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An Octopus Hat???
Through my Eyes I See Joy in Aging
Beach Party Fun
Everyone has a unique story to tell once all the suitcases have been unpacked, and the laundry has been done from a two week vacation spent somewhere. My vacation spot was in upper state New York with my dear Aunt Gloria and two surrogate moms Betty and Pat this past month. Since I am no exception my story to share with you all is about the Senior Beach Party I attended at the Aurora Senior Center with my extended family and their friends.
In need of a beach theme hat for the party I went to the town’s local 5 and 10 cents store called Vidlers! Anything but a 5 and 10 cent store it did prove to be a unique shopping experience as I entered a doorway that took me back some 50 years in time….so fun! Vidlers is housed in four connected 19 century buildings with an upstairs and downstairs to explore. Counters spill over with nostalgic candies, toys; garden and kitchen gadgets to you name it! A collection to graze through for the recreational shopper for sure!
After not too much searching at the back of the store in the toy section there staring me in the face was a fuzzy purple octopus hat reaching out to me with love. The only one with a price tag of $8.96, how perfect I thought! A few minor changes, perhaps some wire to be able to mold the tentacles in fun positions, a butterfly attached to the top of the octopus’s head to flutter around to catch every ones attention, more colorful dots and voila I am visualizing the most amazing chapeau for the festivity!!!
The party turned out to be a huge success with music, food and games. My hat was picked as one on the five finalists, but due to an enormous amount of clapping for each of us the host of the affair decided to do a raffle amongst the five of us left. Although I didn't win a prize for my hat I felt I did win a gift of vision into my future as I begin to age with grace.
You see this was a party like no other I had ever attended. Women were dressed in these fun tee shirts with bikini tanned bodies silkscreened on the fronts and backs. There was a 95 year old man in a silkscreened muscle shirt to compliment his wife’s bikini clad body shirt. One lady had sewn a retro bathing suit from the fifties, and others were wrapped in beach blankets ready to tumble somewhere in the sand for some private smooching under the beach umbrella.
To be 70, 80 or the oldest couple of 95 at the party who by the way glided around that dance floor as if they were Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers was amazing to watch. The groups zest for life was real and so bubbly. Their interaction with each other genuine, with giggles galore, and my heavens their flexibility as they all line danced left me awe struck...especially my Aunty Gloria! They were all a hoot that left me smiling from ear to ear till my cheek bones became sore!!! My-gosh, I even caught the young man of 95 pinching his wife’s butt a couple of times that evening!!
So I close this chapter on my vacation with many happy memories, and gained wisdom that life at times begins an adventuresome new chapter at 60, 70, 80, or for some of us 90 years young! This group of characters gave me new insight on how life can be fun even at an older age. That life doesn’t stop just because you grow older or you pick up some aches and pains along the way. Alzheimer’s, Cancer, Diabetes, Arthritis, and Heart Disease were all in attendance at this affair in some fashion and yet there were no party poppers to be seen crying for attention in a negative way. Just the opposite seemed to be the mantra for the night… dance, sing, laugh, smile, and live like there are no tomorrows!
How amazing that we get to choose how we live and that when we choose wisely life just keeps getting better and better all the time no matter what age bracket we are journeying through!
Enjoy the Beach Party through my eyes!