The number one summertime activity in Southern California has to be going to the beach. Yet, when you have a wheelchair or walker, there is something about the idea of sand and wheels that does not seem to mix well. So, when you are an ocean-lover with wheels, you feel kinda stuck in more ways than one. So what would you say if I told you we found a solution for this that does not involve a hovercraft or a sand-buggy? In fact, we were able to provide four of our wheelchair-bound residents a splashing good time.

It all started with the idea of fostering one resident’s love for fish. She feeds the gold fish in the dining room everyday and has even nicknamed him “Goldie.” She even tries to pet him as he comes to the surface for those deliciously light fish flakes. Then, we heard that the Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach was offering free admission for Seniors. BINGO! This would be the perfect outing for our fun-loving fish friend.

The excitement mounted as we gathered together a team of 3 volunteers, our Activity Director and our “official” bus driver, Sister Gaudencia. The scene was set for a full day of one-on-one ocean fun. The joy in the faces of our beautiful residents was truly radiant as they watch the divers in the large tank in one of the scheduled expositions. A picnic lunch was enjoyed a la fresco with an ocean breeze. And what about our fish-lover? Yes, she got her wish. She was able to pet a jellyfish!