I Just Moved To A Retirement Community - How Do The Meals Work?

You’ve organized your suite and it feels quite comfortable. You’ve strolled the grounds enough to know your way around. There’s just one more area to conquer—the dining room.

But how do you summon the courage to stride into that room full of strangers? Who will you eat with? What if you don’t like the food? What if you don’t want to eat at the posted times? What if you don’t like your tablemates?

Relax. Sure, you’re the new kid on the block but you won’t be for long with these tips:

Who do I eat with?

Standing with a tray of food and looking around for a place to sit – a high school nightmare! Don’t worry – you have been assigned a table with congenial companions by the marketing manager, in consultation with the food services manager and maitre’d. Every effort has been made to match you with similar ages, interests, personalities and mealtime preferences.

What if I don't want to eat right now?

Mealtimes may be strict, to accommodate two sittings, or more flexible within a ‘window’ of time; breakfasts may be buffet-style and eaten anytime before noon.

When you made your rental arrangements, a preferred mealtime would have been established, but if you’d like to change the time, speak to the Marketing Manager and/or Maitre’d, who will arrange another mealtime and table seating for you.

You may also look into a flexible meal ‘package’, so that only dinners, for example, are eaten at a set mealtime, and the other meals are prepared by you in your suite.

What if I don’t want to eat that?

There are always at least two menu choices for each meal, and they are posted in advance, but if you truly do not like anything on today’s menu, you may certainly ask what else is available, or request a simple option such as a sandwich or egg.

If you have dietary restrictions, they will have been documented when you arrived, and appropriate entrees are being offered to you (which may differ slightly from what other residents are eating).

If food preferences become an ongoing issue, by all means talk to the food services manager about your ideas and every effort will be made to accommodate you. Nutrition and enjoyment of meals is one of the fundamentals of a retirement residence’s mandate, and is taken very seriously by its management.

Everyone at my table is gaga – what can I do?

Well, that’s a pretty strong statement, but if for whatever reason you are not enjoying meals because of your tablemates, speak to the maitre’d, who will arrange another table for you. This will be done with great tact to spare everyone’s feelings.

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