Tyndall AFB, Florida: Tonight is the weekly potluck at the Rec Center. We haven't attended before, but thought we would do so tonight. So I'm making the five bean dish in the crockpot that I took to about a dozen potlucks in Alaska this past summer. Everyone loved it in Alaska......we'll see if they like it in Florida!
The Rec Center could also be called a community room, as it's where everybody gathers and where everything takes place. Three mornings a week there is a group that meets for exercise; there is bingo one night a week, the potluck one night a week, crafts one afternoon, and a computer class one morning a week. Evenings find at least two tables of men playing poker, and another table or two of couples playing other card games. There are puzzles to be worked; one one table is covered with 1000 pieces right now. One corner has an exchange library where it's take one and leave one. A big rack holds magazines that everyone is welcome to borrow and return and add to. The center of the end wall holds a big screen TV (which is seldom on) over a fireplace (also seldom on). Next to it on the right is a huge Christmas tree that the people decorated one day right after Thanksgiving. There are a dozen round tables with four arm chairs around each one, and lined up along the far wall are five plastic tablecloth covered long tables where the pot luck foods are displayed on Tuesday nights.
Given the place of honor are two tables right as you come in the door. That's where the folks meet every morning for coffee and cookies and gossip. Most of these people have been coming for 6 or 7 years, some for as long as 12 years. They all know each other and look forward to the arrival of their old cronies each day. Actually, hubby and I feel like the teenagers of this bunch! Many of them are several years older than we are. Some come down for just a month or two, then return to their homes; others are like us and live totally out of their RV and so travel with the weather, avoiding the north during freezing months, and the south during the hot summers.
The main topic of conversation seems to be health! One guy had surgery this morning, another is recovering from surgery. They say things like "doesn't Bob look good for what he's been through?" or "I can't believe Donna has aged so much. Her 'whatever disease' has really taken it out of her." So, daily I thank God that hubby and I are healthy as I am reminded daily of those who aren't.
But you can bet that at 6:00 tonight everyone will be standing in line to partake of the potluck. Somehow those community meals make everyone feel better, if not fatter. We are anxious to see the variety of dishes that will be served. I wonder how my beans will do.