I have some blogs to catch up, beginning with this one.
When I was in Vancouver in May - so long ago! - I stayed with my friend whose birthdate is the same as mine but she’s eight years older. She has a very clear assessment of what she can and can’t do now and she has been fortunate to find a young woman as a companion, Jill-of-all-trades. Christina is young, in her early forties, I think, - so very young by our standards. She likes older women and she is very patient, two admirable qualities that enable her to find as manny clients as she likes and as appeal to her. She drives, taking Agnes to her medical appointments and helping her with the shopping, She is a whiz with the computer and can solve some of the glitches that we older ones trip over. She checked a bus schedule for me and drove me to the express bus that I took to the Horseshoe Bay ferry to Gibsons to visit my friend there. She works for Agnes about four to six hours a week, maybe more, or as needed, and on mutual agreement to fit their respective time tables. Everyone should be so lucky as to have a Christina in their lives, every older woman that is, failing a husband or near-by daughter.
Does anyone remember a funny little paperback book called Schoolboy Boners? (I think that was the title.) It was a collection of errors, mistakes and boo-boos (boners) that kids made in their exams and essays. Nowadays they don’t publish the goofs; they collect them for the sidebars on Google and other browsers. Anyway, I still remember the definition of a serf: "A serf is someone who is chained to the land," and the illustration was of a sad-looking fellow with a chain around his ankle attached to a stake in the ground. (The subject was medieval history/feudalism, I would guess.)
I often thought of that serf. In the days before clones when I would and now do wish for a clone to cover me for a lot of the scut-work I have to do, that we all have to do, I thought that a serf at the bottom of the garden would suit my needs, not live-in, just there when I needed him. “Come serf, and fold the diapers (this was also before disposable). My only asset had its price. I was serf to someone else. My husband, Bill, and I enjoyed mutual serfdom, another thing I miss.
Anyway, Agnes’s “serf”, if you will, has found a compatible way to make a living, in her own time, and to mutual satisfaction. She is a friendly, competent woman, beholden to no one, and her services are essential and appreciated.
In my day, I paid older women to be my baby-sitters. They weren’t old, just older than I. Now younger women, younger than I, can fill a gap. Both employer and employee can afford to be choosy. Unfortunately my scut-work is more of a clerical natural and I still have to do it myself. I’m holding out for a clone.