Do I have a Philadelphian accent? I have always pronounced caramel as CAR-mul, two syllables, but on TV they pronounce it CARE-a-mel with three syllables.  Philadelphians typically drop syllables when the meaning is clear.  It comes from our frugal Quaker heritage.


My wife, a retired nurse with a talent for noticing health problems, long ago pointed out the many people we see walking that have hip, back, or foot problems. You can see it in their gait. It is not quite a limp, but more of a hitch or a sway that indicates something is wrong, something is hurting.


As the weather warms up, a good way to start the day is by watching the 9th Street live camera on the Ocean City Boardwalk at http://attheshore.com/livecam-9th-street-boardwalk (where you can watch the walkers hitching and swaying). In the mornings the people are in sunlight. By the afternoon, the sun is behind them and all you see are silhouettes. But all is good again as dusk approaches and on into the night when the camera can properly adjust the exposure. The south-facing camera seems to be located on the wall of Shriver’s, across from the Strand Theater, and the people are close enough to recognize.  (I haven’t seen anyone I know yet.)  The movement is a little jumpy, but you can freeze the picture to get a clear look.  Time does not freeze with it, so when you resume you will see a whole new group of people.

I enjoy watching in the mornings, about 8–9 am. The walkers, joggers, and cyclists are out by then, particularly on warm weekends, and full of infectious enthusiasm.  After dark is also good.  The other night, I watched a father toss a blue plastic football back and forth with his young 6-year-old daughter as they walked alone about 1o feet apart.  She was very good at both catching and throwing.  It was late for her to be up, but it was a special treat for both of them, and she danced and skipped between catches and throws.  The proud father was totally involved in their little game.


Many move to a beach resort when they retire. Their thinking is, “Where do I go for a special treat on my week’s vacation?  The beach!  When I retire, I’ll move there.  What could be better?” The problem is that 52 weeks a year is not 52 times as pleasurable as that one week. It becomes more like that one week of pleasure spread out over the 52 weeks, which isn’t very much.  My advice is to rent for a year before committing to a major life change.


Years ago a friend bought an older house in an upscale neighborhood near his workplace.  The house was in immaculate condition and the seller had obviously been long interested in gardening.  But the seller had just retired and wanted to leave Delaware to tour the country in an elaborate mobile home.  Live a life of freedom, on the road like Jack Kerouac!

In less than a year, he had contacted my friend.  Would he possibly sell the house back?  He would give my friend a healthy profit.  Bur my friend was settled in and declined the offer.




About Roger Walck

My reasons for writing this blog are spelled out in the posting of 10/1/2012, Montaigne's Essays. They are probably not what you think.
This entry was posted in Aging, Popular culture and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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