Had a really interesting meeting at Cracker Barrel this morning. This gentleman has been involved in local happenings for the past 15 years. He had so much to say about economics, education, history, and so many other things. However, he used a phrase about the people living in our retirement community. He said that some people have come down here to become “professional retirees.”
I asked him what that meant. He said that there are people who come here with a certain kind of mind set. Their objectives are very clear. They do not want to be bothered with the outside world. They make it clear that they want to be involved only in those things that provide gratification. Those things are normally activities that are viewed at “fun.” How about these for a list; golf, jewelry making, movies, mahjong, canasta, poker, sewing, quilting, eating at restaurants, discovering restaurants, wood working
(And there are a bunch of those because of a great wood working shop), watching tv, softball (have you ever seen am 80 year old run the bases), and all of those kinds of things. If I told you that there are copious tennis courts, 3 kinds of golf courses, three well outfitted gyms, a dog park, nature trails, lagoons with alligators (real ones), bike trails, golf carts, bocce courts, and so many other things. The only thing missing here is a cemetery and there must be someone working on that.
So, the professionals do not have to leave Sun City for mostly anything. Sure they have to shop at the local Publix, or Kroger’s, or even Walmart. However, if they want to see a movie or a show, those things are provided. Some are for a nominal fee- $3. They have also had some heavy duty entertainers, for which tickets are at a premium and cost some dough. Community wide problems, such as inferior stucco on most of the homes, are handled at community wide meetings. Individual communities get together for fun and games and also to volunteer in the outside the walls community, schools, libraries, hospitals and so on.
There are a group of people who actually have jobs, some full, but mostly part time. These are people who have not felt that the Sun City community has everything that they need. Some are working because they have to. It is true that there are, even here, some who were affected by the 2008 recession and have not yet recovered. They use their part time wages to augment pensions and investments. Some are just plain bored and need to do something to fill up the time.
As a newly minted resident of the community, I can view the place as an old age home with grass and alligators. That sounds worse than I meant. However, as someone pointed out to me, we are all not going to get better with age. Most are trying to do the kinds of things they could not do when they were working. Some have the means to do it by going on trips, visiting their children and grandchildren and some of them, without means, stay in the community and join clubs. These are still all professional retirees. For some, though, as one of my neighbors has done, withdraw into them.
I am just waiting to feel like this is my home. Because we have had problems selling our house in Harrisburg, PA that has extended. My hope is that once the house is sold, there will be an awakening to the idea that we really do live here and will live here for a long time. I can’t guarantee that, but I am hoping.



  1. Well, one good reason you’re down there is because it’s about to dump 15″ plus or minus on Cumberland, Dauphin, York counties between now and sometime Sunday……..❗️

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