Journey Through Dementia

Journey Through Dementia

Saturday, January 4, 2014


I had a great idea today.  I've been waiting for Judi Dench's new movie, Philomena, to come out so I could take my mother.  She has been telling me for years how much she loves Judi Dench.  She's seen every episode of As Time Goes By so many times she knew them by heart.  Of course, now I don't know if she remembers that, but she did show some sign of recognition when I told her I wanted to take her to the new Judi Dench movie when it came out.
December has been good for her.  At least the last part of it.   She has been more "with it" than she has in a long time, I'm sure due in great part to all the stimulation she's had.  It's not perfect.  I've found gifts from her in the apartment twice and when I asked her who they were fromshe answers "I don't know.  I don't know who has a key to my apartment.  They just appear.  I don't have a clue who leaves them."  (So if you brought her candy or a nice bottle of Claret, let me know!)
But she has remembered upcoming events.  She remembered when the house cleaners were not going to clean the house.  After a month of talking about it and wondering about it, by the time Jeri was due, she remembered she was coming.   She was able to hold her own in conversation, most of the time.  I was very pleased.
I was also very pleased when I called her two days ago and told her I would pick her up today and we would go see the Judi Dench movie...and she remembered it two days later.  Be still my heart.
Before I left home, we had a text from Jeri saying that, miraculously, she had landed safely in Boston.  Looking at the weather reports which predicted blizzard today, I thought she would be trapped here for another day, but no...she is home safe and sound and I'm sure Phil and Lester are very happy to see her.
So I picked my mother up at 1.  I knew that parking might be tricky and I wanted to allow time to find a parking place and to let her walk slowly to the theater.  I thought we might get a nice gelato at the little stand attached to the theater while we waited.
We got to the parking lot well in advance of the start time for any of the movies.  And the parking lot was full.  Both levels.  Full.   You can't park on the street and go to a movie because street parking is only 2 hours and movies are generally over 2 hours long.  I drove around and around.   There is a parking lot several blocks away where you can usually find parking, but there was no way she would be able to walk the distsance from there to the movie theater that was showing Philomena.  I kicked myself for not having Walt drive us down and pick us up afterwards.
Parking in Davis has become a nightmare, and the city only makes it more difficult.  No three hour on-street parking (you're supposed to ride your bike, of course, but not if you're 94 and if you have bad knees at 70!). And even the 2 hour on-street parking is a pain because if it is two hours, you have to move your car, but you can't move your car to just anywhere.  You have to be at least a block away fromwhere you originally parked.  So if I'm at one corner and there is an open space at the other corner, I will get a ticket if I take it.  i have to go farther.
This completely eliminates the possibility of having lunch and going shopping, "patronizing downtown Davis" like they always tell you to do.   It's the reason why I rarely go downtown for more than quick stop somewhere.
So it was a bust.  No place to park.  We just turned around and drove home.  I was disappointed because I can't take her tomorrow.  I'm hoping I'll be able to take her on Sunday, only this time I think I'll have Walt chauffeur us just to be certain.
And before you let me know how convenient it would be if I had a handicap placard, I suspect she would rather die first than accept something that says she is "handicapped"...but it also requires a note from her doctor, whom she had not met (the doctor she saw in May was a bus) and whom she is not interested in seeing unless "she has something wrong with her."

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