As far as I can remember, the only two-story house I have ever lived in was the old farmhouse in northern Idaho where I was born. I was out of there at age 3, and all the other homes have been one level.
When I first saw the apartment where I live now, at Evergreen Estates, Rhicca, the woman showing it to me, commented that it is on the shady side of the building, facing north, with no hot sun pouring in. I was busy getting settled in, and several days went by before I bothered to look out the windows.
The building is somewhat crescent shaped on the front. The street curves in that shape, and from my perch on the second floor, I see the west-end entrance, with mail trucks, delivery vehicles and the endless stream of cars bearing goods to family members in the home. With the virus commanding our days, visitors can only ring a bell and wait for someone to come to the entrance and take their packages. Only residents can enter.
The hospital is across the street from our building, and often there is an ambulance, bringing a sick person to the emergency entrance. A helicopter often roars in and drops down behind the west end of the home, where the landing pad awaits. Shortly, someone emerges from the hospital with a gurney, heading for the helicopter. My faith prompts me to say a prayer for the one being brought in, and for those attending and caring for the person.
Over on the right side of the building is a row of clinics, with many people coming and going all day. How quiet it gets on that side on the weekends. However, the hospital receives ambulance visits and helicopter drop-ins any day or night of the week.
One lovely aspect of the apartment facing north is that I could see the Lions Club’s gift of a star on the north hill. I left the shade up so I could see it as often as I wanted.
In the days before the pandemic, residents went to the large dining room for each meal. It was always a treat to share a table and get caught up on the latest news. We were always concerned about changes in our friends’ health or news of people moving in.
Looking out of my second-floor window, I watched as a couple moved out. I would otherwise never have known about it, as privacy laws keep staff from discussing the activities of residents. It was easier when we could go to the dining room and talk among ourselves. Someone always knew about another resident’s situation, and word got around.
The couple I watched moving out had the apartment right above mine, on the third floor. At mealtime, they pulled their table out from the wall with a lot of loud scraping, and their chairs scraped as well, as they sat down to eat. I miss their noise. I knew someone was alive and eating along with me. I was not alone in the world. Being in quarantine makes you wonder if anyone but the kitchen help exists.
I know I can call my family or a friend and share an experience from the strange year we just ended. We all are praying for a new and better year. We need to always remember that we are not alone.
This truth was driven home last month in an amazing act of kindness: Children from the four elementary schools in Clarkston — Grantham, Parkway, Highland and Heights — came with banners, balloons and handmade valentines for the residents of Evergreen to help us celebrate the holiday.
How long has it been since we have even seen children of this age! With tears of gratitude we watched them parade around our building, waving at those who stood in their windows or went out on their balconies. How touching and kind. A world of thanks to all of you.
Bosserman, 92, lives at Evergreen Estates in Clarkston, where she has been in quarantine since the COVID-19 pandemic erupted in March. She has agreed to share monthly glimpses of life from her apartment complex with Golden Times readers.