We are all social beings, connected through shared experiences of loves lost - and found; of breaks and falls and trips to the doctor; and of past memories and dreams for the not so distant future. We all share the human condition - trying to understand and live this unsolicited gift we have been given. But there are times when we can get disconnected from life - stuck in our own sorrow and self-pity; isolated in our own losses and miseries; when we may not even want to get out of bed, let alone get out of the house. And then we need a pair of jumper cables to get reconnected to life.
Fortunately, there are many places where you can find those jumper cables to get reconnected to life. You can find them though a child by becoming a mentor with Big Brothers Big Sisters or helping a child learn to read through the local SMART program. You can get connected with others through a new or forgotten hobby. Enroll in an art class at The Dalles Art Center, purchase a ukulele at Columbia River Music and practice with the local ukulele players or join the Mid-Columbia Car Club and restore that 56’ Chevy.
Social health and the benefits of staying connected and engaged with others is this month’s focus in your Passport to Happiness Calendar. (And you better have your calendar hanging up next to your icebox or lying on your coffee table, because it provides more than telling you what the date is! Each month the calendar features a healthy food recipe, insights to enhance your personal well-being, a comprehensive listing of agency and service resources, as well as a schedule of events that are of specific interest to older adults. And if you don’t have a calendar, call the Center to find the closest location to pick one up.) This month’s event focusing on the importance of social health will be held on Wednesday, February 20th from 3:00 – 4:30 at the Center. Don’t forget to bring your Passport card (the tear off at the bottom of your Calendar) to get stamped. At the end of this year, there will be a Passport to Happiness celebration where participants with complete (or nearly complete) passports will be awarded various prizes including gift certificates to various local businesses.
The Center was “rockin and rollin” more than usual last week. Brenda Green and Marsha Morrison gave a lively and moving (as in moving your body) demonstration of Zumba Gold - filling the classroom with energy and fun. And for those who can’t wait till the next class, Zumba Gold will start on Wednesday February 20th at 9:00 in the Center’s basement. (And the Center has made special arrangements, so the cost is only $3.00 a class.)
Also last week the iPad and Kindle users groups met (they meet every first Wednesday of the month) and everyone was busy exploring and sharing new ways to use their electronic devices. If you think the Center is just a bunch of “old” people, you are missing all the fun and excitement!
And before the seeds start to sprout – playing tonight at the Center is Martin and Friends followed next week by Truman. Music begins at 7:00, everyone is welcome and donations are always appreciated
The author of over eighty Perry Mason novels and short stories that were the basis for the Perry Mason television series (which I have been told is the longest running syndicated television series) was Erle Stanley Gardner. (And the randomly selected winner of five quilt raffle tickets is Jess Birge.)
To find the question for this week’s “Remember When” I had to go back to my grade school days. Who sang the #1 hit “Great Balls of Fire? - the first 45 RPM record I ever bought (and promptly lost at school the next day). And for those who thought that question was too easy, what was the name of the studio where the song was recorded? E-mail your answer to firstname.lastname@example.org, call 541-296-4788 or send it with a copy of the “million dollar quartet” recording session from Tuesday December 4th 1956.
Well, it’s been another week, peddling in the sand as fast as I can and not getting anywhere. Until we meet again, when you experience life’s quirks and whims - celebrate the ups and don’t get stuck in the downs.
“It's paradoxical that the idea of living a long life appeals to everyone, but the idea of getting old doesn't appeal to anyone.” ― Andy Rooney