Aging Well in the Gorge October 19th, 2022

A few of us are perennials always blooming, a few more are late bloomers and the rest of us are just hoping to bloom someday. Last July I wrote about one of the secrets of living life to the fullest from Connie Goldman’s book “Secrets to Becoming a Late Bloomer”: the secret of gardening. Another of her fourteen secrets is creativity.

Many people view creativity as a rare talent that few possess which allows these gifted individuals to create beautiful and imaginative paintings, songs, or stories. But Connie describes creativity in much broader terms, where every day we have the opportunity to look at a situation with “beginner’s eyes”; to see in fresh ways, with open and accepting minds. The National Geographic photographer Dewitt Jones describes creativity in a similar way: everyday creativity is seeing the “extraordinary in the ordinary”. If you understand creativity in this broader sense, we all possess the ability to be creative. It is in all of us and can be expressed in many ordinary ways: a hobby, a personal relationship, or grandparenting. In all these everyday situations, we can see and engage the world with new eyes.

You can nurture your creativity by engaging in something you enjoy doing on a regular basis. It is when you are doing something you love that your creative spirit opens up. But as with anything important, it’s never easy. Every day remind yourself to look at situations, even the mundane, with fresh eyes and find the extraordinary in the ordinary. As Connie points out “Everyone knows that we can’t stay young forever; yet we can stay fresh, alive, and aware.”

So how about this idea? If you are retired, you can receive a license that gives you the right, without any questions asked and with no guilt attached, to pursue any “trivial pursuit” you had put off throughout your working career because of all those “adult” reasons.

This Trivial Pursuit License would allow you to explore your creative side by checking out the activities at The Dalles Art Center or the Columbia Center for the Arts, picking up a guitar and writing songs to sing in the shower, or just drawing with paper and pencil at the kitchen table every morning. Or other activities that may not be as creative: assembling model cars or planes, blowing bubbles at a street corner, (you may get some looks!), or building a fort out of Legos with your grandchildren – or without your grandchildren. But you may want to skip playing twister or spin the bottle. They just don’t have the same appeal anymore!

No matter what you decide, “trivial” activities are good for your mind, body, and soul. So take the time to do that something you’ve always wanted to do.

Brain Tease: Another Caesar Cipher which involves replacing each letter of the secret message with a different letter of the alphabet.

See if you can decipher this well-known Mae West quote.

“Brx rqob olyh rqfh, exw li brx gr lw uljkw, rqfh lv hqrxjk.”

This espionage thriller that ran from 1965 to 1968 starring Bill Crosby, the first African American actor in a lead role in a television series, and Robert Culp was I Spy. I received correct answers from Doug Nelson, Margo Dameier, Lana Tepfer, Keith Clymer, Rhonda Spies, Tina Castanares, and Kim Birge this week’s winner of a quilt raffle ticket.

We’ve had a comedy, and a spy thriller and now this week’s question is from another popular television genre that began in the late 50s and produced hit television shows such as Ben Casey and this show that ran from 1961 through 1966. For this week’s “Remember When” question, what was the name of the television series starring Richard Chamberlain and Raymond Massey that told the story of a young intern working in a fictional large metropolitan hospital? Email your answer to, call 541-296-4788 or send it with the short story, “Internes Can’t Take Money” from the March 1936 issue of Cosmopolitan magazine where the character was first introduced.

Well, it’s been another week, deciding when to turn on the furnace. Until we meet again, as my doctor once told me, “Aging is not a disease”.

“If stupidity got us into this mess, then why can’t it get us out?” Will Rogers

Nutritious home-delivered and in-person meals are available at noon Monday through

Friday unless otherwise noted.

Seniors of Mosier Valley (541-980-1157) – Mondays and Wednesdays; Hood River

Valley Adult Center (541-386-2060); Sherman County Senior and Community Center

(541-565-3191); The Dalles Meals-on-Wheels (541-298-8333)

For meal sites in Washington, call Klickitat County Senior Services – Goldendale office

(509-773-3757) or the White Salmon office (509-493-3068); Skamania County Senior

Services (509-427-3990).

Answer: “You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough.”

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