Today was an orienteering kind of day. I was sussing out where the nearest station was and armed with my Myki card, I figured out (with more than a little help from the lovely people I am staying with) how to navigate the city.
It was blowy today in Melbourne. They are not kidding when they say you can experience four seasons in one day. The advice for Melbourne visitors in Spring is layer up. I spent most of the day layering up and then shedding layers. For a woman of a certain age who can’t quite regulate her own temperature this was practically moment by moment dressing and undressing. I stopped for a while and dumped my bags on a nearby bench, maps went flying and a lovely woman who was sitting on the bench offered to hold my papers while I sorted myself out.
I’d like to introduce you to this wonderful person. She allowed me to take a photo :
This is Mary, she is 87 and was just heading off to her Philosophy class. We talked for a while and I explained my interest in dementia and how I was travelling on a Fellowship to find out more about inclusive care. Mary told me that she kept dementia at bay by joining new classes, that she had never studied philosophy before so thought she would give it a go. She also volunteered at the local court and supported students to attend murder trials at Supreme Court. She had a career in teaching and loved to keep her hand in, but felt that she might give this up later in the year as at 87 she ‘figured she’d had a good run at it’.
We talked about how travel broadens your horizons and gives you a greater understanding of the world. I will just leave that thought there for anyone who might be thinking of applying for a Churchill Fellowship J