This so made me think of Jay’s Dad.
Jay and I don’t drink alcoholic beverages, but we respected Jay’s parents’ practice of “social drinking.”
They had a drink every evening. After Jay’s Mom died and Jim was living in an assisted living facility, he wanted to continue his long held habit.
So we dutifully took him to the store at Fort Knox when we visited. He stocked up on his favorite bourbon.
We were surprised to get a call one evening from a very “starchy” nurse who wanted us to know they had found Jim “in the bottom of his closet with a bottle of bourbon.”
She delivered the news that they had confiscated all the alcohol they could find in his apartment and had it locked up.
After making sure he was uninjured, we next asked if alcoholic beverages were allowed in private residences.
They were not prohibited. “However,” the nurse continued, “When they become so drunk, they fall, then we have to take action.”
Her call was followed by a call from Jim, who was irate that some woman had come into his apartment and stole the bourbon he “had paid good money for.”
We determined to get to the bottom of this puzzle. So on closer investigation, this is what we found.
A new very conservative nurse discovered Jim’s bourbon cabinet and was horrified. She believed no one should drink, but especially not old people who might fall.
So she had cleaned him out except for one bottle she put in the far corner of his closet on the top shelf. She planned to use this as her exhibit A when we visited.
When Jim returned to his room, he discovered “the theft.” As he was trying to figure out what happened, he saw the bottle of bourbon on the top shelf.
He said he tried again and again to reach it, jumping up and down and reaching further every time … but to no avail.
He tried various things in his room to try to drag it forward … but again to no avail. And then in a moment, it came to him what he needed to do.
Being an avid golfer, he had his golf clubs. So he got out his best golf club and used it to pull the bourbon bottle to the edge of the shelf. He then caught it with one hand when it fell from the shelf.
He said by that time he was exhausted. So he just sat down right there in the closet and had his nightly cocktail. He did acknowledge he had an extra one while he decided what to do next.
If you are wondering if Jim ever got his bourbon back, the answer is yes and no.
Some bourbon was delivered to us, but clearly not all Jim had purchased. The staff tried to imply Jim had drank the extra, but we doubted it.
The assisted living facility made a new rule of no alcohol allowed in resident apartments. They had an open bar one night a week that was tightly supervised by the staff.
As for Jim, he adjusted to his new life without his evening cocktail. He looked forward to open bar night.
However, when he discovered that some of his bourbon was in the locked cabinet in the “bar,” he decided to take action.
He and another 90 something year old veteran made a “midnight requisition,” as Jim called it. He explained with a smile, “We didn’t steal anything. We just took what was ours.”
When I said, “How did you get in the cabinet if it was locked?” he winked and just said, “There is more than one way to do most things in life.”
We didn’t ask where he was keeping it and he never said. But if the nurses had really been paying attention, they would have noticed Jim was quite mellow every evening around 5 o’clock.😘
Jim swore me to secrecy, but now that he is safely in Heaven, I feel released to share the story of his determination to win the battle (and the bottle).
It was that same determination that kept him alive at the front in war and carried him through many challenges of old age until he reached the pearly gates. I wonder if he asked Saint Peter if bourbon was allowed there!