Ever Recurring Themes

GrumbleSmiles blog outpourings over the last eight years have been a loosely linked series of issues all related to my years of experience working with older people and my own Age Rage :-


I started writing about this subject not because of environmental concerns, but because you can’t unpack things !   In the interest of the longevity of products, particularly foods, everything now seems to be double or tripple sealed, which presumably gives it a much longer shelf life.   This is all very well for retailers, but it’s not at all convenient when you think about the longevity of some of their older customers.   Poor eyesight and arthritic hands make opening many packages a real challenge.   The temptation to use a sharp knife or scissors can make opening some packages a real hazardous activity.    Packaging is certainly not age friendly and in the long term, goodness only knows, what the waste plastic and cardboard is doing to the planet.


After a lifetime of accumulation and a reluctance to discard or waste anything, lots of older people find their lives surrounded by clutter.    Of course it’s not always called clutter, many things have sentimental value and are regarded as treasured possessions.    The problem is, it’s not easy to draw the line between what you really need and what is nice to have.   Therefore you usually end up with too much of everything.   Then it gets in your way.   You can trip over it, move it from shelf to shelf, stack it in drawers and cupboards, put it in the attic, garage, cellar if you’ve got one and generally just forget about it.   The trouble is, in my case, the clutter is on my mind, but I have been so ineffectual about reducing it 😤


Pills and ills are a daily subject of conversation for many older people.   The everyday aches and pains of old age are usually addressed with a tablet or two, or a swig of medicine or a liberally applied ointment.   GPs and pharmacies exist in profusion to feed this appetite for cures.   Whether this works or not, who knows, but we still keep taking the pills.


It used to be that “an apple a day keeps the doctor away”.   But now it appears we all have to eat at least 5 pieces of fruit or veg a day.   I guess that’s vegetarian inflation.

I doubt my blogs on these subjects have changed any behaviours, including my own, and I’m sure I will still be writing about them in years to come 🙂 🙂

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2 Responses to Ever Recurring Themes

  1. You old fruit! again dear sir you have provoked me into a thought or two, which will follow a little later?
    You certainly stir my grey matter, and fingers to respond on the keyboard of my laptop?

  2. Here I am full of enthusiasm and questions. I note the clutter, pills, packaging, and fruit, and your ego to challenge all the above?
    I attach my , this sunday comments for your consideration? and a quiet thought or two.
    I have no wish to enter into an in depth deep discussion as to the moral issues I have raised,Careact2014questions1
    Dear John, I need to gently rock, your rocking chair of the past years and your gleaned experiences of various matters within the ‘CARE Industry for the Elderly’ as you perceive the ‘For’s and Against’s points’ of today’s industry when gently reflecting, or basking in the presence/glare of the 2014 Care Act, and its many implications, as it is enacted.
    What follows are my personal understandings of how life for the elderly [Pensionable age], is to day challenging, and maybe on my part greatly mis-understood.
    Personal View Points.
    The government has through the Care Act 2014 empowered each local authority to have a duty of care for the well being of each of its registered resident [voting list/ council rate payers], and will pay for their care after a joint meeting between the ‘Resident[or their carer]’ and a council social worker, after a financial assessment has been made according to the said provisions of the Care Act 2014.
    Dwelling place
    The above procedure is conducted with out prejudice to the registered place of dwelling.
    My Questions?
    1;- if the resident is in their own independent registered address { say the family home}.
    I have no concerns one must if one wished care comply with the help offered by the Care Act 2014
    2;- If the resident is a registered client in a Care or Nursing Home? One has many costs and income streams, and help to consider- Who is the assessor of the and arbiter on what fees and income/assistance can be levied.{ Is it a Social worker? Or advisor from the care/nursing home?] What is the residents future if all streams of income have been exhausted-Does the resident become homeless or destitute? Is there a limit in time or financial as to the residency of desire by the individual.
    3;- If the resident is a dweller in a concept such as a retirement village? What is the future for each resident, should unforeseen circumstances of income and help, both financially and actual in practice cease/end? Again further points?
    a)If the resident is a lease holder
    b)If the resident is a ‘shared owner’
    c)If the resident is a social rental client .
    There are many connitations to these aspects as, the interpretation by the Social Services would be of interest, and would the Care Act 2014 require a novel solution in these circumstance.
    As I stated above this is my person take on some of the possible outcomes of the enactment of the Care Act 2014, and as the Care Act 2014 mentions the collapse of the ‘SOUTHERN CROSS’ Care Homes as one of the reasons for the invoking of this bill.
    One has to in life take educated decisions, from time to time, and as one approaches retirement, one does not have the ability or luxury of increasing ones earning ability to unlimited amounts. Personally my retirement decisions and residency where taken at the point of retirement age, and now would cause hardship to face unforeseen circumstance.
    One unforeseen outcome of these general discussions is that as one is asking under the Care Act 2014, the future of individual residents, and their financial income/affairs is do they have under regulation to have a valid will, with a possible power of attorney to ensure that all financial interested parties, including the registered resident, are at the point of death ensuring an amicable solution to the estate and debtors. as these questions can be considered in a matter of time as the Care Act 2014 as enacted unfolds.

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