Archive for the ‘City living’ Category

All in a Day by Evelyn Spritz

What a beautiful day in Philadelphia on Saturday, Sept. 15th. The weather was perfect and I determined to make my way to Amtrak/30th St. Station for a performance of “flash/song” that one of my friends, Gisela, at the water aerobics class had told me about. She is connected with the Philadelphia Ballet Company and sings with a choir. She had received a telephone call about two weeks earlier asking her to participate in a flash/song performance (which she had done last year), with about some 500 participants, and suggested I might be interested. The time and date were a little vague and when I pressed her on Friday for more information, she told me to be at 30th St. Station on Saturday at l.00 sharp, and that if I were late I would miss it–it only lasts about two minutes. So I got on a bus at l2.25 and arrived with four minutes to spare. Yes, there was a ring of people, a photographer snapping the crowd, a conductor and some musicians, and voila! it came off as promised. I think they sang something from Carmina Burana. The man directly behind me had his lyrics on his phone (what a great use of that instrument), and his wife was reading them from Philadelphia Magazine. And by happenstance, I was just two or three people from Gisella. Someone called my name: another of the women in my class, who was there with her husband. A group of young women and girls were dancing to the music while waving yellow banners. It was a true happening. I was so glad I went. (more…)

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I appreciate being asked for my input! Here in Chicago, I love all the free programs for seniors at Renaissance Court in the Chicago Cultural Center. It has a large lounging/gallery area to connect with others and offers classes on everything from fitness, to film, to humanities. I especially liked the writing group that I met with for a few years; we could copy our weekly one-pagers for a group of about twelve for free.

The Center itself offers over 400 free programs a year, so it’s a broad spectrum resource located in the central part of the city and easily reached by public transportation.

You can read more here: http://www.cityofchicago.org/content/dam/city/depts/fss/supp_info/SeniorServices/Q1RC2011.pdf

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I think our city (Philadelphia) has done a terrific job in helping the elderly; all of our public transportation is free, simply by showing one’s Medicare card; our buses have loud speakers that announce each stop (and sometimes you can even understand what they are saying), and now there will be no riding of bicycles on pavements, which will make walking much safer, as long as the rules are followed. Of course, everyone in Philadelphia still talks on the cell phone while driving and there is never anyone of authority stopping them, but I realize we can’t have everything obeyed. Sadly, we have closed some day centers for the elderly, but that is due to a lack of money, so unless we change some of our taxation, we fear that some of the above-mentioned perks may disappear, too.

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This may sound trivial or over the top———but I have felt for some time that shopping in the winter, with heavy coats to deal with, is a  burden. What a pleasure to be able to go into a store (like Macy’s) and check your coat. Macy’s would surely profit and so would the “elder chick” consumer. Sounds like a “win-win” to me.

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