The Peer Center is a place where folks with mental problems can gather, get support and help. The local NAMI hosts parties on most holidays. A gathering of people, food, bingo, and prizes.
This correspondent has been privileged to join this group on holiday celebrations. I have been fortunate to know the helpers and the helped.
This year this helper met others in the kitchen, carried things, got in the way, served beverages and helped people carry food to tables. When everyone has been served, we eat too.
I talked to one gentleman. He said that he’d been in the VA hospital for months and told me that his nurses loved him and wondered why he wasn’t allowed to smoke and why it was such a big deal. Soon it was time for bingo and prizes and I helped him keep his beans on the numbers.
” I sure want some of those socks. I tell ya. I need some socks.”
The bingo game goes on and on and people keep winning.
“If I win I hope I get the socks.”
I checked his card and wandered over to the bingo table, “How much for a B14?”
“That guy wants socks, that guy with the black hat.”
She smiled, “Well, keep playing.”
These folks don’t stop this game and it continued and continued, bingo after bingo.
Finally the beans rolled up full in a row.
I walked away. He got his socks and I got a lot more.
After that, it was presents for everyone and I got one too. When I got home, in the bag was toothpaste and….
I needed toothpaste!
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