Travelling with Elderly

Hi there,

If you could still recall a post I made about an engagement, yep, this is the subsequent post I promised.

As I’ve mentioned, I traveled with two dependent elderly. It wasn’t easy and very tiring but just like a mother who feels only joy at the birth of her child, I did too when my granny was all smiling.

It was not easy to get my granny out of her house. She worried too much of her hens.  roosters and of course her house. Somehow, she agreed to join us. My mom, uncles and aunties were of course very happy. They can now have a proper family outing after so many years.

Well, of course they had to think a step ahead just to ensure that my granny had fun. So here are some few tricks when travelling with elderly:

  1. Sweaters, thick clothes, socks
    • Especially if you’re riding an airplane, the airport could be a wee bit too chilly for them. You wouldn’t want them to catch a cold. At first they mightn’t feel cold but they’ll thank you later.
  2. Sweets, snacks, water
    • Just like babies, they might experience ear discomfort during the take off. Prepare something for them to suck such as sweets or whatever it is that match their likings.
  3. Diapers, tissue
    • More often than not, they were too embarrassed or find it too difficult to answer the nature’s call. So they held it in and in a matter of time, they’ll find it a little too late. So, before travelling, it is highly encouraged if you could familiarise and train nana and poppa to wear the diapers.
  4. Wheelchair
    • Some elderly still have their ego in them. They might reject the idea of bringing it to everywhere they go. Take my word, JUST BRING IT. We had the experience of wanting to bring it and told not to. What happened next was as we predicted. Luckily we brought one wheelchair because my nanny obviously understood that it would be more than just a brisk walk. In the end, they had to share the wheelchair – we had to make 2 trips to get back to our car.
  5. Elderly-friendly Accomodation
    • Undeniably, we can get all rough and don’t mind staying in an uphill resort but that’s not the case for them. What we did was, since they were 20 of us, we rented two double-story homestays. The elderly by default stayed at the ground floor bedrooms. We made sure to have the bathroom nearby their rooms when we made the reservation. I can proudly say the both of them were happy with their rooms. Oh, also make sure to have another able person to sleep with them because they might wake up at night for a drink or even to go to the loo.
  6. Medications
    • Of course! THE MOST IMPORTANT THING. Assign someone who can be their PA throughout the trip. Remind them when to take their medications.
  7. ‘Personal Assistant’
    • Can’t deny it. We can get too overjoyed and forget about them. This is when having a PA could be so much of a help. It needn’t to be the same person all along. Be sure to have someone specific to guard them. For example, my cousins and I wanted to go for a food-hunting whilst the rest wanted to stay home, so we politely asked one of our aunty to look after the elderly. The next day, when our parents went shopping, we stayed at home and watch over our nanny. Similarly, when we were all out and the young ones went to ride something challenging, we had our parents to wait with grandmom (because they obvs were not keen on the idea of extreme sports).

I guess that’s pretty much it. As you can see, they are not much different from handling toddlers. So, be extremely patient and helpful. It will be worth it.

Until then, peace be upon you.

Advertisements

Eid 2017… and NS E-day!

*swoosh, swoosh, sreetttt, bukk*

Uh, the jingles of Raya eve. As usual, we get busy the day before raya. Real busy – cooking rendang (traditional dish), making kuah kacang (peanut sauce?) to eat with ketupat (compacted rice) and never the least, cleaning the house. Some did last-minute shopping too. *hands-up* Guilty as charge!

But this year raya felt a bit different. My family wasn’t really thrilled by raya but it’s the (then) upcoming engagement. Everyone was pretty much busy with their assigned tasks. I was in charge of the flight tickets, seats arrangement, planning the schedule, etc. – I know there’s a name for this job but my vocab fails me today. I was also the runner at some point. Driving here and there to buy and pick up the last-minute touch up.

The man of discussion wasn’t home until a day before the whole trip started. We had to do things on our own with his relatively laissez-faire (wow, IB thought me well!) approach. I got to thank him for that because otherwise we could go nuts to meet his detailed expectations. *wipesweats*

Btw, the engagement took place in Sarawak. So, we had to fly – because travelling by boats/ferries took longer and driving there didn’t make any sense.

The voyage consisted of 19 people. FYI, that’s a big group for an engagement. So, dwelling with a majority elderly group sure was a test. I was very lucky to be sandwiched (in reality, nominated volunteered) by two amazing yet highly-dependent women in the first row. Seating on the left row was a handsome actor (with his wife and two children. Of course!). My grandmom was seating nearest to him and actually made small conversations with him whilst I was trying hard not to fangirling. Guess who failed miserably? I couldn’t stop starring at him albeit his adorable sons and pretty wife presence. So, I stared at the stewardess instead and gave her plenty of awkward smiles.

So, we arrived in Sarawak after two hours. We were greeted by the soon-to-be fiance and her parents.

That’s it for Part 1.

p/s: Pardon me for the abrupt ending. Hopefully there’ll be Part 2.

Till then, may peace be upon you.

Sisters

I used to think that I’m closest to my brother and I dedicated a post for him in my previous blog.

Although I’m still close to my brother, I found a new sibling-friend; my sister. I’m 5 years older. So, we didn’t really have much things to talk about when we’re younger. I was always too old and she was always too young. So, there was nothing to talk about.

Time flies by. She started to copy my style and secretly adored me. Then she found her own style and defined herself without having my influence. After that, she started to pretend not to listen but silently agreed to my advises. Now, we’re sharing more things than we could ever imagine.

Out of the blue, she’d text me and recommend songs to listen to and I’d return the deed on some other day. I can now actually ask for her opinions on things that I want to buy. Recently, my mom called and told me to get rtw baju raya (basically new cloth for Eid celebration) with my sister cause she doubted that we’ve enough time for tailored ones. I asked her to go ahead and find theirs first. Then, my mom said that my sister wanted to go with me.

On another occasion, my sister was exhilarated when I told her that I’m coming home and asked her for a sisters-hangout. She obvs reached the mall earlier than I do. When I reached the mall, she was standing at the higher end of the escalator. She was wearing a really big smile and waved at me in the middle of the crowds. I doubt she was happy to see me but it was more like, “Yeay, I’m gonna have some fun time and eat everything I want and my sister is gonna pay for it all.” I personally think it was also because she got to experience what a young adult life is – to go shop without parents nor using their money. I – am honoured to be part of her grown up experience. I still remember wishing that I’d have a sister whom I can have girl talks. Now, I have one.

Till then, may peace be upon you.

p/s: Sure, we have disagreements but that makes us sisters. Sisters of our own identity – we have enough people mistaking us for one another.