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How much do you tip at restaurants, airports, motels?

As promised, this week I reviewed the finer points of tipping from “Etiquette,” by Peggy Post.

These “tips” are meant to be fun, take ’em or leave ’em.

In regard to restaurants tipping, just how much?

• The minimum for acceptable wait service is 15 percent before tax. (I personally, generally speaking, tip 20 percent, but lousy service will get you less.)

At airports:

• Curbside baggage checker, skycap or airline porter. The standard is $1 to $2 per bag, a little more if you packed something heavy.

• Shuttle bus driver. If the driver helps you with your baggage, no less than $1 per bag.

Motels — $1-$2 per night, but tip daily since the maid’s schedule could change during your stay.

Next week, we’ll take a closer look at table settings

Survey says

A survey of our meal service was conducted in September at our Pagosa Springs and Arboles sites, as well as with our home-delivered meal recipients.

We take pride in bringing you the best meal service possible with the funding and environment that has been provided for you.

Here are some excerpts of what you think from our Arboles dining site and home delivered meals.

Meal: Chicken fried steak, garlic mashed potatoes with country gravy, California vegetables. (Only nine respondents of approximately 35 in Arboles and five of 14 home-delivered meals.)

Rate your meal in Arboles today:

• Excellent 0 percent.

• Good 56 percent.

• Fair 33 percent.

• Poor 11 percent.

Rate the cleanliness and cheerfulness of the dining room.

• Excellent 56 percent.

• Good 44 percent.

Rate the sanitation practices:

• Excellent 56 percent.

• Good 44 percent.

Rate the quality of the food:

• Excellent 0 percent.

• Good 67 percent.

• Fair 11 percent.

• Poor 0 percent.

• No answer 22 percent.

Has this meal program improved your emotional health?

• Strongly agree 22 percent.

• Agree 67 percent.

• Disagree 0 percent.

• No Answer 11 percent.

Has this meal program improved your physical health?

• Strongly agree 0 percent.

• Agree 78 percent.

• No Answer 22 percent.

How would you improve the dining center?

The only suggestion on how to improve the dining center is to install a dishwasher.

Home-delivered meal survey.

Rate your meal today:

• Excellent 20 percent.

• Good 80 percent.

Rate the delivery volunteers:

• 100 percent.

Rate the sanitation practices:

• 100 percent.

Rate the quality of the food:

• Excellent 20 percent.

• Good 40 percent.

• No answer 40 percent.

Has this meal program improved your emotional health?

• Strongly agree 40 percent.

• Agree 60 percent.

Has this meal program improved your physical health?

• Strongly agree 40 percent.

• Agree 60 percent.

Medicare 101

To help alleviate the overload on our counselors during open enrollment, we are pleased to bring to you Medicare 101 via Webinar (via computer) on Wednesday, Nov. 2, from 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Medicare 101 is for those that are new to Medicare or about to venture into the new world of Medicare. If you are interested in participating in the webinar, you must contact my office no later than Tuesday, Nov. 1, for instructions on how to register, 264-2167.

Division of Insurance news

Has your doctor ever had his or her license suspended?or been subject to criminal convictions since licensing?

Find out at, the Healthcare Professional Profiling Program provided by DORA. Click on “Search Healthcare Profession Profiles” to access this information. All licensed Colorado?physicians are now in the database; other healthcare professions will be added soon.

Medicare Part D Open Enrollment

The 2011 General Enrollment for Medicare Prescription Plans (Part D) and Medicare Advantage Plans has changed to Oct. 15–Dec. 7, 2011.

We highly recommend anyone enrolled in Part D, or needing to enroll, to schedule an appointment. The program(s) can, and sometimes do, change their deductible, the drugs they cover and how much you pay for the drug. Some of the low income plans will no longer be offering services to the low income this year,; however, they may still offer to enroll you at a higher cost.

• Are you enrolled automatically in a plan through Medicaid? Auto enrollment plans may not be right for you and specific to your needs.

• Don’t get caught by surprise; make sure you are enrolled in the plan that best suits your needs. Your neighbor may have a great plan, but it may not be great for you. The best plan for you is based on your specific drugs. Beware of letters you receive encouraging you to buy their program; it may not be best for you.

• Read any material you receive in the mail in regards to your plan’ it may contain information on plan changes.

• Low income beneficiaries may qualify for extra help with drug costs.

• Remember, Medicare will never call you selling a product; never give out your Medicare number.

• When in doubt, contact our SHIP office located at the Senior Center.

You are encouraged to make your appointment early. As we move later into open enrollment, we are extremely busy and want to make sure that we are able to meet your needs.

For further information or to schedule an appointment, call 264-2167.

Upcoming special events

Monday, Oct. 31, at noon, Halloween — dress up in costume, prizes for the best costumes.

Wednesday, Nov. 2, at 12:30 p.m. — Do you ever wonder how many people live in Archuleta County? Or, how many people you know listen to the radio each week? What about online listening? Or, how are these statistics measured? Some call it the Rodney Dangerfield of media, with good reason. Find out all that you ever wanted to know about the radio business, but hadn’t thought to ask. Will Spears, owner/manager of KWUF Radio will speak and answer questions regarding radio and demographics in Archuleta County ... and beyond.


Available Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday to seniors age 60-plus, suggested donation $2 per day. Call for details, 264-2167.

Home meal delivery

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 and weekends. Meals are available to people age 60-plus for a suggested donation of $3 per meal. Give us a call at 264-2167 for further information. Donations are greatly appreciated.

Weekly activities at The Den

Friday, Oct. 28 — Geezers 9 a.m.; Stitchin’ in the Kitchen 10 a.m.; celebrate birthdays at noon; Gym walk 12:30 p.m.; Book Club 10:30 a.m. (fourth Friday of every month).

Monday, Oct. 31 — Halloween Contest noon; Gym Walk 12:30 p.m.; Canasta 1 p.m.

Tuesday, Nov. 1 — Scrabble 10:30 a.m.; Gym walk 12:30 p.m.; Meditation for Healing 1 p.m.

Wednesday, Nov. 2 — KWUF presentation 12:30 p.m.

Thursday, Nov. 3 — Administrative day, no services.

Friday, Nov. 4 — Geezers 9 a.m.; Stitchin’ in the Kitchen 10 a.m.

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 via the San Juan Basin Area Agency on Aging, United Way, Archuleta County, Town of Pagosa Springs and other donations and grants. These funds help support the cost of the meal which is approximately $11.51. 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, Oct. 28- — Celebrate October birthdays with roast turkey with gravy, winter blend vegetables, tossed salad, cornbread stuffing, raisin-nut cup and birthday cake.

Monday, Oct. 31 — Halloween meal, Monster Mash, witch’s toenails, bird nest salad, fungus bar. Translation: Sloppy Joe, mixed vegetables, spinach mandarin salad, Halloween brownie.

Tuesday, Nov. 1 — Chicken parmesan, whole wheat spaghetti, tossed salad, whole wheat roll, tropical fruit.

Wednesday, Nov. 2 — Crunchy baked fish, tartar sauce, whipped sweet potatoes, creamy coleslaw, mixed vegetables, whole wheat roll, fresh orange.

Thursday, Nov. 3 — Closed, no services.

Friday, Nov. 4 — Chicken salad on a whole wheat bun, homemade vegetable soup, tomato wedges, 1/2 banana, raisin-nut cup.

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