Tubing at 81? It’s a matter of attitude

Go for it lifestyle keeps Oak Bay senior healthy

Pat Mills takes to the water with her grandson Nathan Mills on her 81st birthday.

Pat Mills takes to the water with her grandson Nathan Mills on her 81st birthday.

Pat Mills is an active woman. A long time resident of Oak Bay, Mills is a retired nurse who still volunteers at the Royal Jubilee Hospital, helping out those who don’t share her physical independence. She is also very active in her church where she regularly volunteers and participates in a host of activities. Still, Mills makes certain not to miss any of her twice weekly visits to the gym. After all, fitness is important.

So is maintaining a healthy social life; and to that end Mills enjoys hosting a myriad of house guests on a pretty regular basis.

None of that would be all that unusual, even considering that Mills recently celebrated her 81st birthday.

What is a bit more unusual is that Mills marked her 81st birthday celebration by getting out on the water with her 10-year-old grandson to go tubing behind a high speed ski boat.

“I’m no stranger to the water,” said Mills. “I spent years driving the boat around Shuswap Lake while friends and family tubed, skied and did all manner of tricks on the water.”

Still, some might consider tubing a questionable activity for an octogenarian. “My grandson asked me to go with him. … How could I say no?” asked Mills. “We had a great time.”

When he heard about Mills’ aquatic adventure, her husband Bob didn’t have too much to say. Nor should he, given that he was still water-skiing up to a couple of years ago. He was 79 the last time he skied, and still enjoys an active lifestyle.

Mills’ advice for staying young and active seems to be related to attitude as much as anything else. “Lead a busy life,” Mills said. “And if you’re able and you want to do something, don’t worry about what others tell you – just do it.”

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