Meet the Personnel Breakfast Group – Part II


Retirees on the Move

by Beverly Clark, RLACEI Publicity Chair

This lively group of Retirees on the Move was introduced last month. Here’s a quick recap:
The Personnel Breakfast Group, which also refers to itself as the Golden Girls and the Bronze Girls, all worked in Personnel and are now Retired. They meet once a month, generally. The ladies who meet regularly are: Mary Fletcher, Rita Gardner, Fern Johnson, Linda Lanier, Theresa Richardson, Beatrice (Bea) Smalls and Patricia Taylor. Mae Gaddis was also part of the group for many years.

The Personnel Breakfast Group, from left: Theresa Richardson, Fern Johnson, Bea Smalls, Patricia Taylor, Mary Fletcher, Linda Lanier and Rita Gardner.

Now, here’s the rest of their story;

Since the shelter-in-place mandate, how do you spend your time? What do you miss most?

Mary Fletcher: I spend more time keeping up with my four grandchildren. My nails have truly missed my manicurist. I also miss my church. However, an online Mass is offered every day and I actually prefer this, although I do miss the other parishioners. I enjoy walking up the scenic overlook.

Rita Gardner: During this “Stay at Home” period, I spend my time praying, reading the Bible and Holy Scriptures, doing power walks, conducting weekly Religious Education Zoom Class Meetings, working crossword puzzles and word scrambles and having a weekly FaceTime session with my children and grandchildren. I also miss watching various live sports on TV.

Fern Johnson: I am doing everything that maintains my life (e.g. hygiene, devotional, food preparation and eating, clean the house, walk the dog) at a leisurely pace. I am organizing things and de-cluttering. I watch more TV and movies and connect with people via telephone.

Linda Lanier: My time is spent reading, watching TV, talking on the phone, Zoom parties with friends, texting with family, exercising and line dancing with Zoom classes, walking in the park, sitting outside watching the neighbors and working out with my son (the personal trainer). I also attend virtual church weekly. I miss, of course, seeing my family and friends. And I really miss being able to actually go to a line dance class.

Theresa Richardson: My days consist of looking at the four walls, reading, and transporting to the dialysis center. I especially miss going out to restaurants … yes, I hate cooking!! I miss that and fellowship with parishioners and socializing with friends. I would have to say I miss going out to eat with friends and some family the most.

Bea Smalls: Well, I miss everything that I was involved in, especially going to church, my breakfast buddies, friends, and family. I deeply miss not being able to get together the way we used to.

Patricia Taylor: I miss going out and meeting with friends for lunch and dinner and having that “feely, touchy” experience.

How have you been impacted, and do you find yourself getting bored while in quarantine? What has changed during this time?

Rita Gardner: I have been impacted during this “Stay at Home” period by having groceries delivered, not being able to go out and do routine errands, playing tennis, interacting with my family, friends, relatives and students, attending Mass and receiving Holy Communion.

I keep busy and involved as part of three groups that meet via Zoom on a weekly basis, so I don’t consider myself bored but I am tired of some of the nonsensical politics

Mary Fletcher: “Are you bored”? Absolutely not. I miss not being able to catch up over coffee and eggs with the breakfast group and seeing my grands on a regular basis. In fact, I love the fact that traffic is so light, and I don’t have to go anywhere.

Fern Johnson: I’m not really bored, just not as focused as I’d like to be. Time seems to be speeding by. I used to run to the store frequently for greeting cards, gifts and fresh vegetables. I also liked eating out. Can’t do that anymore. What has changed since the quarantined? Going out to a restaurant, getting personal grooming, for example, hair, nails, visiting my place of worship and spending time with family and friends.

Linda Lanier: Since I cannot go out, I’m having to find ways to keep myself entertained. I am spending a lot of time on Facebook. I try to keep a regular routine each day doing housework, exercising, planning and making meals, contacting friends, getting outside, etc. Sometimes I’m bored.

Theresa Richardson: I have more allergy problems with having to wear a mask. It’s hard to breathe … but breathing is overrated!

I’m not really bored. I can somewhat tolerate myself. I fill my days by brushing my teeth, washing my face, showering, preparing food (I can’t use the “cook” word – I don’t do that!), eating, reading, texting, and numerous bathroom breaks.

Beatrice Smalls: I am not bored because I believe if we do as the scientists, governors and mayors ask us to do, this too will pass.

Patricia Taylor: I find that I am not very much impacted, and I am not bored at all. I have decided to replace my flip phone with a smart phone. So that will be my new project while in quarantine.

Many groups have taken advantage of meeting virtually to keep in touch with each other. Does your group meet virtually?

The ladies have not taken advantage of virtual meetings with each other; however, they keep in touch by text and phone calls, and have suggested that they may meet virtually in the future.

In summary, do you have any suggestions or thoughts?

Rita Gardner: Find a cure/vaccine for COVID-19 and its mutations to end this pandemic. Go out and vote for anyone who is running against the current president!

Fern Johnson: Because we have so much more time at home, we can really do a lot of the things we said we wanted to do if we were running around all the time. I enjoy my own company so I’m fine as long as I connect or make contacts with at least four family members or friends each day.

Linda Lanier: It’s important to keep active during these times.

Theresa Richardson: I think it’s good if everyone does what they are supposed to do. It appears this virus is not going away. I don’t know if going back to staying at home is the answer, but it seems to reduce some of the positive cases.

Patricia Taylor: I wish that all of this were over!