Senior Bulletin Board: Time for a smart phone? Help is available

Posted
One of the driving forces in my life has been "lifelong learning" in any of its many forms. I have vowed to learn at least one new thing every day for the rest of my life. This past week has presented numerous experiences that led to learning something new, often linked to an issue of "aging". I have learned so many new things that I think I am ahead of the goal of one new thing every day. I can probably take a breather this next week. Here are a couple of things I learned:

- I heard on the news one morning that Apple is working on a new device that would enable diabetics to test their glucose (blood sugar) without doing a finger prick to get a droplet of blood. Somehow it has to do with light projected onto your skin. The catch is that it will be tied to your smartphone.

Smartphone, you say? Believe me, I was one of the last people on the planet to get a cell phone, so I know how intimidating it can be when trying to get up to speed on this new technology. But, there is help for those of us who, much to our surprise, find ourselves in the "elder" generation.

If you have grandchildren who can help you, consider it a blessing. I began the journey several years ago. Now, I no longer even have landline phone service and have, in the last several years, gradually moved up to a smartphone and, then, finally, to an IPhone. I LOVE it!

If you are a member of AARP and get their publications, you most likely are aware of the advertising for Consumer Cellular - a good place to start. Service is reasonably priced, with a discount for AARP members. They even now offer an iPhone for something like $150, payable over five months. Then, to get your phone set up and to learn how it works, you can ask for an appointment with Jackie at the Manchester Community Library. She is knowledgeable, patient, and ready to help. If you are a member of Manchester Community Library, there is no charge for an hour of Jackie's time. If you are not a member already, you would have to become one, but it's well worth whatever the charge is for a year. Call the library at 802-352-2607.

By the way, one of the nice things for us seniors about the iPhone is the option for you to record and store all of your medical data (primary care physician name and number, your prescriptions, allergies, insurance, etc.). I am told that emergency medical people can access that info if need be (in case of an emergency). Good idea, huh? I will do some additional research on this and let you know more about this via this bulletin board.

Bottom line: If you do not now have a cell phone, I encourage you to consider getting one and getting acquainted with it.

- Couple of additional notes on items already covered in past Bulletin Boards: First off, hats off to all of the people who volunteer at the Meal Sites. Some of them help with getting the tables set up for the lunches, doing some of the serving, pouring coffee, etc.

We would also like to acknowledge the lovely addition to the meal last week Thursday at the Manchester meal site — live music provided by violinist Joanna Genova of Taconic Music. She has offered to do this once a month and I do believe that her offer is being accepted. Her next appearance would be the Tuesday after Mother's Day — to be confirmed.

By the way, experts have been telling all of us for a long time that exercising our brain is a good for our mental well-being — crossword puzzles, learning a new language, mastering a new hobby, learning a musical instrument. Now, they are adding that it is also helpful just to listen to music! The Council on Aging has indicated that they would prefer that you contact the Rutland office if you would like to sign up for Meals on Wheels (802-786-5990). My contact there, Courtney Anderson, says that this office will do the "intake" (processing and approval) and then pass the request on to the Bennington County Meals on Wheels staff and from there, it would be sent to the Manchester kitchen. As a follow-up to my visit to the Rupert meal site a week ago, I asked the same person at Council on Aging about the availability of Meals on Wheels deliveries in that area. I am being told, that there is delivery in the Rupert area several times a week. (P.S. Yes, Rupert is in Bennington County, not Rutland County as some thought.)

Next week: Lunch at the Wilson House in East Dorset at noon on Thursday, April 26. Sign up with Dotty Streiter, at 802-867-4442. Lunches will be offered at both Bailey Hall in East Arlington (802-375-6697) and the town office in Manchester, (802-362-3714),Tuesday and Thursday.

Then ... have you heard that the Northshire Seniors are going to Proctor's in Schenectady on Saturday, June 17 for a matinee performance of "Riverdance?" The group will stop for a meal on the way home, "Dutch Treat." Last I heard, there were a few spaces/tickets left. There is no membership requirement — just be over the age of 55 and want to join a group of other seniors for an excursion out of town. Please get in touch with Linda O'Leary (802-779-1314) if you would like to go. Linda will confirm the date and can tell you about ticket price, departure time, meeting place, etc.

Marian Haines writes the Senior Bulletin Board weekly By Marian Haines

Special to the Journal

One of the driving forces in my life has been "lifelong learning" in any of its many forms. I have vowed to learn at least one new thing every day for the rest of my life. This past week has presented numerous experiences that led to learning something new, often linked to an issue of "aging". I have learned so many new things that I think I am ahead of the goal of one new thing every day. I can probably take a breather this next week. Here are a couple of things I learned:

- I heard on the news one morning that Apple is working on a new device that would enable diabetics to test their glucose (blood sugar) without doing a finger prick to get a droplet of blood. Somehow it has to do with light projected onto your skin. The catch is that it will be tied to your smartphone.

Smartphone, you say? Believe me, I was one of the last people on the planet to get a cell phone, so I know how intimidating it can be when trying to get up to speed on this new technology. But, there is help for those of us who, much to our surprise, find ourselves in the "elder" generation.

If you have grandchildren who can help you, consider it a blessing. I began the journey several years ago. Now, I no longer even have landline phone service and have, in the last several years, gradually moved up to a smartphone and, then, finally, to an IPhone. I LOVE it!

If you are a member of AARP and get their publications, you most likely are aware of the advertising for Consumer Cellular - a good place to start. Service is reasonably priced, with a discount for AARP members. They even now offer an iPhone for something like $150, payable over five months. Then, to get your phone set up and to learn how it works, you can ask for an appointment with Jackie at the Manchester Community Library. She is knowledgeable, patient, and ready to help. If you are a member of Manchester Community Library, there is no charge for an hour of Jackie's time. If you are not a member already, you would have to become one, but it's well worth whatever the charge is for a year. Call the library at 802-352-2607.

By the way, one of the nice things for us seniors about the iPhone is the option for you to record and store all of your medical data (primary care physician name and number, your prescriptions, allergies, insurance, etc.). I am told that emergency medical people can access that info if need be (in case of an emergency). Good idea, huh? I will do some additional research on this and let you know more about this via this bulletin board.

Bottom line: If you do not now have a cell phone, I encourage you to consider getting one and getting acquainted with it.

- Couple of additional notes on items already covered in past Bulletin Boards: First off, hats off to all of the people who volunteer at the Meal Sites. Some of them help with getting the tables set up for the lunches, doing some of the serving, pouring coffee, etc.

We would also like to acknowledge the lovely addition to the meal last week Thursday at the Manchester meal site — live music provided by violinist Joanna Genova of Taconic Music. She has offered to do this once a month and I do believe that her offer is being accepted. Her next appearance would be the Tuesday after Mother's Day — to be confirmed.

By the way, experts have been telling all of us for a long time that exercising our brain is a good for our mental well-being — crossword puzzles, learning a new language, mastering a new hobby, learning a musical instrument. Now, they are adding that it is also helpful just to listen to music! The Council on Aging has indicated that they would prefer that you contact the Rutland office if you would like to sign up for Meals on Wheels (802-786-5990). My contact there, Courtney Anderson, says that this office will do the "intake" (processing and approval) and then pass the request on to the Bennington County Meals on Wheels staff and from there, it would be sent to the Manchester kitchen. As a follow-up to my visit to the Rupert meal site a week ago, I asked the same person at Council on Aging about the availability of Meals on Wheels deliveries in that area. I am being told, that there is delivery in the Rupert area several times a week. (P.S. Yes, Rupert is in Bennington County, not Rutland County as some thought.)

Next week: Lunch at the Wilson House in East Dorset at noon on Thursday, April 26. Sign up with Dotty Streiter, at 802-867-4442. Lunches will be offered at both Bailey Hall in East Arlington (802-375-6697) and the town office in Manchester, (802-362-3714),Tuesday and Thursday.

Then ... have you heard that the Northshire Seniors are going to Proctor's in Schenectady on Saturday, June 17 for a matinee performance of "Riverdance?" The group will stop for a meal on the way home, "Dutch Treat." Last I heard, there were a few spaces/tickets left. There is no membership requirement — just be over the age of 55 and want to join a group of other seniors for an excursion out of town. Please get in touch with Linda O'Leary (802-779-1314) if you would like to go. Linda will confirm the date and can tell you about ticket price, departure time, meeting place, etc.

Marian Haines writes the Senior Bulletin Board weekly for the Manchester Journal.

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