Book Review: Leisureville by Andrew D Blechman
Andrew Blechman was concerned when his neighbor in a small town in Massachusetts decided to sell their house and move to a retirement community in Virginia. And in following up on the story of that one particular move, Blechman delved head-first into the ever growing array of age-segregated retirement communities where well off older people live presumably privileged lives. Children may visit for only a set number of days per year, restaurants and clubs and all manner of social groups and activities are all available within a convenient golf cart ride. Blechman’s investigation takes him to a number of different communities in Virginia, Florida and Arizona. And Blechman finds that these communities are often a hot-bed of sexual proclivities, highlighting the story of an older Don Juan who is constantly after the women, and definitely Not interested in marrying or settling down again. Another highlighted story was of a closeted lesbian woman who seemed to enjoy the perks and benefits of living in her exclusive community, but never felt comfortable coming out there. Which struck me as very sad.
Blechman is more concerned that these communities are detrimental to the well being of all citizens. That by sequestering our older citizens (starting at age 55), we both deprive ourselves and our children of their wisdom and counsel and deprive them of our everyday love and concern. I’m not honestly sure how much I buy into that thesis, but I did enjoy reading about these unique communities where everyone is older and most Everything has already been decided and incorporated into the CC & R’s, the covenants, creeds and restrictions incorporated into the real property deeds for all of the homes sold in the development. If you are approaching your fifties, whether with joy or trepidation, you may well want to give Leisureville a read and learn more. Leisureville. Recommended. Buy now $15.00