Title: Maggie Whitson
Author: Audrie Clifford
Genre: Contemporary Fiction
Published By: Create Space Independent Publishing Platform (June 2, 2013)
About The Author: Audrie Clifford has written two other books titled Damn Newcomer and Dimensions. Maggie Whitson is her third and she is now finishing up her fourth. Share with Audrie on:
https://www.facebook.com/audrie.clifford . You can also find her on GoodReads.
About the Story: Have you ever thought about what goes on in the mind of an elderly person? Since they can’t get around much anymore and not much of a conversationalist, what are they thinking about? Why are some of them so damn crotchety? Maggie Whitson, a feisty 90+ year old woman who says it how it is, decides to get answers to those questions when she finds herself obliged to stay in a nursing home for 9 months. To provide entertainment for herself, she decided to meet the various people who lived there and try to find out something about them. She wrote it all down in her journal. She began with incidences that happened while she was younger and eventually progressed to writing about the other ‘inmates’ in the nursing home. Yes, Maggie thought of them as inmates.
Here’s an excerpt from Maggie’s journal.
Well, all my fellow old farts are being especially dull right now; nobody’s done a damn thing worth telling you about, so I guess I might as well tell you about a better time in my life.
I was somewhere in my sixties, so that makes it a while back. I was finally divorced from that miserable piece of humanity that goes by the name of Burt and since the settlement was quite generous (no thanks to Burt but to my tough lawyer) I was living in a lovely condo. I still own the condo and plan to return there after Nabor springs me from this joint.
One beautiful fall day, I was stretched out on one of my balcony lounges simply enjoying the beauty of the day when my doorbell rang. I want’ expecting anyone but as always, I was delighted ti the prospect of company. I opened the door and there was a very handsome man who was well all down the front of him.
“Please forgive the intrusion, he said, “but I’m just moving into the next-door apartment and I spilled a whole pitcher of water on the floor and I don’t have anything to wipe it up with, so may I please borrow some paper towels from you?”
As good looking as this guy was, if he had been a little older, I would have given him anything I had, but he was so much younger that I just gave him paper towels and an invitation to come back and have a drink with me after he’d cleaned up his mess. So after he left, I racked my brain trying to figure out where I’d seen him before. I was sure we’d never been introduced because even though I was starting to get old, I would never have forgotten a hunk like that.
He didn’t come back as quickly as I’d expected, so I was beginning to think that he might not come back at all, but finally, the doorbell rang again. There he was a multiple-pack of paper towels and a large bouquet of yellow roses. He had changed to dry clothing and seemed even more handsome than before. It makes me sigh just to think of it.
My Thoughts: This was a fast, funny read. Maggie made me laugh many times throughout the telling of her experiences in the nursing home. This book was about learning to understand what makes a person act the way they do and then trying to make lives better by small acts of kindness. Maggie is a wonderful person, and one that I would have loved to have had as a friend. She was so real to me. Her outrageous remarks throughout the book are all excused because you see she was in her 90’s. She called the psychiatric ward where those who had Alzheimer disease the looney bin. Where she is outrageous in some of her comments, she is the sweetest of people in her deeds. You will love her as I do. Thank you Audrie Clifford for sharing such an endearing story. I look forward to the next one.
Author Audrie Clifford is nearing 80 years old. She’s the perfect person to let the reader into the mind of the elderly. She’s has also been a mayor of a small town and she tells of that experience in her book Another Damn Newcomer. She had this to say when I contacted her about the book Maggie Whitson.
“I’m glad you liked reading about Maggie. I liked writing about her. Of course, she’s not a real person, but almost seemed so as I was telling her story. I think what made it so enjoyable to me is that I got to express my own opinions and attribute them to Maggie.” ~ Audrie Clifford