It is interesting to note how moving to a retirement home has changed my perspective about life.

I should have been in church this Sunday morning, but I chose to walk through a nearby shopping center as the sun flooded the landscape.

I hadn’t given much thought to how much time I now spend traveling across blacktop and cement. I did take time, however, to enjoy patches of decorative grass alongside a building and made a note to snap a photograph the next time I pass.

Yet, I may not pass that way again knowing that I don’t have to do anything but eat, sleep and watch the women Ducks play softball.

Today, I’m more concerned about whether an umpire will call the corners when Megan Kleist pitches than debating whether to order pancakes or waffles for breakfast.

During my outing this morning I whiled away the time at a St. Vinnies store and noticed all of the “stuff” that my wife and I no longer need now that we’re in an apartment and are fed three times a day.

“Gotta watch my weight,” I keep reminding myself as I listen to the waitress run through the dessert offerings. Normally, I choose an ice cream cone rather than calorie-laden pie and other goodies.

Now that I’m retired, housed and fed, I should follow the rather strict workout regimine that I mapped out a few months ago. Unfortunately, walking a mile by rounding the retirement building five times now seems formidable.

It’s easier to sit in front of a computer and check e-mail messages and to learn what friends (and strangers) are doing on Facebook.

Or to play a game or two or three or four or five of Solitaire.

Watching the University of Oregon women’s softball team play on TV also requires an investment of several hours a week, which interrupts my nap time, especially now that the team is headed to the World Series.

Nevertheless, I am learning the importance of prioritizing my life in new ways: Breakfast at 7:30, lunch at noon and dinner at 5:30. Maybe a walk now and then even if most of it is on blacktop and cement.

* Photo courtesy of UO Athletic Department


rg letter

Beginning July 1, Register-Guard retirees will be charged $1.50 per week if they wish to continue receiving the print edition.

I knew the letter was coming. Other retirees reported receiving the letter after a media company purchased the paper from the Baker family. I suspect their reaction was much like mine.

The Register-Guard has reneged on its promise to gift the paper as long as the retiree lived in the circulation area. That is the only “perk” most of us received when we retired as employees of the newspaper.

Granted, two decades of service may not qualify me for a “freebee,” but a promise is a promise.

I have been offered several choices, including the following:

* I can begin paying $1.50 a week for the print edition.

* I can receive the digital issue free until 2023. If I survive that long, what happens? I suspect that I would be billed $1.50 a week for the on-line version.

I’ve been in this business long enough to know that we’re no longer handsetting the newspaper, Linotypes are museum pieces and no one has a clue what type lice and hell box mean. Continue reading A PROMISE WAS A PROMISE UNTIL GUARD WAS SOLD




Our garden plot is 30-inches square.

Planted a geranium there that we over-wintered for four years at our former home.

This oldtimer looks a bit lonesome, which means that we need to schedule a buying trek to the Johnson nursery north of Coburg.

Lou and I will fill our new garden with flowers because we get more veggies than we can eat as new residents of Terpening Terrace, a retirement home in north Eugene.

We’re perched in a two-bedroom apartment on the third floor were we can watch sunsets. One bedroom serves as an office, and we watch TV there.

Sold our home of 40 years during April and are adjusting to a schedule regulated largely by when to show up for meals. Yummie meals. Fortunately, I don’t have to prepare them. I do, however, miss eating grapefruit each morning. Grapefruit is off limits in senior living establishments. Doesn’t mix with some medications.

Everyone has a story to share. I have to take care, however, because I often embellish mine. It’s also a challenge to remember the first and last names of more than a hundred occupants. Last names are especially important when it comes to Betty because we have five of them in our village.

I became excited when I learned that volleyball is one of the most popular activities at Terpening. I asked where the court was located. Learned that it was in the activity room, which is smaller than a regulation volleyball court. Turns out, competitors sit in chairs and flip a beach ball back and forth across a net.

You can while away the time in the puzzle room, one where you create pretty pictures one piece at a time. Or you can play card games, including one called manipulation, which most of us have been playing in a different form during a lifetime. Better yet, join the bingo bunch. At least they serve popcorn while calling the numbers.

The two libraries here feature enough reading to keep me occupied for at least two dozen years. The odds are slim, however, that an 89-year-old will accomplish such an objective.

In any event I expect to live a well-rounded life, including regular attendance at mealtime, joining the beach ball bunch, learning to play manipulation and tending our garden plot.