Tag Archives: old

is it a generation thing?

17 Jan

london 11.09pm 2.9C dry tuesday 2017.

i wonder whether old people think differently from young people.

take this case of an old person who tipped her unwanted coffee into the drain before throwing the paper cup into a trash bin. she was fined for littering, but it was cancelled after the press took it up and the subsequent publicity made the council cancel the fine.

i think i would do the same as the old lady, empty the cup first. until i remembered finding a full cup on the bus and taking it away with me when i left the bus and putting the whole thing in a waste bin. i did not empty the cup first. in fact it never occurred to me to empty it out first.  so maybe i wont do the same as her, even though i am of the same age as that old lady. when i first read it, i thought i would do the same as her. but when i look back on my actual behaviour, i find i dont do what she did. 

i wonder if the younger generation might find her behaviour puzzling . they must have thought why not just throw the whole thing in the trash bin? after all, the lid will keep the coffee in, and also the trash bin is used to having water in it from the rain. so why bother to separate water from the trash? and anyway when the trash is removed, i have seen the man take the the whole plastic bag out and tie the top  and put into the cart to take away. he replace the old bag with a new one in the trash container.  in other words, he dont tip the rubbish out into a bigger container. so it is not necessary to separate the water from the cup.

i am thinking the young will not see the logic of emptying the cup first. even if they dont know how the rubbish is disposed off, or whether the gabbage companies dont like water in the trash bag, i dont think they would even consider emptying their cup first before chucking it into the bin. after all, no notices ever are issued telling people to empty their cups first.

so is it a generational thing? different ways of thinking by the old, that the young do not consider? what would u have done?

just some thoughts about attitude to life

28 Nov

london 6.04pm 6.3C dark now. monday 2016

it was a sunny day today, and i got back from the library at about 1.30pm, and got a phone call on my landline from a friend who says he was feeling depressed and felt it would cheer him up to talk to me. he suggested meeting up and i said why not now, and so we met halfway between my place and his.

he lives in a place in north london where there are no tubes nearby. we both got the london pass , but he do not get the full advantage of it as his place is not served by any tube lines. he has to rely on buses only to get about. so he suggested bus 18 route, and so i said meet at the royal oak bus stop . i could normally go there by bus 36 but i decided it will be quicker if i go by tube, and it involves 3 changes of tube lines but i still got there ahead of him.

its a lovely day to walk about. and so we chatted and caught up with each others news. but it is a thing about chatting with people our age, old age is quite sad really. we do notice we are not as spritely and quick as we used to be.for one thing, it is hard to hear each other. haha. both of us are deaf and too stubborn to wear hearing aids. haha

but only if we allow it and see all the bad things about it. we should be grateful to be alive and healthy at our age. but we seldom thank ourselves for it. instead we think of the things that go wrong in our lives. in his case, it is flooding from upstairs flat onto his own flat further down below.  he does not see it as just part and parcel of owning a rental flat. its all in the attitude really.

whereas i get pleasure in all the small things. for eg, i took the tube and i found out i really enjoy doing it. normally i go everywhere by bus, but this tube journey was so quick and effortless. even though it involved 3 changes of tube lines. it was a treat. now u tell me why i dont travel everywhere by tube … after all, it is not because i cannot afford it, my pass allows me free travel in all modes of transport within london. perhaps i know how to dole out my pleasure, so that i can give myself a treat now and then on the tube just to experience the pleasure it gives me. if i do it everyday it ceases to be a pleasure and then i wont be able to get that fresh delight at taking pleasure in something.

i was reading about this guy who goes all round the world doing things like taking all the subway stations in the shortest time, and setting records. and he wants to do the tube , doing all the stations in record time. at first it did seem a bit daft, but then i was thinking, it gives him pleasure so why not?

my friend is still doing hair dressing, for rich old ladies. he said his eyesight is  going and his hands are shaking, but he can still do the hairdressing. mainly because his clients are old ladies who likes him, so dont mind his work. and he charges half the price. i wonder if the old ladies just take pity on him and continue to ask for him, just so he can get work. or that he charges half price haha.

yet he says he doesnot like servicing them because they are so demanding and always trying to get him to do work without any pay.  so maybe they just are very thrifty, or stingy, and do not like to spend money, even though many of them he says are quite wealthy widows. he has got friendly with them, so much so that they invite him to stay at their flats in south of france, where he can play bridge with them. so he is not only their hairdresser but their bridge companion as well. but i daresay they are quite demanding. 

i wonder if hairdressing is one of those professions where u can do even if u are old. this morning i went to the ageuk community hall in my area where every monday there is a woman who would cut hair for £5. it is the cheapest haircut you can get nowadays. she is a bit shaky, haha. and not used to cutting my straight chinese hair. she says so. but like i said to my friend, at my age now i dont care for style anymore, just want a short haircut, without any fuss… and since i could not cut my own hair , especially the back , i have to get someone to do it. and she will do when the back start getting too long.

also maybe she can do with the extra income, who knows. she is there every monday between 10-11am . i just managed to catch her in fact, before she left for the day.

i forgot to ask my friend if it is easy to cut men hair with a clipper. i personally think it is easy, because the barbers that i go too make it look easy, but maybe it is not easy.

simon cuts his hair bald, using a razor. i am not quite ready to go all bald yet. haha. though i am getting a lot of white hairs and have to dye them black. it is easy to do so, there is a product consisting of two tubes, u mix them by laying them side by side on a special brush they supply and then u comb your hair with that brush mixing the two tubes at the same time and apply them to your hair, then i wait a bit, usually i try to let them stay on the hair for as long as i can; and presto, the hair is black, and you then rinse it all off. easy .

i am glad i got black hair. it is easier to decide on the colour to buy.  now u know why we chinese got such black hair. it all comes out of a bottle , or two tubes. hehe. there is a lot in each tube so i can do the colouring 5-8times ( i havent really kept count) or more all for £6 which is what the tubes cost. 

added 10.39pm 3.4C ( supposed to drop to -1C at 7am tomorrow,it seems).my indoor nhs thermometer says 18C. maybe my downstairs neighbour has her heating on and it is seeping up into my flat. 

read this in some paper online. it seems tomorrow pizza express are giving away their doughballs. you just have to go to any branch and say ‘free snowball doughballs please’ . no idea what those dough balls are, but there is a branch near me, in fact several, and i shall just go and see what it is all about. 

old age, young age, celebrating cny

7 Feb

london 3.15pm 11.3C cloudy but bright. sunday 2016

it’s chinese new year eve today in london. nothing going on this weekend to celebrate it, as the celebration will be on next weekend, on sunday 14feb, which is also valentine’s day. (added.11.2.16 was on the bus going through chinatown and saw posters saying the parade and festival is on 13feb, not 14feb). added 12.2.16.looks like that poster was just saying that particular street will be closed on 13feb. the  main festival is on 14feb. 

i suppose it will be a good thing, because the chinese will be going to have their dimsum chinese newyear get together today, or their reunion dinner tonight without the huge tourists crowd coming in too.

i am sure london is so big, and with so many with the money to spend, that the restaurants on chinatown must be very busy today.

people will always want to celebrate it with a reunion meal; it is a chance and an excuse to get together with friends and family… though most of us will be having friends around rather than family, since our families may well be overseas. i wont be joining in, as i think i am past it… i just have a thought, here in uk , esp london, all the chinese businesses, eatingplaces are open for chinese new year. that is rather nice. because in malaysia, singapore, maybe even in china, many of them will be shut to give their employees a chance to go home for their reunion. i know that in malaysia, chinese new year , so many chinese owned businesses shut ,and i am thinkingof the hawker stalls where we lowly earners will rely on for our meals are all shut, forcing us to go to the malay or indian hawkers; it is quite boring for visitors or those single people with no family to eat with, to be there around that time. 

it brings back memories of my youth,though, to see others celebrating it with a reunion meal.  when we would do just what they are doing now… arrange to meet and have dimsum in chinatown. it was very busy though, and a bit of a scramble, with the staff overworked and the kitchen swept off its feet with the high demand. and queues of people waiting for the people to vacate and free up the table. the dimsum was hongkong style, so no yu shang,( tossing the cold fish salad) , that is a malaysian/singaporean invention. i have nice memories of those times.

now every year is more or less the same, and the effort of doing something , anything , becomes more onerous. is that what going old means i wonder? i think that is it really, the thing that separates a young person from a old one. to a young person,everything is new and exciting.  and if you get the strong feelings , you also get the strong despair… when you are young, every little thing seem like a world disaster and hits u hard… but when you grow old, things may not have that high excitement anymore, but u dont get into deep despair either.

 you dont get this high manic excitement of youth,  and it seems to compensate for that, u get this even equable feeling of a steady contentment…. at least that is what my life is like now.

i think when i was young, i was glad to get the high excitement, but now i am old, i like what it is now… an even keel of emotions.

maybe depression is the state when u are out of sync with your emotions and your desires. those depressed when they are young are those who want a even keel of emotions whilst youth gives them the manic high excitement of life and the deep despair that pairs with it… whilst those old people who are depressed are the opposite. 

think again if u want to be an expat; uk is still better than any other country. (just my opinion)

3 Jul

london 9.46pm friday 2015.

people here dont know they have it real cushy. they want to go off elsewhere to live, thinking it is a better life elsewhere and all they can see is to live in a place where the sun is out all year round in their new country, and think that is all they want. 

i got an email from john, who lives in poole, in reply to my query about a mutual friend who had moved to torrevieja to live. john tells me he has major surgery and need more to come, and also that he could not sell his house there, when he wanted to live in a condominium, having discovered it costs a lot to maintain a private swimming pool. that was 5yrs ago. i thought he had sold that house when he moved into a flat in a urbanisation… but it seems he could not and rent it instead and now the tenant for the house has left.

it reminded me that health is the biggest unknown factor to anyone thinking of being an expat. it is inevitable that health problems will surface as you go older. say what u like about the nhs, but at least u can get medical care if u live here.

he lives in spain, and we hear so much of how much better their health service is than the nhs. but if u cannot speak the lingo, much good it will do you. and if the uk votes to leave the EU? what then? i doubt u will get to use their health service free. not being able to speak the lingo is the biggest disadvantage to living abroad. even if u can get by it will still be a lack, as very few expats ever get to be  fluent in it. i think if u are fluent in it, i doubt we can call you an expat anymore. i would venture to say that fluency in the language, or lack of it, will be what defines you as an expat. 

added 10.14am, i got an email from john saying that house of keith’s is another house he got, not the one with the swimming pool, which he did sell. and john says there is no problem with language with the doctors, and it seems keith is getting very good medical care. those major operations he got may not be available if he had been in the nhs here … so maybe i am wrong, it is good to be there…so maybe it is good to be an expat there and leave the uk.  in the end, it really is up to the individual. u can only give your opinion which will be biased to yourself and not to the other person. it might turn out to be a good move, to live in spain, or it might turn out to be a disaster… i guess each person will have to find out for themselves.

i have changed my mind about advising people not to be an expat. all i mean is that i dont like to be an expat outside the uk. haha. in a way, i am an expat from malaysia, so who am i to say no to others who want to be expats elsewhere. 

Humans of New York

15 Dec

Humans of New York.


this picture showing a mother who only wants to interact with her children, and not able to do so, as her children , like all children everywhere have their own lives to lead now.

you would think that having children means u wont be lonely in your old age, surrounded as you will be with your children and more importantly, grandchildren. In olden days when generations live under one roof, or  live in the neighbourhood, it will be so.

but these days children dont live nearby, or if they do, they have their own friends their age, and most dont have many children either.

i think old people and  grand children (and this would include the cousins , grandchildren of their uncles and aunts) get along well together, and ideally both should gain great benefit from it. But now that families are so small , we dont get a lot of aunts and uncles and cousins to play with anymore.  if there is an organisation that brings together young children and old people that would be a very beneficial one. that is my opinion, but i doubt it will happen with so many so worried about paedophiles.

both the old generation and the younger generation have lost out, i think. in fact, even the middle generation have lost out too, having to pay some stranger to look after their children instead.

perhaps she might benefit from such an organisation that brings old people and young children together. be a surrogate grandma to a few young families living near her.

will it work, i wonder, or will blood always be thicker than water and she cannot feel the same way to strangers’children as she would for her own grandchildren.

it seems to me the underlying motivation for everyone is the desire to make contact with other human beings. look at every thing happening , you can  boil  down to this urge to make contact with others, whether with a loving gesture, or with a belligerent one. the belligerent one as a response to someone who do not want to interact with you.

too simplistic a view, you might think. but i think it is a true one.

Amendment. it is too simplistic. i have another think and realise that what we think as the ideal , a cross generational living together may not be all that great. just think of the petty jealousies and power struggles and disapprovals and stuff and u can get an idea that all this living together thing may not be all that great. ah well, back to the drawing board. haha

finding a job when u are close to retirement

9 Sep

Monday 9.9.13
Its been raining practically the whole morning, a fine rain which has been the characteristic of the rain falling around this time of the year. No big torrential rain with thunder like  in summer.

I had been out earlier in the morning, taking the bus to Brixton to buy garlic, ginger, onions, tomatoes. I can get them for 50p a pack, unlike in supermarkets.
Brixton is quite busy even though it was raining. Not so much the stalls, but the main road, where the buses run through. Many people taking the buses. One lady I was standing next to, lost the wheel on her shopping trolley. I told her she might like to put it back on, and she asked me to do it. So I tried to, but it was not easy to put it back. When her bus came, the wheel rim came off again. She just smiled ruefully at me, and dragged it to her bus.

Now I am back for some time, and had my lunch of spaghetti pasta with homemade tomato sauce using 6 tomatoes I bought; and looking out at the rain falling on the ground, and being rather happy that I am inside and the rain is outside. Haha.

added. 14.9.13 i like a bargain, even though i am not really that destitute that i have to buy cheap. i like to buy the basic spaghetti, as i dont taste any difference from the expensive ones; and i am glad to say the tesco in clapham south is selling them at 15p for 500mg. i used to buy asda basic spag for 18p, but recently i went there and found that it is now 32p. glad to know that tesco is still selling them at that low price. it used to be that u can get the chinese instant noodles for 11p at asda, but now they have revert to their higher price of 15p. spag is just as good for use as noodles.  

I notice that i might have given people the wrong impression that i am rather poor and have to seek out cheap goods. it is because i seem to harp on about buying cheap goods. dont get me wrong, i enjoy it. it is something i do to make my life interesting. pathetic i am sure u will be thinking, but then if it makes me happy, why not? right? haha. 

I might go out again, just to the library, and to the sports centre for the swimming pool. I shall see how I feel. It is lovely not to have to work and have all the time to do what I like.

Talking of work, there are still old people who want to work. I have been reading a blog for oldies, where it reprinted a article by the oldie, a magazine that u have to pay for, and normally cannot read it but because he re-blogged it u can read it free in his blog.
It is written by an old man who was made redundant and his experience trying to find another job at 59 yrs old. U can tell he wont find it easy to find work. The mere fact he is so close to retirement will make any employer reluctant to hire him and train him. Not to mention the employer also knows old people are not easy to train.

When u read it, u can see he does not want to get new certificates which he have to do if he wants the jobs. Simple jobs like truck driver, still requires a certificate.
He actually found a job , a good one, quite early on, in the part one of this 2part article, but he found he cannot cope, it was too much for him and he had to leave.

So u can see old people being made redundant from their jobs have high expectations and also reluctant to learn new things. and they dont have the energy to do the jobs in the first place. he mentioned he was tired out during that first job he had. its no wonder so many are reluctant to hire an old person . i know it sounds like i am very unsympathetic. maybe it does, but i think i am only voicing some simple facts of life. we all have a working life span, and are at our optimum when we are at a certain period of our lives. when we are near retirement, that period is past.