My first day off in FOREVER!

I am well aware that I’m pushing myself too hard, and that at some precise moment I’ll pay for it.  However, in the mean time, I’m having a wonderful time, spending three half days at the seniors gym in the morning, then up to the food bank for the afternoon.  Plus, I try to put in  a full day at the food bank as well, helping them catch up on their backlog of paperwork.

As of yesterday late afternoon, we finally finished up with December’s massive load of assorted paperwork!  Now that it is February, we can move on to January’s pile.  There is no point in thinking that we’re all caught up, at least not yet.

Almost all of the people I deal with at the food bank are volunteers, the only exception being Tina, the gal that recruited me.  They are truly an interesting group, none of which I know very well at this stage.

First, there’s Joanne, an eccentric woman in her sixties who is a trained massage therapist as well as a psychic and an astrologer.  She wears enormous hoop earrings, that often get tangled in her long hair.  You’ll be interested to note that Mercury has been in retrograde lately, for what its worth.  Joanne is a warm funny gal, who loves to chatter whether anyone is listening or not.  She has long black wavy hair, and a wardrobe of interesting glasses frames.  Joanne volunteers there pretty much full time.Joannne

I got most of my training in the area from Patty, a woman about my age.  Tina whispered to me that Patty’s husband recently sold his start up company for several gazillion dollars, so she doesn’t need to work.  She doesn’t have much to say, and strikes me as a bit of a cold fish, but that may be unjust.  She lives next door to where Steve Wozniak lived, at least until he emigrated to Australia with his 5th wife.  Los Gatos is a great little village, where many of us would love to live, but the prices there are a bit intimidating, starting in the several-millions range. “Los Gatos” means The Cats, in Spanish I believe.

How perfect for us that we picked up a ceramic sign when we were visiting the cat rescue in Rome, saying “Attenti alIMG_0414 gatto” (watch out for the cats, in Italian).  The sign didn’t fare well in the move, as you can see!   Patty works there Tuesday and Thursday.

The rest of the volunteers are there less often.  Colleen is there once per week, and not at all in the summer.  She and her husband have no kids, but they do have a home in Palo Alto, and a cottage in Lake Tahoe.  She is about my age, and loves to name-drop.  She saw Richard Branson sipping coffee at a café the other day…..

Suki was there last week, and she told me about how unhappy she is with her current home’s location.  She said that they had lived in San Jose for many years when their kids were small, but then her husband got the idea to move to a fashionable community nearer the ocean.  Suzi is miserable there, as the neighbors are not particularly ‘neighborly’, and her husband is happy to just sit.  She has several adult kids, all of whom came home for the traditional New Years dinner she prepares.  She seems tired, but it could just be post holidays stuff.  Suki is only there every other Monday.

A new person came into my cubicle area to use the old IBM typewriter.  She introduced herself as Dot, and said that she was seventy-something (her words).  She carried on a laughing conversation while she struggled with this old dinosaur of a typewriter, tapping out thank you notes for various in-memorium donations.  She was bubbly, and very matter-of-fact when she announced that he husband had ‘gone’.  I must have looked a bit taken aback, as she hastened to add ‘DEAD’.

There are also a couple of young girls that come by periodically, to do some of the computer work.  Any time I happen to glance over at them they are reading something on their iPhones, but that’s not my concern.  They tend to be shy but pleasant, probably feeling a bit out of place with all of us old broads.

I now know that I am a keeper, since I now have a badge that gets me in and out of the locked doors.  I feel like I must be  a decent sized fish, since it seems that they don’t wish to throw me back!

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