Summer solstice. Produce stands. Aunt Ruth's terrace! That's the place I go when I long for companionship that is nurturing and easy.
Like you, I read about aging and the importance of socialization as if this need is more important to "the elderly" than to the "rest of us." One of the many lessons I have learned from photographing, listening to, eating with, and enjoying Aunt Ruth is that my life is richer, happier, and more meaningful from time spent with Aunt Ruth.
At 92, Aunt Ruth is often grieving from the loss of a neighbor or a life-long friend. I share my own worries about loved ones. She listens, nods, smiles, and offers lessons from a well-lived life. We comfort each other. We sit on the terrace covered in carefully tended flowers and enjoy casual conversation with a tenderness born from unconditional love that soothes and warms.
I even take a short nap. Aunt Ruth watches me sleep.
Ah, summer. Ah, Aunt Ruth!