Uncle Bill

Remember when I wrote about my dear uncle celebrating his 98th birthday this past March? (No? Then click here to catch up. Take your time – I’ll wait right here…)

Well, I went to visit Uncle Bill this weekend, and I made sure to take a photo:

Now I ask you, doesn’t he look spectacular for someone who was born in 1910?

I had phoned ahead and planned to arrive at around 10am. He was up and ready, all dressed in a collared shirt, some plaid Bermuda shorts, belted, matching light blue socks and white slip-on canvas sneakers. And, he had remembered to apply his cologne.

“How do you like my glasses?” he asked. He was thrilled to have finally gotten a pair that works. He said he had been having trouble identifying people “across the way,” but now, he claims he can read the newspaper those people from across the way are holding!

We talked about Penn State sports and gin (of course) and the price of gasoline. Uncle Bill isn’t buying much gas lately, though. The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation refused to renew his driver’s license when it came up for renewal this year. Instead, they sent him a letter informing him that it wouldn’t be renewed. He has a clean driving record, can see just fine, and only wants the freedom to drive himself to the store, the YMCA, or his doctor’s appointments. It’s not like he’s roadtripping to the beach. Uncle Bill says he’s going to contact his representative to discuss the matter. He says this turn of events really changed his life.

It was especially good to see him because in May, he spent a few days in the hospital. Now he’s home, and seems to be doing as well as ever. For someone his age, independence is everything, and I’m glad that he still has his, even if the DOT has curtailed it a bit.

It was a lovely visit, albeit too short, and I’m so happy we were able to reconnect.

4 thoughts on “Uncle Bill

  1. Uncle Bill looks great for someone 15 years younger than he is. If he’s working on all cylinders is it legal to just pull his license like that? He should at least be allowed to take a test or something.

  2. Yenta, that’s what we thought, too. Or at least, they should send a warning letter to say, if you don’t come take a driving test, we will revoke your license on whatever date. I didn’t see the letter he received – could be they offered some kind of recourse. He’s pretty salty about it… but he does have a few folks around who willingly help him out with errands and such. Of course, I’m now feeling badly for not being there when he could really use my help.

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