On June 24,
the day after we moved in, I learned that both campuses had July 4 events planned. I decided to go to both in order to build and keep a sense of the whole community by making friends on both campuses.
On June 29
, I took a break from unpacking and went to the Thrift Shop on the main campus, to check out where it might fit in our next phase of decluttering, the post-move. I went to the shop during its Monday “donations” time window, to get an idea of what things the shop accepts and what the options are for getting your things to the shop. Found out the shop also provides IRS charitable contributions receipts. The two residents staffing the shop were very helpful. Both lived on the Lumberton campus and one was even a neighbor of ours! And the range and amount of inventory was quite impressive!
Also on June 29 I emailed two work orders asking Maintenance to put up screens and check an odd stain under the bathroom sink. I mentioned in the requests that I understood that because of damage from the June 23 storm that Maintenance was probably very busy and neither request was urgent.
, I got a call back on both work orders: from Housekeeping for the stain and from Maintenance about the screens. Someone came and did work on each! We kept unpacking, reading the manuals on how to work the new appliances, and laughing over how the TV channels were different numbers and not NY-centric anymore.
On July 2
Phil and I met with the Tammy, Director of Resident Services. We brought our white binder with everything about Medford Leas policy, organization and procedures in it. The binder is a treasure trove of information, but we had questions and we got them all answered!
Also on July 2, at 7:10 pm, we attended a weekly event on the Medford Campus — a music video concert.
Ann C and Maggie from the Lumberton Campus organize and run these events. July’s three-week classical series featured the “Mighty Five” Russian composers – Borodin, Mussorgsky, Rimsky-Korsakov, Balakirev, and Cui (who knew!). Seeing a concert in person, unless you have stunningly good seats, can’t come close to how well you get to see the musicians and the conductors, from orchestras from around the world, do their jobs through the entirety of the pieces, in these videos.
On the morning of July 4
I went to the Medford Campus, for the holiday celebration in the Linden room which spilled out on to the patio. It has been organized the Recreation Committee,
chaired by Dorothy G. There was live music, a sing-along led by Dick W, iced beverages, and appetizers and dessert treats. I met lots of residents, mostly from the main campus, but some like me from Lumberton.
People shared their stories. Some had begun at Lumberton and transitioned to Medford Leas, others moved directly into the main campus preferring to be close to all of the activities and services based there. Some were the second generation to be residing at Medford, having seen how well a parent, aunt or uncle did or was doing so well here. A couple talked of having a grandchild work here. And I heard stories of the history of the area, the older families in the area, the Japanese connection (through Quaker involvement, WWII, internment camps, area farming, …), the founding of Medford and the effects of the visit to California on the architecture. I very much enjoyed the time I spent on July 4 on my new community’s main campus!
Later on July 4, Phil and I attended the Lumberton Campus celebration. We had called Carol F, the member of the Social Activities Committee
taking reservations, and she explained that it was potluck — but since we were still settling in, to bring watermelon, no need for recipe card. (Cards with ingredients listed are for the benefit of those with allergies.) The potluck included every dish you might expect or imagine for the start of a summer picnic. After the meal there was a sing-along of patriotic songs, and Dave B provided a video of Jimmy Cagney performing Yankee Doodle Dandy. What a wonderful opportunity to meet our new neighbors.
During those first two weeks, we accepted that the unpacked boxes in the basement will likely always outnumber us; we celebrated when we found the flatware; we started eating on real plates, and most everything is on the floor it belongs on, or we at least know what floor it should be on!
Editor’s note: A few links have been added above to supplement Jayne’s post. Also, Sumi Kobayashi has provided words and images for two of the photo-essays on the MLRA website: Imprisoned Without Trial and Takashi and Yuriko Moriuchi.