Only in Florida. Or maybe in other states but very appropriate for the land of sunshine, snowbirds, God’s waiting room: the silver alert.
RM drove me to St. Petersburg today to pick up my written prescription for pain pills at the surgeon’s. Actually, I’m not in pain most of the time–just when doing physical therapy. That “no pain no gain” thing doesn’t work for me. One can’t have a script for any kind of narcotic called in or even faxed to the pharmacy. So, a trip to the surgeon’s was necessary.
As we were driving at break-neck speed down the freeway and following cars far too closely, I noticed the flashing sign overhead that flashed “silver alert” with a number to call. I asked RM what the heck that was: she told me it’s the elderly version of the “amber alert”. I think I laughed the rest of the way to St. Pete. Now, those of you who have a relative who has confusion issues, I’m not making fun of them. Just that they have their own alert and someone decided to call it “silver”.
Later, on the return, I could see the other info: Florida tag number and make of car. Again, I chuckled and told RM he was probably making a run for it from the nursing home or a well-meaning relative. RM told me there are more “silver alerts” than “amber alerts” in Florida. Gee, I wonder why? What I did discover is that many of the “silver alerts” involving motor vehicles are usually cars stolen, say in a parking lot, leaving the elderly person roaming the lot looking for the car while everyone else thinks he/she is in the car–driving to the house he lived in 30 years ago–Des Moines.
To make a long story just a bit longer, we stopped at the pharmacy to drop off the script. While waiting at the drive up, I spotted the alerted car in the parking lot but no one in it. I dialed the “silver alert” number and within minutes a police car showed. We pointed out the car and then I spotted him–our “silver alertee”. He was roaming the parking lot of the grocery store, looking for his car. Hell, RM does that all the time.
All’s well with the world for the moment.
The above image is of the infamous “Louise”, my loyal walker. Today I graduated to a cane. The tennis balls are pink–RM’s idea since I’m a survivor. None of this has anything to do with the above narrative, by the way. In the background, the purple zebra thingy is covering an “antique” of RM’s which I have tolerated (barely) in my bedroom. It’s more hideous than the covering I felt was appropriate. I finally convinced her it is not an antique, but junk and it’s going to the garage this week. And, yes, I wear funky flip-flops and I’m using my “leopard” cane. I am blatantly sporting the symptoms: I have officially gone “Floridian”.