Meals on Wheels

This past week Don and I have been participating1 in a community service program2 known as “meals on wheels3.”  As volunteers in this program we have been delivering noontime meals to elderly people who can no longer easily prepare them4 for themselves.  Some of them are even confined to5 wheel chairs6.


The food is prepared7 in the kitchen of the Pella Community Center8.  There is always a hot dish, such as chicken or roast beef, and a cold dish, such as fruit or a salad.  The food is put in plastic containers9 and placed in big thermal bags10 which we pick up.  There are also small containers of milk that go in with the cold food.  We are given names and addresses of the people to whom we are to deliver11 the food and even are told if we should just walk into the house after knocking12 (in situations where the people can’t move fast, or at all13.)  We had nine people to deliver to in our group and it took us about an hour to complete the deliveries14 each day.


We are told that the food is good, and we know the elderly people appreciate15 it and our delivering it.  They keep saying so.  The cold box usually contains a sandwich16 which they can eat in the evening.  That way they really are sure to have two meals each day. 


Some of the people see no one else other than the meal deliverers each day17, so they are eager for a little conversation18, and they often like to ask about the weather.  Today I could tell them that it was lovely, sunny and cool.  Yesterday I told them how windy and rainy it was.  No matter what19, they are always interested.


The program of food deliverers is organized through the local churches.  When it is our church’s turn, volunteers are asked for, and if we are in town we volunteer20.  It’s an activity that always makes us feel good, and we know it is both useful and appreciated.



l. participating: taking part in along with other people (参加).

2. a community service program (社区安排的服务项目): an activity provided by the community in order to provide a needed item or items for some specific group, i.e., the elderly, within the city or area.

3. meals on wheels: 汽车送饭(服务项目)

4. them: 指前面提到的meals

5. confined to: If someone has to be confined to a wheelchair, bed, or house, etc., they have to stay there because they are disabled or ill.

 6. wheelchairs (轮椅): sturdy chairs with wheels for people who cannot walk, or walk poorly.

 7. prepared: put together, cooked, or made ready beforehand .

 8. Pella Community Center (佩拉镇社区中心): a building provided by the city of Pella which serves as an area for community offices, recreation, art exhibits and other services to people living in the community.

 9. containers (容器): box-like receptacles for holding items such as food or other items.

10. thermal bags (保温袋): large portable, insulated plastic containers which keep food or other materials hot or cold for a period of time.

11. deliver (递送、投递): take one or more items to a specific location or address.

12. knocking: 敲门

13. or at all: or cant move at all (或者根本走不动). 此处省略了cant moveat all用来加强语气。

14. deliveries: 递送任务。

15. appreciate (欣赏、感激): feel grateful or thankful for, enjoy something.

16. sandwich: 三明治

17. Some of the people see no one else other than the meal deliverers each day: 他们当中有些人每天除了送饭的人见不到别的人。此处other than表示apart from, except

18. eager for a little conversation: wanting very much to have a little conversation (非常想聊一点天).

19. No matter what: No matter what the weather is (不管是什么天气).

20. volunteer (志愿做某事): agree to do something without being paid or forced to do it, do a task without expectation of payment or wages. 此处volunteer是动词。

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