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When I grow up, I want to tango

Legend has it that the Tango was born in the brothels and tenements of Buenos Aires, Argentina in the late 1890s. The tango is a smoking hot pas de deux (French for dance for two) that was once outlawed for its “immoral” circumvolutions. People with nothing but their bodies and a guitar passed the time dancing in the evenings in their common courtyards.

It is not a dance I expected to see at the Senior Senior Prom on a Sunday afternoon at the Pagosa Springs High School.

Yet there I was, in the packed, gloriously decorated Commons Area. I was seated at a table at the back of the room with my people who were beautifully turned out in their formal wear. John Graves and Company was taking a break from playing music when I arrived. Archuleta Seniors, Inc. had been planning this event for months. As usual, they had worked tirelessly to create this, their only non fund-raising party of the year, recycling the high school prom venue and volunteering for almost every task. Keeping the costs close to nothing was important to them because they want to give every last nickel to their Medical Assistance Fund to help their peers.

As I was pinning on my corsage, the band fired up a tango. I set my carnation down and watched in disbelief as two couples scorched the floor. No lie. These two couples, who were looking at 65 in their rear view mirror, were smoldering. The room was enrapt. One more degree of torrid and there would be spontaneous combustion on everyone’s part. When the dance ended the crowd burst into applause.

I used to think, when I was 6 years old, that if I could stay awake until midnight and be extra sneaky, I could watch as my toys came to life and played with each other. Attending the Senior Senior Prom had a feeling a little bit like this. My ordinary people, who come to the Silver Foxes Den for lunch, quite unexpectedly knocked themselves out, on their oxygen and with their canes, to throw a soirée and look stunning while doing it. They tore up the dance floor, played their music and partied for hours. After that they removed the decorations and cleaned the area. Then, after that, they had an after Prom party at the Shanghai where, rumor has it, they ultimately had to be asked to leave.

When I grow up I want to be like them. I want to volunteer for my peers, party with my friends and be kicked out of restaurants. I want to hijack the high school prom and I want to tango.

Readers Digest-ing

Tessa Michaelson of the Ruby Sisson Memorial Library will join us on the second Monday of each month at 12:30 p.m. to present her series “Readers Digest-ing.” She will highlight new books and resources and offer satellite checkout, as well as highlight upcoming events and programs at the library. The first presentation will be Monday, May 10.

Colorado Legal Service

Kyla Norcross, paralegal, of Colorado Legal Services, will be here Wednesday, May 12, at 12:45 p.m. to give a short presentation on senior law and answer questions. Located in Durango, Colorado Legal Services helps seniors who are 60 and over regardless of income, but only if the individual problem falls within Colorado Legal Services Priorities, and if the office has the resources to provide this assistance at the times needed.

Texas Hold ’Em

Most every Wednesday at 1 p.m., a group of five-10 people gather to play poker. And most every Wednesday the laughter is so loud I have to leave my desk to hear for myself what is so funny, or what the yelling is about or what is the naughty thing Kurt said. Our own Eddie Bennett deals and gives sage advice for holding ‘em or folding ‘em. The players take turns bringing root beer and ice cream. Every player is at a different level and some people just come for the root beer floats. You are welcome to play a few hands or stay until they quit — usually about two hours.

Fox Trot speakers

Game on! The Fox Trot Challenge has begun. Our guest speakers this month are: Judge Greg Lyman (May 3), Ming Steen (May 19) and Nancy Dickhoff (May 25).

Judge Lyman was an Olympic Speed Skater, Ming Steen is a super athlete and manager of the recreation center, and our own Nancy Dickhoff, chef extraordinaire, is also a secret athlete. Speakers begin at 12:45 p.m.

Thanks

Thank you, Archuleta Seniors Inc., for breaking the rules and allowing me to attend the Prom.

Thank you, Sheryl Otis, for your donation of jewelry for our craft and jewelry sale.

Thank you, Jessica Peart, for your fun fitness presentation and information.

Thank you, Eddie Bennett, for your poker playing prowess and patience.

Craft and jewelry sale

On Saturday, June 19, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., we will hold a craft and jewelry sale in our dining room. Booths will be $25. Now is the time to make things and look through your current jewelry that you don’t need. We will also be selling refreshments including cinnamon rolls. Interested? Space is limited, please sign up early. Call me, 264-2167.

Services

Are you homebound or know someone who is? Let the Silver Foxes Den help you with your meals. We have expanded our service to the more rurally-isolated areas of the county and would like to help you help yourself.

These meals are the same meals prepared in our kitchen by the same cooks who prepare those scrumptious senior center meals. Our hot meal home-delivery program remains available to those closer to town four days per week, with frozen meals on Thursdays. Meals are available to people age 60-plus for a suggested donation of $3 per meal. Give me or Musetta a call at 264-2167 for further information.

Weekly activities

Friday, May 7 — Geezers 9 a.m.; Stitchin’ in the Kitchen 10 a.m.; Tai Chi 11 a.m.; Gym Walk 12:30 p.m.; Parkinson’s Support Group 1 p.m.

Monday, May 10 — Gym Walk 12:30 p.m.; Tessa Michaelson “Readers Digest-ing” 12:45 p.m.; Canasta 1 p.m.

Tuesday, May 11 — Chair Massage 10 a.m.; blood pressure checks 11 a.m., Gym Walk 12:30 p.m.; Meditation for Healing 1 p.m.; Healthy Living Class 1 p.m.

Wednesday, May 12 — Dance for Health 10 a.m.; Kyla Norcross, Colorado Legal Services 12:45 p.m.; poker 1 p.m.

Thursday, May 13 — No lunch, administrative day.

Friday, May 14 — Geezers 9 a.m.; Stitchin’ in the Kitchen 10 a.m.; Tai Chi 11 a.m.; Gym Walk 12:30 p.m.; ASI board meeting 1 p.m.

Medical expenses

The Silver Foxes Den, in cooperation with Archuleta Seniors, Inc. (ASI), may be able to help with excess medical expenses. Items covered might be prescription copays, eyeglasses, hearing aids and dental care. Qualifying amounts are based on income and need. Recipients must be current members of ASI. Dues are $5 per year. For more information about how we might help you, please contact Musetta at 264-2167.

This week’s menu

Suggested donation for older adults age 60-plus is $3, kids 12 and under and guests $6. Our meal program is partially funded through the Older Americans Act, United Way, and Archuleta County, Town of Pagosa Springs and other contributions and grants. These funds help support the cost of the meal which is approximately $9.75. Please note our menu is subject to change. The salad bar opens at 11:30 a.m. with lunch served from noon to 12:30 p.m.

Friday, May 7 — Oven fried chicken, spinach mandarin salad, potato salad, peaches, cornbread.

Monday, May 10 — Hungarian goulash, zucchini and onions, spinach, banana, bread.

Tuesday, May 11 — Salmon patties, cream sauce, brown rice, mixed vegetables, fruit, raisin cup, bread.

Wednesday, May 12 — Salisbury steak, whipped potatoes, vegetable medley, greens, fruit, bread.

Thursday, May 13 — No lunch, administrative day.

Friday, May 14 — Chicken cacciatore, noodles, spinach, fruit, garlic biscuit.