Jim at 85 is a lucky elder. He is active, and despite many physical problems, fairly healthy. He has a busy routine and many friends. He goes out to buy coffee for a friend every morning, waits eagerly for the mail to be delivered, sits and gossips with others, and attends meetings--where he always has something useful to say. He has a large extended family that keeps him involved.
For his birthday, his family hosted a party and invited everyone in the apartment building. There was home-cooked food in abundance, a candle-covered birthday cake, balloons, a gathering of relatives from far away, and many of Jim's friends and acquaintances from the building. Everyone agreed, it was a really nice party.
In the apartment building for elderly there are rarely seen young people. At the party the relatives included infants, young children, youth, adults, and seniors. It served as a reminder at how artificial it is to segretate elders. And of how rare it has become for families to retain strong connections among the generations.
Slide show of photographs at Jim's 85th Birthday Show runs on "Flash" in your browser.