Unit 27 Activities
This pandemic certainly has forced changes to what had previously been a “sky’s the limit” ability to travel. During the past month, most of our unit residents have stayed put, as it were. However, a hearty few have ventured out, with specific destinations in mind.
Eileen and Jeff Depka spent eight nights watching the grand dogs at their son and daughter-in-law’s house, while the younger generation traveled to Disney World. Jeff said it was nice to get away, but good to be home again.
Don Burkhead reports that he and his wife Jeanne were able to continue tradition with a driving trip to visit their daughter, Tara, who was born on Thanksgiving in 1964. The family gathered at her home in Tarzana, Calif. to celebrate the holiday and give thanks for their many blessings. On their way back home they stopped in San Juan Capistrano to spend time with Jeanne’s daughter, Deanne. Don says it was one of the best Thanksgivings ever. He notes that after the Thanksgiving trip, they are going to hunker down and patiently wait for the vaccine.
Fira Stout did not travel in November, but instead “stayed out of trouble,” as she puts it. However, she does plan to travel to Michigan for Christmas week. She’ll be wearing a mask so they don’t kick her off the plane!
Fira has been the Unit 27 Bocce Ball coordinator and has indicated that she is trying to set up another unit Bocce Ball outing in January.
Thanks to the efforts of Vicki Strief, The Unit 27 ladies have had a longstanding tradition during the holiday season of lunching together at Vivace Restaurant. This year, the holiday luncheon had to be cancelled as many residents hesitated to sign up. However, in a very festive gesture, Eileen Depka made festive holiday masks for those that signed up prior to the cancellation and Vicki delivered them. Everyone hopes that Vicki will consider arranging another holiday luncheon for next December in 2021.
Carol Merlini reports that she and her husband Richard have continued to go off-roading in their Jeep. They were the trail leaders in a recent trip out of Mammoth and into the Galiuro Mountains to Copper Creek. They had lunch at an overlook of the ruins at the old Sibley Mansion, which has a colorful history. She reports that the Copper Creek Canyon was beautiful because the Alder and Cottonwood trees were turning color. In addition to the Jeep, Richard also rides a Polaris side-by-side into the desert with friends.
In addition to Jeep rides, Carol is on the board of directors, and serves as Membership Chair and Volunteer Coordinator of the SaddleBrooke Pet Rescue Network. Congratulations and kudos for your work, Carol.
Many of our residents are managing to continue their physical and recreational pursuits, including golf, tennis, pickleball, walking, and other activities. One couple, Terry McCarthy and Suzan Carter, made their activity pay off by coming in third in the December Couples Santa Scramble golf tournament. Congratulations!
On the domestic scene, Dick Clark reports that he and his wife Mary “have never gotten more done around the house, never read more books, and never prayed more for our fellow Americans to be safe and careful as they conduct their daily activities.”
Good words for the end of the most strange of years, and hopes for a breakthrough in the fog of what was 2020.
Be well, and Happy New Year!
Preserve Happy Hour: Take Two
The take-two, make-do happy hour at the Preserve Parking Lot Pub came just in time on Dec. 1. The caged-up womenfolk, tired of their cantankerous old crankies hanging around practicing and perfecting old man sounds, lured them with promises of fast carts, good booze, and loose women. Well, two out of three ain’t bad. Carts aren’t fast. That’s why they let old people drive them. The booze—our hero, Preserve Grill Manager Gilbert Zazueta, set up a curbside COVID comfort station with a fine selection of beer and wine for purchase in compliance with SaddleBrooke TWO alcohol rules. But the women—oh were they ever loose! Unleashed, uncensored, and uninhibited, they proved they could wiggle and jiggle it bigger and better than ever!
Who better than entertainer Chuck Moses to get those happy feet into a happy dance at the Preserve Pavement Pavilion? There is no end to the varied music in his repertoire of old favorites and popular new hits. Always expanding his playlist, Chuck kept us on our toes testing out some new tunes on us, but cleverly waited until we had been on the happy train for a good hour. We lent cart-loads of slightly buzzed ears and responded with all thumbs up. One such new number was “Cupid Shuffle.” Since girlfriends don’t let girlfriends dance alone, Deborah Adinolfi led the parking lot pack in social distance dancing, demonstrating this line shuffle.
The women were cutting loose and looking good with their new modern moves, and the men seemed content just to ogle them as they tried to fraternize amongst themselves as best they could six feet apart and wearing masks. Nobody could tell exactly what they were saying, but the gist of it seemed to be something about COVID insanity, diminished vanity, a definite loss of sense of taste, and spouses so tired of seeing each other in their fat pants they had taken to wearing their masks over their eyes. Some confessed they now own a skinny wardrobe and a fat wardrobe just like their wives, featuring pieces and ensembles made of fabulous synthetic wash-and-wear blends with higher percentages of spandex. Or maybe they were discussing how much they had whittled away on that long, long list of things they had promised to do when they could finally find the time, which always involves closet space. For a happy hour and a half, thanks to Social Chair Bonnie Barazani, we kept the COVID Grinch from stealing away our good times, and let loose with a healthy dose of our own pandemic pandemonium.
Even those with 20/20 vision did not see 2020 coming. We remain grateful for the good things in our lives, family and friends who are safe, and our more than abundant food and shelter. We keep the front-line medical workers, teachers, and parents in our hearts and hope these challenging times have made us more kind, patient, and generous. There is power in hope, so let us all have hope for a better year in 2021.
Unit 6 knew they couldn’t get together this year as they have in years past, but there was no reason they couldn’t be festive anyway and they decorated their mail boxes.
There was a wonderful turn out. First place prize went to Mary Elle Hill. She had a Grinch sneering atop a bed of greens with hands and all. It was very creative.
Second prize went to Curt and Dianne Prickett with their neighbor across Ridgeview Court Linda Henrichsen winning third prize.