Dec 22, 2012

Alzheimer's Home Sweet Home

If I suffer from Alzheimer's disease I am going for it, no doubt about it - I'm going home.

By Bob DeMarco
Alzheimer's Reading Room

They say 60 percent of persons living with Alzheimer's disease will wander. This comes as no surprise to me.

Ever wonder where the majority of these wanderers are going?

Alzheimer's Home Sweet Home

Home Sweet Home

I'm going for it.

Let me start with my all time favorite wandering story.
A man suffering from Alzheimer's disease wandered from a Denver, Colorado suburb to San Diego, California.

How did he do it?

He walked down to the corner and took public transportation to the Greyhound bus station. He then took a series of buses to San Diego. He was missing for three days before being found.
If he could do it, so can I. No doubt. I'm going for it.

I'm going to Avon Road in the Somerton section of Philadelphia.

Why not?

On Avon Road we always had plenty of food to eat. I didn't even have to pay for it. Dad was a factory worker and Dotty worked too. I never heard anyone say this but our family motto must have been -- pile it high and watch it fly. I am referring to dinner.

On Avon Road I played stick ball with my best buddy -- Tommy Shields. Football in the snow. I even had my first great job -- when I was nine years old.

After Billy and Joanne left (my brother and sister), I had pizza almost every Friday night. Frank (my dad) would say what do you want? Duh. Pizza. And away we would go to Paisan's pizza.

Guess what I did when I got my license at age 16. I started hunting down all the great pizza places in Philadelphia -- Stumpo's, Pizza City, and my all time favorite -- Charlie's on Oxford Circle.

I also started my love affair with my favorite cheese steak place -- Pats Steaks at 9th and Wharton. At Pat's you stand on the sidewalk and eat your steak sandwich. There is no inside at Pat's. I once ate a cheese steak there after driving 185 miles to get it. As soon as I was done, we turned around and drove another 185 miles to get back to Penn State. I kid you not.

I'm going for it.

It is about 1210 miles from Delray Beach to Avon Road. I have no doubt I'll make it. It won't be hard. All I will need to do is get on Interstate 95 (about 1.5 miles from here). I can drive north until I come to the downtown exit for Philadelphia -- a straight shot up I-95.

Yeah, I'll get off there and head over to Pat's Steak. Only a couple of miles from the interstate highway. Pizza wit (steak sandwich with cheese wiz, pizza sauce, and onions). That's my call.

It won't matter. The locks on the door won't stop me. Nothing is going to deter me. I'm heading out. A man on a mission.

Home Sweet Home.

Figure in the year 2040.

Well, there might be one thing that could deter me.

Maybe I'll be living in a safe, secure environment that is as good or better than

Home Sweet Home.

Maybe they will be feeding me pizza, pepsi, and giant Hershey bars. Maybe I'll be happy and content and without worry.

Maybe I'll feel the love. Maybe I'll feel the same way I did when I was 12 years old. Plenty of food and care.

In that case, maybe I'll conclude I am home -- Home Sweet Home.

Therein lies the moral to this story.

Advice and Insight into Alzheimer's and Dementia

Bob DeMarco
Bob DeMarco is the Founder of the Alzheimer's Reading Room and an Alzheimer's caregiver. The ARR knowledge base contains more than 3,811 articles with more than 306,100 links on the Internet. Bob lives in Delray Beach, FL.

Original content Bob DeMarco, the Alzheimer's Reading Room