Aging Well in the Gorge June 26th 2019

July 4this a time to celebrate our nation’s independence and this year it falls on a Thursday. And maybe because I like to sleep in after watching the Fort Dalles Fourth Fireworks display which starts at 10:00 – and ends way past my bedtime. Or because it is nice to celebrate the Fourth with friends during the Meals-on-Wheels noon dinner and their own July 4th celebration, Meals-on-Wheels and the Center will be open on Thursday July 4th but closed July 5th through the 7th. That also means there will not be Thursday or Saturday night bingo to give our dedicated volunteers a night off.
If you appreciate the activities planned for the Fort Dalles Fourth celebration, they are still looking for donations for veteran banners that will be displayed downtown through Labor Day. According to their Facebook posts you can drop off your donation at the Optimist Printers or donate at the Fort Dalles Fourth GoFund Me page. Any size donation is accepted and for every $149 contributed, a retired banner will fly another season.
I was able to sit in on one of Patrick Wilbern’s presentations at the Center on Veteran’s Benefits and the recent changes. I was impressed by his knowledge and his commitment to supporting Veterans and will make sure he is invited back this coming fall.
I learned that because the Veterans’ benefits system is so complex and ever-changing, there are often unintentional errors that an advocate such as Patrick can help correct so you receive the benefits you deserve. If you have questions, call the Wasco County Veterans’ Services Office at 541-506-2502 and make an appointment with either Patrick or Russell Jones. And on Mondays through Thursdays from 9:00 – 12:00 you can just walk in to talk to Patrick – but it is first come first served.  
If it’s the first Tuesday of the month, it’s time for Kerry Cobb’s monthly art presentation. Kerry has retired from her position as director of the Columbia Arts Center which gives her time to travel including her recent trip to Spain. There she had the chance to experience the works of the Major Artists of Spain which will be the topic of her presentation on Tuesday, July 2 @ 1pm. As Kerry points out, Spain has a rich history of influential artists who each created their own unique Spanish style. During her presentation you will have a chance to explore the works of artists who played a major role in the history of western painting, including Picasso, Velazquez, Goya, Miro, El Greco, and Dali.
The title of the song written for a 1955 movie with the same title; won an Academy Award for best original song; and the recorded version by the Four Aces reached number one in 1955 was “Love is a Many Splendored Thing”; and not the song “Three Coins in a Fountain” which I didn’t realize also had the same title as the 1954 movie, was recorded by the Four Aces and won an Academy Award for best original song. I received correct answers from Rhonda Spies, Cheri Brent, Jerry Phillips, Delores Schrader (who has the Four Aces CD), Don & Daryln Hansen, Ron Nelson and Carol Earl who remembered both songs and is this week’s winner of a quilt raffle ticket. And last week I missed Mark Bartel and Cheri Brent.
I often hear folks bemoaning the quality of popular music these days and that it just doesn’t compare to the music we listened to when we were younger. I can’t speak for those who grew up in the 40’s and 50’s but looking back at some of the popular songs during the 60’s, they’re a little embarrassing. Remember the Troggs singing “Wild thing you make my heart sing”? But that wasn’t the only hit song that was “cringe worthy”. For this week’s “Remember When” question, Tommy James and the Shondells in their number one song from 1966 sang about their baby doing what? Email your answer to, leave a message at 541-296-4788 or return your answer with the recording of “That Boy John’” by the Raindrops.
Well, it’s been another week, thinking any moment the Gorge winds could send me flying through the air with the greatest of ease.  Until we meet again, take pleasure in the small everyday experiences. 
“I used to think getting old was about vanity – but actually it’s about losing people you love. Getting wrinkles is trivial.” Joyce Carol Oates

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