KARLSRUHE — Both of Annette Röser’s parents suffered from dementia, and she remembers a precious means of connecting with their hidden world was music. Her mother’s eyes would light up when Röser played folk songs or "Memories expand=1] of Heidelberg."
Röser's experience with her late parents led her to found SingLiesel Verlag, a German-language publisher specialized in books for people with dementia, reports DPA. Based in the southwest city of Karlsruhe, this specialized publisher uses sing-along and experiential books aimed at relatives who want to build a bridge to their parents or grandparents.
The publications were created with the input of a certified music therapist and other professionals in the field, tapping into a growing market of those who live with or care for some of the estimated estimated 1.5 million people in Germany alone who suffer from dementia. DPA notes that by way of comparison, there are 1.9 children in Germany under the age of three.
People in the beginning stages of dementia can mostly still read quite well. However as the disease advances, the ability to read goes, which is why another German-language publisher, Munich-based Ernst Reinhardt Verlag, specializes in books that can be read aloud to patients – compendia of short stories that take no longer than five minutes to read and highlight working life, hobbies and travel.
The binding on a SingLiesel book is illustrated to look like a primer from the 1940s. The illustrations inside are reminiscent of that era as well. Instead of a lot of text there are drawings like the ones in children’s books showing things familiar to generation 75-plus, like the black dial phone and handwritten letters rather than emails.
Röser tells DPA that it’s important for books aimed at dementia patients to have pop-ups and other features that can be touched, like in one volume where a reader can turn a wheel at a mill. The underlying hope is that these features will trigger memories and that patients will become engaged with the people around them.
Gas stations in many Iranian cities had trouble supplying fuel earlier in the week in what was a suspected cyberattack on the fuel distribution system. One Tehran daily on Thursday blamed Israel, which may have carried out similar acts in past years, to weaken Iran's hostile regime.
The incident reportedly disrupted the credit and debit card payments system this time, forcing users to pay cash and higher prices, the London-based broadcaster Iran International reported.
Though state officials didn't publicly accuse anyone specific, they did say perhaps this and other attacks had been planned for October, to "anger people" on the anniversary of the anti-government protests of 2019.
Khamenei, where's our gas?
Cheeky slogans were spotted Tuesday in different places in Iran, including electronic panels over motorways. One of them read "Khamenei, where's our gas?"
Iran International reported that Tehran-based news agency ISNA posted, then deleted, a report on drivers also seeing the message "cyberattack 64411" on screens at gas stations, purported to be the telephone number of the office of Iran's supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
A member of parliament's National Security Committee, Vahid Jalalzadeh, said the attack had been planned months ahead, and had inflicted "grave losses," Iran International and domestic agencies reported Thursday. The conservative Tehran newspaper Kayhan named "America, the Zionist regime and their goons" as the "chief suspects" in the attack.
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