The restaurant was crowded, so we sat next to a couple while waiting.
He noticed I was watching him tinker with his flip phone, then quipped “Bet you haven’t seen one of these in a while? I like the speed dial so I don’t have to use my shaky fingers to call my girlfriend.”
We introduced ourselves and found they were on a “date”, laughing when they told us he was “only” 93 and she was 87.
He went on, “I dread the day not being able to drive, but worse than losing independence, going on our dates would be a problem since we live 5 miles apart.”
Losing one’s drivers license is collateral damage from aging: Shakiness, decreased vision, slower reflexes, and less ability to look over one’s shoulder to survey surrounding traffic. Independence is lost, narrowing the world around us.
A few months later we saw the couple again, greeting us with beaming smiles. “The bad news is, I lost my drivers license. The good news is, I got a smart phone and we’ve learned to rideshare!”
She gleefully chimed in, “The best news is, we also solved the problem being 5 miles apart… we got married!”
Gene Uzawa Dorio, M.D.
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