BY FLORENCE LEVINE
Ten of us are sitting around
the dinner table in the VIP
Room restaurant downstairs;
the atmosphere matches its
name, making us feel like VIPs.
Tonight, we’re celebrating Herb’s
birthday, regaling him with Happy
Birthday songs, wishes and balloons.
we watch a daffodil yellow
one separate from the bunch,
our ten pairs of eyes following it
Just last week, Rich and I were
still in the house all alone. Then
we made the move. After weeks
of hard work, here we are seated
among new friends. We accepted
their dinner invite finding it easy to
attend; we simply took the elevator
downstairs. We rise now signaling
dinner time is over, almost in unison,
and say goodnight, knowing
we can easily see each other tomorrow.
En masse, we turn to exit.
On the way out, Gloria and I pass
a row of walkers along the wall followed
by a baby stroller; walker,
walker, walker, walker, surprise—a
baby stroller! We laugh as we look
around for the baby.
Suddenly the movie “Cocoon”
comes to mind. With a stretch of the
imagination, I slip into the scene:
the old folks are frolicking in a pool,
playful like dolphins. They jump in,
then bob back out again, somehow
rejuvenated. As if dipping into the
fountain of youth, splish-splashing
around, they’re becoming younger
again. What could be in that water?
My mind returns to the VIP room.
There’s a small town feel here; store
owners know you, reminiscent of
the TV show “Cheers.” the place
“where everybody knows your
Doormen fist-bump, familiar faces
from the gym wave in the arcade,
like-minded people carry books,
tennis rackets or chat poolside on
a neighboring lounge. You might
find an article about yourself in
the newspaper. It’s the small town
I’ve missed and seems like a buffer
against the travails of aging.
Bernie who sits at the head of our
table, entertaining us with off-color
jokes, is witty, biting- humored
and… 100! His wife is just as lively.
People seem buoyed here. And I
wonder if there was something in
the water in “Cocoon,” is that same
something in the air here in North
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24 NORTH SHORE TOWERS COURIER ¢ December 2017