Tag Archives: Virginia Beach

Tomorrow Is Not Promised

A while ago I thought I had found true retirement and what it really felt like until I moved to Virginia Beach. My wife and I walked to the beach, she sat and got a lot of sun while I fished. Life is great and I will try to take full advantage of it with the little time I have left on this earth. Most people do not think about their age or that time is dear. Tomorrow is not promised, you can leave this world at any moment.

I never thought about that, I always lived as though I will be here forever. Then, one Sunday morning in 1971, while I was stationed in Germany, I had a massive stroke and awaken two weeks later. My right side, from head to toe, was paralyzed. I was given a fifty percent chance of having another stroke, a fifty percent chance of surviving another stroke and only ten more years to live. Well, I am still here and did not have another stroke. God is good and have given me a good life but tomorrow is not promised.

Today, like yesterday, I live one day at a time never forgetting that today or tomorrow could be my final day. For more than forty years I have reminded myself of this but I do not let it get me down or stop me from living life to it’s fullest, as much as I can. I also think about people that can not live life to it’s fullest or have the opportunity to even try.

It is a shame to be an American, to be a part of separating children from their parents. Yes, we all are guilty because we are the American that allowed the situation to happen in the first place and then let it come to a tragic point before opposition was voiced. The opposed should have made their voices heard from the beginning, not a week or two later. Although an order have been signed does not mean that this is over or it will not happen again.

How will the children be reunited with their parents when most can not tell their full names, parents full names, where they are from or any valuable information that will garner a possibility of reuniting them? It is a big mess the USA administration have made and they don’t show any sorrow for causing it. Mockery, laughter, snide remarks is all that is heard from the administration as well as blaming other politicians and/or the other party. Have anyone heard the majority leaders speak up yet?

We as seniors suppose to have the maturity to do the right thing, should not wait to see what happen but just do the right thing. Fall elections will be here shortly and the right thing must be done to get back onto the right track. We can then begin to allow people to live the life that we live. There is plenty of room for others, right beside me and you, and we all can ride this good life train together. Tomorrow is not promised to anyone therefore things must be set right today. Judgment could be today or tomorrow but whenever it come, and it will, it will be no use telling God that you meant no harm. You can see the harm and sorrow. You would not want to be treated this way nor have your children go through what the immigrant children are going through. Do unto others as you would have done unto you.

Do the right thing by loudly voicing disapproval, voting the right way and being an upstanding senior that will lead the younger generation in the right direction. Don’t quietly mumble you don’t like what’s happening, say it loud, also… Don’t believe it will get better on it’s own, it will not, believe me. Tomorrow is not promised nor the remainder of today.

 

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Relocating

 

 

I finally have relocated to Virginia Beach, about two hours from Richmond, a few yards from the beach. I returned to Imperial Plaza for the ROMEO (Retired Old Men Eating Out) monthly outing and we all had a really good time with good food. Laughing, joking and having a good time with my buddies made the day for me. It was a really good break from unpacking. My wife had a nail appointment at her usual nail salon after which she and her sister went out to eat. Who say seniors can’t have fun?

The thing about moving is finding things you forgot you have and taking more time than you have looking at pictures/items long forgotten but, my, my how memories return. There are several hard parts with one is finding your way around the new surroundings. Going through the streets watching the driving habits that are different from where you come from. There is also the joy of finding shortcuts that are not featured on GPS, avoiding the volume of traffic during the rush hours. In a few weeks I should be able to go where ever I desire without a thought, GPS or map. I remember being stationed in Europe; I would purposely drive around the larger cities, hopelessly lost, but not afraid. By the time my gasoline is getting low I would somewhat know the city. I would not know it like a local but I would know it. That is what I am trying to do, in time, here.

There is the myriad of empty boxes with a few more to go. Where to put it all is beyond me and I am wondering how we accrued all the things we are finding. The thrift stores will acquire quite a bit before we are finished with it all. I finally can move through this place without sliding side ways from one side of a room to the other. However, this bring on wonderful memories of my many military moves. Oh, well, the things I am really looking for must be in one of the boxes I haven’t emptied yet, I hope.

Another difficult part of relocating is getting used to new routines as well as meeting new people (it takes me awhile to remember a name). For some odd reason I find myself waking earlier than usual but on an odd day or two I do sleep late (blame it on the salt air, so refreshing). It is good during this time of year, however, when it gets dark earlier and sunrise later, I doubt I will be in to it as much. Then, being on the coast, with the water a hundred yards away, may be a problem if or when a hurricane arrive and the water floods the area. We’ll deal with that when the time come to deal with it. Until then, we’ll enjoy what is here.

Well, summer is here and it’s fun time. Many people prefer cold weather, winter snow, I don’t. I spent too many years in the military surrounded in cold weather and snow. Now that I am not required to do it, I will not. Have fun, stay safe and I’ll see you the later.

Changes

I have attended two military management schools plus one when I became a civilian. The first thing that is always drummed into my head that I have found to be true today: there is always a resistance to change. In all my years of moving around in the military or having a change of command, I learned to adapt, go with the flow, things are not as bad as it seem, life goes on.

At the end of the month Bookdale Senior Living will leave to be replaced by Somerby Senior Living. Change. As I look into Somerby, as president of the Resident Council and as an independent resident at Imperial Plaza, I don’t, at this time, see any negative signals about the change. At this time, all I see are positive things. Sure, the pharmacy is lost but that was a part of Brookdale and, as told to me, Brookdale could not find a replacement willing to operate on the premises. Somerby, looking into their other facilities, have never operated a pharmacy on their premises. Maybe later they can be talked into trying although there are many regulation hoops to jump through. Changes.

A lot of people at Imperial Plaza either do not understand or refuse to understand that to them this is their residence but to Somerby or any other company this is a business and businesses must abide by laws and regulations. They want to not cause any disruption to the daily lives of the residents but, at the same time, must do what business practices demand. Sure, with change there will be some disruption of the way things have been done but change cause people to adjust to the subtle change in the way things were done.

Many people, especially senior citizens, want to stay in the same old mold and do not want to change, whether good or bad. They do not want to try something new or even talk about it. I have found a lot of people here always talking about the way it was done back in the ’40s and ’50s and they still want it done that way. On days when the activities department have music, old swing music have the place almost full. On days when up to date music is played, very few people attend then complain that there is nothing to do. They hate change and have to be dragged along into a new era.

I wish Somerby luck in managing Imperial Plaza and attempting to drag the stubborn individuals into a new system. I wish the residents stop asking the same questions over and over, put into a different format and getting the same response, hoping for a different answer. That goes back to the old saying: you can satisfy some of the people some of the time but not satisfy all the people all of the time.

On that note, to those reading this at Imperial Plaza, the blogs will continue but not from Imperial Plaza. My wife and I will relocate to Virginia Beach, right down the road (interstate 64) to a new senior living facility on the beach. My wife and I will return for visits and activities and we will always remember the good times we had at Imperial Plaza. However, as I have said, the blogs will go on and the readers around the world will continue to wonder what I have to say next. I hope I can honor their wishes and make it entertaining. Change is inevitable, we also are changing.

Hear Ye, Hear Ye

I know I am late but things, from time to time, come up that can not be controlled. However, I am committed to continue my blog. There was a night time bicycle ride that had a few streets blocked off that infuriated many drivers. I was at my part-time job, filling in for a person on vacation, and saw the part of the ride that came down Monument Ave. I watched many vehicles making u-turns because streets were blocked off but the bicyclists were elated and having fun. I could not see much but what I could see made me wish I could have been out there. Alas, maybe next year.

We are still having great fun at the White Squirrel with more and more people jumping up to dance. The music is great, the food is good and Steve and Christy will play music in September. So, for the month of September the fun will continue. The room may be small but that is one of the reasons that make it great. I want more to join in. Not to just listen but to eat and dance.

Coming up is another fishing trip out of Virginia Beach, Va. and the casino trip to West Va. For those that do not know, the trip to West Virginia is an overnight trip simply because the horses run at night. This way everyone can take their time gambling and play or watch the horses that night. The last time we went fishing out of Virginia Beach, a lot of fish was caught and a couple of sharks (I kept one to cook the next day). It can not be said that Imperial Plaza does not take wonderful trips and many more are to come. Join in because a second bus can be added to accommodate the overflow of the one bus.

I see Imperial Plaza have many new residents and that is a good thing. There were too many empty apartments but they are filling quickly. I have seen new men and have asked a couple to join us men for ROMEO (Retired Old Men Eating Out). There are many great eating joints, that we go to, that have very good food and we all have fun talking and joking with one another. If anyone know someone that want to go, tell him to sign-up and meet me at the bus. There is one thing that is good. I can drink and leave the driving to the bus driver. The women have started LIFE (Ladies In Full Effect) and they are to go to O’Charlies at the end of the week.

Well, I will close and I am sorry for being late but, as I have said, things come up that will either prevent or make an article late. Hang in there and I will get this out sooner or later (smile). During your retirement, just have fun and don’t just sit around and fade away. Life is short, take advantage of what’s left. I know I will.

Fish-A-Rama

I love fishing and can’t get enough of it. I’ll fish at every opportunity that is available to me and then try to squeeze in more. I do have a couple of problems, though. First I put into the freezer much more than I can consume in a year. Then, second, which piggyback the first one, my wife does not eat any of the fish which mean all that is in the freezer is for me. Here is an example….Imperial Plaza just went on a fishing trip to Virginia Beach. To put fresh fish into my chest freezer I had to throw out six bags of my oldest fish. I usually freeze six to eight fish to a bag and I threw out fish from 2013 and 2014. I now have three bags of eight fish from the trip. It hurt me to my heart to throw the fish away but I didn’t have any choice.

The fishing trip was on a Wednesday and, to top that off, my son-in-law and I went fishing the following Friday night. Sitting on the pier with my chair, a tablet for music, food, and a cooler with ice for the fish and sodas was relaxing as well as great. We were in heaven and have done this, in the same place, many, many times. We just love fishing and, like me, he’ll go fishing every chance he gets. Many fish were caught and we had a great time talking, eating, snoozing and, of course, fishing.

For the first time, I swear it was my first time, I gave ALL of my fish, that I caught Friday night, to a few residents at Imperial Plaza. I will not say that I will always do this but I decided to slow down filling the freezer. I plan to do a lot of fishing and don’t want to load forty or fifty bags into the freezer like I normally do. There are a lot of people, here at Imperial Plaza, that I have become friends with and I know they appreciate having fresh fish that is free. Of course I keep the best stuff (puppy drum, speckled trout, shark, etc.) and I will not clean the fish for them. A few people did not accept the fish because I would not clean it for them.

It was great going out of Virginia Beach from Ruddie’s Inlet because I haven’t taken that trip in a couple of years or so. Most of the time the boat goes out over the ship wrecks, a long, long way from shore, out in the Atlantic but this time the boat went out over the tunnel. For those of you that do not know, this is the tunnel that runs under the Chesterpeak Bay from Virginia Beach to the Eastern Shore. Fish just love this area and dolphin hangout there because of that fact.

While fishing, a lady about six feet from me, caught a small shark but didn’t want it. I could not let good meat go to waste so took it from her and cooked it the next day. Shark meat is good eating although many people turn their nose up at it. They really don’t know what they are missing. Shark is good eating without bones; good boneless white meat. The only bone in a shark is the spine down to the majority of the tail.

Finally, I want to mention the Imperial Plaza activity that I have just come from (Saturday). I want to commend the people that put the Father’s Day Celebration together. It was just grand and it was FREE. We had a live band (BBB [Better Blues Band]), plenty of food and drink, tables under the trees and most of the Imperial Plaza Staff was there to serve. A person couldn’t ask for anything more although, as usual, there were people that had to complain. Personally, I could not see anything to complain about. Even the weather was nice. Again…..Thank You, Imperial Plaza Staff. Job well done.

It’s Coming

First let me say, a week in advance, “Happy Father’s Day”, to all the fathers out there. May your day be wonderful and full of family activities or just plain restful. I prefer restful over anything. Like mothers, fathers need a day of plain rest and recuperation. It’s coming.

Another event that is coming is the Brookdale Imperial Plaza fishing trip this coming Thursday. We are supposed to fish out of Virginia Beach and, I hope it’s like when I have previously fished out of Virginia Beach aboard Miss Virginia, we go to the old ship wrecks. There I have caught plenty of one of my favorite fish, Black Bass. But, there may be a problem on our doorstep. Rains should be coming from the west and arrive here tonight and tomorrow. I am hoping it will be far enough out to sea that it will not cause rough seas. I can take it but I don’t know about the older people that want to go. Can you say sea sickness? Either way it may be, it should be a good day for fishing. The most fish I have ever caught was during a rain storm and during a roller coaster boat ride. I have always said, “the fish are already wet”.

Richmond is still going full speed getting ready for the bike races in September when bike racers, from all over the world, will be here in force. I can hardly wait and I hope the weather will be good. I will be on the sidelines as well as watch on TV. I wish this had happened in my younger years so that I may tryout the route like during the Grand Prix. For those of you that don’t know, before and after the European portions of a Grand Prix, for a small fee you may take your vehicle onto the track and drive the course. I’ve done it and, although you aren’t going at a breakneck pace, you get to see what the drivers see and you let your mind take you into Fantasy Land.

And, while everything depends on the weather, let me throw this into the pot. Let’s not forget that we are now into Hurricane Season and we, here in Virginia, are long overdue for a strong one to hit. I have always kept my eye on the weather and have tried to do an amateur prediction. I have done quite well but I can’t predict the far future weather. Plus, the one thing to keep in mind, is that weather have a habit to do what is unexpected. Can you say it’s not an exact science? So far, here in Virginia, we have had very good weather and good weather is expected for the future. Of course, there must be occasional bad weather (rain, wind, lightning, etc.) but we all should expect this. Everyday can’t be warm and sunny because severe drought will follow. I feel for California as well as the wet weather in Texas, Colorado, and other states that have flooded with too much rain. Virginians have nothing to gripe about nor make undue wishes for. The weather have been perfect.

Keep in mind, this is only the tiniest of tiny of the things that are coming. There is more to do at Imperial Plaza as well as the surrounding areas. I advise everyone to take advantage of it. That Is why I retired, gave up my house and moved to Imperial Plaza. Now I don’t have enough time for everything to do. Let me add one more thing that I am contemplating. I got a message from one of my writers site that the novelist James Patterson will give a course on writing, for a small fee of course. I am seriously thinking about taking the course. I have had a couple of classroom courses but I think James Patterson will be out of this world.

Now, take care and be true to yourself and remember this…..”Be kind to your neighbors because you’ll never know when you may need them”….also, “Insure your words are soft and sweet because you’ll never know when you’ll have to eat them”.Electrical Storm, Arizona