Twenty four happy Gang members showed up for the festivities at the Franconia Inn. We were once again disappointed with the lack of snow, but enjoyed ourselves none-the-less. We managed to snow-shoe, x-country ski, downhill ski, walk, play ping pong, play games, enjoy the hot tub, and of course, eat and drink. Richard took us on a 2 1/2 mile walk that was especially enjoyable compared to the 3 1/2 mile up-mountain trek he led us on last time where he kept saying “the end is just around the bend” or “just up the little rise.” That trek included 90-year-old Theresa! This year Theresa did not attend and Richard kept asking about her, concerned that he had worn her out. We missed you this year, Theresa! Thanks to a wonderful group of Gang members for another fun-filled time in Francionia!
Five members enjoyed a Saturday matinee of “boom” by Peter Sinn Nachtrieb at Wellesley Repertory Theatre. The production was imaginative, darkly hilarious science fiction drama depicted by a cast of 3, with outstanding acting focusing on the powerful fate of humanity.
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.
Thirteen members of the Merrimack Valley/Southern New Hampshire Mystery Group lunched at the Merchants Row Restaurant in the Colonial Inn before visiting the home of Louisa May Alcott in Concord, MA. Unfortunately, Louisa had taken the train into Boston to meet with her publisher, so she was not available to speak with us. However, Mrs. Alcott herself was at home and very eager to entertain us with stories about her girls and Louisa’s most famous book, Little Women. We had a lovely tour of their home and heard about the improvements Louisa was making in the house to better their lifestyle. It was a very enjoyable visit!
Debbie G. and Linda McH.
Have you ever dreamed of wearing a ball gown made from trash bags, ladies? A beautiful one is displayed at the Danforth Museum in Framingham as part of an exhibit of fantasy garments created by local artists and Framingham State art students. Ten of us enjoyed a tour with a lovely guide, Jessica Roscio, who also serves as curator of the museum. Afterwards we enjoyed lunch at Volturno’s, an upscale Italian restaurant. The weather was cold, but the enthusiasm of the group more than compensated for that!
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