Why here?

Some people are probably wondering why I've uprooted Ash and brought us away.  Many more people are probably wondering why Orlando when we don't even 'do' Disney so I thought I might take this last morning to explain.  Contrary to popular images of people living with dementia needing to be in familiar surroundings Ash is actually better away from home.  I think this is because he feels there are no expectations on him to do anything, remember anything or to be responsible for anything.  When we're away we seem to reconnect a little, there are new things to watch and comment on, new places to discover together and conversations to have.  We're slightly out of routine but, with lots of planning beforehand, not too much so he's settled and I have time to watch and learn which is my new pastime.   That then is the 'why' but what about the 'where'?  Whenever over the years I've needed a blood test Ash has held my hand and made me recite the 13 times tables.  The idea was that the answers were always just out of reach so I had to think enough to work it out but not enough that I gave up and it took my mind off the needle sticking into my arm.  Orlando is a little like that.  It's almost familiar.  I can make myself understood, I can shop in the supermarkets, I can work out the money, I can order a taxi and if we have an emergency the staff in this resort will sort it all out for us.  This morning is a case in point.  Two days ago Ash woke up with a pain in his knee.  No swelling, no discolouration just a pain which we thought would go away.  He hates to make a fuss so we did nothing but last night it was worse, he needed to use both hands to lift his leg in order to elevate it and couldn't bend the knee.  We fly home tomorrow and it's a 9 1/2 hour flight so I went down to reception to see how we went about finding a doctor.  I was handed a leaflet giving details of a nearby Doctor who specialises in treating holiday makers.  You phone the number, tell them the problem and they either make an appointment for you to go into the clinic within 2 hours or they visit you at your apartment.  I phoned this morning, explained the situation and made an appointment for 10am then phoned our friendly taxi driver to organise getting there.  Job done.  So it's almost familiar.   There are wonderful differences though such as the towel dispensing machine at the pool, the size of the meals, the free drinking water wherever we go, the sunshine, the size of the smallest cups at the fizzy drink machines, the size of the largest cups at the fizzy drink machines, the bird life, the signs on the running trail (more of that another day) telling you to watch out for snakes and alligators ............ and on and on.  Different enough to make us forget real life for a while but familiar enough to allow us to relax.  And that, ladies and gentlemen, is why and where.

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