Aging Well in the Gorge October 11th 2016

In a few days Medicare Open Enrollment starts. And in preparation you should have received your “Annual Notice of Changes” which describes any changes in your current Medicare plan for 2017 such as cost, coverage, and what providers and pharmacies are in their networks. It is strongly recommended that you review those changes to make sure your plan will still meet your needs in 2017.
If your current plan won’t, then during Medicare Open Enrollment from October 15 to December 7, you can change your Medicare plans. But as many of you know, it’s not always easy to navigate through all the choices. If you have questions, which most folks do, you can call the Center to make an appointment with a trained SHIBA (Senior Health Insurance Benefits Assistance) volunteer; or visit the website
One significant change for 2017 is Regence will no longer offer a Medicare Advantage Plan in Wasco County forcing over four hundred Regence Medicare Advantage plan recipients to search for another plan. If you are one of the four hundred, don’t panic. There will be a meeting at the Center at 1:00 on October 25th presented by local SHIBA volunteers to describe your options; and if you need further assistance, to schedule an appointment with a SHIBA volunteer.
Last week when I looked out my office window I was reminded that the speed limit in a school zone between 7:00 and 5:00 pm is 20 mph. What was the reminder? A city policeman parked at the corner of 10thand Cherry Heights for two days, with his radar gun, ticketing drivers for speeding in a school zone. Now, there is good reason for the 20 mph limit. Research shows pedestrians have a 90 percent chance of surviving car crashes at 18 mph or below, but less than 50 percent at 28 mph or above. So for the sake of our children – and your pocketbook, remember to slow down to 20 mph in the school zones.
A growing percentage of older adults own smartphones – which you can use to check Facebook, send and receive texts, and even tract your medications. It also is a pretty decent digital camera – right there in your pocket for those unexpected special moments. But what do you need to know to take great pictures? Framing? Lighting? And what do those terms even mean?
The Center is looking for a volunteer knowledgeable about photography and can answer those questions to facilitate a Smartphone Photography class. If you are interested, give me a call at 541-296-4788.
I don’t want you to wake up Saturday morning and realized you missed an opportunity to hear vocalist Nehemiah Brown sing the standards from the 50’s and 60’s. So here is your last reminder that Nehemiah will be performing at the Center on Friday, October 14th, from 7:00 – 9:00 PM sponsored by The Dalles Health and Rehabilitation Center. You can purchase $3.00 tickets at the door.
Last week I started a new feature: “40 Great Things about Growing Older”: Here is #2. “The longer you live, the smarter you get.” Of course that’s assuming I can remember what I learned last week! (Anyone remember from grade school who was the first to sail around the world? It isn’t who you think.)
The name of the show that aired from 1950–1956 and starred the title character and his sidekick Pancho was the Cisco Kid. (This week’s winners of a quilt raffle ticket each are Ed Anghilante, Jim Ayres, Alice Mattox and Virginia McClain.)
Even though this political spoof of President Kennedy was good natured and pales in comparison to the nasty political satire these days, it was still rejected by most music recording executives because it would be “degrading of the Presidency”. But it was released in November, 1962 by Cadence Records and was one of the fastest selling records in history. For this week’s “Remember When” question, who was the comedian that impersonated John F. Kennedy on the 1963 Grammy “Album of the Year”, The First Family? Email your answer to, leave a message at 541-296-4788 or deliver it “with great vigah” to the Center.
Well, it’s been another week, enjoying my favorite season of the year. Until we meet again, remember there are only twenty-seven more days.
“I’m not taking any chances and leaving it ‘till the election. When you are 103, you make every minute count.” Ruline Steininger, 103 years old, who voted early in Iowa as reported by CNN.

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