In the corner of my eye I saw her fall. She fell backwards. Her shopping trolley and her walking stick didn’t help her. Then she laid there on the pavement, unable to get up again. I drove the car to the edge of the road. The girls stepped out to help the lady. But they couldn’t get her on her feet again. I went to help. The woman was nearly unable to stand. She was dressed very poorly. My first thought was, she may be homeless. But she could tell her address. She had been shopping. I don’t know how old she may have been. She looked very old, between 80 and 90 I guess. And she was practically unable to walk. But she wanted no help, no doctor, nor to be driven home. The girls were completely shocked. They wanted to help the old lady but were helpless themselves. They both never met such a helpless person before. Such persons don’t belong to their world normally.
And again I asked myself, what a strange world we live in.
Having little children I often felt, that our European world isn’t made for children to grow up. Neither is it made for parents raising children. To have children is a kind of luxury. As parents you better look to be rich before adding a child to your life. Because with a child you will barely get the opportunity to become richer than before. Life is filled with organizing the children into your professional life. Not vice versa, how it should be. There are no career chances fitting to your life. You have to fit to the career chances. And in many cases the people without children simply fit much better.
And life isn’t better for the children you raise. Nowadays nobody sends their children simply out to the roads and fields to play with other children. Much too dangerous. And no other children are around. All social skills children learned from organizing themselves by playing in groups with changing members, they stay unlearned today. In early life children meet the children of their parents friends, when the parents meet. Later they meet their friends, when their parents drive them there. Their social contacts besides school depend completely on their parents. It takes them to grow to teenagers to first learn to organize themselves, their own social life.
But the worst thing is living in this world as an old person.
Many old people have no family living close by. If they have grown up children, they often live apart. One has to be mobile nowadays. Economy requires that. Economy is global and our lives are global too. But growing old and not being perfectly mobile any longer is terrible. Not being wealthy at that point of life, one really has a problem. Most accommodations are not made for old people. Our self service world isn’t made for old people. And you need to pay for every help you need.
I don’t know, how life is for that old lady we met. She just wanted to go shopping and was unable to do that alone. She appeared so unreal in the world of hurrying people on their busy ways. She doesn’t fit into this world. Leaving everybody helpless, not knowing what to do. Have I to call for a doctor in that case? Should I call the police because she seems to be so helpless? She had no phone with her to call for help herself. She even didn’t know the phone number of her daughter.
But luckily she could tell her daughter’s name. And thanks to my mobile internet I found the daughter, living in the neighbor town.
So we could leave the old lady with her daughter, who came immediately.
I guess I would have called the police for help otherwise.