Four Champs who inspire me
Happy 2014. One of our recurrent themes is the importance for older singles to get out of the house and involved in activities that interest them.
Sometimes, doing so leads to meeting a significant other and other times it doesn't. Regardless, what getting out and involved does is enrich one's life. It makes one a more educated, more interesting and a happier person. When singles do that, they develop new friends and appreciate life more than when sitting around and getting bored.
An example of our Champs getting out of the house and enriching their lives was demonstrated to me personally this past Monday afternoon when Champs Linda and Jackie, from Dayton, Ohio, and Xania, Ohio, respectively, popped into Tutor and Spunky's, my Dana Point, California, deli to meet me.
They hadn't arrived in Southern California by airplane or train. Rather, they arrived with Linda driving an RV and Jackie following behind her in her car. They had been traveling since Thanksgiving, stopping at places like the Arch in St. Louis (it was 10 degrees when they went up in it) and sites of interest in Arizona and New Mexico.
How it works for them: They locate an RV park (electricity required) and park the RV and live out of it like a hotel. Then, they do local sightseeing in Jackie's car.
They were on their way to an RV park in Santa Barbara, California, a couple of hours northwest of Los Angeles, to spend the winter. To help defer their costs, they are trading their time working at a nature preserve in exchange for complimentary parking of the RV.
We shared bowls of soup and chili while getting to know each other. They were thrilled with the culture and places they had seen so far. Both were rested and enthusiastic. Meeting them brightened my day.
Traveling by RV is no cake walk. They had blown a tire entering San Clemente and had to have it fixed at a tire store.
This summer, Linda parked her RV in the mountains of Colorado (Jackie was not along on this trip). When Linda needs some extra cash, she drives semi-trailer trucks to earn spending money.
Jackie - Tom - Linda
Linda and Jackie inspired me. They are living life to the fullest--without men. I'm not sure any men their age could keep up with them. I am proud to have them as part of our Champs corps.
Part 2 - Other Champs who inspire me
Chris is in his late 70s. For years, he has been a dance host on cruise ships. A few years ago while on a cruise, he met Tina, from England, and they have been in a long-distance relationship ever since, while both maintaining residences in their respective countries. Chris just sent an email that he and Tina are off on another adventure for several weeks. No sitting around the house for him.
Carlene went through a divorce last year and moved to a new city. She wrote, "I found a church and two places to volunteer--within three days of being here. Knew I'd get the grumpies if I didn't find something to keep me busy.
"Then, I found out what activities are going on in the area--too many--and set out to pick what I liked and wanted to do. No decision was made to "meet a man" at anything I wanted to do.
"I have done more things in the past nine months than some people who have lived here for 30 years! Have made new women friends along the way and some nice men too. One man knew where I would be on Christmas Eve; he surprised me by coming to the Christmas Eve service--suit and tie--and asked me to sit with him.
"I expanded my 'borders' to include towns 15-50 miles away. Every time I get together with folks I hang out with, my first question is, "Where have you been and what's new and exciting that we should try?
" My involvement in my local communities has led to a part-time job I would never have imagined. I love it. It keeps me out of trouble and I am making more new friends in a community 13 miles from home.
"I spent Christmas alone--yes--a personal choice--a day of reflection-- and then on to the next adventure."
Kudos to the four of our Champs featured in today's article, who keep life interesting, and are an inspiration to me.