From the Seniors’ Centre

News from the centre, as well as some tips on how to get the most - and best - out of life.

Joyce West

On May 19 we had our usual potluck lunch, followed by the business meeting and then by card games. At the meeting, the executive welcomed a new second vice-president, Muriel Nichol, better known to us all as Binky. She has the most infectious smile, and we are most glad to have her on board—welcome! The other positions are filled by the current directors, while one job, that of treasurer, is presently being understudied by Linda Holland with the hope that she will take over later in the year. Note was made of the splendid job being done by Nola, our kitchen convener, whose task, incidentally, includes keeping track of our paper towels and toilet paper stock! She works with a ready smile and a kind word for everyone, while her laugh is really infectious and much missed if she is away.

Carpet bowls, bridge, card games, and the Guys’ Wednesdays are all doing well, and  while we who come to Bingo on Saturdays enjoy it very much, for various reasons numbers have been lower of late, so the prize money has also been a bit less. Come back, you absentees!

Kevin and Isabel were late arriving because they had been using their energy to attend an organizational meeting for the Seniors’ Games which are held in the fall. This year they are to be held once again at the coast, and it is thought that this may be the reason that less interest is being shown in attending them. Next year they are to be in Vernon, and it is hoped that this will spur on more competitors from the Interior zones. Thank you to Kevin and Isabel for giving up your time to bring us the report so speedily.

Applications were received for the bursary for a local student going on to further education. Three students have applied, and  three of our members are studying their applications and will bring us their recommendations.

There was a short discussion regarding our pool table, which has not been used for its real purpose for quite a long time. It is a very good piece of equipment to be standing idle, and it is hoped that some of our members will come out to use it. This is the reason it was decided to keep the table, and we hope that it will be used again soon.

Dates for your calendar:

Saturday, June 11: Last bingo for the season (starts again in September)

Thursday, June 16: Last business meeting and cards until fall

Tuesday, September 6: Centre reopens with carpet bowling and cards

In our travels, John and I have met many wonderful people who have kept up with us over the years by e-mail and Skype. Computers make it all so easy—when you get them to work properly, that is!—and one person whom we met on our first cruise is called Rosemary, and comes from Australia. Recently she sent us the e-mail below, and I would like to share it with you and perhaps even hear your thoughts on it, remembering that Aussies are reputed to be quite outspoken!

Rules For A Good Old Age

1. It’s time to use  the money you saved up. Use it and enjoy it. Don’t just keep it for those who may have no notion of the  sacrifices you made to get it.

2. Stop worrying about the financial situation of your children and grandchildren. You’ve taken care of them for many years, and you’ve taught them what you could. You gave them an education, food, shelter, and support. The responsibility is now theirs to earn their way.

3. Keep a healthy life with moderate exercise, eat well, and get your sleep. It’s easy to become sick, and it gets harder to remain healthy.

4. Always buy the best, most beautiful items for your significant other. The key goal is to enjoy your money with your partner. One day one of you  will miss the other, and the money will not provide any comfort then. Enjoy it together.

5. Don’t stress over the little things. You’ve already overcome so much in your life. You have good memories and bad ones, but  the important thing is the present. Don’t let the past drag you down or the future frighten you.

6. Regardless of age, always keep love alive. Love your partner, love life, love your family, love your neighbour, your surroundings, your country. We are never old as long as we have intelligence and affection.

7. Be proud, both inside and out. When you are  well-maintained on the outside, it seeps in, making you feel proud  and strong.

8. Don’t lose sight of fashion trends for your age, but keep your own sense of style. You’ve developed your own sense of what looks good on you—keep it and be proud of it. It’s part of who you are.

9. Read newspapers, watch the news. Make sure you have an active e-mail account and try to  use some of those social networks; you’ll be surprised which  old friends you’ll meet. Keeping in touch with what is going on and with the people you know is important at any age.

10. Respect the younger generation and their  opinions. They may not have the same viewpoints as ours, but they are the future and will take the world in their direction. Give advice, not criticism, and try to  remind them of yesterday’s wisdom that still applies today.

11. Never use the phrase “In my time”. Your time is now. As long as you’re alive, you are part of this time.

12. Some embrace their golden years, while others become bitter and surly. Life is too short to waste your days in the latter mode. Spend your time with positive, cheerful people; it’ll rub off on you .

13. Do not surrender to the temptation of living with your  children or grandchildren (if you have a financial choice, that  is). Being surrounded by family sounds great, but we all need our privacy. They need theirs and you need  yours.

14. Don’t abandon your hobbies. If you don’t have any, make new  ones. You  can travel, hike, cook, read, dance. You can adopt a cat or a dog, grow a garden, play cards, checkers, chess, dominoes, golf. Find something you like and spend some real time having fun with it.

15. Even if you don’t feel like it, try to  accept invitations. Get out of the house, meet people you haven’t seen in a while, experience something new (or something old). The important thing is to leave the house from time to time. Go to museums, go walk through a field.  Get out there.

16. Be a conversationalist. Talk less and listen more. Some people go on and on about the past, not caring if their listeners are interested. Don’t go off into long stories unless asked to. Speak in courteous tones  and try not to complain or criticize too much unless you really need  to. Try to accept situations as they are, and always find some good things to say.

17. Pain and discomfort go hand in hand with getting older. Try not to dwell on them, but accept them as a part of the cycle of life we’re all going through. If they become your entire focus, you lose sight of the person you used to be.

18. If you’ve been offended by others, forgive them. If you’ve offended someone, apologize. Don’t drag resentment around with you. It will make you sad and bitter. It doesn’t matter who was right. Someone once said, “Holding a grudge is like taking poison and expecting the other person to die.” Don’t take that poison.

19. If you have a strong belief, savour it, but don’t waste your  time trying to convince others.  Live your faith and set an example. Live true to your beliefs and let that memory sway them.

20. Laugh. Laugh a lot. Laugh at everything. Remember, you are one  of the lucky ones. You managed to have a life, a long one. Many never get to this age, never get to experience a full life. Find the humour in your situation.

21. Take no notice of what others say about you, and even less of what they might be thinking. They’ll do it anyway, and you should have pride in yourself and what you’ve achieved. They have no idea about your history, your memories, and the life you’ve lived. There’s still much to be written, so get busy writing.

And remember: Life is too short to drink cheap wine!

Have a great summer, everyone, and come back in the fall bursting with energy and lots of good ideas.

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