But, it is Old Man Marley played by an elderly Roberts Bloom that catches my attention in this classic film. He is the reclusive neighbor that was also home alone for the holidays, separated from his son's family by some long-standing disagreement. Could he have been gay and ostracized? In a touching conversation about Marley's granddaughter, Kevin suggested a reconciliation. As the movie ends, the MacCallister family is reunited on Christmas. In that joyous moment, Kevin peeked out a window and smiled when he saw Marley's family reunited on his snowy front lawn, verifying his suggestion had been heeded. What if the movie script left-out the conversation about reconciliation with Marley's granddaughter and son? The film's happy ending would be incomplete.
How many older gentlemen did we, as Prime Timers, prevent spending the holidays alone? As time allows, I read Prime Timer newsletters posted on the www.primetimersww.com website. Among them, I see pictures from holiday events where Prime Timers are gathered in smiling groups, celebrating a meal, gift exchange, or an evening of spirits, fun, and companionship. Before the events, there are enticing invitations to join the upcoming fun. If Woody Baldwin peeked over my shoulder to see those newsletter photos and stories, I'm sure he would flash his broad smile, seeing his vision for Prime Timers still vividly displayed.
This time of year, we tend to think of things past and reflect on our present and future. As we begin 2017, resolve to reach-out to add a member to your Prime Timers chapter. Those "Marleys" and others we bring can share gatherings throughout the year, but especially during holidays when being "home alone" magnifies the importance of friends and fellowship. Happy and Successful New Year!