My American grandmother turned 100 this week. I don't think that I have ever personally known someone who is 100. She lives in a private home with a few other elderly people and there have been more than a few that have come and gone since she has been at this facility.
It amazes me that she has known me all of my life and I remember living in the apartment above hers. It was to her home that I went when my parents brought me home from the hospital. Back then, Grandpa was alive also, and he would drink Pepsi with salt and sit in the backyard among the fruit trees listening to baseball on the radio. Grandma would babysit me sometimes and would bake woderful applesauce cake.
We moved away from there when I was five, but we continued to keep in touch and I would go and visit Grandma on Saturdays sometimes if my parents had to work. Then, she would cook me scrambled eggs and we would play games together. Grandma drove a big Lincoln and would have to sit on two pillows to see over the steering wheel. It was in this car that she took me to buy my first Bible. She would also call on nights that Billy Graham was on TV to tell us to watch.
As I got older still, we would go and visit sometimes. She came to my high school graduation, and we went to see her after my undergraduate graduation. Then, it came time to sell her house because it needed a great deal of work and she was getting older and could not really manage it anymore. She moved to a retirement home that was near where we lived, and I would run errands for her and sometimes she would go with me to the store. She had bought a smaller sedan by then and would drive it around the complex where she lived.
I believe that the last time that she went back home, I took her. We went to the cemetary and saw her parents' graves as well as some other family members. We had lunch with some relatives and went to see her aunt who was close to 100 by then also. That was a great time being on the road with grandma and doing something that she really wanted to do and was not able to do on her own. We tried to make plans to go again the next summer, but it didn't work out because Grandma would work herself up and get too excited about the trip and get sick.
She eventually moved to a better place farther away from us. We still see her from time to time mostly on holidays and in the summer. We can't call her anymore because she cannot hear us on the telephone. Sometimes when we don't go for awhile because we all have to be healthy to go and she says that she was not sure that she would see us again. I think that is life at 100. You go through your daily routine, but you wait for your family to visit and call.
Remember to always keep in touch with those that you love...
PS She got about 140 cards for her 100th birthday.