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ERS Linkage Podcast - Episode 25

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Episode 25 : Honoring the Classics While Looking to the Future

Date: December 3rd 2020

Hosts: Bryan Reynolds & Kristin Davenport

Guests: Alice Grove & Walter Langsam

For our twenty-fifth episode, we touch base with residents, Alice Grove at Thomaston Woods in Amelia, Ohio and Walter Langsam at Central Parkway Place. Plus we hear from President and CEO, Laura Lamb.

Click on the link above to listen now. You can also listen to our podcast on Google Play Podcasts and Apple Podcasts.

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Episode 25 Transcript


Bryan Reynolds [00:00:05] Hello, hello, hello, welcome to Episode twenty five, I can't believe it. Twenty five of the podcast by Episcopal Retirement Services. This episode is for the week of November 30th. Thanks so much for joining us on Bryan Reynolds, vice president of Marketing of Episcopal Retirement Services. And I'm here with Kristin Davenport, Director of communications for ERS and our executive producer. How are you, Kristen? 

 

Kristin Davenport [00:00:30] Hey, I'm doing well and congratulations, Bryan. I feel great about our accomplishment. That's fantastic. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:00:36] Absolutely. It's been a great, great ride. So the Linkage podcast is dedicated to educating our audience about issues regarding aging, informing people about the mission of the ERS and how that comes to life and our everyday interactions with residents, clients and even family and staff members. Kristen, you want to tell everybody about our our great twenty fifth episode coming up? 

 

Kristin Davenport [00:01:01] Yes, Bryan. We have some great guests with us today. We have Alice Grove. Alice is a resident of Thomaston Woods in Amelia, Ohio. And Walter Langsam, he lives at Central Parkway Place down and over the Rhine and Cincinnati. And of course, our president and CEO Laura Lamb will be with us to give us the update on all things happening around our ERS communities. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:01:27] Well, it sounds like we have a great, great lineup once again. And I can't believe we're at twenty five episodes, Kristen. And we started this right back at the beginning of the pandemic and have been doing it almost every week. And I have really had fun touching base with residents that we've known for a while. But but, you know, we haven't been able to see because we you and I aren't going into the office or the communities right now. And and that meeting some new people .

 

Kristin Davenport [00:01:58] That is been one of the real wonderful things to reflect back on with these podcasts is not only the connections that we've been able to keep with residents that we know, but also all the residents that we're meeting just through these podcast recordings. And we're going to have a whole host of people to catch up with once it's safe to get back into the communities and be present with people in person, not just over the computer, over the phone. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:02:29] Yeah. And I think what I found really interesting, you know, from these past eight months of doing this and twenty five episodes, is that, you know, you can hear all of the the ways people are staying engaged and positive through this whole thing and the life lessons that have kind of got them through it. You really get to know these people in a way maybe we haven't always gotten to know know before as well. 

 

Kristin Davenport [00:02:57] Yes. That's so true. Folks that I've I've known, I've met you maybe have no idea what maybe some of their interests or careers or their history is. And getting to virtually sit down with them and have these conversations has been just not only engaging, but really uplifting. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:03:21] Yeah. And I think it's also kind of taken on the narrative that we've been hearing about nursing homes and retirement communities as being difficult places for older adults. But, you know, while we know people are limited in seeing their families and friends and, you know, in their interactions in the greater community, there's still so many benefits of being in a safe place and also being engaged maybe, maybe not in the big events that we've had. But, you know, that supportive staff and and maybe smaller social situations that are done with masks and social distance. And so being able to kind of tell those stories, I think has been really important as well. 

 

Kristin Davenport [00:04:10] So true. Bryan just had a conversation this past week. One of my thankful Thursday calls that I made on Thanksgiving was to a resident that I try to keep in touch with just about on a weekly basis. And she just said, you know, I feel safe here. And that's that was so comforting to hear to hear that that was her overwhelming feeling and her overwhelming thing to be thankful for. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:04:35] That's a great way to kick off our twenty fifth episode. And why don't we kind of move along and get to our first guest. You want to introduce our first guest? 

 

Kristin Davenport [00:04:44] Absolutely. Bryan. Well, this is one of those guests that I had never met before. Her name is Alice Grove and Alice lives in Amelia, Ohio, at Thomaston Woods, a community for families that's next door to Thomaston Meadows, one of our senior living, affordable living communities. And very interestingly, you will hear Alice was a Pan Am flight attendant at the time when that was just an iconic career for women. So let's meet Alice. 

 

Kristin Davenport [00:05:29] Welcome, Alice Grove to our podcast. Thanks for being here today. 

 

Alice Grove [00:05:34] Well, thank you and thank you for asking me, I'm honored. 

 

Kristin Davenport [00:05:37] Oh, that's wonderful. And so just tell us all a little bit. How's your day so far out there at Thomaston Woods? 

 

Alice Grove [00:05:44] It's been a typical day. I'm retired and I'm able to do the things that I wanted to do for years. I do a lot of baking. I do a lot of cooking. I do a lot of home sewing. I took up baking and I'm going to make an interesting bread. It's Asiago and everything bread. It's a beautiful loaf. It's it's a shame that you can't see the picture of it. 

 

Kristin Davenport [00:06:08] Wow. Well, you know, if you send me a picture, we do post our podcasts on our social media channels and share with the listeners what your beautiful bride looks like. So go ahead and send that along. I appreciate it. 

 

Alice Grove [00:06:22] And that will come with a recipe, too, in plastic. 

 

Kristin Davenport [00:06:25] What a bonus for our listeners. Thank you. 

 

Alice Grove [00:06:27] You're welcome. 

 

Kristin Davenport [00:06:28] I was going to ask you if you had something special that a recipe that you could share. So that would be wonderful. The bread sounds amazing. 

 

Alice Grove [00:06:36] It is. It is. 

 

Kristin Davenport [00:06:38] Besides baking. Tell us a little bit about what you're doing to stay active, engaged right now. You mentioned you you have some other hobbies. 

 

Alice Grove [00:06:47] I do. Home sewing. I mentioned that I belong to a sewing circle and we make simple quilts for children's hospital so that the child will feel like they have something of their own. They can some some of the quilts, the the hospital keep, some of them the children take home. We also make simple little garments for the children who are there on long term. 

 

Kristin Davenport [00:07:14] And as fantastic That is so appreciated, that's so appreciated. It's it does add something very special to a room that's probably not very welcoming for most. And and that is just a blessing and a godsend. Thank you so much for doing that. 

 

Alice Grove [00:07:34] Well, I'm one of the newer members, but the group has made over 3000 quilts for them. 

 

Kristin Davenport [00:07:40] That's amazing. 

 

Alice Grove [00:07:41] Yes, it is. 

 

Kristin Davenport [00:07:43] Well, it's it's wonderful that you've found ways to stay engaged and and baking and sewing are both wonderful things, not just for your body, but for your mind, for your spirit. I commend you for for finding those those wonderful ways to stay active and engaged in your retirement. I had a little conversation before we started to record, and you told me that you had a career as a flight attendant. I would love to hear a story about that. That had to be some kind of an amazing career traveling. 

 

Alice Grove [00:08:15] It was wonderful. It was almost 30 years of piano. And I live between Boston and Manhattan. I spent five years in the London base and I met some of the most amazing people we have. They what we did was so different that it was actually a family. We had I told you about an interesting couple. I was working first class at that time. We didn't have the computers that we have now, so we would take names and drink orders in advance of takeoff. And there was a married couple and he was at the window, she was on the island. This is your last name, sir? Smith. Your first initial J. J like John. Yes, and Mrs. Smith, yes. And your first initial assessment, and that's M. S. 

 

[00:09:19] And I said, "that's just like Mary, Susan?" "That's M.S.!" And one with this tiger and the meantime, the cabin ends up in the flight deck every time out stop. And I said, "thank you very much. What will you have to drink?" And that was it. So he brought me up, motioned me to come up and I said, you know, he said, "Don't you know about the feminists?" And I said, "What do you mean?" He said, "There's Ms." I said, "What do you mean?" "MS!" So that's what she meant. So I just stayed away from her. The man looked like he wanted to evaporate into his seat. 

 

[00:09:56] Then we were ruled by the weather. You know, the weather called the day that you were going to have fog. People didn't understand the delay because they kept driving for snow. Can understand, but because they could slip and slide and snow. I had the Everly Brothers really brother who joined the Mile High Club on my flight. I let them. Chet Atkins. He was on the flight, he thought he was in first class, he bought a seat for his guitar and. Well, I really didn't know who he was. I grew up with classical music. And so I went around and we're taking names again. And "your name, sir?" "Atkins" "What is your first initial of that? C as in Charlie?" "Yes." And the captain is just losing it, motioning for me to come up up front. 

 

[00:10:57] Well, I had to finish and I said, just you go ahead and then you must take a lot of your guitar. Do you play a little is it all? I picked a little old hobby and and he just smiled at the nicest guy in the world and the captain said, "Do you know who that is?" I said, "well, let's see. I think is that is Atkins." He said, "he's on the Grand Ole Opry!" I said, "what's that?". You know, I grew up going to the going to the zoo opera when I was a child, going to the symphony where I had no idea who that was. 

 

[00:11:28] Well, he asked for my name when he when he got off, he said, oh, I'll send you a couple tickets and thank you a month later in my mailbox. I received two tickets to the Grand Ole Opry, the the old stadium, the old I can't think of the name where they were and where there was front seat, front row seats and nicest guy in the world. Anyway, wonderful memories. 

 

[00:11:57] I told Sue about the time I was going to represent Panama with another girl I flew with, she was drop dead gorgeous. I just look like anyone on the street and we're in uniform. We're walking down 5th Avenue. And there's a man whose eyes are just hit on the door and she was drop dead gorgeous. She was Miss Tammam and nearly knocked me over.  He could only see her. She grabbed him and she said, "What are you doing? Look what you almost did to her."So I ran the gamut and I was a wonderful life. It was more of a lifestyle than a job. And when it was over, there was a there was a grieving period, and I was lucky I was in the right time at the right place at the right time. 

 

Kristin Davenport [00:12:47] Mm hmm. Well, that's amazing. I've loved hearing your stories. Not only were you a flight attendant, how are you the most iconic flight attendant? Would it be those that that flew for PanAm? For sure. I mean, everybody knows was PanAm. 

 

Alice Grove [00:13:04] You know what they were? Nice people. If you wanted the job, you had to develop discipline the airlock, the early founders of the airlines were former military, that's all they knew. It were never late. If you were late three times and a quarter, you were terminated. I don't think so. And we we were told how to what jewelry to wear with our uniforms. Nothing political. If you were engaged, you could wear an engagement ring. You couldn't be married. You couldn't be pregnant. Well, now they have majorities in uniforms, all different thing. Everything has evolved. But we were proud of what we did. We were proud of the service that we did get that we gave. There was one captain. And that was George safely, everyone knew who George was. And George liked fruit salad. So the caterer would board our first class and and towards catering when the first class catering included fresh fruit. It was so gorgeous it didn't look real well, Captain Staples, like fresh fruit salad. So we would ask him, do you want a fruit salad? Yes. And so we would offer the passengers the fruit before we even took off so that we would have enough to make Jorges fruit salad. No idea what it's like to prepare a fruit salad and OK, I don't know how many dominant sugar packets to sweeten it for in-flight. 

 

Kristin Davenport [00:14:48] Wow. Yes. Well, that's fantastic. 

 

Alice Grove [00:14:54] Alison Kosik at the Carolina Flu for us. It was the same job and it was his job. And it gave me an entree of going all over the world, give me an entree to the world and meet other people and to see how they lived, to eat their food and to worship with them. Like I said, it was more of a lifestyle than a job. It was absolutely wonderful. We would we could we'd be out, we would have a layover in Rome and we'd have espresso, like a little cafe. You don't do that with any other job. I missed it for years. 

 

Kristin Davenport [00:15:40] Rome is one of the places I've been lucky enough to travel, and just when you said an espresso in Rome, yes, I could remember that full experience. 

 

Alice Grove [00:15:48] Yes, yes. They have the Spanish steps next to the Spanish steps as you're facing it. On the left is an English chamber of Bebbington Tea Room. And then you proceed off to your right and there's a wonderful it's a coffee shop and the pastries are served to you on a beautiful tray, beautifully presented, and their little works of art and the people serving as our morning coats. It's a wonderful experience. 

 

[00:16:23] We would we couldn't do that on every on every layover. Some of them were thirty six hours a day, depending on what the union had negotiated and we had flown. But we were lucky. No matter who you flew for, you flew over a small regional carrier or an international carrier. We all did the same job. 

 

Kristin Davenport [00:16:49] Alice, that was wonderful. I'm sure our listeners have really enjoyed that. I'll just close with one more question then. So once we figure out this this coronavirus and we find a better way to be together in the future, what's the one thing that you're looking forward to? What's on your list of something you haven't been able to do safely in the last few months? 

 

Alice Grove [00:17:11] You can always find something to do at home or take up something you can pick up making just you can get a couple of bread pans and just learn to do a simple bread recipe. But immediately I'm going to be able to go out with my friends without a mask and I'll be able to hug my friends. Someone was going through a rough time, be able to shake their hand, be able to give them a hug and let them know you care. There's nothing better than the human touch down the road. In two years, I'm planning a trip to the Galapagos Islands off the coast of Ecuador. It's a wonderful place. It's. It's the world before we set foot on it and started building the the animals have never been scared by a human being and they'll approach you, a bird will come and rest on your shoulder. Darwin began his study of the origin of the Species. In the Galapagos, there are six species, six species of birds named after Darwin and the Galapagos. You have a wonderful bird's eye view for the bilby, the red for the bilby, the mask bilby. Ah, you have the Galapagos seal. And that seal is as a as a result of a migration from California, has a salary like for crab is all kinds of pastel colors. They it's just a wonderful place to go. And you know, you don't have a glitzy resort, you take your best old clothes and I'm going on Lindblad Tours with National Geographic. So, that's something to look forward to.  

 

Kristin Davenport [00:19:08] Well, Alice. That's amazing. You really painted a picture with your words there. I could just see the nature, the beauty of the place. So thank you for that. And and thank you for our time together today. You've been a delightful guest. 

 

Alice Grove [00:19:23] Thank you for having me. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:19:34] Kristin, that was a lovely interview with Alice. I really enjoyed hearing kind of about the glamor of the old days of being a stewardess and working for Pan Am, it kind of almost takes you back to the Mad Men days and and the glamor of that industry back in that time. 

 

Kristin Davenport [00:19:54] That is so, so correct, Bryan, the the the Mad Men I when I was talking to her, I just had this visual picture of just everything she was telling me about the the people she met and the places she went. And and not only that, she was just such an uplifting person talking about, you know, deciding to take up baking during a pandemic. You know, she just looked at this as an opportunity to to try something new that she she always wanted to do and never tried, you know, so I was I felt really fortunate to get to know Alice and hope all our listeners enjoyed our conversation. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:20:33] We'll look forward to getting that recipe from her. I'm putting out on our social media channels as well. I love that idea. 

 

Kristin Davenport [00:20:41] Well, next up, I guess we'll have our check in with Laura Lamb, our president and CEO who spoke to Bryan this week. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:20:54] So we're back this week right after Thanksgiving with president and CEO Laura Lamb. Hi, Laura. 

 

Laura Lamb [00:21:01] Hi, Bryan. How you doing? I'm doing well. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:21:04] Happy the week after Thanksgiving. How is your your holiday? 

 

Laura Lamb [00:21:09] Oh, my goodness. It was great. I like small and quiet holidays and a pandemic made it smaller and quieter. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:21:21] Yeah, yeah, we definitely had just our household this year, obviously, as everybody was recommending, but it was I think you said it earlier, it was nice to in some ways not have to rush rush around or be so time driven as in previous years. 

 

Laura Lamb [00:21:40] So that was my favorite part. Most of my family has to go somewhere else after they my extended family, that is, which I didn't have that challenge this year. And it was so nice to just be a little bit more leisurely and in all all things on Thursday. So that was nice. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:22:01] Yeah. Yeah. Well, so I wanted to kind of jump in. Actually, there's been some breaking news, just as was the really last night that we heard some news on the vaccines. And I was wondering if you could share what you've been hearing, maybe both from the CDC and from the state on on that news? 

 

Laura Lamb [00:22:24] Yeah, it is very exciting. And we've all been waiting for this day where we can talk about the vaccine. And yeah. So I'm sure the listeners have heard the same news Bryan is that, you know, we're really close to having approval for probably two vaccines. Our federal government has done work to kind of lay out how the vaccine is going to be distributed. And the breaking news was that CDC issued some recommendation guidelines of how it should be distributed and who are the priority groups. And fortunately for the health care heroes that work at ERS is communities are retirement communities. That is and are our residents in our congregate living settings will be there in the top priority. So that means they'll get that sooner rather than later. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:23:29] That's fabulous to hear. 

 

Laura Lamb [00:23:31] Yeah. Yeah. I mean, I know people have different views about the vaccine and without a Covid lens on it, but I can tell you just from where where we're sitting, you know, for health care workers and the elderly who are most vulnerable, we need a vaccine because, you know, our mitigation strategies to protect them really are falling short. So this is this is something we absolutely need. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:24:04] Yeah. And and it sounds by all measures that, you know, it's gone through the proper clinical trial process for safety and efficacy. So I'm really excited to hear the data that's been coming out. And while I'm not necessarily on the front lines, I'm really excited to get vaccinated myself. 

 

Laura Lamb [00:24:27] Yeah, I am, too. You know, I think it's a real lesson for us that when everyone has a common goal. Yeah. And we're all headed in the right direction, how quickly we can do things in a safe, methodical, science driven fashion. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:24:48] Right. Right. Yeah, and it gets reviewed by the right people. Yeah, yeah. Well, that's that's really exciting news, particularly, you know, as as we've had kind of a rough, rough November and potentially a tough holiday out in the broader community now that this couldn't come soon enough. 

 

Laura Lamb [00:25:11] Yeah, and speaking of soon enough, you know, we're hearing from both Ohio officials and, you know, Kentucky, the two communities or the two states, we have our retirement communities that it could be, you know, mid December. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:25:27] Wow. 

 

Laura Lamb [00:25:28] I know. I know. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:25:30] Wow. Just a few short weeks away, it would be. That would be wonderful. 

 

Laura Lamb [00:25:36] It sure would. It sure would. So we'll keep folks updated as we learn more information. But we are so excited we made the cut, so to speak, and are in the top priority. And we'll share more information as it becomes available. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:25:52] Yeah, well, that's thanks for sharing that great news. We can't. Can't wait to provide further updates when we're actually providing those those vaccines. 

 

Laura Lamb [00:26:02] Absolutely. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:26:04] So the other thing I wanted to talk about this week, you know, I know we've kind of talked about this in different groups throughout the year, but, you know, our our residents, our elders and our staff have done so much work in the area of technology and innovation through this pandemic. And there was a really great story about the resident that kind of made me think about this. And I was wondering if you could share that story about the resident and kind of using technology when they weren't real easily adopters of technology and and how you also see that throughout our communities manifest in other ways. 

 

Laura Lamb [00:26:50] Yeah, so, you know, I'm on our manager on duty rotation, like most of our managers, and it's one of the highlights of my month. Frankly, I love being in the community. And one of the roles of a manager on duty is they facilitate the Zoom and window visits that we have. And so I was assigned this particular time to Deupree House, which many of you know, was my home for more than 18 years when I was vice president. And so I still have quite a few friends that still live at Deupree House. So this one resident was is a friend of mine and it was good to catch up with him and help him with his Zoom call, but it was for his birthday. So it was it was special in and of itself. Yeah. But as I was helping him with the Zoom call, his family was definitely using this as an opportunity to assemble the entire family. They had family members from multiple states and countries. So I think that the one family was living is living in Norway right now. But anyway, it was just so much fun just to see the residents reaction. This gentleman is his has always I've known him to be a little bit reluctant, although I did find out that he has an iPhone and he uses it because he monitors the stock market every day. 

 

[00:28:28] But I when I told him that he could do Zoom on it, yeah. Just shook his head. And he's like, no, no, no. That's what you help me with. Right. So that we've facilitated this great call and video conference. And I think he was they were on the call just we didn't have much many other actually we didn't have any appointments the rest of the afternoon. So Bryan they were on the call for a good hour and a half. It was. Oh, wow. So neat that they were able to connect from all over. And the resident found out that his grandson just got engaged and met the fiancee on the call. It was like, it gives me goose bumps just telling you about it. It was neat. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:29:16] Yeah, that's so neat. I mean, even even without covid or technology, that's something that may not have happened for months, you know, until they came back stateside to meet some rackley. 

 

Laura Lamb [00:29:29] Exactly. So it's just neat. It's you know, I, I do have a love for technology. You know, that when we're able to use technology to help our residents stay connected, it's it's it's very fulfilling. It's very well. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:29:49] And there's been so many ways other than, you know, just communication that residents have started picking up on and or have allowed our staff to support our residents for just ordering things or or sending updates, things like that. Can you talk a little bit about kind of maybe our residents and our what our staff are doing? 

 

Laura Lamb [00:30:14] Yeah. So, again, you know, the use of the Internet and the ability to go on to Amazon or Kroger or you name it and purchase supplies so that we don't have to go out of our house so that we don't have to leave the campus, frankly, makes everyone safer. Yeah. So, you know, our residents are using click list, they're using insta card, they're using their amet, they're getting their money's worth from their Amazon Prime membership. So free delivery. But we we don't assume that everyone has has wants to do that or or has the ability to do that. And so as staff, we've set up systems that we are we're available to do that service for our residents. 

 

[00:31:06] So our retirement communities, we residents who want to take advantage of ordering from Kroger online but don't want to submit their order. And we do that from beginning to end. We submit the order. We actually have a staff member that goes and gets it and brings it to the community and our residents pick it up in our our lobbies when it's delivered. So Amazon's the same way is that we will order anything residents want and need and and we'll get it delivered to their apartment. 

 

[00:31:47] So, you know, if you think about just. A way technology has evolved. Yeah, no, I've thought about this Bryan, you know, if we were in this pandemic 10 years ago when these systems in this infrastructure wasn't Bryan Reynolds, we would really be struggling. But, yeah, with a computer and an Internet connection and my husband says and a credit card, you can get just about anything you want, want or need. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:32:19] Yeah, yeah. It's really been amazing to see. And I think just, you know, coming off a Black Friday, you know, hearing online sales have gone up so much more that obviously the store sales are down. But it's those online sales that felt like Black Friday turned right into Cyber Monday throughout this whole year. 

 

Laura Lamb [00:32:40] For sure. It's the one in the same, right? 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:32:41] Yeah, absolutely. Well, great. Well, thank you so much, Laura, for this week's update. It was great. Great to catch up post holiday. And we'll look forward to catching up next week. 

 

Laura Lamb [00:32:53] Thank you, Bryan. 

 

Kristin Davenport [00:33:04] Well, Bryan, I just was hanging on every word that Lara was telling you about getting those those mile markers, now we're starting to see in this marathon of covid, we're starting to maybe see we're getting closer to the finish line. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:33:19] Yeah, yeah. It's it's exciting to hear that, you know, it's right around the corner. And of course, in our long term care, our congregate living settings are a priority in our health care workers. So that's that's really exciting, even though, you know, the numbers right now are really exploding. But, you know, it couldn't come couldn't come soon enough. So that that's great news to hear. 

 

Kristin Davenport [00:33:46] And also just a Laura touched on how our communities, our residents, our staff are using technology to really stay connected and engaged with anything that our residents might need from the outside world, whether it be families or, you know, getting together with their families or things that they need to purchase. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:34:07] You know, I've always been kind of a technology geek and really enjoyed my my toys, but it's been exciting and refreshing to see our residents really using it with more frequency and feeling more comfortable with it. I think that's always been a big challenge with our our our residents. But they're using Zoom. They're using click list. And if they're not using it, our staff is able to support them by using those tools. So, as Laura mentioned, you know, we may not have been prepared ten years ago yet with this infrastructure, but we have it now. And it's it's helped us get through this challenging time. So that that was really good to hear from her. 

 

Kristin Davenport [00:34:50] And that's another good bright spot for us, for sure. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:34:53] Absolutely. So with that said, I think I'll introduce our next guest. I had the wonderful opportunity of interviewing Walter Langsam down at Central Parkway Place, and he's just a delightful gentleman. And here's my interview with Walter. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:35:20] So I'm here with one of our residents of Central Parkway Place, Walter Langsam. Hi, Walter, how are you? 

 

Wlater Langsem [00:35:28] Fine, thanks, Bryan. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:35:29] And you doing very well today. Thanks so much for joining us on our podcast. And I always like to start off our our interviews with just a check and question. And how are you doing? You know, particularly you know, we've been in the pandemic about eight months now. 

 

Wlater Langsem [00:35:49] I'm actually fortunate to be doing remarkably well. I have so far not caught the virus and no one I know and care about has either. Thank goodness I went into self quarantine very early for the first person in the building, and I was quite resented by many people in the elevator with no masks. And I would recommend, shall we put it politely, that they wear them and now practically everybody is, which is a relief. Yeah. Both medically and in terms of tension. But I have by limiting right outside life and fortunately having a few but enough friends and family to help me get by from a practical sense and a psychological sense as well. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:36:45] Yeah, that's great. And you mentioned family and friends. So what kind of things have you been doing to stay active and or engaged? Have you been on the phone a lot? Have you been. 

 

Wlater Langsem [00:36:56] Yes, I had two or three sometimes more friends. Someone calls several call once a day and. I am 85 and and I'm lucky to have that many such faithful, loyal friends. I have two friends who are willing to drive with me in the car. They both seem to feel that it's safe to do so. And so far for me, it has been yeah, I've eaten out with them until recently and really eaten outdoors by chance. And I've been taking advantage of take out myself and other people have brought it to me. Right. Fortunately, I have a friend who's been in the shop. That is for me. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:37:59] Oh, that's nice. 

 

Walter Langsem [00:38:00] And an old friend. And we shop together for a long time. It's a transitional phase. So he knows exactly what I want. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:38:11] Right. Well, and you you and I were talking a little bit earlier yesterday when we first met. And, you know, with the location there near Washington Park, do you get out and do any walking or. 

 

Walter Langsem [00:38:24] Well, the course, depending on the weather. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:38:26] Sure. 

 

Walter Langsem [00:38:27] And I don't like heat, but then you can go early in the morning and sometimes it's difficult with the cold. Frankly, I'm having great difficulty at present. Walking. Yeah. And but my doctor has prescribed a walker with the seat and that should allow me to get to Crowhurst four or five blocks away on my own and do shopping and get to the park and exercise much more. Which is important, right. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:38:58] Oh, they've got the new new Kroger's not too far away from you. 

 

Walter Langsem [00:39:02] They're now four blocks away. The challenge right now, but should be with the walker. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:39:10] Yeah. Yeah. So, Walter, again, when we discussed now, you were an adjunct professor at the University of Cincinnati. Can you tell us a little bit about what what? And I found it fascinating, but what you I don't know, architectural historian and art historian too. But I teach and write and give tours and so on of architecture primarily look all the way down with the Western architecture, British architecture and so on. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:39:43] Sure. 

 

Walter Langsem [00:39:44] Well, my specialty is nineteenth century Victorian and early 20th century architecture. I've been very involved with historic preservation locally in the past and I still get questions about the and value and so on. And I've written one important book in contributing to several others on Cincinnati architecture, and that's what I taught as an adjunct. I didn't really have to teach anything. I didn't feel like right. And they found that course for me every quarter for 30 years or more, and including even in college. And I and I got there for a broader range of students than just that, basically. Yeah, but I love living down here at the at the old Y. Yeah. Seventh floor on the south east corner with spectacular views of old downtown and all along for the ride. Wow. And it's just filled with architectural landmarks and that's the greenery actually on Central Parkway. So from that standpoint I'm still immersed in preservation and architecture. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:41:12] Yeah. And you've had the wonderful. Just the observation of seeing a lot of the preservation work down there and over the Rhine with, you know, between Memorial Hall and music, old music hall and a lot of the homes in the neighborhood. 

 

Walter Langsem [00:41:34] Yeah, it's a fabulous location. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:41:37] Yeah. Yeah. So, Walter, one of the questions I like asking our our guests on our podcast is, you know, obviously you've you've lived a long, fruitful, interesting life and you've seen a lot of challenges that our nations faced. And I'm sure you've seen had some personal challenges. Are there any kind of lessons that you've pulled from from those that kind of help you get through this pandemic now? 

 

Walter Langsem [00:42:09] Well, I've only recently, really, thanks to a good friend and following politics of presidents and administrations that I admired, but not very many, of course, from I remember Roosevelt before he got that that FDR, not bad. And and that it's been a real interest. And it's added excitement and further stress share in this recent period. As far as what's an experience like this one, that's personal. But as I think I told you, I had bedbugs earlier. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:42:58] Yeah. 

 

Walter Langsem [00:43:00] Summer and the sort of deprivation of having all my possessions in storage for well over a year. Yeah. And really put me through it. And in a way, it prepared me for the for the better. Yeah, I, I, I spent my time listening to music, huge CD, DVD collection and, and I read and I so I was already browsing self-sufficient. Yeah. I mean I used to have lots and lots of activities that I said teaching and preservation and Bryan Reynolds and so on. Right when I was retired anyway and, and adjusting to them. I've had some personal losses and I'm coming here was a great blessing after I lost a partner 30 years. Yeah. It really was one of the best things that ever happened. That's right. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:44:09] Understood. 

 

Walter Langsem [00:44:10] Yeah, they come here, right, and tell us everything. Yeah. And having resolving. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:44:17] Yeah. And having some great support from the neighbors. 

 

Walter Langsem [00:44:22] And so. Yeah. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:44:24] So so, you know, there's been some breaking news this week and we're all hearing that a vaccine is on on the horizon here. So hopefully, you know, in the next few months, several months, that'll be available. But what are you looking for in the second category? Yeah. So what are you looking forward to? You know, once kind of the crisis is over and things settle down to what are you looking forward to getting back to? 

 

Walter Langsem [00:44:53] Well, I want to get out. I to eat. Yeah. I want to be able to visit my friends and my family. I visited my family only sitting on the porch with their dad. Yeah. And, you know, I can't have meals with them, so I'm looking forward to that opening up. And of course, I felt what for me is almost complete cultural deprivation. Yeah, I used to go to all the concerts and operas and the movies and operas and some theater and so on. And and I well, I miss it tremendously. Yeah. It was kind of wonderful moving down here right next to the music hall and watching the world. Right. To enjoy living in the Central Park place. Yeah, I could walk almost everywhere. Yeah. And so I look forward to that very much. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:46:00] Well yeah, I think I've heard that from so many that the cultural, the arts are so important to so many of our residents and they look forward to that. So they to be here. Yeah. Well, Walter, thank you so much for joining us on our podcast. Hopefully we can catch up here in several months and obviously even get together again when that that vaccine is out and we all have a chance to get it. So  thank you again, man. 

 

Walter Langsem [00:46:31] May I say something more?

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:46:33] Absolutely. Please do. Yes. 

 

Walter Langsem [00:46:35] One of the advantages of living here is having the YMCA. Yeah. And right now I can't walk. I haven't had that exercise particularly wonderful silver sneakers classes. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:46:52] Yeah. 

 

Walter Langsem [00:46:53] And there was one last few months with a very, very sensitive proposal, inspiring yoga, which is the first time we've done this. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:47:07] Oh, great. Yeah. 

 

Walter Langsem [00:47:09] Well, again, at my age and so on, I don't want to infect anyone else. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:47:20] Yeah, that is a great benefit of the Central Park Way location and having that YMCA. 

 

Walter Langsem [00:47:27] It has the right sizes and classes and so within within the building. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:47:32] Right. 

 

Walter Langsem [00:47:34] It's extremely interesting. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:47:36] Yeah, I myself just tried to start walking a little bit more and stretching and I'm looking forward to trying yoga myself as part of my own resiliency plan. That's neat that you're you're trying that. And, you know, we do have some exercises we're actually putting up on our website. I know you don't use the computer a lot, but there's a another option. We're trying to reach people at home with that. 

 

Walter Langsem [00:48:04] Good. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:48:05] Well, again, thank you so much, Walter, and we'll we'll catch up real soon. 

 

Walter Langsem [00:48:09] OK, thank you, Bryan. 

 

Kristin Davenport [00:48:21] Well, Bryan, I had met Walter quite a number of years ago, it was good to hear from him today. I know he was one of the very first residents to move into Central Parkway Place. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:48:32] Yeah, it was a pleasure for me to to to meet him over Zoom and get to know him. And, you know, he certainly values his his apartment location for The View over over the Rhine and then down into downtown, and especially with his background as an adjunct professor, you see of architecture. I really, really enjoyed that conversation. So and he's a fascinating man and loves the arts and really missing socializing. So again, with the news of the vaccine, I think he's really looking forward to hopefully getting back to to to to to some of that culture that he really, really enjoys. 

 

Kristin Davenport [00:49:20] Absolutely. That's one of those things we all miss is is that the culture, the arts, those in-person performances that looks like we might I'm hearing maybe summer? It might be, we say, for most of us to start doing some of that again. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:49:38] Right. Well, that's it for this latest episode, the twenty fifth episode of the Linkage podcast. For more information about us, you can visit our website at Episcopalretirement.com. We have a lot of great content, including our Linkage online blog resources that you can download to learn more about aging and the services that we offer and so much more. You can follow us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and YouTube to see what's going on with any ERS and our communities. If you have any questions or feedback for us, we love hearing from our listeners. You can email us at info@erslife.org The Linkage podcast is produced by Kristin Davenport and myself, Bryan Reynolds Feoshia Davis, our associate producer and our technical director is Michelle Hoehn. I'd like to thank our guests today, including Alice Grove and Walter Langsam and of course, for president and CEO Laura Lamb for always joining us week in and week out on behalf of myself, Bryan Reynolds and Kristin Davenport, thank you so much for joining us. And we'll look forward to everyone joining us next week for our next podcast. Thanks so much, Kristin. 

 

Kristin Davenport [00:50:52] All right, Bryan See you next time. 

 

Bryan Reynolds [00:50:54] All right. And congratulations once again. 

 

 
Kristin Davenport
By
December 03, 2020
Kristin Davenport is the Director of Communications for Episcopal Retirement Services (ERS). Kristin leads ERS’s efforts to share stories that delight and inspire through social media, online content, annual reports, magazines, newsletters, public relations, and events. Kristin earned her BFA in graphic design from Wittenberg University. She joined ERS after a 25-year career as a visual journalist and creative director in Cincinnati. Kristin is passionate about making Cincinnati a dementia-inclusive city. She is a Lead SAIDO Learning Supporter and a member of the ‘Refresh Your Soul’ conference planning team at ERS. Kristin and her husband Alex, live in Lebanon, Ohio with their 2 daughters. She also serves as a Trustee and the President of the Lebanon Food Pantry and is a board member for ArtScape Lebanon.

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