reproduction of cells by simple division. He hypothesizes that stem cells don't evolve because their populations are largely "small and quiescent." When they reproduce, they initially change just a little, enough to produce new kind of cells--transient amplifying cells (TACs)--which divide, and thereby proliferate, several times, each time becoming more differentiated, until they are mature cells, which can neither reproduce nor replicate. ...

So if the multi-stage process of cell reproduction and proliferation suppresses evolution and cell-change, why do we age?

"Somatic evolution has been proposed as a fundamental source of senescence. We have shown that serial differentiation can reduce somatic evolution, but not completely eliminate it. Some proliferation by stem cells is necessary, and self-renewal of TACs can arise by sporadic somatic mutations disrupting normal differentiation. By slowing somatic evolution, serial differentiation may not entirely eliminate senescence but delay it until old age," writes Pepper.

In other words, if it we replaced single cells by simple division, the errors associated with aging might occur quite rapidly. With the muti-stage process--stem cells to TACs--there is a slower accretion of changes characteristic of aging over a longer time.

This research also has implications for cancer research. Cancer is cell-division gone wild.

... "When cells reach the point where they divide constantly, instead of only when needed, they are cancer cells."
The moment where a "switch" goes off at the cellular level, precipitating a dysfunctional cell replacement process or cell death (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Programmed_cell_death#Evolutionary_origin_of_PCD) is currently the focus of many heavily funded, complex studies and research.  

The study that I mentioned yesterday observes the result of diet upon the development of disease.  Its conclusions are helpful, in terms of health maintenance.  So far, not much is known about the precise moment when the proliferation of cancer cells occurs in one specific body.  Or when Alzheimer's starts happening in the brain, or even why.

Nonetheless, information gathered by Dr Yian Gu (http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/8615456.stm) can be helpful.  It might make a difference in delaying the onset of Alzheimer's.  What's so threatening about that knowledge?
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on April 14, 2010, 02:08:39 PM
I must say losing memory as I age is scary. I had to ask a friend for my neighbour's name, because I had forgotten it! And, occasionally, I forget to take prescription medication.




.......what were we talking about again?  :age:
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: skdadl on April 14, 2010, 02:36:05 PM
Boom Boom:  :lol:

Names are hard for some people even when they're young -- don't know why that is, but it's so common and yet we all feel so embarrassed when we're the forgetter. The funny thing is, the name often comes back a few hours later -- smack brow, of course! Linda and Steve! Those are my neighbours! But it's true; memory does diminish as we age, and we repeat ourselves a lot because we don't remember we've said that before. Those aren't necessarily signs of dementia -- they could be, in very early stages, but they're also just common experiences among older people, as problems with sight and hearing are, and then there are the joints and the muscles and the nerves and the little blood vessels.

deBO, I didn't mean to "lecture" you; my last comment wasn't directed at anyone in particular but meant to flesh out the historical context of things I'd said earlier.

I don't find Dr Yian Gu's study "threatening" -- as I said at first, the diet her team recommends is well known to be healthier, especially in terms of heart health, and since we don't know all of what "healthier" might mean, it could indeed have potential we don't know about.

I was surprised to see her make that link, though, between two kinds of dementia that do different kinds of damage and appear, at least for now, to have different causes, although we don't know what the cause of Alzheimer's is, whereas we do know the cause of vascular dementia (although not necessarily how it takes off).

And beyond that, given the statistical limits of what she did, the attention of the popular press seems out of proportion to what was demonstrated, which is essentially another endorsement of the Mediterranean diet, although maybe not on the grounds she claims.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on April 14, 2010, 03:17:33 PM
Quote from: skdadl

Names are hard for some people even when they're young -- don't know why that is, but it's so common and yet we all feel so embarrassed when we're the forgetter.  

I had a great memory when I was younger, not so great today. Interesting, though, that I have no difficulty (yet!) remembering computer access codes, bank account numbers, and grocery PIN's.

(just back from the dentist, informed that I need to see a gum specialist asap)
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on April 14, 2010, 04:04:58 PM
Is the gum specialist covered by something?
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on April 14, 2010, 05:01:59 PM
I'll know tomorrow or Friday after making inquiries about coverage for the periodontist (gum disease specialist).
Title: Aging well
Post by: skdadl on April 19, 2010, 05:29:59 PM
Here (http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2010/apr/17/diana-athill-move-old-peoples-home) is a splendid column from this weekend's Guardian by Diana Athill, (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Diana_Athill) legendary English literary editor and memoirist.

I worked with Diana for a year (1970-71) at Andre Deutsch in London -- marvellous woman she was and obviously remains, at age 93. She recently decided to move herself into what she calls an "old people's home," even though she's still writing and winning literary awards. This column is written in typical Diana style -- she walks us through the steps her mind took between her initial resistance, and then panic, even as she was thinking through the sad results she's known when other friends have resisted the inevitable. The whole thing is very her.

Although Diana came from what I guess we'd call an upper-middle-class background (b. 1917), fairly refined childhood in Norfolk a century ago, a kind of life that doesn't really exist any longer, Oxford education, all that stuff, by the time she was on her own in London during the war, she had no money except what she earned, and working in publishing, she didn't earn much. She became a director of Deutsch, had a nice flat in Notting Hill when that was still a fairly bohemian area, and lived that kind of life.

The home she's moved into is in Highgate, which is a beautiful part of north London, just east of Hampstead, lots of woods and the heath for walking, and shopping in Hampstead not far. I assume it's fairly pricey and kind of a return to her proper girlhood, but maybe Notting Hill has lost the charm it once had for her.

Anyway, I'm always happy to hear that she's still going.
Title: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on April 20, 2010, 09:12:46 AM
Great story. Very attractive person too. I can see her point, but "homes" terrify me.

Now we'll meet someone who is way off the charts, Olga Kotelko, pressing iron at 91. I know she is utterly atypical - for one thing most of us are still dead by 91 - but the article does speak to the importance of strength training. She holds several records for her age group in track and field as well:
Late-life dynamo Olga Kotelko (http://www.montrealgazette.com/health/Late+life+dynamo/2927897/story.html)
Title: Aging well
Post by: brebis noire on April 20, 2010, 10:16:31 AM
Wow, that's not just impressive, that's encouraging; and it's something I observe in animals (sorry, can't help it; professional deformation again...). Every once in a while I'll meet a supposedly elderly dog or cat who is definitely not acting his or her age, and I'll wonder, hmm: genetics, superior care, lifestlye, nutrition, dumb luck or all of the above? I tend to believe that genetics and nutrition often combine to have the greatest impact on lifestyle (when I say lifestyle in animals, I'm referring mostly to stress levels, interactions with other individuals, general activity and play.)

I can honestly say that in terms of general aches and pains, it's something I've lived with since the age of 10 or so - so I don't necessarily believe they are simply a result of aging. For one thing, my mother has never complained of them. I don't feel any more stiff or painful now than I ever did, and the two worst times for my physical fitness levels were puberty (due to an unfortunately rapid shift in my center of gravity leading to injuries), and then my childbearing years. Things have been getting better since then, and even though I doubt I'll be benchpressing when I'm 90, it's nice to know it can be done, at least by a woman from Saskatchewan with Eastern European genes. On the other hand, I'll likely have more free time for physical activity if I ever retire, so maybe I will contemplate the possibility.
Now, where is that bench-pressing geezera smiley?
Title: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on April 20, 2010, 11:26:44 AM
Just got back from the clinic - got three injections of arthritis painkiller in my joints. That should dull the pain for a while. Will be seeing the opthamologist tomorrow to see what is causing the streaks of light, hopefully not 'retina detachment' as the nurse thinks. Did I say I hate getting older? :age:
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on July 20, 2010, 03:20:47 PM
Had a bit of a panic this morning while at a doctor's appointment - had a pain in my chest, had nitro squirted into me, then felt faint and dizzy, next thing I'm having an EKG and blood work. Blood work was negative, so I'm okay. Am waiting for a hospital appointment now for heart stress tests. Aging sucks!
Title: Aging well
Post by: deBeauxOs on July 20, 2010, 04:44:17 PM
Quote from: Boom Boom
... Had a bit of a panic this morning while at a doctor's appointment - had a pain in my chest, had nitro squirted into me, then felt faint and dizzy, next thing ...
Not to play down the possibility there might be a physiological basis for the chest pain but this reminds of the time that stressful work conditions made my blood pressure go up which made me anxious then triggered panic attacks followed by dizziness because I hyperventilated, not a good thing because I was recovering from H1N1 and I had a cough that I couldn't shake and got short of breath one day when I went for a short walk in the cold and ....
 
The problem with aging is that it becomes a challenge to distinguish between serious problems, such as pain that could indicate a kidney stone being evacuated or simply a nasty back twinge from pulling a muscle.
 
As Gilda Radner used to say:  It's always something.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on July 20, 2010, 06:31:41 PM

The problem with aging is that it becomes a challenge to distinguish between serious problems, such as pain that could indicate a kidney stone being evacuated or simply a nasty back twinge from pulling a muscle.

Exactly. This morning, the physician was sufficiently concerned that he ordered all the tests as well as the nitro. Better safe than sorry, I guess.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Croghan27 on July 20, 2010, 09:41:38 PM
Quote
The problem with aging is that it becomes a challenge to distinguish   between serious problems, such as pain that could indicate a kidney   stone being evacuated or simply a nasty back twinge from pulling a   muscle.

This is a constant problem - the idea that any, once little, disruption in my metabolism MAY BE THE BIG ONE. Having been a shift worker for many years my 'digestive regularity' is used to being 'unregular' - still it occasionally causes me a bit of worry. Things I would just throw off a few years ago, now tend to take more import, in my mind if not in my body.
 
in 2008 my heart ramped up to 180 bpm - for reasons still not clear. There was nothing wrong with it, it was just throbbing at an outrageous rate. Subsequent tests have shown no problem.

A very similar thing happens regarding bedbugs. Someone told me the other day that there is rather a serious infestation of bedbug happening in Ottawa right now.

Since then, any little twitch, any body hair unbending late in the evening, any unexplained shiver causes me to leap up, turn on the lights and look for the little crawlers. I am sure that I have avoided the plague (so far) but just the thought has ruined some good night's sleep.
Title: Aging well
Post by: deBeauxOs on July 21, 2010, 10:53:55 PM
Holy Sh*t!!! The plague?  :o
 
Something else to worry about.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: deBeauxOs on August 27, 2010, 02:05:20 PM
Sarcopenia  (muscle loss from aging process) - and muscle atrophy (from immobilization) are the leading causes of bad falls for people over 65.

Quote
The best exercise for preventing sarcopenia is strength training,  which is also called resistance or weight training. This is because it  taxes your muscles in an intense manner and forces them to get stronger and larger over time.
 
From here (http://www.longevity-and-antiaging-secrets.com/sarcopenia.html).  It's just an overview, there are probably better sites if one does a search using the terms muscle loss/sarcopenia and strength training.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Antonia on August 27, 2010, 03:52:56 PM
It's also a balance issue.

Although I have stopped hitting the heavy weights, i did notice that, once I was into squats, lunges, leg presses, etc., I was able to recover from a stumble, before the proverbial face plant.

Core work also provides some stability.

Even standing on one leg, say while you're brushing your teeth or dong the dishes, for 10 seconds or more, helps.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: skdadl on August 27, 2010, 04:24:12 PM
I learned a bit of tai chi years ago (friend and I quit when we started to feel the teacher was a bit of a cult leader with a need to control women), enough to learn that balance is all. When you're doing the "dance," much of the time you're balancing on one leg, and that leg is bent, so it is really the thigh muscles that are working hard.

There is something powerful about tai chi, even just watching it. I remember showing my sister the first moves of the dance in our parents' kitchen one afternoon, and the family dog, Georgy Girl, just went berserk as I sank into position and started to move. She loved A; she loved me; but she obviously thought that I was attacking A, and she did not know what to do except beg me to stop. So I did.

I think that tai chi is kind of the reverse of karate -- one is slow, the other fast; and then when you get good at either, you learn to switch. Interesting minds behind those disciplines.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on September 06, 2010, 12:06:33 AM
I'm doing a bit of research on where might I move in 2016 when I sell here and relocate to the mainland. This article caught my eye: Senior-friendly London lands WHO title (http://www.lfpress.com/news/london/2010/07/06/14626876.html)
 
I think London is probably the last place in Canada I'd want to live - but I spent two years there doing a diploma at Fanshawe College ('69-'71), and I kind of liked being there. It's got a great university and library, a great concert hall (I saw classic rock acts there). And it's flat, which makes cycling a breeze. :bike
 
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on September 06, 2010, 12:13:17 AM
Another fascinating link: Best Places to Live: Retirement (http://list.canadianbusiness.com/rankings/bestplacestolive/2009/article.aspx?id=20090501_20002_20002&sp2=1&d1=a&sc1=0)
 
London is 5th, Ottawa/Gatineau 3rd. Ist is (drum roll) Victoria! ::)
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on September 06, 2010, 07:03:33 AM
I'd think housing in Victoria would be prohibitive for most pensioners. Perhaps not as absurd as Vancouver, but still... on the list it is 147th (best) and Vancouver 150th. Yes, London doesn't have the heritage appeal of Kingston (or Québec City for that matter, though Québec has somewhat colder winters). I don't believe housing is more affordable in London than in Joliette (a very pretty town, not very far from Montréal in the event highly-specialised medical care is required, and for a greater cultural offer - Joliette has a CÉGEP and a cultural centre with a large performance hall for a city its size, and Le Festival de Lanaudière http://www.lanaudiere.org/ but no university). Joliette is fairly flat, but it is in a region with beautiful high hills, Lanaudière.

Housing in Ottawa ain't cheap, but can be cheaper on the Québec side. One of my cousins and her spouse bought and restored a lovely old house, at least 150 years old, in Aylmer, one of the towns that are now part of Gatineau. Central Aylmer is pretty and walkable for shopping, though the lovely church was destroyed by arson, and there is mind-numbing sprawl around it.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: skdadl on September 06, 2010, 07:54:40 AM
If you went to London you could be friends with Tommy_Paine and Rebecca West from babble, Boom Boom, which I think would be lots of laughs and good fellowship. It is flat, boy -- that was my impression the first time I drove in -- wow, this place is flat. Mind you, a lot of southern Ontario is pretty flat.

Sometimes I miss the mountaynes. South of Calgary (now, unfortunately, almost part of Calgary), west of Okotoks to Black Diamond and Turner Valley, is the most wonderful foothills country right in the shadow of the mountains and yet still flat enough. I think that's sort of where Ian Tyson lives, although maybe he's in Kananaskis, a little to the north. It's cowboy country, very beautiful (to me), maybe tough winters although not so tough as Kegaska. Holly Stick will know it better than I do. Bet you could get a nice spread there.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on September 06, 2010, 08:05:09 AM
I was a tad disappointed not to see any info on rental or affordable housing. The only way I'd buy a house in any of these markets is if I could get a CMHC assisted mortgage (in other words, a loan at very low interest). There's close to zero chance I'd move to Victoria or Ottawa. Right now Gatineau and London are my choices, but if they become increasingly unaffordable, I'll have no choice but to look elsewhere. I have a relative in Surrey looking to move to Victoria and he's not wealthy by any means - I think he's looking at smaller older homes or another rental unit, and I have a friend in much the same situation moving to London - I'm going to call on her experience with London to help find a place I can afford. That's still six years away and who knows what changes will happen by then.
 
ETA: does CMHC actually assist with low-interest mortgages in housing markets like Gatineau and London where the average home starts at around $220,000? That would surprise the heck out of me!
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on September 06, 2010, 08:30:13 AM
Central Aylmer is pretty and walkable for shopping, though the lovely church was destroyed by arson, and there is mind-numbing sprawl around it.

That's sad to hear. I loved visiting the tiny communities of Aylmer and Quyon while I was a teenager in Ottawa with a driver's license and my first car. Didn't visit Hull (now Gatineau) much because there simply wasn't anything to see there back then - it was the poor neighbour to Ottawa; but federal and provincial governments have since poured $$$ into the place if my memory is correct. By the time I left for good (1975) Ottawa/Hull were being referred to as The National Capital Region.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on September 06, 2010, 08:35:04 AM
You might even qualify for public housing for seniors, within Québec, at 65. It is district-based, so if you are aiming for Gatineau you'd have to move to the area first. That sounds dismal, but they vary greatly in quality. There is a really nice one my tenants' association had a hand in launching, les Habitations St-Georges near the Jean-Talon métro in Mtl. Often people ask residents if they can buy a flat there, as it is at least as nice as most nearby condos, low-rise buildings with nice balconies - of course it does have a lift although it is only four storeys tall.  Others might have that dismal institutional look - I'm not familiar with public housing (HLMs or non-profit corporations) in the Gatineau area or the Outaouais (QC side of the Ottawa Valley - the French and English misheard the Indigenous name differently), or income maxima. We have forms of affordable housing for seniors with higher income maxima than the HLM and non-profits; the rent is somewhat higher but there are forms of assistance available.

dBO and others could update you on Ottawa/Gatineau better than I can. Ungordly sprawl is a planning (or non-planning) problem just about everywhere, and future slums post-peak-petroleum.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: brebis noire on September 06, 2010, 08:38:20 AM
Hey Boom Boom, you should check out Sherbrooke. Of course, it's mainly French, but there's still an English community - albeit a very bilingual one - but Lennoxville is still at least half English (Lennoxville - Bishops University - is now part of of greater Sherbrooke, which since the merger has a population of around 140K). We have a much milder climate than you, drier than Montreal because of our altitude but still eastern-humid.
It's very affordable while not being completely out of the loop (1.75 hour drive to the Champlain bridge in Montreal).
Lots of hospitals, including a university centre.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on September 06, 2010, 08:54:36 AM
Hey Boom Boom, you should check out Sherbrooke.

Indeed! I know people in both Sherbrooke and Lennoxville, and the Eastern Townships have been in my mind as a Plan B backup in case Gatineau or London did not work out for me. I've driven between Sept-Iles and the Eastern Townships a couple of times (there's a ferry that cuts the distance considerably). The Eastern Townships are well known to folks from the Lower North Shore because many from here go there to continue their education, and some have moved there to retire - and I likely know all of them.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on September 06, 2010, 08:58:05 AM
A scary article on Ottawa: Affordable Housing (or lack thereof...) (http://www.ottawa.ca/residents/housing/housing_strategy/current_state/affordable_en.html)
 
excerpt:
 
 A recent study by the Royal Bank of Canada suggests that Ottawa is among the most affordable larger urban centres in Canada. The study is careful to point out, however, that Ottawa also has the highest average household income of the cities in the study. Certainly, most households in Ottawa are able to find suitable housing they can afford. However, many households continue to have difficulty in finding affordable housing or are paying increasing portions of their income to meet housing costs. Others are increasingly leaving the city core and seeking more affordable housing in Gatineau and formerly rural areas, with resulting increased commutes and pressures on physical infrastructure.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on September 06, 2010, 09:04:46 AM
I agree - it is a lovely area, and housing can be very cheap. Sherbrooke has relatively good public transport for a city of its size as "free" public transport is part of the package for Université de Sherbrooke students (not sure about Bishop's students as many in that small University live on campus or nearby). There is also frequent bus service to Mtl if you don't want to drive or health conditions prevent it (but don't require medical transport). Only the most arcane medical conditions would require going to Mtl though, as there are several hospitals (and vet clinics, of course ;) )

Because of the universities and other factors, there is also a very good cultural offering for a city of its size, and pleasant little cafés to hang out in. The air never gets as stifling there as it does here or in Ottawa during the summer. You could invest in at least a small room AC for the very few stifling days, if your health requires it.

Fall fairs are coming up there soon, including Townshippers Day!

And yes, boom boom, I think that is what is causing all the ugly sprawl around Aylmer...
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Toedancer on September 06, 2010, 11:56:03 AM
Hey Boom Boom, interesting London is one of your choices. I know nothing about it really, but my kid has just moved there for 2 years of Fanshawe. She's already in love with the bike trails, and altho biking to Fanshawe is 40 minutes for her, she says it is an easy 40 minutes with a good bike (she just bought a new one).  Anyway I had a look-see on affordability and set my parameters between $75,000 and $120,00 just wondering if something would come up to suit your pocketbook, but not especially the need to garden or walkability. Also no stairs, except if there was a finished basement. And surprised myself by finding 2 very nice little houses with plenty of space for guests. Here they are:
http://www.realtor.ca/propertyDetails.aspx?propertyId=9809411&PidKey=678824619

I prefer the layout of this one tho and under $100,000: http://www.realtor.ca/propertyDetails.aspx?propertyId=9811381&PidKey=-1472376914

There are plenty of townhomes, but I simply can't abide them. Have a look-see and see what you think.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: skdadl on September 06, 2010, 12:45:51 PM
That second one is quite dear, isn't it? And very affordable.

Och. Real-estate pron. It's almost as bad as kitchen pron. Don't get me started!
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on September 06, 2010, 01:13:49 PM
Hey Boom Boom, interesting London is one of your choices. I know nothing about it really, but my kid has just moved there for 2 years of Fanshawe. She's already in love with the bike trails, and altho biking to Fanshawe is 40 minutes for her, she says it is an easy 40 minutes with a good bike (she just bought a new one). 

I lived in London 1969 - 1971 doing my diploma at Fanshawe, and I loved the place. I lived on Piccadilly, near the main drag that takes you to UWO (I forget the name of that street). I had a great Japanese racing bike and used it most of the year. I'll look at your links in a minute or so - cooking lunch now. If I move to Fanshawe London I'll have to hang up my Fanshawe diploma in the narthex just to show visitors I'm one of them! :))
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on September 06, 2010, 01:17:45 PM
That wee house looks like it needs a lot of repairs, somehow. That can cost a fortune.

Toe, are the townhouses where you live not soundrpoofed enough? Because if they are, that would actually be a benefit in terms of reducing heating costs.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on September 06, 2010, 01:23:47 PM
There's a lot to love about the London of 1969-1971 while I was there (I realize that's 40 years ago and things have changed): cheap dope; great bookstores downtown, cheap dope; cheap eateries because of all the college and university students; cheap dope; awesome rock concerts at Wonderland; cheap dope; it's very flat and great for cycling; and did I mention the cheap dope?  8)
 
Thanks for the links! I'm tempted to sell right now, and not wait for 2016. That second house is exactly what I want!
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: skdadl on September 06, 2010, 02:18:05 PM
But Boom Boom, you forgot to mention the cheap dope.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on September 06, 2010, 02:26:17 PM
But Boom Boom, you forgot to mention the cheap dope.

 :))
 
I have so many memories of London - including waiting for Jane Fonda (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz/article-1199657/Jane-Fonda-shows-forgotten-1970-arrest-wears-T-shirt-mugshot.html) to show up for her anti-war fundraiser - she had been delayed at the CAN/USA border for hostility towards the Canadian border guards and finally arrived in London just before midnight - four hours late. A few local bands gave a free concert while waiting, and all of us (over 300) passed joints back and forth and grooved to the music. I remember all the clenched fists and "right on!"s shouted when she finally arrived - a bit dishevelled from the long drive, but otherwise totally gorgeous, man (that was 40 years ago, eh...).  8)
 
ETA: oops, it was a fundraiser, so not a free concert. I can't for the life of me remember what we paid.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Toedancer on September 06, 2010, 02:32:45 PM
Toe, are the townhouses where you live not soundrpoofed enough? Because if they are, that would actually be a benefit in terms of reducing heating costs.

I don't live in a townhouse Lagatta. It is a very old Victorian 3 storey job. I'm on the main floor, which gives me carte blanche to big front porch, have a side porch and all the garden. I share of course.

I don't like townhouses period. If I was forced, I'd prefer a semi to a townhouse. I like our wee nabe tho, w/o having to like Hamilton. Lots of kids, who know they can come to the side porch for a glass of cool water when their exhausted from street hockey or roller blading and all that stuff. Certain nabes can come and grab my bundle buggy, the single women mostly, and out of some couples, the menz always do stuff for me that even with a dolly I can't handle.

But truly I'm a very detached with a decent lot kind of person, close or on a river/lake.Oops, forgot, I don't pay any utilities at all, covered in rent.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Toedancer on September 06, 2010, 02:41:42 PM
Thanks for the links! I'm tempted to sell right now, and not wait for 2016. That second house is exactly what I want!

Indeed, altho we've never met that is the one I can easily see you in.
I like the ceramic/laminate floors for easy cleaning, the bow window for your winter herbs, the downstairs for your guests. I know you would do wonders with the pretty things like perennials and such, but you also have that covered patio area with the carport for good summer storms. I'm wondering tho, how you would get to the roof for night gazing, ha!

Also BB you might be interested. I've been a reader of Garth Turner's greater fools blog for a long time. He has been right months and months and months before the idjits of the msm tell us the real picture. Once about 5 months ago, he told us to pick a house, any house, in the area we want to live in and watch the prices fall while they sit on the market foeva. So I did that. I chose a 3 bedroom bungalow on a river just east of Lake Simcoe, but west of Fenelon Falls. It dropped first $10,000, then $20,000  :o And it is still on the market. Not a thing to do with it, other than outdoors with perennial, stake out veggie garden etc.  Now I have mine eye on another, more preferrable, smaller unfortunately, but with some real funky angles, a proper good pellet stove and lots of windows, trees, and the lake literally across the one lane road. Only problem is, not enuf space for the grandchillens for sleeping, I would have to get all Ikea'd I guess.

Oh shite, I forgot. I've learned from Turner a couple of things, no not the obvious negative equity stuff, but that 'some' areas, London is one of them, where one doesn't have to wait for market corrections, or falling prices for a deal, because it has always been and will remain for another couple of years, the same stable, lower prices. It's just the way it is for some places. BUT when us boomers start truly packing up and looking for affordable housing, health care and all that jazz, then the 'place' will start to rise in prices. So yeah, I get what your saying about doing it much sooner than 2016.
 
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on September 06, 2010, 03:23:33 PM
Thanks for the link to Turner's blog - I used to read him years ago and just fell by the wayside. I think I'll start reading him again!
 
 
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Mandos on September 06, 2010, 03:29:28 PM
I had until recently some reason to visit London on a relatively frequent basis and can attest to many of its advantages. It *is* a bit sleepy but it also a small walkable city that has most of the amenities, and Toronto is a short and not-too-expensive train ride away.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on September 06, 2010, 03:42:39 PM
And of course there is a seniors' discount for the oldsters, Mandos. :geezera VIA is one of the few discounts here that starts at age 60 - though I don't know the modalities. (In France, everything does).

Toe, you are truly a country gril at heart - although I love trees and flowers, I'd be at a loss outside a city. I've never lived in a single-family house in my life, not even as a child.

I'm so sad, Toe, as we have to have structural work done, so all the perennials we can't move (we are moving the shrubs) will have to be cut to ground level (as if by an early frost) and they are putting boards over them. I just hope they come back to life in the springtime. There are all kinds of flowers including muguet (lily-of-the-valley). The patch of lawn in the back will be mucked up too. I'm not happy. :(
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: k'in on September 06, 2010, 04:53:43 PM
The "quick" Via rail train will get you to Toronto in just over 2 hours.  The longer one (that makes a few more stops) takes 3 hours plus.  It's a pleasant ride, and you get to miss the gridlock getting into and out of Toronto.

Boom Boom---further to what lagatta said, please get a home inspection prior to buying.  The first house linked seems to have had thousands of dollars (electric, plumbing, roof, windows, furnace, A/C) in recent improvements.  Would be interesting to know the back story.  The second house, cute as it is, may need costly upgrades. 

London has always had relatively affordable house prices despite having  a better than average employment rate.

Now, I hate to be a party pooper, but I know London well, and I just don't get that it's a bicycle utopia.  It's in a snow belt, plus  I can't think of a more car oriented city.  Unless things have changed very recently, public transit is weak.  Recreational/trail cycling maybe, but I'm way too much of a wimp to attempt cycling to actually get from point A to B there.

Re:  your CMHC mortgage - you've already qualified for your existing property so your mortgage is transferable to a new property, no?
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on September 06, 2010, 05:21:23 PM

Re:  your CMHC mortgage - you've already qualified for your existing property so your mortgage is transferable to a new property, no?

Gosh, I have no idea. I'm a virgin when it comes to real estate.  :embarassed
 
My mortgage will be paid in full in July 2016 - it's only slightly more than $300/month. Then I'll have full ownership, and no debt whatsoever - for the first time in ten years. The prospect of going into debt again and all the stress of moving simply terrifies me - but I don't know if I can realistically live here into my senior years, thus the reason for looking elsewhere. I'll talk to my local social worker and see what she thinks.
 
 
As for London - remember I'll be a senior citizen and probably cycling only in safe areas, not in heavy traffic. My rowdy years in London date back to 40 years ago.  :geezer
 
ETA: I had completely forgotten that London is in the snow belt. Are you sure of that? That would seriously make me re-consider.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: k'in on September 06, 2010, 05:57:46 PM
Quote from: Boom Boom
I had completely forgotten that London is in the snow belt. Are you sure of that?

Oh yeah.  I have some photos from just last fall from a London friend of the London peeps being snowed under while we were still waiting for our first dusting.  I grew up along highway #4 and "road/schools closed" was common.  The Mel Lastman "call in the army" episode in Toronto was a joke...puny snow compared to the majestic banks of yore.  Bring your snowmobile!

Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Toedancer on September 06, 2010, 06:37:42 PM
Yep, total snowbelt, weird huh? Think Buffalo and winter storm news. But they also get better thunder/lightning storms. I know, I know, I'm a sucker for weather. So be it. Personally I wouldn't move there, but only cuz I'm a country kid who thrives on silly moving life forms on riverbanks. Like otter creatures. Big or small I want to touch them. Freakazoid. Also, I just found out Cobourg and surrounding environs are going to getting big time nurses to single person, like 5 to 1 which is important for sweetie. But north of Cobourg has stuff to watch and touch. All I know is I'm giving my notice next spring. Sheesh, I better check, without a lease, going month by month, do I have to give 30 day or 60 day?  :confused
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on September 06, 2010, 08:17:34 PM
Where does the London snow come from - Lake Huron? Buffalo gets smacked because it is right at the eastern end of Lake Erie - actually the counties south of it get more snow, but they have far fewer people. That and the escarpment are why Buffalo typically gets far more snow than nearby Hamilton, with almost identical temps.

Coburg is a lovely old town - don't know anything about services available though.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Croghan27 on September 06, 2010, 08:42:24 PM
T'was driving my VW Golf back from the US of A one time when I got caught in some lake effect snow in Gananonqui.  Whereas the snow quickly was deeper than the tyres on my car-car it was quickly resolved that I repair to a local Inn.

Going downstairs to the grog shop I was, save one, the only person in the place. Naturally the two bar-flys recognized birds-of-a-feather and we soon began to quaff together.

My mate was the Director of the Lake End PlayHouse - and in his misspent youth, was a member of The Lov'in Spoonfuls. (Yes, I Believe in Magic :p )

Over some good dark rum ..... 'we sang 'bout every song that' we knew.

(He died a couple of years ago.  :annoyed )
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: skdadl on September 06, 2010, 08:50:00 PM
Croggy: Zal Yanovsky, (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zal_Yanovsky) owner of Chez Piggy in Kingston, which his daughter still runs?
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Toedancer on September 06, 2010, 08:55:15 PM
Where does the London snow come from - Lake Huron? Buffalo gets smacked because it is right at the eastern end of Lake Erie - actually the counties south of it get more snow, but they have far fewer people. That and the escarpment are why Buffalo typically gets far more snow than nearby Hamilton, with almost identical temps.

Coburg is a lovely old town - don't know anything about services available though.

Lake-effect, so they say. Sounds reasonable.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: brebis noire on September 06, 2010, 09:10:57 PM
I didn't know you objected to snow, Boom Boom. Sherbrooke gets a good lot of snow, most winters. All the better for skiing - of all kinds. I will take snow over cold any day of the winter, hands-down, and even acknowledging the inconveniences.
 
I don't know how to rate the city re bike friendliness. There are cycling trails, urban and semi-rural (including around the dam-created lake in the center of town) all over town, a lot of green spaces, and traffic isn't too crazy. However, the hills make it a challenge except for the fittest and most committed. I try to cycle wherever I can, but very often the presence of a major hill on my trajectory will make me reconsider...
As lagatta mentioned, public transit is quite good here, depending on where you live. And a lot of people enjoy walking to work if they live near the city core.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on September 06, 2010, 10:22:26 PM
I didn't know you objected to snow, Boom Boom. Sherbrooke gets a good lot of snow, most winters. All the better for skiing - of all kinds. I will take snow over cold any day of the winter, hands-down, and even acknowledging the inconveniences.

Yeah, my enjoying-snow-days are over. I even hate skidoos now - I rarely use mine except to get groceries. I had this vision of London as being like Vancouver - mild winters. Guess I have to brush up on my geography a bit - I thought London was south enough. I can't remember the winters from 1969-1971 at all. :embarassed
 
I had forgotten about Quebec winters in the Eastern Townships, too. Someone shoot me now.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: deBeauxOs on September 06, 2010, 10:35:30 PM
Quote from: Boom Boom
... I can't remember the winters from 1969-1971 at all. :embarassed
That's okay, Boom Boom.  Most of what I remember of 1977-78 is that I lived in a big house in the Gatineau Hills with a bunch of friends and that we ate brownies.  Lots and lots of brownies.
 :peacea :dance
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on September 06, 2010, 10:43:56 PM
Quote from: Boom Boom
... I can't remember the winters from 1969-1971 at all. :embarassed
That's okay, Boom Boom.  Most of what I remember of 1977-78 is that I lived in a big house in the Gatineau Hills with a bunch of friends and that we ate brownies.  Lots and lots of brownies.
 :peacea :dance

:rotfl
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on September 07, 2010, 12:41:08 AM
This question is driving me crazy: if London, Ontario is in the snow belt, then why the heck is it a nirvana for senior citizens? I thought seniors hated the snow. :confused
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Croghan27 on September 07, 2010, 06:26:33 AM
Croggy: Zal Yanovsky, (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zal_Yanovsky) owner of Chez Piggy in Kingston, which his daughter still runs?

Yes - I did not think his name added to the story, but that is him .... a very nice and funny man who I found was well respected in the area. (He "didn't have to be so nice ...")

I did not know that his daughter still operated the restaurant - I just (vaguely) recall a good evening with her father on what now seems to long, long ago. I certainly enjoyed ... "the great relief of having him (sic) to talk to....."
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Toedancer on September 08, 2010, 09:06:39 PM
For those interested in retiring abroad AARP has an article on the most livable, best places to retire abroad article.
 http://www.aarp.org/home-garden/livable-communities/best_places_to_retire_abroad/

I was watching a movie the other day and it was set in Italy (with Maggie Smith) and suddenly I had big tears running down my cheeks wondering if I'd ever get to rent my villa for 3-5 months after all.

Also Boomers Abroad Blog/Community (http://www.boomersabroad.com/blogs.html)
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on September 08, 2010, 11:11:10 PM


I was watching a movie the other day and it was set in Italy (with Maggie Smith) and suddenly I had big tears running down my cheeks wondering if I'd ever get to rent my villa for 3-5 months after all.


It's called My House in Umbria and I watched it a few nights ago - I've seen it before. I can understand the American guest getting fed up with Maggie Smith - she plays a lush and non-stop talker who also writes trashly romance novels and got rich from it. But I still liked it for the most part - the scenery is just breathtaking.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on September 09, 2010, 07:02:16 AM
I studied in Umbria (Perugia, a lovely small city halfway between Florence and Rome) and it is beautiful. Returned most recently in 2006, as I was interpreting there. Alas they had no money to send me over this summer, and I had no money to go on my own. Would have been better without so much of that annoying character. There is so much more interesting there - due to the "University for Foreigners" (horrible fascist-era name, never changed after the Regime) it has become suprisingly cosmopolitan for a smallish Italian city - you can buy African products at a stand at the market, there are Brazilian, Chinese and Middle Eastern restaurants and other commerces... There are far more interesting stories to tell, about intolerance and active welcome and integration.

Think Umbria has a higher standard of living than we do now - it is a "Red" Region, though of course the former CP is at best NDP and at worst Third Way - at least its heritage means decent health care, education and other infrastructures. I sure wouldn't want to be hospitalised in Calabria...
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Antonia on September 09, 2010, 08:21:35 PM
Quote
Quote from: deBeauxOs on September 06, 2010, 10:35:30 PM (http://breadnroses.ca/community/index.php/topic,2942.msg187629.html#msg187629)Quote from: Boom Boom<blockquote>... I can't remember the winters from 1969-1971 at all. (http://breadnroses.ca/community/Smileys/import/redface.gif)
</blockquote>   That's okay, Boom Boom.  Most of what I remember of 1977-78 is that I   lived in a big house in the Gatineau Hills with a bunch of friends and   that we ate brownies.  Lots and lots of brownies.
 (http://breadnroses.ca/community/Smileys/import/peacea.gif) (http://breadnroses.ca/community/Smileys/import/dance.gif)

I do believe we must have crossed paths in those years Boom-Boom.

Interestingly enough, I am writing about LSD and magic mushrooms right now for the paper.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Toedancer on September 09, 2010, 09:27:24 PM
I remember being interviewed by who? for an article about the Rochdale days. I lived there for a time, yes during the times it was raided over and over again. I never read anything about it though.   :confused

eta - oh shite, I should add, it was the Cook who gave me up! The kitchen was special  :p
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on September 09, 2010, 10:00:40 PM

I do believe we must have crossed paths in those years Boom-Boom.

It's possible. I used to visit Rochdale in Toronto during the hippy dippy days. And that high rise for radicals on Rideau in Ottawa that I think has become a senior's residence - I moved into it one summer.
 
I can help with LSD questions, but I have no experience with magic 'rooms.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Antonia on September 09, 2010, 10:16:32 PM
I was in Montreal, not Toronto.

As for help on acid, none is needed.  :groucho
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on September 09, 2010, 10:48:45 PM
(my ISP went down for a few minutes - I sent a reply, it disappeared)
 
I spent lots of time in Montreal - Ottawa - Toronto in the 1960s. In the summer of 1967 I lived in a Montreal apartment while at Expo - my next door nieghbour was a guy who called hisself Hippy Dippy (really) and I never lacked for dope thanks to him.  :applause 
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on September 09, 2010, 10:56:02 PM
Gatineau Hills closer to Mtl than Ottawa.

My misspent youth not quite the same - more hard political, but certainly outside the realm of straight.
Title: Aging well
Post by: deBeauxOs on September 09, 2010, 11:01:50 PM
Quote from: Boom Boom
I can help with LSD questions, but I have no experience with magic 'rooms.

'shrooms, Boom Boom.   :geezer
 
 
 
 :ducking
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Toedancer on September 09, 2010, 11:06:15 PM
Remember this thread? I can't seem to access it. http://breadnroses.ca/community/index.php/topic,5192.msg184946.html#msg184946 (http://breadnroses.ca/community/index.php/topic,5192.msg184946.html#msg184946)

Nevmind. Got it.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on September 09, 2010, 11:07:02 PM
I was reading Rolling Stone to keep up with radical politics, because the MSM was pretty useless (still is...). Most of the time I was at music concerts when not busy with skule, and doing dope much of the time as well. Those were the days. Kids these days are so conventional. ::)
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Toedancer on September 09, 2010, 11:09:30 PM
I was reading Rolling Stone to keep up with radical politics, because the MSM was pretty useless (still is...). Most of the time I was at music concerts when not busy with skule, and doing dope much of the time as well. Those were the days. Kids these days are so conventional. ::)

Yeah, kid can't even cromprehend that we smoked doobs in the back of the bus for hours before we were kicked off. Shows em eh? They are such wussies. Mind you we didn't have to scream 'don't tase me bro'.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on September 09, 2010, 11:17:25 PM
No tazers back then, but billy clubs. I got one in the ribs once at a protest. :o
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Antonia on September 09, 2010, 11:28:42 PM
There's a school not far, and a very cool laneway (park on one side) not far from that. Sometimes I walk my dog along there. it's a popular spot for the kids to smoke up. They always look at me defiantly, as if I am gonna tell their mothers. What I usually say is, ''Fuck that shit smells bad. Skunk weed. Can't you get anything better?'' or ''Don't worry about it kid. I was doing that before your parents were born.''

I spent every day of the summer at 67 at Expo. Still have my passport. Where was your apartment, Boom Boom?

And Lagatta, I too was political. I even was part of the McGill Francais movement. I think back and laugh at myself. Not about Vietnam or Amchitka though.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amchitka#Milrow_and_Cannikin_tests (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amchitka#Milrow_and_Cannikin_tests)
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on September 09, 2010, 11:40:32 PM
I spent every day of the summer at 67 at Expo. Still have my passport. Where was your apartment, Boom Boom?

Somewhere in Montreal, as I recall. :ducking
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Antonia on September 09, 2010, 11:45:45 PM
 :cluebat

Why were you there?
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on September 09, 2010, 11:48:16 PM
 :))
 
My brother was painting one of the Expo pavillions, and I got in with him as his 'helper'. 8) 
 
 
 
 
ETA: Speaking of 1967, I still have a bunch of Centennial one dollar bills in mint condition, and an earlier Diefenbuck somewhere.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Antonia on September 10, 2010, 12:38:22 AM
I'm reading a Walrus piece on the history of LSD. This paragraph made me crack up.

Quote
Eating, too, would be an enormous problem. After meeting up with my   similarly dosed pal that October evening in Winnipeg, we walked to a   large park, where we sat like fakirs in the darkness, listening to the   potent silence of the woods, listening to acorns occasionally falling to   the leafy floor with a startling crash. Eventually we decided it would   be a good idea to get something to chow down on. This turned out to be   not so much a bad idea as a very complicated one. Under lurid   fluorescent lights, surrounded by strange people, it took enormous   concentration to deal with the simple fact that the world contained   something as bizarre as pizza, and that one was expected to eat it. Each   bite seemed to contain so much flavour that I sat walleyed for long   minutes, trying to process the information contained in a morsel of   pepperoni the size of an asterisk.

http://www.walrusmagazine.com/articles/2007.06-society-peaking-on-the-prairies/4/ (http://www.walrusmagazine.com/articles/2007.06-society-peaking-on-the-prairies/4/)
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: skdadl on September 10, 2010, 06:37:39 AM
I'm reading a Walrus piece on the history of LSD. This paragraph made me crack up.

Quote
This turned out to be   not so much a bad idea as a very complicated one.


 :)) I can grok that. 

I never dropped acid -- I think I'm a couple years too old for the full experience of psychedelia, was working full-time by 1968 -- but many's the happy smoke we used to have. I still remember the night in Vancouver in 1967 when I was sitting on a fat couch and listening to Sergeant Pepper with friends, thinking to m'self "Gee, I still don't get grass; it's just not doing anything for me," and then I started to sink into the couch, deeper and deeper and deeper, listening to that final chord -- I mean, I just kept sinking, like forever, and then (I'm told) I started to smile beatifically at the whole world ... and then I fell asleep. My friends just kind of folded me up (I'm told), and after that I was hooked for a few years.

Great as grass is, I was tragically already an ordinary smoker, and as many addicts like me will tell you, there's just no competition, at least if you want to get any work done. What an obscenity, though, that people go to jail for smoking dope, for doing anything that uplifts or comforts.  :annoyed

Toe and Boom Boom, I didn't get to Toronto until 1971, when Rochdale was already turning a bit sour and, just down the street, Yorkville was becoming gentrified almost overnight. I knew some of the people who'd helped to start Rochdale, like Dennis Lee, and they were already detaching. One of the first books I worked on was an update of Clay Ruby and Paul Copeland's legal guide for street people (and there was a similar medical guide I worked on about STDs), but they were already becoming high-powered and respectable (gosh, but I had such a crush on Paul Copeland). That was the year I started to realize that the party was over. Och, weel -- it was fun while it lasted.

Oh, and the demos: just before the G20, there was a discussion at babble about taking kids to demos, and I chimed in briefly at one point to agree with Michelle (whose kid I have marched with) that it is often a hopeful sign when you see families joining in the marches, parents with kids in strollers -- that's when you know you've reached the tipping point, and we saw that happen in the late sixties. But then a (much younger) woman who I think is on the rabble staff appeared to wag a finger at me. I understood her point: she's a young mother, and the G20 was shaping up to be threatening, so she's probably right that you don't take kids into a situation like that, not unless you've got a million other people to stand by you, and we know that that hasn't happened in Canada yet. But it was the way she put it that gave me a jolt -- she seemed to be lecturing me on how much more dangerous demos are now than those cute rallies us li'l ole peeps had in the late sixties. I read that and gaped. Sheesh, kid: I went to demos then; I go to demos now; some always have been really rough and some always have been pretty limp, but in the late sixties there was real fear on the streets because people really were ready to act. Now there's fear on the streets because people are depressed or in hiding.

Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on September 10, 2010, 08:14:19 AM
I never dropped acid -- I think I'm a couple years too old for the full experience of psychedelia, was working full-time by 1968 -- but many's the happy smoke we used to have.

My drug experience was a short one, just from 1967 to 1970, because the scene turned ugly (think Altamont) and I would be job hunting soon. Psychedelics just lost their appeal for me, as they did for most baby boomers at the end of the 1960s.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Croghan27 on September 10, 2010, 08:24:30 AM
I never dropped acid -- I think I'm a couple years too old for the full experience of psychedelia, was working full-time by 1968 -- but many's the happy smoke we used to have.

My drug experience was a short one, just from 1967 to 1970, because the scene turned ugly (think Altamont) and I would be job hunting soon. Psychedelics just lost their appeal for me, as they did for most baby boomers at the end of the 1960s.

Very good point, Boom Boom .... I spent several years in a drug filled haze .... and never really gave it up ..... it just did not seem appropriate any more ....  :confused so I stopped.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on September 10, 2010, 08:34:41 AM
I'm some years to slightly younger than most of the people joining in here (dunno about Toe, we might be the same age) so some of the dope scene had already begun to sour - I remember ODs among kids I studied with. I did smoke a bit of dope, no acid or anything hard. Smoked on and off quite a bit later as it had just become accepted to a large extent in Québec, but it was never a big thing for me. Certainly protested any stupid laws against it. Now wine...

As for demos, sure there are always children and babies on the May Day marches, but those are largely ritual. There were lots of children on the huge antiwar protests in the leadup to the war on Iraq - those demos counted up to 200,000 people so you just got every type of person, young to old, alternative to M et Mme tout-le-monde, whatever ethnicity (obviously Middle-Eastern people were overrepresented). The large demonstration against the G20 in Québec City had lots of families too. But many of the "antiglobalization" demos are risky - there has been a lot of violence and arbitrary arrests. Of course, over the years I've seen, experienced and been affected by (clubbed, gassed) during union struggles as well.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on September 10, 2010, 08:58:19 AM
I don't think we see a 1960's style generation gap between parents and kids today.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: brebis noire on September 10, 2010, 09:11:32 AM
I have a copy of Go Ask Alice in my library somewhere. If that doesn't scare someone off even trying drugs, I don't know what will - true story or not.
 
And I like to regale my kids with stories of the 60s  - second-hand, évidemment - back when kids rebelled against their parents and wore their hair long as a statement. The generation gap is already two generations removed from them; it was already only theoretical for me, though I could understand why it happened, as my parents were the age of parents of Boomers and my brothers were at the tail end of relevant teenage rebellion.
 
Alcohol was the drug of choice for my peers, until the rave scene got started.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: skdadl on September 10, 2010, 09:42:49 AM
brebis noire, yes, I think that younger people ran into worse drugs in the 70s and 80s than most of us had known in the 60s.

When I was teaching, maybe 1980 or 1981, I had a student who came to me to talk out a strange experience he'd had with ... [hell, I don't remember what it was -- one of the rave drugs]. He couldn't tell me at first exactly what had happened to him, and I'm not sure he remembered clearly himself, but over the course of a number of conversations (over weeks), I guessed that some older guy had drugged him and seduced him. I honestly did not know what to do in that situation except to tell the kid that I would be his friend and he could talk to me any time. He was a very sweet young fellow and a good writer, but I think the drugs did something bad to his head, as, obviously, the crummy experience did as well. I lost touch with him after I resigned; I hope life went ok for him afterwards.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on September 10, 2010, 11:15:39 AM
I've been free of recreational drugs since early 1970, and had almost totally given up alcohol by 1990. I never truly enjoyed alcohol at all - wine tasted sour to me, hard liquor caused bleeding ulcers, and the taste of beer just never appealed to me at all - but on a hot sweaty day I like a cool beer. We don't get hot sweaty days here. All I drink is a coffee when I get out of bed, then for the rest of the day ice water, and a diet pop in the evening. That's it.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Antonia on September 10, 2010, 11:25:14 AM
Would love to add my history here but I post under my real name. So ...  :whistle
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: RP. on September 10, 2010, 11:35:50 AM
Same.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on September 10, 2010, 12:11:49 PM
I love wine (have taken wine courses and of course travelled and lived in major wine-producing areas). Don't care for beer (often even one beer makes me feel uncomfortably bloated) or hard liquor except for a few VERY pricy and smooth as velvet substances such as single-malt Scotch and some fine old brandies. They are a rare treat, which is just as well.

I can't remember when I last took a puff on a joint - it would be a few years back. I feel no need to be "free" of dope as I never was particularly into it - it was always chez des amis, and not such a big thing. I do distinctly remember the last THC-containing thing I ingested as a friend living with AIDS was making hash cookies and gave one each to friends he was visiting here. (Shhh - the Feds' nightmare). I got really stoned on that - this was quite a few years ago, perhaps even ten.

The only substance I'm addicted to is coffee. I have cut back on it very much - have two 3-cup espresso pots in the morning  (a 3-cup is no more than an ordinary Canadian coffee cup) and no more unless I'm enjoying a coffee with a friend, in a café. But if I don't have it I do feel out of sorts.

There are many, many things I'm far more worried about in terms of health. Main one being somewhat overweight, though I've lost quite a bit and got into really good shape (though the arthritis always looms) by stepping up the cycling. Thinking how I'll keep in shape and avoid winter weight gain...

Edited to add: On the subject of la Marijuana, in Amsterdam and elsewhere in the Netherlands, a lot of the famed "coffeeshops" - devoted above all to joints, hash and space cookies - coffee places are called cafés there - have closed down in recent years. They simply aren't as popular as before, except among a certain type of tourist. No suprise that a great many have become ... cybercafés. To each generation its drug of choice, I guess.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Antonia on September 10, 2010, 01:55:51 PM
Quote
Thinking how I'll keep in shape and avoid winter weight gain...

Crank up the music. Dance.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: skdadl on September 10, 2010, 02:03:34 PM
Edited to add: On the subject of la Marijuana, in Amsterdam and elsewhere in the Netherlands, a lot of the famed "coffeeshops" - devoted above all to joints, hash and space cookies - coffee places are called cafés there - have closed down in recent years. They simply aren't as popular as before, except among a certain type of tourist. No suprise that a great many have become ... cybercafés. To each generation its drug of choice, I guess.

I've only been to Amsterdam once, over Christmas-New Year's 1977-78 -- absolutely loved the place and the people, the most tolerant, sensible people I've ever met. It was so odd -- the Dutch themselves are thumpingly sensible, even moreso than Canadians, but then, anyway, they didn't seem to care what anyone else was doing. You could get stoned just by breathing the air in the centre of the city, but all these upright citizens did not seem to be bothered, just bought their food and their flowers and then went home. Total non-fuss culture.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on September 10, 2010, 04:02:47 PM
Quote
Thinking how I'll keep in shape and avoid winter weight gain...

Crank up the music. Dance.

As soon as renovations and gardening are done, I'll be gone for long walks - and when the snow is deep, using my treadmill.
Title: Aging well
Post by: deBeauxOs on September 24, 2010, 02:47:34 PM
Floaters seem to occur as a result of aging. I recall noticing that I had a bunch of them, but since I've been spending less time working at a computer, they have disappeared.

More information here (http://www.protect-your-eyesight.com/floaters.html).  It appears that pregnancy too as well as changes in health condition can cause them to form.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on September 24, 2010, 08:13:41 PM
Floaters seem to occur as a result of aging. I recall noticing that I had a bunch of them, but since I've been spending less time working at a computer, they have disappeared.

More information here (http://www.protect-your-eyesight.com/floaters.html).  It appears that pregnancy too as well as changes in health condition can cause them to form.

Thanks for the link!
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: brebis noire on September 24, 2010, 08:45:00 PM
Floaters seem to occur as a result of aging. I recall noticing that I had a bunch of them, but since I've been spending less time working at a computer, they have disappeared.

Meh, so does vertigo (http://www.emedicinehealth.com/vertigo/article_em.htm), as my doctor kindly informed me last week. I've been having episodes every 2-6 mos. for the past few years, they start without warning any time of day or night, for no apparent reason, and they only go away if I sleep it off. Note that they started *before* I hit 40, so I don't consider "aging" to be that much of a factor since nobody in my family who is older than me - which means everyone except the kids - has ever had a single episode. The good news is that benign vertigo can be cured with a series of head movements, even DIY at home. Apparently it's caused by tiny crystals of the viscous liquid forming in the part of your inner ear that keeps your balance (much like a construction level). They make you feel like you're spinning around. I had observed nystagmus (rapid involuntary side-to-side eye movements) in animals before, but it's not as cool when it's happening in your own head.
 
I had floaters for a while when I was in my early 30s, not getting enough sleep and doing a lot of driving. They went away when I changed my lifestyle. I can imagine them coming back if I spent every day, all day on the computer.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Toedancer on October 15, 2010, 01:31:09 PM
So this is what I had done today for a Pinser big left toe nail.

 Total nail avulsion, involves the complete   removal of the toenail under local anaesthetic. When the toe is   completely numb, the surgeon will remove  the whole   nail plate. This involves removal of   the nail matrix (root/s) also. (which is attached to the bone) The McMac students were thrilled.            Following the nail removal a chemical called phenol is   applied to the nail bed. This chemical prevents any subsequent re-growth   of nail in that area and also adds as a post operative analgesic (eases   the discomfort after the local anaesthetic has worn off). The toe is   then thoroughly irrigated to ensure that all of the phenol is washed   from the area and the toe is bandaged.
Repeat visits for fresh dressings are necessary to ensure   that the toe is kept free from infection. On average you can expect the   toe to heal within 3 weeks.
My anti-B's are 4 a day, always with something in the tummy, they are anti-bone infection pills, plus extra strength Advil. Reasons for getting a Pincer nail: who t f knows. Yes it is hereditary, but not with me. So bad shoes for too many years, which I can't figure cuz I've always worn sensible shoes. Bad neglect, umm, sometimes. Post-menopause sweaty feet inside bad shoes. Or deeper health issue like arthritis/join problems, yep that's me. So again who tf knows. I honestly did not know it was so serious, so I had planned to go to the farmers market and get some beef bones for the Spence but doc forbade that, so I imaginarily smoted him.  Foot up until MONDAY!!!!! 4 frikkin anti-b's a DAY!!! for 10 days and a dressing change on Monday.

Neighbour has gone to get me some devonshire cream, 2 bags of mini croussants, kraft dinner, more almonds, eggs and tuna, granola bars, soda crackers and gawd knows what else. Other nabe is going to come and re-configure the LR so I can sit in my own push-back chair and watch bloody movies for days on end. I'm gonna go nutso fer sure. My own physician also watched because she was fascinated with the matrix/bone thingie. Surgeon asks me - will you be very upset with the look of your foot when you wear sandals in summer? Before I could answer him, my physician laughed and quickly covered her mouth, because she knew I would say and I did after flashing her a warning with my one eyebrow that I can raise - "I couldn't give a flying monkey's Ass about the appearance of my foot in a sandal."  The surgeon said well if I ever was I can have a nail parlour constructed nail for 'special events' for pretty sandals.

Meantime I am going to the nail parlour every 3 months from now on and for the rest of my life so I don't lose anymore nails. And yes the other foot must be done as well, as the Pinser is already on the way, even tho I can't see it yet. Isn't aging fun?

The freezing is now almost out and I better head to my chair soon.
eta - And my big toe is wearing a condom, but that's not what the surgeon called it. I must say if what I'm feeling is even 1/10th of what a guy feels, they have my condolences.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Holly Stick on October 15, 2010, 01:36:23 PM
So do we now call you Slightly Nail-reduced Toedancer?  :p
 
May you be able to dance again soon.  :hug
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: skdadl on October 15, 2010, 01:50:01 PM
Gosh, Toe, I had no idea. Hugs to you, and I kiss your toe to make it better.

And blessings upon your neighbours -- it is just wonderful that you have people close by who will rise to the occasion.

Srsly, though -- are you saying that the nail will never come back? I did not know that that was done.

Forgive me for getting a bit gruesome here, but that was a classic torture technique of the Gestapo in Paris (and probably elsewhere, but the stories I know are from Paris WWII). Somebody would just pull out toenails with pincers, one at a time, as questions were being asked -- see story of Odette. Her nails grew back, though -- I guess just yanking them out doesn't get at the root?

People's nails do commonly get very thick and tough and brittle as they age -- it becomes difficult to trim seniors' nails without splitting them, which can be dangerous. I've seen nurses worry over that.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: sparqui on October 15, 2010, 02:35:51 PM
Oh what a horrible ordeal, Toe. I'm so sorry.

I put a lot of wear and tear on my feat but in the past few years, I have made it a point to get a pedicure every 6-8 weeks (no polish unless a special occasion). I just figure it's a front line of defence. I always ask if all looks "normal".
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: brebis noire on October 15, 2010, 03:50:46 PM
Oh, TOE!
 
Ouch. That does sound like a real trial, but it also sounds like you'll be well fed.
I'm sure you'll be amused to know that whenever something similar happens to dogs  - like when they pull out a claw halfway, or break it down low, or get a fungal disease that makes the claws all weak, etc - it's a huge deal. Local anesthesia usually isn't enough, except in the mildest cases (especially if we're dealing with huskies, labs, shelties, rotties, shepherds, spaniels...ok, pretty much everybody), and that's when I really appreciate the general anesthetic drugs that we can reverse quickly for this type of procedure. Incredibly painful, the poor dogs come in looking extremely anxious and trembling all over (just for starters) when I even glance at their paw. By the time they're on the table, most are going berserk and there's no use even examining it until they're under.
 
And having smashed my own fingernail a few months ago in a windowframe, still living with the consequences, I can appreciate what you're going through.
Follow all the doc's recommendations!  :hug
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on October 15, 2010, 05:29:47 PM
Can we still call you "Toe"?

I didn't even know about this condition. What kind of footwear can you wear? Thinking of that because at home now I'm wearing Crocs and fleece socks. I lucked into brand-new Crocs (red!) for $1 at a charity counter at La Maison des grands-parents. A friend who had a foot operation a couple of years ago was prescribed those.

I do hope this heals quickly, and that you don't have to spend too long on antibiotics...
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Toedancer on October 15, 2010, 05:57:58 PM
I'm high on Advil now. You can call me No-Nail Toe. Yes it is permanent, unless the matrix is not all gone. 3-4% is a fail. I'm not going to read about Odette, just yet. Poor thing. Poor Doggies, Poor Me. I'm already sick of tellie and now I've 2 books on the go. One is a Stephen King, the size of an encyclopedia (The Dome), which I'm going to be as well if I don't stop eating the pistachios.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: skdadl on October 19, 2010, 08:37:27 AM
One of my knees is wonky this a.m. -- makes it somewhat difficult to walk, especially to do stairs. It'll work itself out in a while, I'm guessing, but a reminder of what happened to my mum.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on October 19, 2010, 11:09:49 AM
skdadl, I had that a few years ago, and have improved it significantly with exercise. You really must find exercises that will strengthen your leg muscles and help the wonky joint. One good thing for joints is the whole family of exercises including Tai Chi amd Qi Gong. There is a large group of Vietnamese seniors at Centre Lajeunesse that does these graceful but demanding exercises every morning, and they have been joined by "non-Vietnamese" - "QuébécoisES de souche", Haitians and others. That is a community centre with low-cost activities near my place.

And of course cycling is good for them leg muscles and for balance...
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Antonia on October 19, 2010, 02:30:41 PM
You must strengthen the quads.

Do wall squats.
Title: Aging well
Post by: deBeauxOs on December 01, 2010, 12:45:52 PM
10 Types of Dementia: What to Look For  (http://www.care2.com/greenliving/10-types-of-dementia-that-arent-alzheimers.html)

Informative.  My Dad suffered from vascular dementia, which can result from the narrowing of blood vessels, and thus poor supply of oxygen to the brain.
Title: Aging well
Post by: deBeauxOs on December 05, 2010, 01:07:25 PM
The difference between normal forgetfulness and serious memory loss, here (http://www.care2.com/greenliving/worried-about-your-memory-5-signs-its-serious.html).
 
For those who can't remember where they left their house key, as I often do, but so far haven't found them in the refrigerator.  (They're usually in the pocket of the last sweater or jacket I wore outside.)
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on December 05, 2010, 01:57:43 PM
I suffer from CRS (can't remember shit) syndrome. Yesterday, for example, I made a BLT, it was wonderful, but I turned around and saw that the bacon was still in the fry pan.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: deBeauxOs on December 05, 2010, 02:09:57 PM
That could just be distraction, or being preoccupied with something else, like trying to find the mayo.  Did you eat the whole BLT before noting the presence of bacon in the frying pan?
 
 :annoyed
 
I have a part-time job and I live with a cat, which forces me to a certain extent to keep a schedule, especially now as I'm giving her antibiotics every 12 hours for her bladder infection.  But if I don't focus on 'here and now' and let myself be distracted by whatever drifts into my mind, I forget stuff too.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on December 05, 2010, 02:22:17 PM
That could just be distraction, or being preoccupied with something else, like trying to find the mayo.  Did you eat the whole BLT before noting the presence of bacon in the frying pan?
 

Oh, yes, definitely. Then I made a second sandwich with bacon and ketchup. :))
 
That's probably not as embarrassing as when I left my Scottish Tartan scarf in the fridge for a day and went nutso looking for it. :o
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: skdadl on December 05, 2010, 02:28:29 PM
It's worth noting that early-onset dementia (diagnosed before age 65 -- not the same thing as "early stages," which can occur any time after that) is believed to be genetic because of high correlations within families. It accounts for a relatively small minority of cases, but it certainly happens -- Alzheimer's original study was of a woman diagnosed in her forties, and for a long time, that was how the term was applied -- to what are now called early-onset cases. Only in the 1970s did studies begin to demonstrate that the process turns into the same thing once it starts going, at any age -- until then, older people were said to have senile dementia.
Title: Aging well
Post by: deBeauxOs on December 05, 2010, 02:34:49 PM
... That's probably not as embarrassing as when I left my Scottish Tartan scarf in the fridge for a day and went nutso looking for it.
Did you put it there to teach it a lesson?  :p   Or was it keeping the haggis company?
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: sparqui on December 05, 2010, 02:53:27 PM
Oh dear, Boom Boom.

My mother was the queen of distraction. She once stepped into a police cruiser during a snowstorm and called out her address, thinking that it was a cab. Another time, she bused it all the way home from work and fumbled with her keys, not understanding why they didn't work. Sure enough she was wearing her boss' gabardine trench coat, not her own. The truly fascinating part is that her boss was a good 8 inches taller.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on December 05, 2010, 03:20:58 PM
Did you put it there to teach it a lesson?  :p   Or was it keeping the haggis company?

 :)) :)) :)) :))
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Antonia on December 05, 2010, 04:34:15 PM
I must be getting old. I am eating lunch and the only thing I wanted was soup and toast with Marmite. (Gardennay Roasted Pepper and Black Bean soup.)
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Croghan27 on December 06, 2010, 06:34:22 AM
When my heart was really working out (or not, whatever the case) it would fade in and out of reality. One time, living just of Queen Street in Toronto I went for  a walk toward downtown to see some friends.
 
Unfortunately the walk extended for several miles as I could not come up with a reason to stop walking.  I eventually strolled from east of the Don Valley as far as Mississauga before the darkness made me question what I was doing there?  :confused
 
The was not enough blood reaching my brain for me to fully comprehend what was happening. To complicate this it was dependent upon the clot load that was restricting this oxygen - so often I was what passes for normal, I had a job moving pianos at the time.
 
Then it would return again and stairs would be a major barricade.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on January 24, 2011, 09:22:15 AM
Dang. Was just talking to The Boss and discovered that the life insurance policy The Mob took out on me in 1980 was 'term', not 'whole life'. In other words, it cancels out when I turn 65. Son of a gun! I have two beneficiaries I really wanted to leave something to - now they don't get anything unless I kick the bucket before I turn 65. I'm going to see if I can convert 'term' to 'whole life'. Anyone have experience with this?
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: sparqui on January 24, 2011, 11:54:12 AM
That seems like a total rip-off, Boom Boom. I'm hoping whatever it is I have from the Civil Service is not structured like that. I hate dealing with insurance and pension matters.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on January 24, 2011, 12:02:04 PM
The way it was explained to me was that "...all term insurance cancels at age 65. Only whole life pays after 65. My policy would have been term. Very common."
 
I didn't know it was term insurance. It was an employment benefit - which ends when employment ends. I'm trying to see if I can convert it into whole life, in other words, I'll pay whatever premiums are required, not the company, after age 65.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on November 15, 2011, 08:12:35 PM
Anyone have knowledge or experience with Home Care? The social worker in this district has been trying to get me interested in accepting Home Care. I said my main need is to get someone to shovel the snow off my bridge in the winter - I have a snowblower for the driveway, but I'm a heart attack risk for shovelling heavy snow off the bridge and steps. The only solution so far is to ask local young people to take it on for the winter. I'm not sure what Home Care involves - all I got out of the social worker was that a few hot meals each week would be provided, but I'm already doing that without any problems at all. Oh - and house cleaning - I guess that would interest me, because I rarely do more than an hour of cleaning in the year. I don't get why house cleaning is so important.  :confused
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Toedancer on November 15, 2011, 08:39:54 PM
Well I have a bit of experience with it BB. So does skdadl.


I don't know anything about the meals, I prepared ev. House cleaning was all I wanted, plus cleaning out the fridge. I'm very particular about floors always being clean. I don't mind a mess, but dirt I can't abide.



One thing I learned about Qualified Nursing (when we needed that in the last couple of months) was not to trust the Nursing Org who 'promised' me our insurance covered it, after I asked about 3 x. When I was spazzed out and didn't do my usual 'double-checking' and all was said and done, it turned out I owed close $2,000 to the Nursing Org, because our insurance only covered RN and not just a Practical. When your in a middle of an ongoing crisis, you don't think clearly all the time. I sure as hell didn't need the added financial stress at the time.



Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on November 15, 2011, 08:49:37 PM
Dear Boom Boom,

From work at a local tenants' association (though this can also concern householders under a certain ceiling) the home care can be really adjusted to your needs.

Housework is certainly no fascist requirement for the messy. But we have seen several cases (including a lady downstairs from me) who are unable to keep an apartment or small house clean in a sanitary sense (lady downstairs had a fridge full of rotting food, since she was pretty much blind and starting to get a bit confused - not Alzheimer's or anything similar, just far more on in years than you or I are (she is turning 90).

If you want, some local young person will mop your floors, making work for them and a spic and span place for you.

You are really not in need of hot meals - in more populated areas, not just central cities but some rural communities that are more spread out than yours, the meal service is not just keeping seniors from living only on the proverbial tea and toast but also providing human contacts, and safety checks. There is a particularly excellent one in the southwestern Plateau Mont-Royal (just north of the McGill Ghetto), Santropol Roulant. They do excellent, healthy meals, delivered on cargo bicycles/adult tricycles. It is an important lifeline for the vulnerable of all ages (not just seniors, also AIDS, cancer, chronic disease patients). http://santropolroulant.org/2009/E-home.htm

And yes, important to make sure all is covered. Usually that is one of the better aspects of the Québec system, which has other problems.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on November 15, 2011, 08:56:47 PM
I don't need nursing care (yet...) just someone to occasionally check in and see that I still have a pulse. The social worker said if I qualify for Home Care, I don't pay a cent.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on November 15, 2011, 09:04:14 PM
Lagatta - excellent post - thanks!  :hug 
 
I don't know who provides Home Care - but I'm told it's available.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on November 15, 2011, 09:09:48 PM
I'm glad my thankless years in community work pay off!  None of these "aide à domicile" (homecare) provisions I mentioned have anything to do with what is usually referred to as nursing, nor do they require a nurse or nursing assistant. They are just services to make living easier for people who have some kind of special needs.

Of course this stuff can include nursing, but not necessarily.

I'm sure your nurse or whoever deals with this stuff can steer you. Probably just local people - strong young people for snow and floors, perhaps older and more skilled people for food if ever that should be needed. Remember, this provides them WORK which is sorely needed in a tiny remote community.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on November 15, 2011, 10:39:34 PM
I think I'll give Home Care a chance, because the social worker is adamant that it shouldn't cost me. I guess having a cleaner house and locally prepared healthy  food is a bonus. At first I didn't think I'd get along with the social worker because she's so young, but she has proven to be a godsend. She's the one who got me to the hospital when I had an allergic reaction to penicillen. If she can get Home Care for me on top of all that other stuff - well, hell, I'm not going to say no! I'm quite impressed with her, actually - on top of everything else, she also does speech therapy here on the coast.
 
ETA: I've put local people to work every year since I retiired on disability almost ten years ago - I've had two carpenters (home renovations) and a lumberjack (firewood)  do a lot of work for me.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Antonia on November 16, 2011, 11:21:09 AM
This is great news Boom-Boom. I bet she makes a project out of you.  :popcorn
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: sparqui on November 16, 2011, 11:56:19 AM
That is good news, Boom Boom. It's nice knowing that you have a compassionate young soul looking out for you.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on November 16, 2011, 12:26:46 PM
This is great news Boom-Boom. I bet she makes a project out of you.  :popcorn

Yes, I think she's doing that in good neasure. I guess I'm older and more infirm than I thought. I probably shouldn't mention my painful arthritis to her, that will likely bring her to call in the troops to make sure I don't have to do anything here at all.  :)) 
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Caissa on November 16, 2011, 02:24:04 PM
You should adopt her Boom Boom.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on November 16, 2011, 03:18:27 PM
You should adopt her Boom Boom.

Too late - I think she's already adopted me. :geezer
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on December 15, 2011, 11:36:21 AM
OMG!!!!  I got through the 20-page Home Care application with the very young female Social Worker, and one of the categories was Sexuality. The question that flummoxed me was: "Are you satisfied with your present sex life - yes or no?
 
I started to giggle a bit, thinking of the ramifications of answering this invasive question either way, and suggested we skip over this one. :pound
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on December 15, 2011, 12:34:00 PM
Especially in such a small place! Much speculation about whether it is the grocer, or someone on a church committee... In a large city, I don't mind answering such a question.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on December 15, 2011, 03:29:49 PM
There were other invasive questions too. She told me everything is recorded on computer somewhere. I guess for long term Home Care services they have to know this stuff so to have an idea what I need in regards to this service.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Antonia on December 15, 2011, 04:47:17 PM
I think a dissatisfaction with one's sex life is a health issue. But that's just me.  :popcorn
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: sparqui on December 15, 2011, 04:51:30 PM
I guess for long term Home Care services they have to know this stuff so to have an idea what I need in regards to this service.

So what does Home Care do for the sexually unsatisfied under their watch? I'm kind of serious since I think I once heard a documentary on Radio Netherlands re: providing sexual relief to the disabled. And we are talking progressive Quebec not bible belt Manitoba.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on December 15, 2011, 05:01:51 PM
This has the potential to be my favourite thread, ever. :pound  :p   :))   :popcorn
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Toedancer on December 15, 2011, 07:08:41 PM
So what does Home Care do for the sexually unsatisfied under their watch? I'm kind of serious since I think I once heard a documentary on Radio Netherlands re: providing sexual relief to the disabled.


WOT? You mean I'd have to move to Quebec for old-age sexual relief? And would I get a catalogue to choose from?
P.S. The answer is YES, well okay, not in Canada yet and so far only for the disabled, but fersure it's out there.
Zurich's disabled to get sexual relief http://www.swissinfo.ch/eng/Home/Archive/Zurichs_disabled_to_get_sexual_relief.html?cid=3229102 (http://www.swissinfo.ch/eng/Home/Archive/Zurichs_disabled_to_get_sexual_relief.html?cid=3229102)
Tackling the taboo -
http://www.swissinfo.ch/eng/Home/Archive/Zurichs_disabled_to_get_sexual_relief.html?cid=3229102 (http://www.swissinfo.ch/eng/Home/Archive/Zurichs_disabled_to_get_sexual_relief.html?cid=3229102)Services that Sex Workers provide for Disabled People
http://tlc-trust.org.uk/services/index.php (http://tlc-trust.org.uk/services/index.php)


Nothing for the aged, YET.



Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on December 15, 2011, 08:32:56 PM
......
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on May 18, 2012, 08:50:21 PM
 Test All Baby Boomers for Hepatitis C, CDC Urges (http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-05-18/test-all-baby-boomers-for-hepatitis-c-cdc-urges.html)  (US story)
 
Rising deaths among baby boomers from hepatitis C prompted U.S. health officials to declare the entire age group a risk factor for the liver infection and recommend that all of its members be tested for the disease.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Antonia on May 19, 2012, 09:05:41 PM
For reasons I won't get into here, I get tested every year.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on May 19, 2012, 10:51:05 PM
I think all boomers should get a bone scan. I probably would have found my osteoprosis sooner and could have gotten treatment before it got advanced.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Antonia on May 20, 2012, 08:49:41 PM
I think menopausal women get them as a matter of course. I know I started 12 years ago.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Toedancer on May 20, 2012, 10:23:14 PM
I think all boomers should get a bone scan. I probably would have found my osteoprosis sooner and could have gotten treatment before it got advanced.


I've just gone thru a wee medical crisis which I won't discuss here, but from now on I'm paying for a consultation with the private sector.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on February 23, 2013, 09:48:47 AM
Just saw this: Anonymous tip line to ‘rat out’ unfit elderly motorists unfairly targets seniors, critic says (http://news.nationalpost.com/2013/02/20/anonymous-tip-line-to-rat-out-elderly-motorists-unfairly-targets-seniors-critic-says/)  :geezer
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on February 23, 2013, 11:42:59 AM
It would be fairer to look at dangerous drivers of all ages. We do have to remember, though, that there are a lot of elderly drivers who shouldn't be driving any more as they are a danger to themselves and above all to others.

Of course the other facet of this problem is bad (carcentric) urban planning leaving many people with no other way to access shopping, services (including health services) and social life.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on February 23, 2013, 11:46:47 AM
There are probably a lot of young drivers out there who shouldn't be driving because they are a danger to themselves and others, too. They're the ones texting and using cell phones while driving.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on February 23, 2013, 03:15:23 PM
Yes, as well as the ever-popular speeding and even racing on city and residential streets...
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: sparqui on February 23, 2013, 03:40:58 PM
The snitch line approach is so wrong be it for this or EI/Welfare infractions. The potential for abuse is so very high (grudges etc). Enough rules are in place that a physician can issue a statement of whether a patient is fit to drive at any age based on medical conditions.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on February 23, 2013, 04:41:50 PM
Exactly, sparqui. And, here in Quebec, when you renew your driver's license every year (or two? can't remember), you have to declare any changes in your medical conditions.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: arborman on February 24, 2013, 10:27:51 AM
I hope that when I reach a point where I am unfit to drive I will have the sense to give it up.  I have great respect for my great grandfather, who at age 93 ran a stop sign then decided he did not want to harm anyone and voluntarily gave up driving.  (He lived another 10 years, most of them good).

Young people in most provinces now have a graduated licensing system, which is a huge step in the right direction.  I chuckle every time I see a flashy car or big rumbling truck with bass pumping out of it and tinted windows - all intended to impress - and then see an 'N' sticker on the back of the vehicle.  It's like an Armani suit with a diaper - completely undermines the effect.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on March 13, 2013, 07:07:28 PM
The RCC has a new pope - and he starts his job at age 76 or 77.  And it's a tough job.
 
In my circle, folks think of retirement around age 65.
 
Is there a message there?
 
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on June 14, 2013, 01:25:12 PM
 Got bitten by blackflies yesterday while cutting the grass, and slept in this morning - I wonder if the two are connected?
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on August 27, 2013, 12:47:31 PM
Am waiting for the Municipality to respond to an offer from me to donate half my land to the local 50+ club to build their own permanent place - with meeting area, kitchen, dining room, and washrooms. I'm giving the club my house and property in my will to do as they please. Keeping my fingers crossed for a good outcome.  :popcorn
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on August 27, 2013, 02:01:34 PM
That would be nice, Boom Boom.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on August 27, 2013, 02:48:38 PM
All available land in Kegaska is already spoken for, so it's a huge boost to the 50+ to get a nice piece of land free to build on. And there may be building grants available for a permanent senior's centre  since it's a non-profit.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on September 21, 2013, 10:33:20 AM
Will finally have my lungs looked at next week - this is an appointment made in 2008.  :o
 
Also have biopsies and scans scheduled for the other stuff - only had to wait two months.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on September 21, 2013, 12:22:31 PM
I'm glad to hear that, Boom Boom.

Are you going to Blanc Sablon or Sept-Îles? Yes, wait times for certain things have much improved here.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on September 21, 2013, 12:37:16 PM
Both. Blanc Sablon Thursday, Sept-Iles Friday. 2,000 km of flying for two appointments.

 
 
ETA: I waited five years to see a lung specialist.
 
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: sparqui on September 21, 2013, 05:26:07 PM
That five year wait time seems outrageous. Anyway, I hope all goes well for you, Boom Boom.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on September 22, 2013, 09:27:29 AM
Holy flying squirrels, Boom Boom!

Those unfamiliar with the Québec North Shore should look on a map...

Not as far as Montréal - Kuujjuaq (which I've done), but a hell of a long distance in little planes.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 04, 2013, 08:34:40 PM
I'm back from Sept-Iles - got back Wednesday afternoon, actually. With no help from our !@#$%!!!! excuse of an airline.
 
The biopsy procedure - I was told it would hurt - but I didn't feel a thing.
 
My immune system is almost non-existent so I have to avoid sick people (cold, flu, etc...).
 
Still waiting for biopsy results - could be 2, maybe 3 weeks.
 
I'm happy to be home, and not eating crappy restaurant food, because that's all it was. And sleeping in my own bed! God, I hate travelling out.
 
 ETA: the wait for the lung specialist continues (since 2008!) because the !@#$!@#!!!!! airline can't fly in the fog and my appointment was cancelled.
 
 
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on October 05, 2013, 09:16:48 AM
I'm glad you are safely back home despite your crap internet connection there. I do hope you can get to Natashquan (with a friend driving) soon to get some good produce at the supermarket there.

So much excess salt, so many additives in bad restaurant food...
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 05, 2013, 12:18:30 PM
The Marche' store in Natashquan sent us a grocery flyer this week for the first time ever - as a consequence of us now having a road and bridge.  It's 44 km each way there and back, on a gravel road, but even so some here are making the trip just to get better groceries.
 
The main store here has a poor selection of fresh veggies - and the other, smaller store had some better items.
 
I wonder if the two stores here can remain open now that we have the option of driving to Natashquan. Time will tell.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on October 06, 2013, 07:00:44 AM
I think at least one of them will, as a "dépanneur". Depends on their vice selection. Do they sell tobacco, beer and wine, lottery tickets?

44k wouldn't be a lot for many people in rural areas, but the rural areas I'm thinking of have paved roads.

Imagine that they have a decent range of frozen vegetables, which is important in the wintertime. Even here in the middle of the city, I always have at least frozen spinach on hand when it is out of season.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 06, 2013, 11:25:11 AM
I think at least one of them will, as a "dépanneur". Depends on their vice selection. Do they sell tobacco, beer and wine, lottery tickets?

Yeah, both of them sell all that stuff. And one of them is attached to our only restaurant, the other is attached to our only gas pump.
 
Dropped by the restaurant/store yesterday, and they were being kept busy turning away travellers from their washroom - the washrooms are for restaurant customers only. Those washrooms are the only public washrooms in our village. None at the airport nor at the wharf.
 
Question: there are washrooms at the school. Would those washrooms be considered "public" and thus open to be used by anyone - including travellers on the road?  :confused
 
 
 
 
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 06, 2013, 11:36:10 AM
I think this week I am going to attempt to drive to Natashquan for groceries instead of buying what I need here. Maybe I'll do this once a month - I'll have to see if I can do it, first. There's potential for all kinds of problems, though - flat tire on the gravel, hands too sore to continue driving, breathing problems (I'm using a puffer now when I get shortness of breath), and who knows what else.
 
A new taxi service started up last week! The driver lives across the road from me, and he's a great guy. Charges $80.00 one way to Natasquan. But if you call him from the airport in Natashquan to pick you up to go to Kegaska, he does not charge for the empty taxi to go to the airport. It's $80.00 regardless of whether he has one passenger or four, so if it's four passengers, then each pays $20.00.
 
I think the taxi service means the end of the airplane service to our village, though. I predict pretty soon the plane will simply fly over Kegaska and land Kegaska passengers in Natashquan, and we'll all be forced to call for the taxi to get us home. And, if you're a hospital patient and have to get to the hospital in Blanc Sablon or Sept-Iles by air, you will have to either drive to Natashquan or call the taxi to get you to Natashquan to make the air connection.   :mad2
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: sparqui on October 06, 2013, 08:44:20 PM
The laissez-faire market approach is a total failure when it comes to remote communities. We used to have much better access/service to Thompson and Gillam when Air Canada had regional routes. It made the smaller regional air outfits far more responsive in order to compete. Now that AC is gone, one by one, the small regional outfits are collapsing/reducing flights or disappearing altogether. And then there is the bus service, Grey Hound (Grey Goose). They are closing lots of their northern service even with public subsidy. Not profitable enough. :mad2

I'm sorry you have to go through such transportation hurdles to get decent food and medical care, Boom Boom. And I still hoping your test results are not problematic.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 06, 2013, 10:34:10 PM
Yeah, it's getting ridiculous all over the country in remote locations.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on October 07, 2013, 11:23:29 AM
Isn't that a roundabout way of closing those locations down? Some decades ago, Québec literally "closed" villages in the Gaspé (there were a lot of protests).
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 07, 2013, 01:11:13 PM
I don't know what's going to happen - hard to get local news here. The small village of Aylmer Sound - near Harrington Harbour - was shut down about ten years ago.
 
Kegaska, however - has a deeper harbour than Natashquan, and the new supply ship the Bella Desgagnes has had difficulty getting to th dock in Natashquan. Rumours have been flying that Kegaska would become the new main port for the Lower North Shore, but that seems a remote possibility to me. More likely they will simply dredge the Natashquan harbour and make it deeper.
 
Kegaska will probably carry on, experiencing death by a thousand cuts. Who really knows?
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 25, 2013, 07:38:25 AM
Off to Quebec City in a few minutes for more tests. The Tests in Sept-Iles were inconclusive, so another round of biopsies and blood work is scheduled. Doc said my bone marrow blood cells are abnormal....  does that mean I'm turning into a freaking zombie...?
 
ps: any spare brains lying around? I'm hungry!  :vampire
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on October 25, 2013, 08:01:49 AM
The food in Québec City is very good, but I don't know whether that extends to hospital food...
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 25, 2013, 10:53:29 AM
The food in Québec City is very good, but I don't know whether that extends to hospital food...

It'll be my first time at this particular hospital, so I can't speak from experience. 45 minute flight from Natashquan to Sept-iles was smooth. Some snow in Natasquan - not much.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on October 25, 2013, 02:33:05 PM
I read an article in Le Soleil (Québec City daily paper) about efforts by local hospitals to provide food that was at once healthful and tasty for their patients (and staff). The foods mentioned actually sounded good, but the proof is in the pudding, as they say.

It seems very cold here. I have put the heat on (only to 18°, but I almost never heat more than that - I hate giving $$$ to Hydro-Québec) and I'm freezing. I've been writing up a job application, so I haven't budged much in a few hours. I certainly have enough clothing on.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 25, 2013, 02:44:19 PM
The food at the hospital in Blanc Sablon has a Newfoundland flavor to it - which is fittng, as it is on the border of Quebec and Labrador (I'm right below Labrador). The food at the hospital in St. Anthony is quite good, too - I've been there a couple of times.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: sparqui on October 25, 2013, 08:59:19 PM
Hoping all goes well with your Quebec City hospital adventure, Boom Boom.  :hug
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on October 25, 2013, 10:17:37 PM
Yes, of course! Both in short and long term.

If you are up to it, there are a lot of little cafés nearby where you can have a coffee, tea, soup etc.

And very good pastry  :drool
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 25, 2013, 11:41:06 PM
I'm at the hospital and I have high speed at my bedside!!! :applause
 
Made it through the first round of tests okay.
 
Next tests at 6 am...  :o
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 26, 2013, 07:45:11 AM
Hôpital de l'Enfant-Jésus (http://www.cha.quebec.qc.ca/en/research/index.html)  (English research page) - where I'm at.
 
ETA: With all the blood they've sucked out of me, they should rename this "Baby Jesus Vampire Hospital".  :))
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Debra on October 26, 2013, 08:35:14 AM
Geez Boom Boom they are really putting you through the wringer. High time though that is a an unforgivable amount of time to make you wait for tests!


I bet high speed feels like being in a different era  :))


Hope everything works out well for you  :hug
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 26, 2013, 09:03:55 AM
I had a biopsy a month ago, and they found a form of leukemia that they've never seen before. I'm in kind of an isolation ward - I think just one other patient across the hall.
 
ETA: Actually they've moved very fast since they discovered abnormalities in my blood. What I have really waited for is an appointment with a lung specialist - I've been waiting since 2008!!!

ETA: Just back from a walk - there are 8 patients on my ward, but we're not allowed off the ward, and have to wear nose and mouth masks while outside the room - it's a sterile environment. There's an exercise bike - no treadmill.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on October 26, 2013, 11:09:34 AM
That's a bummer, in the middle of an urban neighbourhood for once. I guess that means you can't have visitors for now.

I suppose that is for your own protection, as they probably suspect you (all) might have a suppressed immune system, as these certainly are not communicable diseases.

Glad you have the high-speed! So, keep well and get well. You can do exercises withl little weights if you don't have exercise equipment. I have tiny barbells (oh, only 3 and 5lb, believe it is lb and not kg) but I dance around with them to exercise my bad shoulder. You can always improvise little weights.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 26, 2013, 11:11:14 AM
No limitation on visitors that I know of, but I'll check.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 26, 2013, 01:11:10 PM
The food at the hospital in Blanc Sablon has a Newfoundland flavor to it - which is fittng, as it is on the border of Quebec and Labrador (I'm right below Labrador). The food at the hospital in St. Anthony is quite good, too - I've been there a couple of times.
Could barely eat lunch - awful smelling roast pork with red gravy - hospital food from the 1950s. Instant mashed potatoes, boiled beets. The dietician came this morning and explained today's menu was set before I entered the hospital. She now has a list of my likes and dislikes so it should get better.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Holly Stick on October 26, 2013, 01:33:29 PM
I'm at the hospital and I have high speed at my bedside!!! :applause   ...


What are you waiting for? Look at pictures!


http://bibliodyssey.blogspot.ca/ (http://bibliodyssey.blogspot.ca/) has magnificent illustrations from all sorts of old books; probably the blogrolls have more.


I hope it goes well and the food gets better there.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: sparqui on October 26, 2013, 02:41:58 PM
Yay about the high speed internet but shame about 1950s institutional food. I hope they take good care of you even if feeding you well seems like low priority.  :hug
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 26, 2013, 03:03:13 PM

What are you waiting for? Look at pictures!

http://bibliodyssey.blogspot.ca/ (http://bibliodyssey.blogspot.ca/) has magnificent illustrations from all sorts of old books; probably the blogrolls have more.

I hope it goes well and the food gets better there.

Thanks for the link. I get the impression that folks here are dealing with strong bacteria - everything is sterilized to a high degree - especially the drinking water in plastic containers.

No limit on visitors, but everyone has to wash their hands.

And no hugging or kissing - and, I suspect, no sex. :p
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 26, 2013, 04:26:08 PM

http://bibliodyssey.blogspot.ca/ (http://bibliodyssey.blogspot.ca/) has magnificent illustrations from all sorts of old books; probably the blogrolls have more.
I like this time killer too:  Games For The Brain (http://www.gamesforthebrain.com/)
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 26, 2013, 07:42:26 PM
Supper was incredibly bad, so I'm using the mini kitchen outside my room. Doc says I can order out.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on October 26, 2013, 08:33:58 PM
That is awful, and I'm sure your doc finds the idea of ghastly food in Québec City of all places ... hard to stomach.

As you've seen from the list of 3e rue Limoilou businesses I sent you, there are a lot of restaurants nearby.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Toedancer on October 26, 2013, 10:29:36 PM
But sentate   gets more than ever one else.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 27, 2013, 01:52:45 PM
Update: The Menu I negotiated with the Dietician yesterday has kicked in - delicious lunch, very spicy meat sauce and spaghetti. I'm impressed!   :drool :drool :drool
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on October 27, 2013, 04:41:38 PM
That is great news. Perhaps that is why they keep their patients in isolation - I can't imagine Québec City residents standing for such shitty "food".
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 27, 2013, 05:28:51 PM
Mandarin chicken and veggies tonight! Very spicy - and delicious. :drool
 
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 27, 2013, 05:32:44 PM
That is great news. Perhaps that is why they keep their patients in isolation - I can't imagine Québec City residents standing for such shitty "food".

Exactly. This is Quebec, after all. But as the dietician explained, the standard menu ("shitty food") is served only until she meets with the patient and negotiates their likes and dislikes. I can't eat mushrooms and most shellfish, for example. I specifically said I can't eat lobster, and she laughed - and said there's not much chance I'll be served lobster in the hospital!  :))
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 27, 2013, 11:42:51 PM
Day Three about to start. Anyone interested?   :p
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Sharon on October 28, 2013, 10:09:33 AM
I'm interested. :-)
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 28, 2013, 10:22:42 AM
I'm still at the hospital ("Baby Infant Jesus Vampire Hospital")  in Quebec City. Will be here for a while. Had a CT scan an hour ago. Expecting my second bone marrow biopsy soon.

It's cold here, but we're expecting a warm spell mid-week.

I'm alone here, don't know anyone at the hospital at all, can't do verbal French, and am still waiting for visitors to bring banned contraband.  :p
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on October 28, 2013, 11:13:46 AM
With your computer, you can communicate, via Google translate. I have taught second languages to students with a hearing impairment, but it takes patience for the student to learn. (Probably modern software can be a big help). Hearing-impaired people are always lip-reading to some extent.

You can write notes - on the screen, too - like when we were kids at school.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 28, 2013, 07:31:50 PM
Chicken and rice curry tonight!  Best hospital food ever. :drool
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Alison on October 28, 2013, 09:47:34 PM
Boom Boom, make sure to add fresh fruit to your list of incoming "contraband". If hospitals in Quebec are anything like the ones out here on the west coast, fresh fruit is rarer than "contraband".


Great suggestion re google translate, Lagatta.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 28, 2013, 09:50:10 PM
Good idea. although I get a fresh apple and orange every day, and fruit as well as veggies are included in most cooked meals so far sine Sunday - with the exception of that pasta dish - but there was a fruit salad on the side.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Alison on October 29, 2013, 03:38:23 AM
A fresh apple and orange every day? Luxury.
When I was in hospital we had to get up at 4 in the morning and hunt for old tennis balls we would paint like apples and oranges in occupational therapy for the hospital gift baskets. You young people nowadays don't know what a real stay in a hospital is really like.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 29, 2013, 08:37:42 AM
Well, I doubt you are much older than I am.  I remember the 1950s hospital institutional food well. This is a  research hospital affiliated with the University de Quebec/Laval with 188 researchers on staff. The hospital dietician is a highly educated young woman with no doubt high standards for food.

Drat - I'm not making any medical history. The results of two biopsies are simply going to be compared at McGill.
 
ETA: CT scan showed everything is normal and in the right place.

ETA: Chemo can help my immune system recover, but first it has to make it worse, and then develop all over again.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 29, 2013, 12:52:46 PM
Lunch:  merlu meunière (hake fillet?)  with lemon and garlic mashed potatoes, carrots, diced pears. I feel spoiled. :)
 
Heart ultrasound an hour ago showed that my heart continues to beat - good news! :D
 
I have a good heart, but I think you all knew that. :)
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 29, 2013, 02:09:28 PM
I think I made someone's day today - I told the nurse I'd rather stay here than go home.   :hug
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 29, 2013, 04:00:46 PM
A page from the hospital where I am a patient that deals with the forum topic:

Centre hospitalier affilié universitaire de Québec (http://www.cha.quebec.qc.ca/accueil/index.html?no_cache=1):  Aging (http://www.cha.quebec.qc.ca/en/research/fields-of-research/aging/index.html)

 The activities of the Aging fall into 5 principal areas of research :
 
Area 1
Alzheimer's disease and other dementia
     
Area 2
Long-term care practices
     
Area 3
Organisation and evaluation services for the elderly
     
Area 4
Motor function, balance and aging
     
Area 5
          Vision and aging
     
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 29, 2013, 06:08:56 PM
I know you are all getting tired of this, but here goes: supper was Fettucine Alfredo with ham, absolutely delicious. I'm sure you'll all starting a line at your local  Clinic begging to be admitted to this hospital by now.  :p
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 29, 2013, 07:13:36 PM
I don't know if this is what lagatta was referring to, but it's good news in Quebec.
 
By next March, all hospitals in the province are supposed to meet new Ministry of Health standards for nutritious food. Some hospitals are ahead of the curve in implementing these changes. (http://www.cbc.ca/quebecam/food/2013/10/08/healthy-nutitious-food-now-served-in-a-quebec-city-hospital/)
 
 
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on October 29, 2013, 07:27:13 PM
My they are feeding you well! I hesitated to mention the horrific "food" you endured to my friends near the hospital - one is a hospital worker herself, though I think it is in a different facility, though it might be part of the same complex as "yours". After all, good food is a "Québec value". She must be taking her pension soon...

Boom Boom, yes, I'm referring to that, but there was a pilot project in Québec City and I read about it in Le Soleil. For some reason, I can't get your Qc Am interview to play - I'll get back to it later.

It was sunny today, at least here. Do you have a view outdoors?
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 29, 2013, 07:32:57 PM
All I can see from my window are other buildings - but there's a nice view of trees changing colour at the end of the ward.

All this good food - I'm using the stationary bike three times a day, 20 minutes each, to keep it off. One of the nurses said to me today: "You're looking good".
 
*blush*
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: sparqui on October 29, 2013, 08:32:31 PM
Boom Boom, you are a shameless flirt  8) I'm starting to wonder whether your meals are especially good on account of extra TLC.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 30, 2013, 03:56:55 PM
Boom Boom, you are a shameless flirt  8) I'm starting to wonder whether your meals are especially good on account of extra TLC.
:)) :p :applause
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 30, 2013, 04:03:00 PM
I'll be here for a while. Just got back from having two catheters inserted through my arm to my heart for injections of chemo and blood transfusions that start tomorrow. They wanted to start these today, but I need time to let this all sink in. My immune system is already very low, and they have to kill it entirely to allow a new immune system to start over again. In other words, kill all the bad white and red  blood cells, and hope that enough good cells survive to take root. It's a very complicated process.

Two catheters? I thought one was for beer and one for wine.  :p
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: sparqui on October 30, 2013, 08:50:58 PM
Keeping all digits crossed that you go through with this better than expected.  :hug
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on October 30, 2013, 09:41:23 PM
Yes, I can see why they are keeping you in virtual isolation, with no immune system.

I'm glad you had some good meals, as you'll probably feel nauseated.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 31, 2013, 08:12:06 AM
The doc was here yesterday, and said I need to start chemo asap. I asked what are the alternatives - she said "death within two months"

I wished I had opted for an Oscar Wilde response (Oscar Wilde, lying on his deathbed, is reputed to have said: "Either that wallpaper goes, or I do."  :)) ) but I got nothing.

I wish I had said "Two months, eh. Do I get a puppy?"  :p

So, not having the greatest comeback line  in the history of cancer humour, I opted for the chemo.  :o
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: pogge on October 31, 2013, 11:11:52 AM
I think you should get the puppy anyway.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Debra on October 31, 2013, 03:45:16 PM
Quote
I asked what are the alternatives - she said "death within two months"


jeezus that was direct! Hope it goes well.  :hug  I second the puppy  :dog
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 31, 2013, 04:58:29 PM
I think hospital professionals have to be direct because it's an extremely serious situation. But, yeah, it took a while for that to sink in.  :o

Pre-chemo and regular chemo are in progress now.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 31, 2013, 06:00:30 PM
The worse is yet to come, but supposedly at the end of five weeks you'd be back to almost normal again. Or dead.


Okay, I made that last bit up. Gallows humour. (http://rabble.ca/sites/all/libraries/tinymce/jscripts/tiny_mce/plugins/emotions/img/smiley-laughing.gif)
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Alison on October 31, 2013, 06:12:08 PM
Quote
I think you should get the puppy anyway.


Thirded! Pulling for you, BoomBoom.


 :dogwalk



Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on October 31, 2013, 08:56:55 PM

jeezus that was direct! Hope it goes well.  :hug   

Just did some digging:

As an acute leukemia, AML progresses rapidly and is typically fatal within weeks or months if left untreated (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Acute_myeloid_leukemia)

She said my AML was quite advanced hence the need for chemo to start asap.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: sparqui on October 31, 2013, 10:00:24 PM
Yikes, Boom Boom. I'm taking a deep breath and thanking the heavens that you're being treated.

A fourth for the puppy - even if it's just hospital visits once your immune system is up to standard.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on November 01, 2013, 07:14:00 AM
Yes, the same thing (different disease) happened to a relative - they were looking for something else. He is fine several years later.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on November 01, 2013, 07:51:37 PM
A friend in Massachusetts has offered to knit one of these for me (I have a few back home, but I'm taking up her offer because she's such a kind spirit) and she knows I will lose hair due to chemo:
Canada’s National Hat & The Origin of the Word Tuque (http://www.billcasselman.com/wording_room/tuque_canada_hat.htm)
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on November 01, 2013, 08:52:03 PM
That is very nice of her, but there is obviously no shortage of them in Québec City.

You have to make sure you get one that is both warm and not itchy. I bought one of these for a friend: http://www.mec.ca/fr/product/5001-785/tuque-en-laine-merinos-de-parkhurst-unisexe/?f=10&q=tuque
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: sparqui on November 01, 2013, 09:05:52 PM
I know it's extra work but a took lined with satin or something similarly smooth might feel even better.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on November 02, 2013, 05:18:43 AM
Kind of hard to imagine any of the commercial varieties made in sweatshops, but if the market exists...
 
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on November 02, 2013, 05:45:06 AM
Parkhurst hats (like the tuque I bought for my friend) are made in the GTA, not China. The working conditions there are decent, but I find the wages low to live on in Toronto (there were articles about it in the bourgeois press, perhaps the Globe?) The owners are Orthodox Jews - wearing a lot of head coverings - I think nowadays most of the labour force are people from China and Southeast Asia.

I have the softest cotton bérets, made by Parkhurst: these are sold by a shop here called Haya Kova with an odd combination of people "covering" for religious and medical reasons. They sell wigs as well as hats. They have bérets from small to large (which cover all of scalp and hair or lack thereof), but they aren't warm enough to wear outdoors in the wintertime in Québec City or the Lower North Shore. They would be very nice to keep a scalp warm indoors. They also make woollen felted bérets, of course. http://www.hayakova.com/

Lots of other places sell Parkhurst hats though, even the Bay.


Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: sparqui on November 02, 2013, 10:54:04 AM
I guess that should have read "tuque".
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on November 03, 2013, 08:11:35 PM
Been a difficult couple of days.

Was hoping for a hernia operation before the leukemia kicked in, but too late now..
More hernia pain, so it's back to Radiology.  They did x-rays and a  CAT scan last night, no idea why that's not enough.

Horrible hospital food is back. Today I ate a  piece of toast  and drank instant coffee for b'fast, and that was it..  Four more weeks of this???  Enough to kill the soul.
Last night I vomited for the first time in ten years - equalling Jerry Seinfeld's old record, then collapsed on the floor, received morphine prior to emergency surgery for an inflamed hernia, went through X-rays and CAT scans, was prepped for surgery, signed the DNR paper....  and then no aneasisiologist to be found.
Finally the surgeon just pushed the little sucker in causing me very, very great pain. But the surgeon was a blonde Venus, who  could get mad at her?  :p 
 
Whatever the long term prognosis might be, I'm debating stopping the treatment entirely and just let nature take its course.  With the assistance of lots of morphine, of course.  :p :p
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: sparqui on November 03, 2013, 08:48:26 PM
I'm so sorry you had such a horrible day and night, Boom Boom. Don't give up too soon, and certainly not based on the poor food. We can make arrangement to send you contraband delicacies to lift you spirit and appetite.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on November 03, 2013, 10:11:10 PM
Sadly, vomiting is normal in initial chemotherapy. As can be unpleasant stuff from the other end.

I suspect the disgusting "food" was a very bland - and scanty - diet to mitigate those effects, though they could have done better. There are other, gentle things they could have fed to you. Ask doctor or nurse.

Yes, I seem to vomit very little now; vomited much more often when I was younger (and I am not including too much to drink or insanely hot and spicy dishes).
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on November 03, 2013, 10:49:21 PM
Had conversation with a variety of people - moving from here to a hospice is simply not feasible with the chemo killing all my blood cells in the bone marrow, and my immune system at zero. As soon as I were to walk out of the ward as I am, I'd die. So, have to make the best of it. I got morphine this morning to lift my spirits and everything's rosy again.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on November 04, 2013, 12:57:35 PM
I'm glad to hear that. Of course it is your life and your decision, but I thought the pain and misery were taking over and you weren't thinking straight. I'm wondering medical marijuana might be helpful - a friend of mine who was undergoing equally horrible therapy for AIDS got access to it (he is much better now, some years later).You don't have to smoke it; it can be taken in other ways.

Have you spoken with your Bishop friend? I know that another aspect of your problem is isolation due to deafness (and as a result, not having learnt colloquial French).
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on November 04, 2013, 01:42:17 PM
Yes, the Bishop was here last Friday, along with a priest from Ottawa, and they were great at translating between myself and the staff here. I'm getting great support from everyone.
Supper last night was roast chicken with the usual disgusting gravy and instant mashed potatoes. When I lifted the cover off the food, I was hit with a big smell of really offensive body odour. Lunch just now as badly overcooked salmon filet with white sauce and chopped green onion. Truly awful. The Dietician a couple of days ago promised good things - I'm still waiting. May have to order out tonight.
It's a shame. A week ago the food was excellent, now they've gone the other way.
I woke up a grumpy old bastard this morning because of all the horrible stuff they're pumping into my body to kill the leukemia - but one shot of morphine later, everything is rosy again.  :p
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Alison on November 05, 2013, 03:32:51 AM
Marvelous stuff, morphine - you still know you feel like crap but you no longer mind  :p


I wonder if the food is just as wonderful as you were crowing about last week but the chemo is throwing your taste buds off. Think?



Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on November 05, 2013, 04:59:04 AM
I'm inclined to think that about the food. One could do far worse than roast chicken (don't eat the gravy if it is crap) or a salmon fillet, even overcooked, at any kind of institution. Remember the "mystery meat" from university?

Béchamel with chopped green onion is a very common pairing with fish here.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on November 05, 2013, 09:06:26 AM
The salmon smelled bad - like it has been the fridge too long, and was spoiled. The  chicken smelled like really bad body odour.
I woke up feeling good, much better than yesterday.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on November 10, 2013, 06:24:18 PM
I caused a lot of drama today. Blacked out due to a number of factors - intense pain (maybe from an infection?)  on my right side from head to shoulder, an over heated room, plain fatigue and stress - and hunger. Haven't been able to eat a meal in 5 - 6 days due to a constricted throat.

 I'll be seeing various specialists starting tomorrow. I'm  told this is almost normal for AML patients.

 One big shot of morphine later, everything's coming up roses.  8)
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Debra on November 10, 2013, 08:20:53 PM
keep it up Boom Boom and we will be taking you from this image  :spy  to this one  :stonerflak
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on November 10, 2013, 08:47:20 PM
keep it up Boom Boom and we will be taking you from this image  :spy  to this one  :stonerflak

 :p
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Alison on November 11, 2013, 04:54:19 AM
 :stoner :rockon
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: sparqui on November 11, 2013, 10:49:51 AM
I'm sure Boom Boom will be more circumspect about his narcotics use. More of a  8) dude than a stoner hippie. Hope today is a much better day for you. (http://breadnroses.ca/community/file:///Users/hobbsassociates/Library/Caches/TemporaryItems/moz-screenshot.png)
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on November 11, 2013, 12:25:25 PM
Day 17. Almost halfway I'd guess.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Alison on November 12, 2013, 09:03:22 AM
Well done, Boom Boom, you're heading for the homestretch now. :applause
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on November 12, 2013, 09:20:15 AM
Well done, Boom Boom, you're heading for the homestretch now. :applause

Yes, but  don't kid yourselves, still a tough, tough ways to go.  :o
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on November 13, 2013, 09:03:30 PM
Yes, of course we are all thinking about you and commiserating - not much else we can do. I have a cold; can't visit...
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Boom Boom on November 15, 2013, 08:15:11 PM
Been feverish these past few days, and with a hit of morphine, everything's coming up roses again. :p
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on November 20, 2013, 03:27:42 PM
Just saying hello.  :hug I know it's tough.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Toedancer on November 21, 2013, 11:28:48 PM
Boom-Boom thinking about you a lot.  :grouphug
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: pogge on November 23, 2013, 11:06:50 AM
Boom-Boom thinking about you a lot.  :grouphug

As is skdadl, who sends her best. (Had a phone chat with her recently.)
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Bacchus on November 26, 2013, 01:33:07 PM
Any more info from Boom Boom?
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: sparqui on November 26, 2013, 09:12:27 PM
I'll check on Facebook and report, Bacchus.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Sharon on November 28, 2013, 12:17:19 PM


Boom Boom wrote on Facebook just after noon today:

"I am too tired and too shaky to do any typing. So any time I will get someone typing for me I will send some news. Thank you."


It's been several days since he wrote anything at all so it was good to see this and I know everyone continues to send positive thoughts his way.

Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Debra on November 28, 2013, 01:22:16 PM
Thanks for posting this Sharon.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Bacchus on November 28, 2013, 01:24:09 PM
Thanks. I was a tad worried.


After Croghan I worry about long silences

Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Toedancer on November 28, 2013, 06:33:53 PM
Thanks Sharon.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: sparqui on November 28, 2013, 07:42:31 PM
Thanks so much, Sharon. I was starting to worry about the silence.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Sharon on November 28, 2013, 09:09:12 PM
You're welcome, everyone. I will certainly keep you posted whenever Boom Boom is able to update.  8)  (Isn't this the one he always liked?)


I hope everyone else is well.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Sharon on December 01, 2013, 03:53:23 PM
Boom Boom's latest -- early this afternoon -- was:


"the last few days have been hell mostly from boredom."


That seems like quite good news to me!
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on December 01, 2013, 06:23:57 PM
Yes, it does!  :hug :applause 8) :spy :spy 8)
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: sparqui on December 01, 2013, 08:17:58 PM
Boredom trumps pain and depression any day of the week!  :applause :hug 8)
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Sharon on December 03, 2013, 06:15:54 PM
Another update:  8)

"I'm okay. I think I might be here another month."

Even still -- sounds not too bad! (This was posted mid-afternoon.)
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Sharon on December 05, 2013, 03:58:24 PM
Says Boom Boom, earlier this afternoon:  "tough disease, this leukemia"



In the comments, someone asked if he could have books or was he allowed to have anything -- immune system etc. He responded:



"as far as I know, eeeeeeeeeeeverything is allowed"


Once again, I think it sounds quite hopeful.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Alison on December 05, 2013, 05:51:59 PM
Good news from his tone.


Thanks for keeping us caught up, Sharon.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Toedancer on December 05, 2013, 07:23:13 PM
Aww, he's going to be there over Xmas. Can we do something/send something/how?
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Sharon on December 06, 2013, 11:43:00 AM
Boom Boom has put up three short messages this morning.


The first:


"Am trying to come home asap"


The second:


"Monday at the earliest I think"


The third:


"Unless someone wants to drive all this way!!!!"




He's obviously typing awkwardly -- poor spacing etc. -- but I fixed it up for sharing.  He's probably one-handed with IVs and other paraphernalia.


Boom Boom has many loving people who comment regularly on his posts. Some of them are clearly from his town and others are from his other lives. There is some concern being shown about whether he's well enough to travel all that way on his own.

ETA: While I was reporting this, he put up another message:

"I'd rather die at home than a hospital when the time comes."

Edited once more (I can't keep up with him!) to add:

"just got clearance to go home sat, sun or monday"
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Toedancer on December 06, 2013, 06:32:22 PM
Thanks again Sharon, pls let him know we're thinking about him and I hope his village helps out w/ his going home and getting him settled.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Sharon on December 07, 2013, 05:12:20 PM
I can't really share all Boom Boom's posts from today as there are quite a few and they're all very impatient from a guy who really wants to go home, right now! He's asking if anyone is driving up, he's willing to pay; he finally said he'd pay the full fare for a taxi to get home.


His most recent post said:


STEPHEN ; I AM ALL PREPPED AND READY TO GO HOME TOMOOROW. CAN YOU DRIVE ME?


What can I say? I'll let you know.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on December 07, 2013, 06:33:44 PM
I confess this is bothering me more than a bit.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Sharon on December 07, 2013, 09:07:08 PM
lagatta, it's hard to tell exactly where he's coming from. I think his treatment is over for now and he's just anxious to get out of there. He does have a lot of people expressing concern and I think he will get a lot of help.


He knows that a lot of people are sending prayers and/or positive thoughts his way.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: sparqui on December 07, 2013, 09:41:53 PM
I sent him a personal email and he hasn't responded. I'm not sure whether his treatment is over or he is choosing to withdraw from further treatment. There is a response to someone where he states that the doctor said getting a clear pass is rare. I don't feel very good about it either and he seems so isolated, with no family or friends nearby to help get him home.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Sharon on December 07, 2013, 10:10:45 PM
I'm actually finding it a little confusing right now as he says the doctor approved him to go home for 24 hours. As that wouldn't really be possible, I'm wondering if we're missing some of the information.
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: lagatta on December 08, 2013, 12:05:40 PM
He was supposed to have two courses of treatment, and as he said earlier, go home (possibly) in between, though logistically that doesn't make sense.

I couldn't go visit him because of the quarantine, and I have a lingering cold (or after-effects of flu) so I wouldn't dare. I have friends who live very close to that hospital. 
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Sharon on December 08, 2013, 09:36:35 PM
Boom Boom hasn't posted anything today so maybe this means he's on his way home -- or maybe he decided that going home wasn't really practical.


I'll keep my eyes peeled for more news.


Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Sharon on December 11, 2013, 02:06:10 PM
Boom Boom's latest status -- posted early this afternoon says simply:


[Boom Boom] is HOME


I know everyone will be looking forward to hearing more details!
Title: Re: Aging well
Post by: Alison on December 11, 2013, 03:22:48 PM
Good news - what he wanted!


Thanks, Sharon.