Life in Retirement

My husband Gil, and I, had a wonderful life living in Loxton, in South Australia’s Riverland, where we raised our three children.

Marina and (the late) Gil Fielke

Eventually, Gil had a transfer to Adelaide, so we made the move to the city. We settled into our lovely home in Valley View, with beautiful gardens and entertainment areas. We missed our country lifestyle but enjoyed the family benefits the move created.

As I write, I contemplate the thankfulness that overwhelms me, as later, Gil and myself were offered a retirement home in the Lutheran Homes Incorporated (LHI) Glynde village. It was a huge decision at the time, but God’s hand was surely guiding us – and we certainly had no regrets in making the move.

With some 400 applicants on the waiting list, we were notified of the construction of 23 Weckert Court homes – and we were blessed to be offered one of them!

So, as we made 247 Weckert Court our home, much had to be considered and many changes made, but the move was made with the blessing of our family.

Marina, in black and white top, and her enthusiastic band of helpers

Downsizing and settling in was easier than expected and, our new three-bedroom home, has allowed for many overnight visits from numerous family and friends. The open plan design and outdoor covered pergola also facilitates easy entertaining – something Gil and I both enjoyed.

We were warmly welcomed into the community by both staff and those already here and enjoying the many facilities available. It wasn’t long before we were invited into volunteering and this became the easiest way to meet both staff and residents.

Here at our village we have everything that makes for comfortable living. We have Kafe Schulze, a licensed restaurant and a great social venue for both residents and visiting diners. There is also a well-supported coffee shop for “time-out” and open all day. We have a corner shop, which is staffed by volunteers, providing the basic groceries for those unable to shop at shopping centres. Again, the volunteers always take the time to chat with the customers. Additionally, we have a busy hairdressing salon, gymnasium, physio, podiatrist and a doctor and dentist on call.

As I am a florist, I have really enjoyed the opportunity to arrange table decorations for Kafe Schulze – and multiple other floral arrangements for the various functions in the community centre.

Our new community centre is a wonderful asset for the many social functions, meetings and events held there.

The popular garden stall

The Lutheran Women of South Australia-Northern Territory Glynde auxiliary has particularly enjoyed the extra space and facilities provided so we can efficiently stage our fundraising events. As auxiliary president, I am blessed to have wonderful committee members who work tirelessly for our annual luncheon and later spring fair. We also have various plant sale days hosted by two energetic garden-loving members – and all monies raised are given to the committee. Over the years our luncheon has been well supported. There is always a theme, and guests are encouraged to join in on the occasion. We are indebted to our Kafe Schulze kitchen who rise to the occasion with a fabulous menu, along with extras of wine, drinks, and chocolates. Our members also appreciate the support of our menfolk who assist and support with the setup for these events. The annual Spring Fair is a real community occasion and is well supported by residents and visitors. We have many stall holders, but our auxiliary cake/biscuit table is extremely well supported, as is the Devonshire morning tea and sausage sizzle. Residents and “shut-ins” love these occasions where they can linger over their coffee and scones and socialise with their family and friends. Again, the success of this event is dependent on the support of families and residents.

New secure garden at LHI

Our fundraising efforts support our Glynde Residential Care Facility (Nursing Home) and, over the years, we have been able to finance necessary equipment that falls short of the budget each year. This has recently included an outdoor garden which is a safe place for those in need, and we are proud to have been able to financially support this.

St Andrew’s church, with Pastor John Gerhardy as our spiritual carer and chapel pastor, is always an inspiration to all those in need in our village.

We also have a well-stocked library which is supported by the avid readers in our community.

Time in retirement can mean many variants to those in these years. We all need to be thankful for the times we have now.

I am blessed that we made the move to Glynde LHI – and even more so since Gil, sadly, died suddenly nearly two years ago.

Here, I feel secure in this Christian village, and in the care given to me both from Glynde professionals and the many friends around me. They held me in the stressful times, celebrate with me in the happy times and I can live in peace each day.

The gift of years is an invisible package that must be opened one day at a time – for it is the gift of life itself.

Love and blessings,

Marina Fielke

Main Image: St Andrew’s Glynde

Photos by courtesy Colin F Hentschke

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