Tuesday, January 27, 2009


Yes, you can!

On a recent trip to Florida, I visited a posh country club, all of whose members appeared to be senior citizens. Many of them have partners, short or long term.

An interesting contrast to the sea of gray hair and stooped shoulders was the club's staff, young and vibrant men and women from around the world. They seemed to have formed a friendly, caring bond with the people they serve.

Many of the club's members are retired people, seeking not only relief from winter's chill but a milieu to make new friends and enjoy activities, both old and new to them.

The dining room had a festive air and an extravagant display of fine food and wine. Of course, there was no way to know how many of these guests needed special diets, preventing them from partaking of the tempting food offered. As they came into the dining room or left it later on, they stopped to greet friends at the tables scattered around the room like hosts at a private party.

Adjacent to the dining room was a lounge. Not everyone settled there after dinner, but I soon identified those who did, as having dancing feet. Couple after couple walked over to one end of the room, where there was a platform. There was music, a three-piece ensemble, a talented, exuberant singer, all of whom seemed to be enjoying themselves as much as the dancers. For me, it was like watching high-quality entertainment. Indeed, these people could dance! They moved to the beat of the music with an expertise that made me speculate that they had taken expensive lessons to become so expert, just as they took lessons to improve their golf game or their bridge skills.

I felt pleasure watching my 90-year-old brother twirling his spirited partner around the dance floor, executing intricate steps with ease and grace. I felt a pang of envy that I did not have a partner to swing to the beat. It was not a wish that I were young again; but a wish that at 94, I could be sharing the pleasure of this experience, rather than being a spectator.

Of course, these privileged people are not free of the fears and anxieties we all have, are heir to. They, too, mourn the loss of their youth and vigor, the death of loved ones, the aches and pains of aging, the woes of the world - but for some shining moments in time, it's "Lets Face the Music and Dance!"

1 comment:

gerri said...

I just read some of your January posts, and as usual, they are wonderful. As you know I love to dance. Maybe we could get together sometimes and I could teach you some steps.