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Make the most of your retirement

Those of us who reach retirement age are lucky. Ones like me (over 90 years old) have had unusually good luck. Some of you who have thanked me by e-mail, telephone or in person when we’ve met are partially responsible for my continuing to write these Superior Telegram columns. Thank you.

I hope the readers today who are retired are enjoying retirement. If you could use more enjoyment and haven’t done any volunteer work, I recommend and hope very much that you will consider volunteering. There is great satisfaction in helping worthy causes. You will make new friends and learn new things. "Use it or lose it" is very true. It is true in mental activities as well as physical activities. It’s difficult to explain it, but you will be most amazed at why you haven’t done it before. The satisfaction is more than doubled.

For nine years, I drove for the Aging Resource Center (now Senior Connections), driving folks who didn’t have a car or for some reason were not driving anymore. Many people who were using services available in Duluth seemed to be most pleased to be provided that ride over the high bridge.

The Superior hospital has many volunteer roles so you could choose one that you like the best when it became available. I spend a few years on a Catholic Charities committee and several years on the Superior Vocational Center board. The list of available volunteer services is lengthy and Senior Connections would be pleased to discuss available opportunities with you.

After rereading the above, all to once it dawned on me, "What about humor?"

All of the above have aspects of humor, but humor is too important to stop there. Luckily for me, over 40 years ago, a local group invited me to join their morning coffee group. They met, and still meet, at 6 a.m. everyday. If the restaurant would change its opening hour, they would move to one that did open at 6 a.m. because several members needed to be elsewhere at 7 a.m.

Humor was and is a most important topic of discussion; nobody would miss their day in the barrel. I’ve always been a lover of humor and decided that this new practice was the place for me. Laughter, and the ability to make it and take it is more stimulating than outside the sphere. If you have tried humor and not been impressed, my advice for you is to stick to your day job.

Maybe my best closing would be with local Poet Bud Brand’s poem,

Half and Half:

Half of living

Is how you take it;

The other half

Is what you make it.

Bernie Hughes, Ed.D, is a retired educator who resides in Superior. He can be reached at