TUMBY BAY - We’ve only got one pharmacy in Tumby Bay. I believe it’s been in the same family since it began.
The grandfather passed it on to the father and now the father has just passed it on to the daughter.
I was in there the other day collecting some diabetic gear: a box of needles for my disposable syringes; a couple of packets of test strips for my glucose testing gizmo; and my blood pressure tablets.
The young lady who served me went to great lengths to make sure I understood how all this gadgetry worked. At some point in the process I began to feel like a two-year old.
Something similar had happened a few days before. I’d rung up the government dental clinic to make an appointment for my free pensioner clean and check-up.
The lady on the phone carefully explained how to get to the clinic, where to park and what I was to expect at the front door Covid-19 check: how they’d take my temperature; how to use the hand sanitiser; letting me know I’d need to answer questions about whether I’d been anywhere near Victoria in the last two weeks, or had the sniffles.
Again I started to feel like a two-year old.
After the pharmacy visit I went home and checked the mirror.
I’m in the habit of growing a beard every six months or so and then shaving it off when I get bored with it.
I’m still bearded but it doesn’t look much different than in the past. Maybe a few extra white hairs. Nothing else.
I did notice that the backs of my hands are a bit more crinkly and the skin a bit thinner; products of a largely outdoor life.
The hair on my head is all still there, all of it. Maybe a bit thinner and more pepper and salt in colour but essentially unchanged.
My face has a few more wrinkles I suppose, but I haven’t got any extra sunspots or anything like that.
My eyes don’t look particularly bloodshot and my teeth, although tea stained, appear the same.
I don’t need a walking stick and at a pinch I can still touch my toes.
Clearly, however, I’ve reached a point in my appearance where pretty young ladies in pharmacies and dental clinics feel it is necessary to treat me like a child.
I’m not too sure how I feel about that. Their concern is nice I suppose but I’m not yet in the mood for mothering. I guess I’m flattered and offended at the same time.
Despite diabetes, which I’ve had for 50 years, and marginally high blood pressure, I feel as fit and healthy as ever.
I reckon I could walk any of those younger people off their feet if I wanted to.
My next door neighbour however is a different matter. He’s got about 12 years on me and often seeks my help on various matters.
He’s a nice old bloke, a retired farmer who likes to feed scraps to our two cocker spaniels when he thinks I’m not watching.
Explaining stuff to him is a nightmare because he quickly forgets what I’ve told him. He often comes to me with the same problem over and over again.
And it’s no use explaining to his wife because she is equally forgetful.
I thought about that after checking the bathroom mirror. If those nice young ladies think I’m a doddery old bugger what’s to say I’ll remember anything they tell me.
Maybe I’ll go and explain that to them.
That is if I can remember where I put my car keys.