Have A Cool Yule And A Fantastic First
By Judy Borello
One way to enjoy your holidays is by staying fit. One expression that never made sense to me is "fit as a fiddle." What does that mean? Maybe if the fiddle was upside down with the thin neck on the bottom and it bulbous part on the top, it would be top heavy and fall over, like a lot of us. Sounds reasonable to me.
In June, I wrote a column about Senior Services in Pt. Reyes Station and its gift to the elderly in our community by having exercise classes on Tuesdays and Thursday at Walnut Place. Having attended the classes for over six months due to infirmities I suffered from an aneurysm and a fracture in my back from a clumsy fall in January.
When I was first in Kentfield Rehab they told me I'd never walk again, but due to a miracle and the good staff at Kentfield, including Dr. Dougherty who believed in me. She pushed cajoled and persisted incessantly that I partake in physical therapy five times a day.
Being very grateful for what I regained, I still had challenges such as very poor balance and a right leg that won't do what I tell it, and a right foot that cramps and constantly tries to curl up in a fetal position.
Since joining the class my foot and toes extend for longer periods, my balance is improving and I am emotionally high when I sit my rotund derriere in my chair and greet all my new friends that gather there.
Deciding to poll the inmates and hear their comments on the benefits of this super class, here are the results.
1) Leona Enders, 90-years old, says, "The class is very good and I feel much better." What she didn't say was she smiles and laughs most of the time.
2) Betty Oken, 92+ years-old, says "It keeps me fit!" What she didn't say is that she works on a stationary bicycle and peddles her fanny off twice a day.
3) Georgia "Peach" Shore, says, "It helps my neck and shoulder pain by reclining and relieving it." What she didn't say when it's time for lunch she spins faster on her cane and zips down the sidewalk a lot faster. Now, it's either physical improvement or the lunch will consist of prime rib, lobster and baked Alaska!
Kake Lepisto says, "What I like best is that everyone's in a great mood after exercising." What Kate didn't say is that she and husband Arnie manage the senior housing at Walnut Place and do a very fine job. Arnie, who handles the maintenance and gardening has told me on previous occasions that it helped him with his duties such as pushing the canon on the front lawn and firing it, especially to ring in the New Year (just kidding)!
5) Ruby Morris says, "I walk better and better balance with fewer cramps, and can open cans better. What Ruby didn't say is that she's up at dawn walking her dog and her dog is happier now since the canine doesn't have to wait so long for the dog food can to be opened. That could make any dog cantankerous.
6) Rik Crowe says, "I feel so much better and it helps all living functions to be easier, such as walking the dog, getting around town and moving in the garden. What her lovable dog ,Toby, told me on the QT is that a happy master makes a happier dog and he is getting more toys, but some he doesn't like.
7) Marcia Brown says, "Less aches and pains, energizing up, lifting emotionally! I feel really good awake afterwards. What Marcia didn't say is that she takes less sojourns to Reno now that she can shuffle cards better. Go girl!
8) Gail Greenlees says, "The simplest exercise like shoulder roll backs relieve tension in these parts of the body. Toe and hamstring stretches really help with mobility. And the arm stretches, well, I feel I an fly."
What Gail didn't say is that she can grow and pick herbs with a lot more dexterity and enthusiasm. Wouldn't surprise me if she concocted a new brew called "Gail's Air-Ale" made with eye of newt and ground sesame seeds sprinkled and ground with red pepper seeds. Mmmm good!
9) Missy Patterson who wasn't there on Thursday but had related to me in prior conversation, "I have more flexibility and range of motion."
I'm hoping that mobility doesn't increase anymore than it is. Have you ever seen Missy on her whiz-banger scooter. It's faster than the Road Runner (beep-beep)!
I challenge Missy to a race in front of Walnut Place between my golf cart (the Flying Lady) and her Roadrunner scooter and if you're a betting person, bet on Missy cause I feel she'll skunk me! (but I'm ready)
10) Rebecca Hunter (Becky) who teaches us our exercises notices a lot of improvement in many of us. The most fun exercise we do is the John Travolta arm stretch with one finger up. Being blind as a bat, I have no clue what finger they're flipping up but I'll guarantee you, I've seen the UPS driver, John Martinson, roll his eyes!
11) Rhea McIssac who works with a lot of the seniors, says she's noticed a lot of improvement. Of course with her dachshunds Co-Co and Elvis, I don't know who is leading who when she arrives at Walnut Place. When doggie "Elvis" starts singing or should I say crooning "Hand Jive" at the end our class when we do two claps and two shakes, I'll know we hit exercise heaven.
Where is Dan the Man? We miss him; and of course Frank Cerda has been missing lass quite a few times lately. He's either getting ready for his presidential campaign or he's up in his apartment watching "Dr. Strangelove" for the umpteenth time.