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Monday, December 3, 2012

Time and Place: Water aerobics

This week's Time and Place photo was taken at 11:40 a.m., on Nov. 27 at the Helene S. Mills Multipurpose Senior Center in the Old Fourth Ward during the facility's twice-a-week water aerobics class. The class is free for Fulton county residents aged 55 and over. The center, one of four in Fulton county, serves about 200 seniors a day with classes in various subjects ranging from Spanish to guitar lessons.

"Most people think it's a bunch of seniors walking around with canes playing bingo, when in fact nothing could be further from the truth," said Peter Traina, a health and fitness coordinator at the center. He added: "even though we do play bingo."

Pictured in the image are Linda Bennett and Benny Gordon. Benny, 75, was born in Walton County and was an auto mechanic from 1953 until he retired in the early 1990s. He said the first thing he thought when he saw the picture of himself was that "he was an ugly frog in the pool." He complained that he never seems to have a good expression on his face and that he was just thinking about trying to keep his feet up when floating. "My feet are like lead," he said.

Bennett, 67, said that floating in the pool is like meditation for her. She can't drive anymore, she said, because everything appears blurry. But the Mills Center gives her a chance to interact with people. She said everyone has a blast.

"When we get older our inhibitions go out and everybody just says what they think," she said. "You would be amazed how everybody acts up in every class. It's been a godsend. I just love the people down there.

She added, while laughing: "I don't think I have a sane bone in my body. I have always been cuckoo, I was just born this way, like the Lady Gaga song says. They tell me at the senior center, 'You give out good vibes.'"

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