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Relationship grows with time well spent

Created date

January 25th, 2010
WCD_0210_love story
WCD_0210_love story

[caption id="attachment_7605" align="alignright" width="280" caption="Shirley and Ralph Greer walk along the Highline Canal on a trail easy to access at Wind Crest. Walks on campus top their list of favorite activities to do as a couple. (File photo)"][/caption] Ralph and Shirley Greer s love story began more than 30 years ago. The couple, both widows, met at a Parents Without Partners support meeting and immediately made a connection. We had a lot of the same interests and sensibilities, Ralph recalls. We hit it off right away. Then I had a friend who asked if I wanted tickets to go see Eddy Howard and his big band. I needed a partner, so I asked her and it turned into a routine dinner, dancing, and dates. Thirty-three years of marriage later, they are still going strong. It is a great companionship that developed, Shirley says. We love doing things together but can hold our own apart too. In that way, I think we complement each other. Now living at Wind Crest, they say taking walks on campus tops the list of things they like to do together. We do a lot of walking and hiking, Ralph says. We love to go along the nature trail here at Wind Crest, and we ll walk up and down the Highline Canal together. It s a beautiful trail, Shirley adds. It helps us relax. If the weather s nice, we ll go several times a week. When the couple isn t walking together, they try to continue their original routine of going out for a night of dinner and dancing on the town. It s fun, and it keeps that spark, says Shirley. As many married couples can attest, another key to keeping their relationship healthy is the time spent apart. At Wind Crest, the Greers do that by letting the other pursue their favorite hobbies. For Shirley, that means music. It s been my love since I was a little girl, she says. I began listening and playing in high school and college and intended to teach the piano, but I got sidetracked. Back on track, now Shirley participates in a number of off-campus choruses and the Wind Crest sing-along club. One night a week, our group gets together in the clubhouse and just sings along with our old favorites from the 40s and 50s, she explains. Shirley also sets aside time for herself to play the piano and keyboard the couple has in their apartment home. It s my therapy and a gift I give myself, she says of her music. And it s a gift to me too! Ralph says. I love hearing her play. For Ralph, his passion is photography. Every spring, when we go to Tucson and Omaha and California [to see out-of-state grandchildren], I ll just take as many pictures as possible, he says. And digital cameras are so convenient because you can take as many photos as you want. Currently, Ralph is working on a personal project, converting his old family and vacation slides to digital format to share with the family. And, of course, I take pictures around here too, Ralph says. With no more home maintenance and stuff like that to take up all your time, there s less stress and more time to relax and do what you want at Wind Crest.