Tag Archives: elderly

Retirement Woes

Growing up, there was this unrealistic assumption that being retired was a goal to achieve in order to live the waning years of life in complete peace, tranquility and ease. Yet, as this age of life is finally here, the stark truth of retirement is realized and most of it is not entirely the way it was envisioned. Those that are not overly wealthy find daily worries, wondering about the amount left in an account after the last shopping trip and before another sum is credited into the account. With that, to some, not being enough worry, politics enter the picture. Most elderly people think politics does not overly concern elderly individuals because they have retirement money, social security money and other income, for some not all).

These monies are for housing (even if the house is paid there is maintenance, taxes and insurance), food and utilities (not counting clothing and mild entertainment). Then account for the insurance for any medical issue. Politics have a strong and lasting effect on all of this. As one catastrophic example, imagine a person depending on retirement money from a corporation. Then imagine politics forcing that corporation to declare bankruptcy. Now the corporation cease to exist and so goes the retirement money. And, in a domino effect, there goes the way of life for the retiree, that is if the retiree is not independently self sufficient. Also think about depending on work place health insurance. If you stop working, where does health insurance fit in?

As the political scene tease, change and outright stabs a person in their heart, the retiree, like me, wonders what will tomorrow bring. Will I have enough money for housing needs, food, medical care and, politicians don’t want to hear this, entertainment. Politicians have their way mapped out for them and they don’t worry about their future. We the people pay their way. People with money don’t worry because they have their life and they don’t worry or care about those without money. Sure, they give a little to this cause or that cause but for the most part it is only a drop of water in a very large bucket.

We all have to worry about our political scene as it is presented to us today not yesterday. We not only have to look at what is happening now but what will happen in the future when certain bills are passed and bestowed on us and our children. What hoops will our children have to jump thru to reach retirement (or will they be able to retire). The life of peace, tranquility and ease will be snatched away and replaced with doubt and angst.

I’ll throw one more wrench into the machinery and leave this train of thought alone for a while. Don’t believe being ex-federal (civilian or military) leaves you immune to all that is happening in politics. The politicians are attempting to not only put deep cuts into things non-federal but they are looking at the military (don’t believe everything that you have heard about the military), federal hospitals and everything else that is federal. It will be a little slower coming than the rest that is proposed but, if they have their way, it is coming. Everybody that does not have a large sum of money will be on shaky ground with no where to run. And remember one other thing, if you voted for the present administration, you either have what you wanted or you will get what you want. Oh well.

In closing, although this is not a woe, my wife and I, again, was able to enjoy an entertainment before cuts are made in my monies. Where did we go? The annual Hampton Jazz Festival in beautiful Hampton, Virginia. As usual, the artists this year were outstanding and, of course, I saw my favorite, Fantasia. The line-up look like this: (Friday Night) Jill Scott, Kem, Brian Culbertson, Gerald Albright & Jonathan Butler. (Saturday Night) The O’Jays, Fantasia, Anthony Hamilton, West Coast Jam featuring Richard Elliot, Norman Brown & Rick Braun. (Sunday Night) Maze featuring Frankie Beverly, Patti LaBelle, Ramsey Lewis, Bobby “Blackhat” Walters. All of this was performed in the Hampton Coliseum and it was the 50th Anniversary for the festival.

This fall, across the street from the coliseum at the Convention Center, will be the annual Hampton Jazz Legion. We will be there also because, like I have said before, I love jazz and want to attend live performances. Both programs are always sold out well in advance and so are hotel spaces. In fact, people usually get tickets and hotels a year in advance of the performance.

Try to stay safe and cool. Have a great summer and be kind to others. See ya!!!

Coco Cay, Bahamas

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Elderly and Writing

Cool weather is upon us and we must prepare for the up coming cold winter air. Don’t wait because it will be upon us before we know it. Winter, like summer, is no joke, especially if you are among the elderly. Things we used to do when we were younger is no longer true now. The heat or coldness we used to endure is fatal now. The getting up at the crack of dawn is gone. Swiftness in our step is slowing if not already slowed. Soon it will come to a stop; we all must meet that fate. It’s no fun getting up in age; we all must meet that fate also. We are human and not infallible and must watch what we say, do and react to. Infallibility certainly come with age and we get older, not younger.

Have patience with those that are older than we are. Those that move slower. Those that are slower in wit (some didn’t get it with age but was there most of their lives). Not only does the body deteriorate with age, so does the mind (few exceptions allowed). Be helpful and understand. One day we all will be in the same position. How would we want to be treated?

On a lighter note…My wife and I attended the Annual Meeting (and luncheon) of The Virginia Writers Club on the 7th and it was grand, although there wasn’t as many attendees as I thought there would be. We bought a couple of books (the book I’m writing is not finished yet) and had them autographed. My wife won a prize, a book. The main speaker was great and the food was out of this world. The event was held at The Embassy Suites Hotel and the hotel have a botanical garden area that Lewis Ginter Gardens would surely love to have. It was wonderful to tour the floras and running water (all indoors, of course). We even accidentally met the keeper of the gardens. It was a great day. Now I must buckle down and write in earnest. I’ll tell you why…

The Mighty Pen is a project presented (hosted) by the Virginia War Memorial. I am in the second class of writers that are coached (taught, instructed) by some highly powered people. The class was an idea of author David Robbins and he taught the first class and drops in on the second class, my class, which have two more weeks left of a ten week course. My class is instructed by Dr. David Coogan, author and professor at Virginia Commonwealth University. There are only twelve people at each class but two have dropped out of mine. As can be expected, the writings are all about the military, fact or fiction (great majority is fact). It is a great course and I would have never forgiven myself if I had passed on the opportunity to attend (it was my wife that showed me the article about the class). I’m glad I am attending and I have learned a lot as well as rubbed elbows with a lot of influential people. I hope the younger class members realize what an opportunity it is to be there.

Mr. David Robbins is also the co-founder of the James River Writers Club and asked me to check into them and, hopefully, join. I am looking into them as soon as I can and, if they are as good as The Virginia Writers Club, I will join. These clubs, in the future, may be a help to me in my writings and will look good on my resume, when submitted to a publisher. Wish me luck.

There was suppose to be a writing course started here at Imperial Plaza. I signed up for the course about three months ago but have not heard anything yet. I heard, a couple of weeks ago, that they were looking for people to take the course but my name and number have been on the sign-up sheet for a long time. Oh well, no contact, no sweat. I’ll wait because I have plenty of other things on my plate, not counting my writings.

Remember, prepare for winter and keep a sharp mind. Be mindful of others and, as it was said in days of yore, “keep on keeping on”. And, as I used to close all my radio programs, “be kind to your neighbors, because you’ll never know when you’ll need them. Also, ensure your words are soft and sweet, because you’ll never know when you’ll have to eat them”. Bye-bye!!!