The weather’s been improving and so we thought a trip to the coast would be a good idea. The last time we planned to go, Grandpa ended up in the hospital the evening before, which was annoying. I feared something like that would derail this trip, but everything worked out wonderfully. The day was stunning — not a cloud in sight — and Grandpa enjoyed the drive and the sights. The whole trip he sat with his eyes the size of silver dollars, taking everything in. He kept raving about the trees (and eventually the ocean, once we got there) and how beautiful everything looked. He normally sleeps half the day so I expected him to conk out during the drive, but he was wide awake the entire day. We went to Pacfic City to the pub and enjoyed a delicious lunch (Grandpa had the salmon, my mom and I had the fish and chips). Uncle Keith showed up, which was great. I’d sent him an email but hadn’t heard back (he doesn’t have a phone). After that we went and visited Grandpa’s old haunts, the town of Oceanside, his old beach house, Tillamook, etc. We got milkshakes at Dairy Queen for the drive home. It was great. On the drive home, two things happened. One, Grandpa kept thanking me for the wonderful day, telling me how much he’d enjoyed it. He really overdid it — he was overcome with emotion and it made me weepy too. But the second event was a little disturbing. His memory’s not great, of course, and it’s fascinating watching how it works (or doesn’t work). Earlier, right after we’d driven by his old house and looked at it for a few minutes, he suggested we go take a look at his old house. He’d already forgotten us doing that! But now, on the way home, he seemed to have lost himself in memories. He became confused, asking where “home” was, and thinking Carol (my mom) still lived at the coast. He seemed to remember nothing about living with me: he wondered where he was going to go and what was going to happen with him. It was like he’d forgotten the entire past year! Fortunately, once we got him home and into a familiar routine, he was fine. It was just a momentary lapse. Being at the coast reminded him of old times and he was back there, unable to distinguish past from present. Fascinating.