Riderwood Residents Recall Surprising New Years Past

SILVER SPRING, MD (December 18, 2012) - As the new year 2013 fast approaches, Riderwood retirement community residents in Silver Spring, MD, are recalling the memorable, rewarding and surprising directions their lives took with the start of New Years past and the ensuing decades. "I'm glad to have been around when women began to have more interesting jobs," said a resident. "I did the marriage and four children phase. Then I loved working at NIH for twenty-two years.". "The 'Fifties were very exciting to me," said another resident. " I never expected to go to college, but I used every penny of my G.I. Bill, which enabled me to have a rewarding career as an engineer." Fascinating stories are being shared at the 120-acre Riderwood campus: "I staffed a horticultural research station in Puerto Rico in the 'Seventies," a resident said. " We had weekends free for beaches and mountains. Collecting wild orchids was half hobby, half research." One resident said that the years after World War II brought marriage and children, which got her interested in civic and political activities. The signature elections of 1952, 1956, and 1960 were a coming-of-age era for her and for the nation. She became a lawyer. A couple with seven children and myriads of grand- and great-grandchildren recalled two very different decades The 'Eighties and early 'Nineties were said to be "heaven on earth" because the family was free to hike through all the national parks. Years of scientific research, including disparate fields such as the metabolism of dairy cattle and experiments carried into space marked that era for this couple. Moving to this area of the nation was a significant event for some. One resident made up her mind in the 'Thirties to leave Upper Darby, PA, and did so in 1939. She lived with a family she had known earlier, took classes whenever she had enough money and earned a college degree. She never got a diploma because she did not have enough credits from any one of the colleges she attended. She is still proud of the first job she had here: enumerator for the 1940 census. Another resident who retains her southern accent from Port Arthur, TX, moved to Silver Spring, MD, and faced double culture shock. Maryland neighbors were a different brand of southerners from Texans, and the rest of the neighbors were from New York and who knows where before that. "None of them had been taught good manners!" she said.  It is time once more to celebrate another New Year and its unique wonder: "Should auld acquaintance be forgot, And never brought to mind? Should auld acquaintance be forgot, And auld lang syne! For auld lang syne, my dear, For auld lang syne. We'll take a cup o' kindness yet, For auld lang syne."