Monday, June 8, 2009

I really enjoy talking to older folks. I think this is something that I picked up on my mission, cause Norway is lousy with older people. I love to hear the stories they tell or the things they've done over the course of their lives. This remains true to this day. A lot of the time when I go to a house to appraise it and there are some older people there and I'll see something in their house and ask a question about it and then we get going and the conversation just rolls. I could stay and talk for a long time and I sometimes do. A few months ago I was at this older couple's house for almost 4 hours. This is no exaggeration, it really messed up my week.

Something I have noticed over the past few years, and I guess that it has been my grandparents who have really pointed this out to me, is how much old people like to give you the death report when you are catching up on the people around town. Because my family has always been a fair amount of distance away from my grandparents, catching up with the latest and greatest on the local friendships is paramount.

I remember a conversation between one of my parents and their parents that seemed to go something like this:

Parent: So how is Bill Johnson doing?, gosh, it's been forever since I've seen him.
GParent: You know, after a long bout with cancer he finally passed away.
Parent: That's too bad, what about Mrs. Johnson?
GParent: She lasted a bit longer but passed away in 2000.
Parent: What about Mrs. Jensen up the street?
GParent: She made it to the age of 78 and then died.
Parent: What about that guy that bought the house across the street and fixed it up.....what was his name?
GParent: George??
Parent: Yeah, George, how's he doing, have you seen him lately?
GParent: I saw him at his funeral, he's dead.
Parent: How about Mr. Smith?
GParent: Dead.
Parent: Bob Collins?
GParent: Died last year.
Parent: John Barker?
GParent: Not quite dead, but he's most of the way there. He'll probably die this year.

Of course this is mildly exaggerated but you get the point. It's a fun conversation to have as long as your the eavesdropping third party.

I think that once you get to a certain age you feel a kind of pride or maybe its more survivorship in having outlived everyone else.


Petunia+Poppy said...

that's so funny. and yeah, i'm sure it's best third, or fourth party. i was cracking up but if i was the one having the conversation i'm sure i wouldn't be laughing.

and i bet that couple loved having you hang out for hours. it probably made their day. i'm bad at talking to old people because i just feel like we have nothing in common.

taryn said...

That was hilarious and so true. Usually by the end of that conversation they get into how its going to be them next, but since they've been saying that for the past 10 years it's just a good joke!

I love elderly people too! They have so much wisdom and its just fun to listen to their stories from the good old days.

ryan and danielle said...

that is funny! but i am with carrie, i don't do well with elderly....but more for a reason of fear. Haha, not quite sure why they scare me but maybe it was all the carroling as a young kid in the nursing homes and having bed pans fly by my head.....who knows. :)

Shelley said...

I don't know if I'm really looking forward to the "everybody dying around me" stage of life. I guess if you are the last man standing, you have something to be happy about!

The Jeppsen 5 said... your last line. "WooHoo!! I made it longer than that guy!!"

Tastes Kinda Minty said...

It is also kind of sad when you start to know more people in the cemetery then out. It gets kind of parent has said to me

Anonymous said...

I can only quote grandpa Asay and say it might be funnier, but I'm starting to feel like "I are one!"