Retired and living in a village with three hundred other retirees was not something my wife and I had planned to do. In our sixty years of married life, (we were married in Berwick upon Tweed) we have moved on six times, living in Yorkshire, Lancashire, Edinburgh, Cheshire, Surrey and Burgundy in France. Here we are back in Surrey, settling into a “no more moves” status along with other retired people.
Never a dull moment here in Elmbridge with activities to meet every taste, whether it’s croquet, we have a wonderful croquet lawn with very enthusiastic players, table tennis or indoor bowls, bridge, whist or cribbage are all on a menu for residents.
On a personal basis, my computer related working life has been a dominating feature of my activities in the Village.
I have developed a working relationship with residents who wish to further their computer skills, I now hold open sessions for residents to come and learn and share their experiences with other residents. I proposed having a village website which I now manage (more about that in another blog).
The people in my village are a cheerful friendly lot, always willing to chat and not only about the weather. It can be very interesting to hear where they lived previously and why they chose this village, they all have a story to tell.
I was asked to organise Teenage Challenge Group visits to the village, I agreed. Now four years later we still have their visits over a three or four week period in the summer by possibly up to 12 teenagers visiting, fortunately I have had a supportive team working with me including the village manager.
What has been surprising is the number of the older residents who have taken to using emails to contact their family and friends. Skyping is now being used and with some skill from what I’ve seen, my visits to the coffee lounge are invariably met with computer related issues.
I am convinced that communication with other residents, is a very important aspect of life in a retirement village.