“Neighbours made them feel the Celebration was all about them”
When Marion and Bev Genoe moved into the adult lifestyle community of Maple Meadow Homes, their arrival coincided with Canada Day and their new neighbours made them feel the celebration was all about them.
“They had a cake for us because we were new,” Marion recalls fondly. “It’s hard to explain, because it’s just so overwhelming how welcome and accepted you are. They would invite us to the breakfasts and dinners before we even moved in!”
Prior to downsizing to the Meaford community, the Genoes lived in a big house on an acre of land in the nearby countryside. It was time for a change.
“I couldn’t keep that place without my husband if anything happened, and he wouldn’t want to be there without me,” she explains. Intending to stay in the area, the couple looked at other local residential opportunities, including a condominium, but they decided against the elevator.
“Everything here is on one level and the garage is attached – you don’t have to go outside,” she says about Maple Meadow. “Everything is very well built and the owners are fantastic.”
In the end, the decision was easy.
“We had one acre before, and now our back sunroom overlooks our backyard and the bush beyond. We’re really close here to the Georgian Trail and we use it a lot.”
Marion says she walks everywhere – to volunteer at the hospital on Wednesdays and to the Royal Canadian Legion where she just topped off a 10-year stint on the executive with a two-year term as chapter president; and over to the bowling alley in town where she plays on a five-pin league. A short stroll also takes her to the community recreation centre where she attends aquafit twice a week, plays cards and dominoes on Tuesdays and line dances on Thursday mornings.
“There’s also shuffleboard on Friday afternoons, but I haven’t made that yet,” she laughs. She and Bev do enjoy the community dinners, breakfasts and the regular music nights that have rhythmic residents and friends jamming together while the audience taps a toe or cuts a rug. “I don’t sit idle too much.”
When she does get a chance to sit, she certainly isn’t idle. Last year, her crocheted entries (from an afghan and slippers to scarves, hats and mitts) all took red ribbons at the Rockland Fall Fair.
Bev, a regular volunteer himself, helps out with the local Good Food Box program and with the necessary cleaning and testing of the salt-water community pool. He also schedules time to go to the nearby army base to share the exercise room with the soldiers, and to join in card games, bingo and the monthly trivia night.
During the summer, their attention turns to the road as they head off on camping trips in their RV (country-western musical jamborees are a popular destination), or to display their ’65 copper Thunderbird amid other antique car aficionados at the two clubs they belong to.
“Bev has always been into cars,” she considers, thinking back on the 43 years of married life and a couple of years she knew him before that.
But colder weather isn’t a deterrent to this duo, who would rather go snowshoeing than head south.
“I enjoy the winter – I’m not leaving,” she says with contentment. In fact, she doesn’t want to go anywhere for long. “I’m here to stay. There’s everything here that you really need.”
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