Have you always wonder why those inflicted with dementia tend not to forget the past but remember the past events and memories vividly, yet often cannot recall the most recent activities? The grandfather used to be many things e.g. a famous chicken seller, a dancer and a popular ladies man, until all these became his memories and he continued to live in them. His favourite grandson tried to jolt his grandfather's recollection of recent incidents but the outcome was predictable.
It was said that for some, the memory is just a thing of the past. But I feel that this group of people, the memory is their present and what keeps them alive. The fortunate ones would still have their children and grandchildren to look after them when they live in their worlds. The really unfortunate ones would have no one with them when all memories are lost and no one remembers their past, no matter how glamorous, beautiful, sad or pathetic it ever was. What remains is just an empty shell.