Life After Retirement

Peter Terzian

As we learned last week, there’s a lot of adventure happening in the lives of OLLI members right now. Youthful Adventures don’t have to stop when you turn fifty. But being in a place where you can have adventures in your, ahem, Golden Years, takes some planning and preparation. In this week’s issue Peter Terzian takes us through some of the life steps that prepared him for a happy retirement with room for adventure.  We expect to see a lot of heads nodding in agreement as you read his story.

Read more

CUBS WIN!!! CUBS WIN!!!

Diane Henrikson Russell

The moment I stepped off my Southwest Airlines plane at Midway Airport, I could feel the electricity in the air. It was Wednesday, November 2, 2016. Millions of Cubs fans, including me, were holding our collective breaths as we waited for the seventh game of the World Series between the Chicago Cubs and the Cleveland Indians. We were still nonplussed at finding ourselves in this sweet yet precarious position, thanks to the guiding hand of Coach Joe Maddon (who coincidentally coached the Tampa Bay Rays in the 2008 World Series). The Cubs had last won the World Series in 1908.

Read more

 

The Stick

Doug Guido

“Hey look, it floats!”

That was how it first came to my attention. My beloved hickory walking stick had been unceremoniously dumped in the brown river water, solely to satisfy adolescent curiosity. I don’t know which one of the ten-year-olds said it; nor did I know who actually did the deed. I only knew that my stick was fast disappearing in the swift current of the Trinity River, while I had the forced realization that, while it was a treasured possession – it figuratively represented my authority in the woods – I wasn’t going in after it. Nope. Bad choice. Current too swift, not a good swimmer, it’s just a stick. In that order.

Read more

 

My Come From Away

Theresa D’Aiuto Sokol

It was the summer of 1973. A year after college graduation, I was making a life for myself on the gritty upper west side of Manhattan in a run-down tenement building occupied by a motley crew of hippies and disillusioned Columbia University graduates.  My boyfriend Fred and I shared a fifth-floor walk-up at 105th Street and Columbus Avenue, adjacent to a building controlled by the local drug dealers. Each evening we were serenaded by salsa music emanating from the bodega just across the street, sometimes punctuated by the click, click, click of dominos accompanying excited comments from local Dominican and Puerto Rican players and onlookers.

Read more

The Disastrous Ball Game

Bruce Zimmerman

The PS 52-school yard was completely enclosed with a ten-foot-high chain link fence topped off with barbed wire. Why the barbed wire, I’ll never know. The building and its grounds were a lot worse than some of our present-day work-release facilities. Aside from all that, it was one of the better places to play a good softball game. If we won the game, seven or eight of us would try to go home a little richer. With our game winnings in hand, we would go into the far corner of the schoolyard and shoot penny to nickel craps.

I would imagine I was about fifteen or sixteen at the time. Some old biddy who was being her nosey self, called the police to report the gambling activity. Either this harmless activity during the war years must have been unpatriotic, or perhaps the real New York gangsters were all in the armed services. And sure enough, this old-time paddy wagon backed up to the gate blocking our only exit.

Read more

How I Became Asian?

Bharat Pathakjee

I was born in India and given a name which originated at the time of Alexander the Great, who when reaching the Sindhu River with his armies, could not pronounce the word Sindhu because his language had no sound for the letter “s.” And so, Sindhu became Hindu. The name morphed to India during the British era when a classical education was highly prized. Yet where the classical Greek has the Iliad and the Odyssey, Vedic India has the longer epic poems Mahabharata and Ramayana, texts which explain my first name. The origin of the word Aryan enters modern use after the linguistic linkage by William Jones in his 1794 translation of the Indian Laws of Manu.
Read more

 

Feast of St. Joseph

Poem by Patricia R. Antolino

It is a little-known fact that millions of Italian families, whose ancestors arrived during waves of immigration in the late 19th and early 20th century, mark an ethnic and cultural celebration in mid-March. Overshadowed by the overwhelming popularity of St. Patrick’s Day on March 17th, this holiday and other traditional Italian observances are hinted at in films like The Godfather, where an iconic scene features bystanders lined up along a parade route following a statue adorned with dollar bills. On March 19th, Italians commemorate the Feast of Saint Joseph (Festa di San Giuseppe) with parades and processions throughout the northeastern states and in New Orleans. Bakeries and families eagerly anticipate the sale and purchase of special fried and baked sweets native to the cuisine of Sicily and the Neapolitan region of Southern Italy. This week’s blog honors those traditions and sentiments with an ode to Italian ancestry and a recipe for the Italian confection most associated with “the festa,” zeppole, a sweet delight which holds an honored place in the pantheon of Italian cuisine.  Editor

Read more

Perfect Day at Circle B Bar Reserve

Diane White

The OLLI-USF Outdoors “hikers” explored one of their favorite places, Circle B Bar Reserve in Lakeland, on a beautiful day in March. We would like to share it in words, but mostly pictures, with OLLI Connects readers.

If you are looking for a great place to take your out-of-town visitors, or just go for a stroll to take in amazing wildlife, this is the place to go. One of our members, Sheryl, wrote, “With the exception of the Ding Darling Wildlife Refuge on Sanibel, Circle B Bar had the biggest variety of wildlife I’ve seen of all my hikes in Florida.”

What will you see? In many places you will see birds on the left, birds on the right. You might see a great blue heron and gator face off.  View more

Growing Tomatoes in Florida

Bruce Shanker

Bruce Shanker successfully produces two harvests of homegrown tomatoes each year in his backyard garden in Carrollwood, yielding an amazing quantity and variety of jewel-toned, plump and flawless specimens. We sat down with Bruce on a zoom call to learn about his secrets for growing tomatoes in Central Florida.

Click on the photos below to open two short videos detailing Bruce’s methods, equipment and growing schedule. The first video focuses on planting, fertilizing and irrigation. The second video provides detailed information about improving yield, (more…)

 

The Balloon Also Rises

Delia Palermo

Dawn, Canyonlands National Park, Utah

The first surprise was the actual pre-dawn hush. There really was “a kind of hush all  over the world,” at least outside of Moab, Utah. Following strangers to a dark van in a dark parking lot could have put us in mind of Scandi noir, but instead we felt the hush; no one in the van spoke on the drive to the balloon, which lay flat and ghostly on the dark ground. Shapes began to emerge into the other-worldly red rock terrain of the canyon although we could not see the tops of the canyon.

The previous night I had read a review that exalted over a balloon’s basket hitting the ground and bouncing up nearly to the top of the canyon, then again (more…)

Verified by MonsterInsights