“This is the first time in my life that I am not working.” (87 years old)

Today at the healthcare facility there was a man who was 87 years old. He had served in two wars – WWII and the Korean War. He was a cook in the Navy and had been to 85 countries. I showed the video below and introduced it by saying that it was filmed at a train station in Belgium. He looked sad.

“This is the first time in my life that I am not working.”

I put the video on and he said:

I have been to that train station. That is the Antwerp train station. My friend wanted to date a lady from Belgium and we went there.”


He seemed like a very interesting man. I would love to have talked to him for hours. All of those countries…..two wars…..a cook on Navy ships for a whole career….fascinating to me!

He said, “I had the best mom and dad. Jacob and Dora. They gave me a life ….very good life.”

There was something special about this man. I think I will go back soon. Something is telling me he has a lot of wisdom about life to share. He is the one that said that the way you get through life’s challenges is that you have to learn to “paddle your own canoe.”  That you are responsible for your own direction in life.

I left thinking, “I think I want to write an inspirational book and call it YOU HAVE TO PADDLE YOUR OWN CANOE -WISDOM FROM THE SENIORS IN HEALTHCARE COMMUNITIES. “

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