|l Early in the spring, Epsom Manor received its new outdoor sign: it is now called Epsom Healthcare Center. It is now a nonprofit concern, and boasts several awards in the skilled nursing care field.
l Probably because of snow in the early spring (as late as April 28th), Tony has begun complaining about this "God-forsaken" area again. He says he likes the facility well enough, that he is taken care of, the people are great and he enjoys the food, but he doesn't like the cold. When reminded that it is always a minimum of 75 degrees inside, he corrects himself to say that he wishes he could get outside more in the sun.
l In April, physical therapists began a program of helping Tony to strengthen his legs. The goal was to have Tony be able to hold himself up with aid, for at least enough time to be able to transfer him in and out of cars for travel. The idea of being able to get out more was incentive enough for Tony to practice his exercises eagerly. He would grip horizontal bars, pull himself to a stand, hold that position for several seconds, and then lower himself back to a sitting position.
l In early May, Tony found out that the Kandy Kettle -- a handy candy store that shares the north-end parking lot with Epsom Manor -- will be torn down and rebuilt.... much bigger, and with an ice cream parlor too. Tony's grandsons often wheel him over there (on sunny days) for a refill of jelly beans.
l Very early in the spring, Tony welcomed a new roommate, Tom Michael. The two are well-suited to one another, and are cheerful roommates as well as "messmates."
l From May 12 to May 16, there was a flurry of activity at Epsom Manor, in honor of National Nursing Home Week. There was a volunteer dinner, to thank all the hard-working volunteers who assist with the residents; there was a patriot day, with the NH National Guard doing a flag-raising ceremony; a luau and entertainment was enjoyed; and finally an outdoor carnival. Tony enjoyed all these, but while attending the carnival he felt chilly. That's when he began asking what his chances are for returning to Florida.
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