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June 2019

July 2019

Knees News

I had my right knee replaced twelve years ago.  The surgery went smoothly.  The recovery did not.  Physical therapy hurt.  Working from my sofa was painful.  It took about a year for the swelling to go away.  To this day, people tell me I have a run in my stocking because I have a ten-inch vertical white scar through the center of my knee. 

I decided that one knee replacement was enough.  I vowed to keep my left knee unreplaced forever.

About a year ago, I began to have a little discomfort in that left knee. I ignored it until I couldn’t.  I decided to wait until summer was over before I sought help, but my friend/trainer Kathy said waiting was a bad idea because you have more options if you catch it before it is bone-on-bone. She mentioned something called Synvisc, a shot that puts a gel-like cushion between the bones. 

My X-ray showed severe osteoarthritis, but it wasn’t bone-on-bone yet.  My primary care doctor referred me to orthopedics.

I haven’t had much good medical news lately, so I was prepared for the worst.  But, not only did the doctor tell me that my replaced right knee still looked great,  she gave me a shot of Synvisc in my left knee that has already, just four days later, given me noticeable relief.

Good news for a change. 



Hot Pots

Attention:  Monday and Tuesday are Amazon Prime Days.  This is the fifth year that Amazon will offer its bargain-loving customers short windows of savings on many popular items in honor of its own birthday.  Only those who have “Amazon Prime” ($119 a year for a membership that includes free shipping) may participate, meaning that potentially 101-million people could be competing with you for a limited supply of robot vacuum cleaners.

(I have heard that other big stores are hoping to join in the fun by matching Prime Day prices—no membership required.)

Last year Amazon sold 300,000 hot pots on Prime Day.  It boggles my mind to think of Amazon employees scurrying around warehouses looking for hot pots to pack into boxes for delivery to 300,000 customers all over the world.

I don’t own a hot pot.  I don’t want more “things.”  I will not be tempted by Amazon Prime Days.

Will you?


How Healthy Do You Feel?

Next Avenue is a digital platform produced by PBS.  Simply put, it is a website that produces excellent articles aimed at baby boomers. 

A story last week, The Surprising Way Older Adults Describe Their Health reported that most older people feel healthy more often than we think they do, even though about 60% of them have two or more chronic illnesses.

In the 2017 National Health Interview Survey, 82% of adults ages 65 to 74 described their health as excellent. So did 73% of adults 75 or older.

Younger people have different assumptions about their health. They believe that their health should be perfect so anything less is bad.

For baby boomers and those even older, resilience, gratitude and realistic expectations all play roles in how we feel about how we feel. 

Like so many things in life, it’s all about expectations. 


You can get on the Next Avenue mailing list here.




We don’t know all the neighbors on our corridor very well.  But we have been observing Naomi.  She is a very tiny 90-year old who goes out every day, no matter what the temperature.  She’s bundled up like an Eskimo in the winter and under a big hat in the summer.  We hear classical music coming from her condo, and rumor has it that she was a wonderful classics professor. She walked 2.1 miles each way to Boston University every day.

Peter talked to her at our condo’s community cookout last week and offered to help her with her computer.  He spent about a half hour with her the next day.  He was unable to help her deal with her 20,000 unread emails! They agreed that she needed to go to the Apple Genius Bar.

On Wednesday, Naomi and I were waiting for the elevator together and we chatted about the hot day and then she asked, “Is that man you live with your father or your husband?”

I discussed this with Peter. We’re not sure whether I look young or he looks old.  Maybe both.  I still grin when I think about it. 

Peter thinks Naomi needs to get her eyes examined.

Where Did theYear Go?

It’s July.  How is that possible?  In just a few weeks, we will have been back in Cambridge for a year.  Our apartment feels much more like home now.  Its imperfections are still here, but we are used to them.  We have established some routines.  We know when to avoid the laundry room and how to get rid of stuff that’s too big for the trash chute.

Our landlord has extended our lease for another year so we’re actually considering buying towels that match our bathrooms.  We’ve gotten used to the sound of traffic and never tire of our wonderful view of the crews rowing down the Charles River at dawn.

Most of all, we are happy to be with our friends of so many years.  And we’ve made some new friends too.  We are happy to be back with our doctors although we wish we didn’t see them so often. 

Do we miss anything about our life in Washington, DC?  Yes.  Being near our kids and grandkids was amazing.  It just wasn’t enough.