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Senior Living: It’s never too late to pick up a new hobby

By Dr. Thomas LaGrelius

Contributing writer

Live an interesting life as a senior. Be active. Too many seniors stop doing the things they loved to do before and fail to take up new activities if they cannot do the old ones. There is a website you can visit, meetup.com, with unlimited possibilities.

Dr. Thomas W. LaGrelius

From “Sassy Soul Senior Sisters” to “Women, Wine and Wisdom Los Angeles,” there has got to be something here for you. There are more than 100 local groups on this list. Something for everyone. Change the city name at the end of the link and your area comes up. Or delete the state too and search the whole country.

Many of our local patients belong to the Beach Cities Health District’s numerous programs for seniors. They have a fitness center, a beach walking program and numerous classes and workshops.

Our local hospitals have programs for seniors, or you could volunteer there helping others.

There are also the South Bay Village and the Palos Verdes Peninsula Village programs, where you as an able bodied senior can volunteer to help less-able bodied seniors in their homes or with transportation.

If you need help, join as a recipient of assistance. There is a small charge, but not much. Similar programs are available in most other communities.

Are you good at construction or organization? Habitat for Humanity can use your help.

As a senior citizen myself — age 76 — I try to be a good example, working full time trying to extend lifespans and health spans, writing, exercising, traveling, flying and sailing. The joints are stiffer than they once were, but I do a lot of stretching every morning.

Flying is a personal passion. From Nov. 1 to 5, my wife Patti and I led seven planes and 21 people, including seniors, on a flying trip to Alamos, in Sonora, Mexico. Alamos is a small colonial silver mining town in the mountains near Mexico’s famous Copper Canyon, which is deeper, wider and in some ways more beautiful than our own Grand Canyon.

Patti did most of the hard work for our trip, arranging hotel accommodations and entertainment for 21 people at the famous Hacienda de los Santos Hotel, said to be the best and most beautiful resort hotel in northern Mexico. It lives up to its reputation.

We flew over the picturesque town of San Carlos just west of Guaymas, a town Patti and I have grown to love.

We did many interesting things in Alamos: We visited the public market, biked, rode gentle horses and enjoyed amazing meals. We saw talented local artists perform in a charming colonial setting, and we relaxed.

Many of the people flying with us were more than 70 years old, some were in their 80s — including pilots. The trip was organized through our Del Amo Flyers flying club.

Want to join? You don’t need to be a pilot, but you must truly love airplanes. Membership is $40 a year. As a member you might find a pilot willing to take you along on our monthly trips, especially if you are full of fun and willing to buy some gas.

Being a senior does not mean you have to stop enjoying life. There are a thousand wonderful things to do if you cultivate a sense of adventure. If you find yourself sitting around, visit those websites and pick something interesting to do.

Live long, be well.

Dr. Thomas W. LaGrelius, M.D., F.A.A.F.P., is a certified specialist in family medicine and geriatric medicine. He is the founder and president of Skypark Preferred Family Care, a concierge primary care/geriatrics practice based in Torrance www.skyparkpfc.com. He is a staff member at Torrance Memorial Medical Center and Providence Little Company of Mary Torrance Hospital. Email questions and topic suggestions to office@skyparkpfc.com or call 310-378- 6208.

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Source: Orange County Register

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