Many senior citizens feel lonely in life.
Gone are the days when they can easily go wherever they please and do whatever they want. Their children are also living away to start families from their own.
Seniors who get bored usually sit and watch television even though they want to do something else. That is why they always want to talk to someone, especially to the younger generation.
It was six years ago when 86-year-old Cyril Aggett lost his wife, Shirley. After she passed away, he would always come home to a silent and empty house. He shut his door and never talked to people after the funeral but he then realized that he had to do someone else to alleviate his loneliness.
For more than a decade, Mr. Aggett and his late wife were living near the Coombe Dean Secondary School. They have also been going to the school cafeteria to enjoy warm home-cooked lunch with children. But when his wife died, he couldn’t bring himself to go outside.
The school checked on Mr. Aggett and encouraged him to go back to the canteen and have his lunch there. Now, he has been spending his lunchtime with the school children and the staff, and everyone is happy that he does.
“When I first came here I was down in the dumps. I get a cup of tea, my lunch, and good service,” he shared.
“Everybody talks to me, the office staff is brilliant and even when my wife was ill, they took dinners up to her. My wife was there one minute and then I couldn’t talk to her because she was under sedation all the time.”
Mr. Aggett also said that for a year after his wife died, he never wanted to leave his house. However, his visits to the school canteen have helped him.
“A couple of months ago, I wasn’t really getting up until about 2 pm in the afternoon, it was lovely weather and I couldn’t be bothered. I think Shirley must have said ‘pull your socks up you know’. Coming down here has brought me out of my shell again,” he added.
The Coombe Dean lunch ladies would make extra batches of sausage rolls, apple crumble and pasties during school holidays so he can freeze them.
“I don’t think they should go on holiday actually,” he joked.
His story is a big inspiration to people. Sometimes, it takes a simple smile or ‘hello’ to change someone’s day.
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