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This is Ivan


He loved having a house, with a garden and the ability to barbeque but felt that Los Angles was a sprawling city that felt more like a suburb.  He decided that instead, he wanted to live in New York City.  He loves being retired in Manhattan.  He frequently attends Broadway plays and movies.  He mentioned that he has tickets for 3 plays in the near future.  Getting around even with a walker is relatively easy.

I asked him what he dislikes about the city, and he said the cold or inclement weather can sometimes be very difficult for him to manage.  He likes getting out, but when it is very cold, he has difficulty breathing and getting around with a walker in the snow can be challenging for him.


I first saw Ivan standing at one of the vegetable stands that dot the sidewalks of Manhattan.  As I watched him leave the stand and begin to cross the street, I noticed that in addition to his interesting hat, he had a nasal oxygen tube coming from his walker.  I caught up with him and we began to talk as I explained what my blog was about.  Ivan was interested.

Ivan is 71 years old and has been retired for 12 years.  He quickly added that he has been disabled for 10 years.  He has emphysema and needs continuous oxygen.  He uses his walker when shopping so that he has a place to put his groceries, but it also provides a portable seat for when he tires.  He has never married and has no children. He does have family-brothers and sisters and sisters-in-law, nieces and nephews in Brooklyn, Queens, and Long Island.  He is close to his extended family and sees them often.  His closeness with his extended family keeps him from feeling lonely or isolated.

Ivan attended Queens College and worked in production for AM and FM radio shows that were broadcast all over the United States.  However, he was able to work from a central location in Manhattan for these broadcasts.  He did live in Los Angles for twelve years and he described his life there with that of a love-hate relationship.


Most people are helpful, nice and considerate of him, but it does bother him when he believes people are taking pity on him when they see the walker and oxygen tube.  Ivan is a born and bred New Yorker.  He is getting out and does not allow his walker and oxygen to be barriers.  Nothing stops him from enjoying the culture and excitement of New York City.

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