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Senior Musings is a new feature offered exclusively on The Cheshire Herald website where local senior citizens will discuss different issues they face in everyday life. Today Sandy Chase talks about how games can represent a needed escape for all ages and how the Senior Center provides activities to fit anyone's lifestyle.
I love playing games of all kinds. From the time that I got my first game of Candyland when I was about four-years old, I was hooked. I remember being scolded for putting back the dreaded card that sent me all the way to the Candy Hearts or Peppermint Stick Forest — following the road over Gumdrop Mountain, past the Gingerbread Tree and the Peanut Brittle House, through the Lollipop Woods, on the Ice Cream Floats and through the Molasses Swamp. Butthe excitement of reaching the Gingerbread House to win the game was the best.
Next came Chutes and Ladders. I loved going up those ladders to get me to the top but those chutes would bring out the tears and “I don’t want to go down the chute.” Monopoly was my game till I got caught with my hand in the till. I know I wasn’t the only one who “borrowed” money from the bank without collateral or permission, but I was the one who got caught. It soon became apparent to me and my friends that it was better to play, win or lose, than not to play at all.
Over the years I have played games of all kinds — board games, card games, dice games, puzzle games, you name it and I have probably played it. My favorite are card games of any type. I am always willing to learn a new game and even if I don’t like it, I can at least say I tried it once, twice, or several times for that matter. Never give up on a game, even a bad game can grow on you if you play it enough.
When I stopped working a few years ago, I started getting cabin fever and going stir crazy watching TV, shopping, and doing housework. This wasn’t for me at all, so what was I going to do. A friend who goes to the Cheshire Senior Center had been pestering me to come with her and give it a try. Well, all I can say to her now is “thank you.” The Cheshire Senior Center changed my life and saved my sanity.
The first time I went was on a Friday to play Setback. I was met by my friend and several other men and women who welcomed me and made me feel comfortable immediately. As time moved on I became more and more involved with the activities of the Center. I now play Petey, Pinochole, Whist, Nickel Nickel, Golf, Setback, and Wii. I have not had the chance yet to try out the Bridge, Scrabble, Mahjong, Pool, Poker and other games currently being played. Playing games is an excellent way to challenge and exercise your brain. Challenging your brain and giving it a good workout will keep it working efficiently and help attain your quest for mental fitness.
Did I mention all the wonderful trips that are arranged by the Travel Club? We have been to Newport, Suffolk Downs, New York City, Atlantic City, Boston, Tanglewood, and so many places they are too numerous to mention. Almost forgot we have a trip to West Point in April and some other great ones planned for this year. We have speakers on all sorts of subjects; a health fair, bazaar, game nights, special luncheons, cookouts, and so much more. I can’t forget about exercise classes. We have exercise classes to meet everyones needs, from low impact and chair exercise to Zumba Gold, we have whatever you want or need. Starting in May I can add Zumba Gold to my list of senior center activities. I am not sure if I am ready for Zumba or if Zumba is ready for me. I am probably the least graceful or rhythmic person I know.
Can you guess what the best thing about the center is? It’s the people who are my friends, playmates, and confidants. I have been very lucky to have met some amazing people since I joined. If you are over 55, looking for fun and friendship, if you want to take great trips, play games, or just come for companionship, lunch and conversation, stop in and say “Hi”. We will be glad to meet you.