Death so near…I have to get out of here!



Yesterday was quite the day for me. To give a short version of my life, I live in a Senior complex. Not all the people here are really old and doddering, some are quite active. I am the youngest here, since I moved in with my mum due to my health issues. I attract a lot of attention due to my silly dog and my youth (all of 50 years old). When I am out with the dog, Wizard, people seem to gravitate to Wizard, and offer me only a smile nod. This being the case, I do not socialize much with the other residents since I feel out of place. There is also a lot of gossip here, since it is a small community everyone knows what others are doing, and as far as some are concerned, what others are thinking. Nuts!

Some of the residents here do not have visitors, friends, or family, to come visit them. With this in mind, it is real possibility for someone to have an accident or death with no one knowing about it for days. Just last month, a woman who lived upstairs in my complex passed away during the day. Her friend who lived next door had a nightly ritual of watching television together. Luckily, the day the woman passed, her friend found her that evening. She passed quietly, in her chair. It was quite weird to me, since I have never been around anywhere in which people just up and die. From what I have been told, the gossip line, the woman had been suffering quite badly from cancer. I guess it was a great relief for her, and for those who knew her. It was still a shock though.


The apartment next to me is, was, occupied by a single man. He was a big guy, tall and slightly overweight. It was hard to know much about him as he wasn’t very social, less than me. When Wizard and I would pass him in one of our walks, he would always be nice and smile. His truck is parked outside my window, and it has a real noisy interior alarm when the door opens. So, even though he wasn’t real social, there were clues to whether he was alright or not.

In the past few days I had noticed his truck hadn’t been moved. Mum didn’t really think there was anything to worry about. I also noted I hadn’t heard him while asleep. Let me explain: his bedroom is right next to my bathroom, so when he would fall asleep, he had really bad dreams. In the middle night it was quite eerie going to the bathroom hearing his ‘voices’ through the wall. I have to say, I often worried about him and felt bad for him: anyone who had a life which would lead to dreams this bad is so sad. His voice would change to a real high pitch while he was ‘dreaming’, and then it would lower. It was just horrible to hear. He also had real bad problems with diabetes. When he first moved in, he went through about three trucks due to crashing them on his way home from work because his diabetes was not under control. One time he did this, he took out part of the brick wall near the apartment. So, not only did he have horrible dreams, he also had pretty severe health problems.


Yesterday, I finally told mum he had not moved his truck in over three days, and his lights were never on at night. I just notice things like his truck since it was next to my window and Wizard and I passed it everyday. As mum left for errands in the morning, she mentioned to the manager I hadn’t seen nor heard our neighbor for a few days. The manager said she would call and have a Wellness Check done by the police.

Wizard and I headed out for our afternoon walk. As soon as we opened the door, I noticed police next door. One officer kind of stepped out on the sidewalk in a manner to deter me from walking in his direction. Wizard and I went the other way, and didn’t even act interested in what was going on. Not so nonchalant when I came back in though.


I stayed in the living room, going from one window to the other trying to ascertain what was going on outside. I felt it would be too obvious if I opened the front door, but it sure would have been easier to hear. I watched, going from window to window, as another police car came, then the Coroner. Oh my goodness! I ran woke mum, telling her the man next door was dead.

I listened, and yes, I eavesdropped, and heard one police officer talk into his radio. He spoke of rigor already set in, but nothing past this. Then, as I was standing outside talking to the upstairs neighbor, two guys from a local mortuary came to take the man’s body. I didn’t stick around after this. I knew what had happened, and am in a way glad he is finally at rest. Those dreams had to be hell to go through every night, then not having any social life to help deal with it all, he had to be fighting every night.


So, in just the first three months of 2014, two people have died, in my apartment building, and right in the middle of our side. It is a little weird. Last night I had three nightmares. I wasn’t scared at all because of the deaths; I think it was just so much happening in my otherwise dull world.

I so have to get out of this place!




16 thoughts on “Death so near…I have to get out of here!

  1. Quite a mixture of personalities sounds like, Rene. We do the best we can but when people just want to be alone, I guess it’s best to let them be. Sad to leave this world that way.

  2. The guy next door was very introverted. I believe, have no evidence of, he had some sort of psychological issues. He was kind enough when we passed him outside, but kept to himself, windows closed, door closed, and never came to any activities in the complex. The woman upstairs was quite a bit older than me. Since she lived upstairs I also could not reach her apartment. She also spoke mostly Spanish, I am not very good at conversational Spanish. There are a few older folks here I do talk to, and to whom Wizard has ingratiated himself.

  3. Wow, Rene. I can see why you’d want to move someplace else. Just in reading, it doesn’t sound very pleasant. Maybe, if getting to know the people more, it wouldn’t seem so morbid in their passing.

  4. Here you go… Try your hand at Horror!
    Man next door stops by and visits you everyday at same time.
    He only stays long enough for a cup of tea and maybe wheel of Fortune.
    Maybe a budding love affair or a couple of sessions of hot animal murder sex!
    This goes on for two weeks…
    A relative shows up concerned because man hasn’t been answering phone.
    Man is found dead. Been dead at least a month.
    Older Woman is pregnant.
    The night the baby kicks for the first time is when the scratching at the doors start….

  5. I am okay. It was just a bit…I guess…weird. I have known people who died, been in hospitals when they died. Right next door to me though, a bit messed up. Then to add to it the guy had been dead in the apartment for at least a day. Scary!

  6. Hi Rene, I am the same age as you, 51 in two weeks, I know that it does play with emotions when someone dies who are not family but lived close, I live within 13 houses and appartments, I was one of the first tenants when they were built on 17 years ago, now there are 3 of use left who are original tenants. I have watched people come and go some move some past on my next door neighbour moved into a residential home 2 years ago and died last year. This unassuming man who loved his horse racing, the church and talking over the fence, when this man was 17 he landed on the beaches of Dunkirk on the second wave and his to friends, an officer went to look for food to bring back to the wounded in a make shift hospital, while walking down a narrow country lane headingvto an abandoned farm hoping to get eggs and a couple of chickens he came across a body of a British paratrooper who was still connected to his chute, he gave the mans boots a kivk to make sure and then heard a shot, looking around he couldn’t see anyone, then didn’t feel right, he saw a tear in his tunic and then blood, he sank to his knees, heard a second shot then one of his friends telling him it was a sniper in a tree but he got him. The got him to the field hospital, a Priest gave him the last rites. Stan survived and came home to Glasgow where he spent 3 months in hospital and was the youngest solider there.

    When he came out of hospital he rejoined his unit and then was chosen to join a specialist unit of British, French and Canadian who were trained in demolition, in groups of 8 where dropped at night into Germany and France to destroy radio transmitters, bridges and anything else that would help slow the Germans and speed the end of the war. If any of these men were captured or injured they were to take their own life and some did.

    How brave were these men, Stans ended in a hospital not even recognising his family, but that man from Glasgow who loved his horse racing and telling his story of his life made a huge impression on me and I will always have a corner of my heart for the hero next door.

    You also Rene you are one of these people I admire taking the time to look after your mom, there are liad of lonesome parents because their kids dont give a damn and think their lives are important, I know how old people can be, I worked in two long term hospitals feeding, washing, chatting, playing games for occupational therapy and was it hard work. So don’t feel old because your not, feel proud because you are doing a good thing.

    God Bless, take care you wonderful 50 something 🙂

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