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Old 12-02-2016, 06:09 AM
 
Location: ☀️ SWFL ⛱ 🌴
2,427 posts, read 1,665,603 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PhxBarb View Post
Huh? This may be true if you live in a 55 and over community, where you pay big HOA fees to have these activities, but the average older adult does not.

Those communities are great to make friends (unless the peeps are snarky) and join clubs. If you live in a regular house in a regular community, you are on your own.
We live in a very large non-HOA FL neighborhood that is in between. It is quite eclectic and not for those who want uniformity: RV's and boats allowed and a purple house if wanted, although I haven't found one yet. Higher-end newer houses next to low cost older homes and a mix of people to match. There is an optional civic association that can be joined along with a ferry beach pass and boat launch pass that can be purchased. The association has classes, potluck dinners/breakfasts, rummage sales and many types of groups to join, ranging from cleaning the beach to volunteering to interface with county government on several levels.

The nice part is it is all optional, and ala cart, which can make it easy to not participate for those that like their own company, without the pressure to get their money's worth. The more socially inclined can stay as busy as they want within the community and there are many groups to join/volunteer in the surrounding areas. The county also has a great online volunteer site to help people and groups connect.

I tend to stay busy with my grandkids and their activities and other family time, but I make time for my own interests too. I'll be honest and say at this point in my life I'm not looking for close friends, just nice aquaintances with the same interests to hang out with occasionally and those are easy to find anywhere.

Last edited by jean_ji; 12-02-2016 at 07:22 AM..
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Old 12-02-2016, 04:08 PM
 
Location: Lakewood OH
21,699 posts, read 23,655,251 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thinkalot View Post
If retired you have much more time for these things. You have more time so you can expand your area for social things.
I agree. The 62+ low income complex where I live has a senior center in the building that has tons of activities. Some cost a little but most are free. These activities are mainly in the day time because since most here are retired, they are free to do things during the day rather than having to go places at night after work.
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Old 12-04-2016, 11:08 AM
 
633 posts, read 801,592 times
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Unfortunately I have endured some similar issues since becoming a widower. I have had to reemploy some social skills and others that had become fairly dormant.

Fl. has many charms--respect for others is not a priority however. It has been said "all a newby has to do is drive around and observe" any area. That will give you a birdseye view into the minds and manners of others.
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Old 12-04-2016, 11:41 AM
 
2,734 posts, read 721,741 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bluskyz View Post
Unfortunately I have endured some similar issues since becoming a widower. I have had to reemploy some social skills and others that had become fairly dormant.

Fl. has many charms--respect for others is not a priority however. It has been said "all a newby has to do is drive around and observe" any area. That will give you a birdseye view into the minds and manners of others.
Respect for others doesn't seem to be a priority anywhere. I could see where it could be even worse in Florida with both a high immigrant population (people who came here for a "better life" and are determined to get it, however they define that good life) and the high concentration of elderly people who realize they don't have much time left and are therefore determined to get what they want when they want it.

But bluskyz, the fact that you even write about remploying some social skills and others that had become fairly dormant shows that they probably aren't all that dormant. Most people wouldn't even be cognizant of this. And I dare say you have encountered people whose social skills aren't dormant---they were never even developed in the first place! Just your saying this sounds like you have much more emotional intelligence than the average man, especially one of a certain age.
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Old 01-04-2017, 02:04 AM
 
5,425 posts, read 3,445,259 times
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Looking for a Friend in Old Age
Lives
As told to DMITRIY FROLOVSKIY DEC. 30, 2016 New York Times Magazine
http://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/30/ma...ide-nyt-region

Last June, as there was no poplar fluff to bother me yet in Novaya Usman, I got in the habit of spending my days outside. Novaya Usman is a small village in southern Russia near the city of Voronezh, and I have lived here for more than a decade. I am now 80, and at my age it is hard to walk for very long, so I would sit on a lavochka, a wooden bench, near my house and watch the people go by. I also daydreamed about life back at Almaty, thousands of miles away. If nostalgia became unbearable, I headed back home.

I spent my childhood in Northern Kazakhstan. Along with many Russian families during Stalin’s era, my family had been exiled to the steppe near Aktyubinsk because my father had been an officer of the czar’s army and a kulak, a Soviet word for entrepreneur. By the time I was 12, both my parents had died. And so my brother and sisters and I lived as orphans in our rickety house without any utilities or winter clothes. Hence, I was fearless and not afraid of hardships.

As I matured and grew capable of work, I took 12-hour shifts as a cook. And yet I stored enough energy for dancing every evening. Those were the happiest days of my life. I was popular: Young men liked me and invited me to dance. I surely broke many hearts.

Hard work brought me to the Communist Parliament as a chief cook, and that is when I moved to Almaty, which was then the capital of Kazakhstan. I worked there almost 40 years and eventually retired.

I cherish Almaty as my only home but living there became unbearable after the collapse of the Soviet Union. My family is Russian, and while Kazakhs treat the elderly with respect regardless of their ethnicity, the youth experienced constant racism.

“Orys! Orys!” I heard several times at bus stops. “Russian! Russian! Go back to Russia!” I witnessed other nasty things but I do not want to mention them. In any case, Germans who lived in Almaty moved to Germany, Jews to Israel and we Russians back to Russia.

Even after years in Novaya Usman, I struggled to make local friends. People just seem different, and I myself am too old to change. I am like an exile, as if swallowed up by Lethe, as the poets say.

Then one day in June, while moving toward my lavochka with a small fluffy cushion in my hands, I spotted an old man. He was walking along ponderously, relying on a stick for support and wearing an old khaki Soviet jacket. The asphalt was scattered with large holes filled with dusty rainwater, and it was a challenge for him to pass.

He noticed I was staring and turned toward me.

“May I sit here?” he asked as he approached.

“Sure, please,” I replied.

He landed on my lavochka and we instantly started talking. He appeared to be knowledgeable and eloquent. We spent more than an hour discussing the latest political updates that we had received watching the Russia-24 channel. In all my time in Novaya Usman, I have rarely met people interested in discussing anything but local problems or gossip. So this was a surprising relief, as I really enjoyed our conversation.

Later, as I returned home, I felt excited that after a decade here I had finally found somebody to talk to. After that, I met him several times a week, and we would talk for an hour or more.

We never discussed our personal problems, our health or our families. I knew that he was a retired officer who served in Adygea, a republic in the Western Caucasus, for most of his career, and also that he had diabetes. But that was it. In fact, we never even asked for each other’s names and had no interest to do so.

Our meetings went on for more than two months. I enjoyed talking to him for so long. Then one morning in late August, I was on my lavochka as usual when I saw him approach. He did not sit but rather stood in front of me.

“I am a quiet man and do not like fights,” he announced calmly. “People have started gossiping, and my wife has grown jealous lately. She prohibited me from speaking to you ever again.”

“Sure,” I said, nodding. “I understand.”

I watched him turning away and walking along the street. His silhouette gradually vanished behind gray Soviet-style apartment blocks.

Later that night I bolstered myself with the idea that I can still cause jealousy, even in my old age. Memories of youth and nights of dancing were resurrected in my head, as if I traveled in time. But these feelings did not last for long. I realized I had lost my only friend in years. We have never talked again.


Iraida Konstantinova Kireeva, 80, told her story in Russian to Dmitriy Frolovskiy, a writer based in Moscow.

Last edited by matisse12; 01-04-2017 at 02:16 AM..
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Old 01-04-2017, 03:34 AM
 
Location: Los Angeles area
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^^^^^^ Matisse12, that is a touching and sad story. Thanks for posting it. The loneliness of old age.
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Old 01-04-2017, 11:06 PM
 
Location: Southwest Washington State
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matisse12

Thanks for sharing this.
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Old 02-02-2017, 08:08 AM
 
6,306 posts, read 5,049,308 times
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I've been thinking about this the last few days. Maybe because of the dreary weather - who knows.

I hang out with people at least ten years older than me. People my age are still working or in some kind of relationship - happy or not - busy with obligations.

So I look at my companions and think that they are getting older and sickly - will have to forage out and make new friends. Sad.
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Old 02-02-2017, 10:06 AM
 
Location: Location: Happy Place
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I think people are just busy. Even retirees. If you stay home, you never meet anyone. I don't know any of my neighbors, so it is just me and my husband and my few work pals.

Should I outlive him, it will be hard to get OUT there and make friends. But, I will cross that bridge when or if I get to it.
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Old 02-02-2017, 11:03 AM
 
6,306 posts, read 5,049,308 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mschrief View Post
I think people are just busy. Even retirees. If you stay home, you never meet anyone. I don't know any of my neighbors, so it is just me and my husband and my few work pals.

Should I outlive him, it will be hard to get OUT there and make friends. But, I will cross that bridge when or if I get to it.
I go out and do something almost every day, but sometimes it is with the same people. And we don't all think the same. I don't want to say they are not open minded, but not entirely free thinkers. So unless I want to be debating all the time, I just kind of stay quiet or change the subject.
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