Nice guy. Early eighties. Professional. Tall, healthy-looking. D was still with it. And he was looking for a job.
“Geez, D, I’m hardly the guy to ask. Haven’t worked officially since I was fifty-five and, to be honest, mostly faked it until then. Probably never worked a real day in my life ‘cept for building a house.”
“Well, I still have what it takes. Not full-time, of course. But a day or two a week. Need to keep busy.”
“Thought of golf? The garden? Building ships in bottles? Post-eighties is getting on, man. I should know, I am post-seventy and I’m practically beyond getting on!”
“No. Hate golf. And my wife is in the garden. Never been much into sailing. But I walk every day. A few miles, actually. I’m pretty fit.”
“Well, I’ll keep my eyes open but, you know, I live on a remote island and even with both eyes open, I rarely see anyone. But, forgive me for asking . . . you’ve been a successful professional all your life. Long time. Productive time. I mean, do you really need the money?”
“Well, yes. Yes, I do. A few marriages, ya know. And they came with extra kids. Some are still with me. And I’m still supporting a few.”
I immediately jumped to the image of the wife being in the garden . . . but he seemed sane. Then I thought . . .“hmm . . . maybe all three wives are in the garden . . .”
All that is really just a segue to my main topic. I’m getting into health care these days. No, I don’t mean drinking less wine or exercising more. I am NOT crazy! I mean volunteering in the community to help create a better health clinic. And, with that work, comes some information about the folks out here. The bit that I am focused on is the stats on our local demographic. Seems 46% of the local population is over sixty-five. Practically half the people out here are old!
And that has ramifications for health care. Worse, our ‘cohort’ is poor, having less income than the average BC’er by far. And we drink and smoke, too. Seems I’m living in a poor section of the wilderness with a lot of old people with bad habits. No wonder fit 80 plus year-olds are looking for work; they’re the labour pool!
If anyone asks, I guess I’ll just refer them to him, but I kinda feel obliged to check out his garden first. Just how does his garden grow? Maybe I’ll go check while he is on one of his long walks.