March 1st, day 1 of my month-’o'-blogging.
March came in gray and damp and chilly here in Southern Wisconsin. Yesterday morning, it was clear and sunny and unseasonably warm. A strong south wind pushed fluffy clouds through the sky and made me feel like spring was just around the corner. My walk to work was invigorating. By mid-afternoon it was cloudy and alternately raining, snowing and sleeting. Still, it is March, and spring will come!
The cafe where I work has a wide range of clientele, and we get a fair number of senior citizens. Today a woman came in with family members, and it was clear she suffered from dementia– she couldn’t even remember what she wanted long enough to order for herself. We get a fair number of customers like this. There is another woman, a pretty regular customer, who usually doesn’t remember what she ordered– it’s often a surprise to her!. She sometimes forgets to pay, other times she pays but forgets that she did. The staff is always careful to let each other know when she’s paid so she doesn’t end up paying twice.
Seeing people with dementia makes me really think. We get the occasional customer who is clearly on his or her own, and I worry for them. Most of the people have family or caregivers, but I think about how hard it is for the caregivers.
I seem to be noticing a lot more of this. I don’t know if I’ve just become more aware, or if people are just starting to feel more comfortable bringing their loved one out in public (which is wonderful), or if there are just more people with Alzheimer’s or dementia.