Curl Up For the Winter

Yes, you can curl up with a good book in January. The winter months will pass, and you will be a well-read blimp when you emerge in April.  Or you can try curling.

After we retired, my husband and I started curling at Weston Golf (and curling) Club. We enjoyed the game and made a lot of friends at Weston and things were going along smoothly until the management decided one September that they wanted to use the curling rink space for a golf academy. The curlers were declared redundant. We gathered together to commiserate, to vent, and to share our disappointment. Then we scurried off to find other rinks to play. It was very late to be registering for the fall season and the choices were few.

But Peter and I were met with open arms at High Park Curling Club. We were easily accommodated in their Saturday night social league. The club is not as posh as Weston but it’s not as elitist either. The curlers are a mix of all ages and all backgrounds. We no longer feel like rejects.

After the game, we e can be sitting at a table, sharing a drink with millennials, gen Xers, and old geezers like us, all at the same time. The conversation can range from hobbies to work projects to music. We try really hard to keep up and even learn some new things. For example, we found out that The Weekend is more than just two days – it’s a Canadian pop rock band!

Rarely does the conversation focus on illness, doctor appointments or sleeping problems. Hardly ever does one person ask another person to please speak louder. People talk about the latest food trend, or current event, or exercise routine. We follow along and add our opinions when we can. But when the subject changes to the latest technology, we start to yawn and put on our coats. There are some things that we will oldies never master.

The club is run entirely by volunteers. There are a number of committees which plan events, clinics, and parties. The Hallowe’en season is alive and well on the ice as the volunteer DJ plays “Monster Mash” and “Ghostbusters” while we curl. At Christmas we all don our Santa hats and get rid of the tacky gifts that we got from even older relatives. Then there are Valentine’s Day and St. Patrick’s Day where curlers search their closets for colourful curling pants with hearts or shamrocks.  At the end of the season we celebrate with play-offs and prizes.

And then we start looking forward to the fall. We oldies feel very lucky that we were adopted by the High Park curling family.