The day starts at 10 am with tea/coffee and biscuits. We then go into the lounge where our guests talk to each other, read a magazine or fall asleep :-) They also talk to us. They have some lovely stories to tell. It's all too easy to look at an old man or woman and see just that, as if they have always been that age. But we see the young girl or boy, the newly weds, men going off to war, parents raising a family with all the hopes and dreams that most of us have. We currently have two ladies who used to be midwives, one used to visit new mums here in my village in the days when midwives did that.
We also arrange entertainment. Once a month a lady from a music group visits, she has a disc player and hands out song books and our ladies and gents choose songs they like, we all then sing along to the music.
We have jigsaws, colouring books and picture making. Sometimes we play bingo, with chocolate bars as prizes, and a small group play cards. I've modified the game of Articulate which is good fun and helps exercise the little grey cells.
At about 12.15 we go back into the hall for a two course lunch prepared by the volunteer kitchen ladies. The menus are varied, with chicken; sausages; fish; jam roly poly; apple strudel; cheesecake. Today was meat pie with creamy mash, cabbage and parsnips, followed by rice pudding and jam, and finish off with tea or coffee, all for only £4.
My friend M and I have been helping for 6 years, H a bit longer and V about 4 years. It can be quite depressing and sad because over the years we have seen some lovely old folk sink into depression or dementia and eventually stop coming. And inevitably many have died.
But it can be humorous as well.
The four of us have made a pact that when we are really old we will look out for each other and not let us sit with our legs wide apart showing our drawers, or fall asleep with our mouths open letting our false teeth fall down!
I know that sounds irreverent but we have to maintain a sense of humour because we are painfully aware that at the rate time is passing we will soon be the waited on instead of the waiters.
~Be warm and well ~