As I arrive at my weekly visit with Tod I am always filled with wonder. I wonder what kind of mood I’ll find him in. I wonder if he’ll remember me. I wonder where our conversation will go. And I wonder about the physical details of his surroundings. For example, the items on his small desk are often carefully arranged in some fashion whose meaning I can only guess at.
The one item that is the most wonderful of all is his blue walker. It’s the sort of walker that has four wheels, a seat, and a small basket under the seat. Often times this basket is so full of random items that it doesn’t fully close, rendering it’s functionality as a seat moot. There’s usually an assortment of DVDs, some loose, some mismatched, others unopened. There are sometimes articles that somebody has printed or torn from a magazine. Occasionally a bit of a plastic plant will be stuck in the hole at the end of the handgrip as a bit of decoration. One time he had a stuffed bumblebee tucked into the pocket of his jacket that hung from his walker. Apparently he had hijacked it from one of his visits to Beverly. (The bumblebee can be seen in the penultimate shot of Unlocking Dockstader: episode one).
And then there are the tissues: facial tissues, half rolls of toilet paper, paper napkins. He’s constantly grabbing them from around the home; he’ll see a box sitting on a table and say “Oh I need those,” grabbing them and adding them to the collection. To be fair, he does frequently have the sniffles, so it’s not like it’s just some weird pathology.
Other times the blue walker has been a source of concern as he’s left it somewhere and forgot where it is. The staff will buzz around looking in his usual places until it turns up in a bathroom or on the patio or wherever it might be.
On a recent visit I discovered that he had acquired? Stolen? Let’s say “appropriated” these two little flowers in their pots.