The definition of old age has changed and life does not stop at retirement any more. There is ample time and lots to explore. Whether it is net surfing, playing video games or going to clubs, the elderly are leaving no stone unturned to keep pace with Generation Next.
As the world celebrates Elderly Day on October 1, we bring to you what today's senior citizens do to live life afresh and bridge the gap with the present generation.
As the times are changing at a fast pace, today's elders are also trying to learn new things with enthusiasm. Seventy-five-year old tech-savvy ML Sharma has a Nokia N 72 mobile and has Orkut and Facebook accounts too.
He says, "Old age is like a ripe mango and it should be sweet. I am a regular user of internet. Like today's generation, I am fond of uploading my pictures on my Facebook account. I know how to operate a handycam and love to capture the world in my camera. Most importantly, I keep myself updated with all mobile technologies and know the software photoshop and use Picasa. I chat and video conference and send mails."
The elderly can be cool too, it's just that we need to have a closer look and notice the difference. They too believe in flowing with the tide. SK Khanna, a 74-year-old fun loving man says, "I think the very first step to be part of any generation is not to criticise it. Rather, we should patiently listen and believe if we are comfortable with it, then adopt it and if not then keep quiet. I never impose restrictions on my children and grandchildren. If the times are changing then it is obvious that the thinking of the people will also change. Had these things been at our time we would also have used them. We should happily accept the change. I go for morning and evening walks, do yoga and go to pick and drop my grandson from tuition and school. I play chess with him and encourage him in all his activities."
Today's elders also believe in the fitness mantra. SL Watwani, a retired scientific officer from the Ministry of Defence, is computer friendly and a badminton player as well. He says, "My son went abroad 12 years back and at that time I understood the importance of computers. I learned computers and now I am in touch not only with my son but with so many other people. I am in constant touch with my young friends via e-mails and also give them suggestions online. I also do not watch television and prefer reading e-paper. To be fit, I play badminton. I might not be a champion but love to play this sport."
Age is no bar in the case of RS Behl too. He says, "I play PSP with my grandson and also watch cartoon with him. He gives me updates about the latest things in market. I get to learn new things which otherwise would not have been possible. My grandson is more like a friend to me."
These elderly people have set a trend and are an example to others to follow suit and get rid of old age loneliness. They are a storehouse of knowledge and have nothing to take and have a lot to give. Old age is just another stage of life and is as beautiful as any other stage. What they need from us is only love and care.
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