The Grandpa Mystery

by Sarah Boissiere 9 months ago in advice

I feel bad about this...

The Grandpa Mystery

I work in a retirement home on weekends. We have about a 100 residents, in two four-story buildings.

I work at the front desk, I greet people when they come in, give them their mail, and residents can reach me on the landline at the front desk. They each have a landline in their room where they can reach me directly, and I can also receive outside calls. When I get a call, I can see the outside number or the room number of the person calling, on my landline screen.

It was a Sunday morning, about 10 AM. I get a call, and all that is written on the landline is "Line_01." I pick up, even if this number doesn't match any room in the retirement home.

On the phone, I hear a heavy breathing, with wheezing, and I understand that the person has difficulty breathing. I ask immediately who it is, and all I get is the person saying "Hello? Hello?" That's it. So I keep going, asking their name. From the voice, I try to recognize any of the residents, I hear it's a man, but I can't get a name, I don't know if he can hear me, and after a few more hellos, he hangs up.

There I am, knowing someone is having trouble breathing, don't know if he fell, if he's in immediate danger, don't know his name, or where he is.

I call the nurse working at that time right away, but she doesn't pick up. I keep calling her for 20 minutes, and she's not answering. I start panicking, because I can't leave my desk, and I can't do anything to help this guy.

Finally, after 25 minutes, she answers. Her phone had a problem, and she didn't hear it ring. She doesn't know this "Line_01" either.

We get working, I pull out the list of residents, and we single out every man in the retirement home. Remember, it's a pretty big place, so we have about 30 people to check out. We split up, I try calling them, take them out of the list when they answer, and tell her about the ones not answering.

At this point, it's been about 45 minutes since the man called, and we still don't have the slightest idea who he is and where he is.

I take the men out of the list one by one, until there is no one left on the list. Every man in the home is accounted for, and none of them has had respiratory difficulties.

So there is my mystery. It wasn't a resident, but if it had been an outside call, then it would have shown a phone number on the screen. If the landline announced "Line_01," it means this number was registered as "Line_01," and this landline knew it. So it has to be some kind of inside number.

I have this hypothesis that it might be one of these alert bracelets that old people have, and if they fall or are in danger they press it and it calls someone, but I don't see why it would call the front desk, and not the nurse or a family member. And also, if it's not one of the residents of my retirement home, then who is this grandpa? Is he alright? Is he nearby and his signal caught my landline?

I have so many questions that can't be answered, and I feel really bad I couldn't do more. I hope he is alright.

The end.

Sarah Boissiere
Sarah Boissiere
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