Friday, February 24, 2012
A DAY IN THE PARK WITH ABUELA
We went for a walk today with Abuela (my grandmother). It was a gorgeous day today - I heard reports that it was 81 degrees! The sun was shining, there was a warm breeze blowing, and it certainly didn't feel like February weather. So we decided to get out of the house. My aunt and I got Abuela ready - sunglasses, hair fixed, tissues on hand - and then we took turns pushing her wheelchair the few blocks from our house to the park by the lake. We'd brought along stale bread for the ducks, if we saw any.
We finally found some ducks on the second wooden bridge along the path that cuts through the middle of the park. There were about six of them, lingering in the cool shade of some overhanging branches along the water's edge. But they came swimming right up when they saw us approaching. These ducks know that people often mean food.
Abuela was quite entertained by the ducks. I positioned her wheelchair at an angle close to the railing, so she could toss in small pieces of bread that I tore off for her. Splashing and diving, the ducks competed for the crumbs, to our great amusement.
My mom arrived after a few minutes. She had picked up our almost-99-year-old neighbor Elva, who's my grandma's buddy, and driven her to the park. Elva can walk with a cane quite well, but gets winded after a bit and has to rest on a park bench for a few minutes. When my grandma saw Elva, her eyes lit up. "Well, hello there!" she smiled, as Elva bent over to kiss grandma on the cheek. Then Elva asked if she could push grandma's wheelchair. "It helps me to have something to push," she explained, "like a shopping cart. It keeps me steady."
What a sweet sight that was, our 99-year-old neighbor pushing my 100-year-old grandmother down the path in the park, heading back home.