“It’s hard not seeing anyone,” said Bee Shtulman Cherkas, who has lived at the Moldaw Residences, a Jewish retirement community in Palo Alto, for over a decade. “That’s why the waving is so nice.”
Cherkas and other residents of the retirement community have been gathering on their balconies every evening at 5 p.m. to wave at each other in a spirit of fellowship and community during the “shelter in place” order.
“It’s ideal for us, because my courtyard has four buildings around it, and there’s another courtyard with four buildings,” she said.
Cherkas said fellow-resident Jean Myers had the idea, and Cherkas had called and e-mailed residents to encourage it.
“I can’t take credit for it,” she said.
She said there’s “healthy competition” between the two courtyards to get people out and participating, and people are getting creative. There’s been singing in each courtyard from some inspired soloists, and tonight there will be a group singalong with songs like “I’m Looking Over a Four Leaf Clover.”
Restrictions to protect residents from Covid-19 are being taken extremely seriously at the senior living space. Cherkas said if you leave the property — even for a doctor’s appointment — you are tested for symptoms of Covid-19 for a number of days after you return. Communal dining has been reduced and people are being careful. But it’s been working.
“So far we haven’t had any coronavirus,” she said.