Our Florida contingent of 6 met for a 5 K walk around Lake Sumter in the Villages on a beautiful 70 degree winter day. We walked the lakeside and boardwalks, parks and golf cart trails for 4 miles. Later we shared lunch a nearby Fire and Ice restaurant. Our walk was organized by Christine B. and lead by Dawn M.. From left to right we have Dawn M., Joe M., Joy T., Walter B., Joan H-B, and Christine B. This is our second winter adventure. Our first was a 20 mile ride on the Tarpon Springs to Sarasota Bike path. Having fun, but missing friends and skiing.
It was a reunion for many and a first time for some at the recent cross country/snowshoe trip to Old Field House in Intervale, NH. Though there wasn’t much snow the week before, we were lucky to be surprised with a snowstorm on Friday. That made driving up North a bit messy, but everyone made it without incident! Skiing and snowshoeing conditions were ideal!
Friday night’s Happy Hour was topped off by pizza, salad and homemade goodies – thank you Peg T. and Lucy McG.! True to form, many gathered to play games until bedtime.
After a tasty breakfast featuring the innkeeper’s famous blueberry waffles everyone was out and about either snowshoeing or XC skiing. Dinner that evening across the street at the New England Inn was followed by more games – one especially raucous one named “Catch Phrase”
Everyone headed home on Sunday, many stopping along the way for one last bit of outdoor activity. Old Field House is so comfy and familiar to so many of us, it’s like home!!
Judy T., Trip Leader
We had a group of 16 members (12 downhill skiers and 4 x-country/snowshoers) for our "swan song" year at Stowe. We were delighted with the ski conditions, even though we had to contend with some fog at the top for the first two days (the visibility did clear as one dropped down on the trails, especially the tree-lined ones). Wednesday started out grey with some light snow, but by noon time that gave way to full sunshine and bright blue sky for a glorious afternoon - it was our banner day. Our snow dances must have worked as we had 6 inches of new snow on Thursday and were skiing in powder the whole day (also enjoyed by the snowshoers who had an active and strenuous day climbing to the peak cabin at the Trapp Family Ski Center). We were very grateful for the soothing hot tub and pool at the Stowe Mountaineer Inn, as well as the satisfying and plentiful buffet meals we had there. After 5 years, we are finishing up our tenure at Stowe and were very happy to have such good skiing and a fun group for this last year.
Seven Walkers ventured to the FarandNear Trustees of the Reservations site in Shirley, MA. Meeting at 10am we walked until noon through the varied landscape including beaver ponds and an arboretum of Pine trees. The paths were clearly marked but a few were a little icy. After we had a great lunch at the Devens Grill in Devens, MA; the former Ft. Devens.
Thirty-two intrepid TOHG members descended on New England’s best ski lodge (The Mountaineer Inn) for three to four days of skiing at Mount Snow. Snowfall has been a bit low but great snowmaking and grooming gave us a wide choice of fun trails and slopes. No 40-mile-per-hour winds or torrential rains this year. The new young chef was outstanding (he is at an upscale Nantucket restaurant in the summer). Ned’s piano accompaniment to Happy Hour was a delight as usual. It was a great place for four new members to get acquainted with “the old guard.”
By Sue Scheible, The Patriot Ledger, Quincy, Mass.
WEYMOUTH - If Dot Anderson was going break her hip while skiing at age 90, at least she could have done it when she was going down the slope.
But Anderson met a different fate. She joined a weekend downhill ski trip with the Top of the Hill Gang of New England, "energetic adults 50 and older," and that's just where she was Jan. 22 at the top of the hill at Mount Snow in Dover, Vermont. She was getting off the ski lift when she "miscalculated," stepped sideways and toppled over. She felt no pain but when she went to get up, her left leg was limp and "wouldn't do anything." "It was a big goof," she said this past weekend, seated in her living room. "I've been skiing since I was a teenager."
She was taken to Brattleboro Memorial Hospital where surgeon Michael Wack performed a partial hip replacement, inserting a titanium ball in the top of the hip joint. "The Mount Snow Ski Patrol and hospital staff were wonderful," she said. After a four-day stay, her daughters Shirin Anderson, of California, and Lynn Tribble, of Plymouth, drove her home to North Weymouth, where she is recovering and counting the days until she can get out again. While she can walk normally, she has to be careful to not raise her leg more than 90 degrees and not cross her legs when sitting. She uses pole grippers to pick up things and put on her socks.
Always on the go before the mishap, she is "reading some good books" and keeping busy with her volunteer work with the group that opposes the natural gas compressor in North Weymouth. She has been active in protests against the proposed natural gas compressor station for four years. "Dot is quite quite the spirited elder!" said Eva Borsody Das of Hull who knows Anderson from the protests. When she turned 90 on Sept. 14, Anderson said she believed that "you are only as old as you feel" and that she felt like skiing, hiking, joining civic protests, serving as an elder ombudsman, keeping up longtime friendships and making new ones. That hasn't changed, although at her daughters' urging, she may replace the downhill skiing with cross-country outings from now on at the South Shore Country Club in Hingham. Her advice for others who enjoy an activity is "Don't stop. That's the scary part. If you stop it is hard to get going again. "We'll see how it goes. If you still have that interest and the joy of getting out and doing things, you don't feel old. You feel like you want to keep doing it."
Eight walkers met at the Park Street Visitor's Center and wandered by the Frog Pond to watch the skaters then through the Common and the Garden and down a few blocks on Commonwealth Ave. The lights were lovely as the sky darkened and although the temperatures were in the mid- to lower 30s we didn't seem to mind. After walking back to Park Street we headed to Faneuil Hall Area to watch the "Blink" music and light show. Ending the evening with an early dinner at Cheers.
. . . With Bells On! . . . [the common format in response to an invitation to indicate one's enthusiasm].
Certainly, 83 Gang members had their seasonal “bells on” at our JBB on December 8th at the Encore Casino in Boston. We handled a sumptuous buffet with aplomb (and hearty appetites), reveled as only we can do, shared our past year’s peaks and valleys with dear friends and chatted about what’s on our new year calendars. Many of us took a guided tour of the resort including the artwork, architecture and top floor suites (which I understand do not disappoint). My sincere thanks to Jackie A., one of our newer members, who was integral in arranging for the tours. . . my thanks, Jackie!
Suffice it to say, that a good time was had by all. Happy New Year ! ! !
With glad hearts and a little apprehension about the weather, 13 members of the North Mystery group travelled to 192 Broadway in Methuen, Mass. We were about to enjoy the annual Christmas Concert at the Methuen Memorial Music Hall, home to what was once the largest pipe organ in the world(now, reportedly second largest). The hall was built specifically to house this magnificent instrument after the Boston Music Hall needed more room for the Boston Symphony Orchestra. A real community treasure, the Methuen Music Hall offers programs in the summer and a “Christmas Season” program 3 of organ music with guest musicians. We enjoyed a broad range of classical and “classic” Christmas music, culminating in audience participation singing the Hallelujah Chorus, Silent Night, and “Nowell.” We were warned about the impending storm and the group wisely decided to cancel plans for dinner in favor of safe travelling home once the snow started.
Joe M. and Dawn M.
It was a wonderful day for a walk thru three of Andover’s reservations and a part of the Bay Circuit Trail for 4 miles. Ten of us started in cloudy but comfortable weather and almost made it to the end without a light rain which kept us company for the last half mile. We found Winne the Pooh’ s house in the Ten Acre Woods, on the Indian Ridge Reservation, a long board walk to cross in the West Parish Meadow, two large Beaver Dams and a lodge in the Bakers Meadow Reservation. All this and plenty of rest stops along the way kept us hydrated. Our walkers were Nancy Ch., Denis U., Pat K., Betsy B., Judith L., Bob R., Paul and Linda McH.
Joe and Mary are considering one more walk before Christmas at maybe another interesting reservation.
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