Senior Living in the City!

The World Health Organization (WHO) recently announced the launch of the Global Network of Age-friendly Cities. The initiative aim is to “help cities create urban environments that allow older people to remain active and healthy participants in society.”

This reminded me of a story I had planned to share here a few weeks ago.  The father of a friend of mine was widowed several years ago.  Living alone, he was lonely and many people encouraged him to move to an active adult community.  He did a little research and followed their advice.  After a few years he realized it wasn’t a great fit. While he made friends, many were couples and he didn’t play golf which was a common pastime in the community.

He grew up in a city, but lived in the suburbs as an adult, and he began to dream about returning to an urban lifestyle.  He travelled to several cities and eventually found an amenity-rich condo and neighborhood in Baltimore that he liked.  He has absolutely no family or connections in Baltimore, but he decided to make the move anyways.

In my last conversation with my friend, his dad was in the middle of packing, a bit nervous, but very excited to experience the urban lifestyle as an elder.

I love this story because it is a great example of an elder exploring an urban lifestyle. Its also great example of how someone tried out a “traditional retirement option” and it didn’t fit, but he is now on an adventure to create a lifestyle that works for him. A great reminder that we don’t need to play by the rules, I hope to hear more stories like this one in the future!

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