You might find Reg Nutter sitting in the bistro, drinking coffee and reading the paper. Or maybe he’ll be in the games room, playing a round of cribbage. Or in the theatre enjoying a live Calgary Stampede show, complete with band, stand-up comics and Harry the Horse mascot. Since moving into Masterpiece Evergreen in Calgary last June, the busy 88-year-old has wasted no time taking advantage of all the amenities the retirement residence has to offer. “I’ve made a lot of friends here,” Reg says. “It’s nice to have other people around.”
Reg had been living with his daughter. But she worked all day, leaving Reg alone—which was a bit of a worry when he started experiencing blackouts. No cause was ever determined, but it became clear that it wasn’t a good idea for him to spend hours alone. It was time for Reg to get a little tender loving care. And when he heard good things about the food at Masterpiece Evergreen, he was sold.
British-born Reg had spent several years cooking and caring for his late wife, Hilda, who was disabled by osteoarthritis, followed by a few years making meals for just himself. Asked if he misses cooking, Reg answers, “No!” He adds, “If you’re ill, the dining room staff will bring a meal right to your room, which is great when you’re on your own.” He also enjoys the monthly men’s luncheons and men’s nights, where the guys play pool or ping pong and feast on pub-style fare such as chicken wings and potato skins. There are almost as many men living at Masterpiece Evergreen as women.
A former railway worker who went on to teach industrial arts and French, Reg finds that his large studio unit, which opens onto a long garden terrace, is plenty big. It’s a bonus that Masterpiece Evergreen, located less than an hour’s drive from the mountains, offers some magnificent views. Fitted with a pacemaker, Reg uses the exercise room regularly and does a lot of walking. “I’ll tell you, if you walk the four floors of this building and use the stairs, you’ve had a pretty fair workout,” he says. He hasn’t experienced a blackout since he moved in, although it gives him peace of mind to know that there’s 24-hour care.
Comfort life features many retirement homes in Alberta.