Q&A: Celebrating a century

Longtime White Rock resident arrived at her party dancing

Helen Cowhig, a charismatic woman with a witty sense of humour, celebrated her 100th birthday with a dance and a drink at The Peninsula Retirement Residence May 25.

Originally from Regina, Cowhig served in the Navy in Ottawa and Halifax during the war and worked in government relations before moving to the White Rock area 65 years ago.

Peace Arch News sat down with Cowhig last Monday to quiz her on health, life and the secret to longevity.

Do you have any children?

No, I never married, and I still don’t have any children.

What has been the key to getting to your age in such great health – how did you do it?

How did I do it? Well, my answer to other people is that I didn’t get married.

I always ate well, I’ve always had a good appetite, I’m not picky and I exercise. You know, my mother and dad have lived to a great age. I think it has something to do with it… a lot to do with it.

I heard that you never miss a happy hour.

Not if I can help it.

Another thought-provoking question: what’s the key to happiness?

Oh lordy. I’m a Roman Catholic, a devout Roman Catholic. Before I came in here, I went to mass every day. I can’t do that now, but it’s always been there for me and as I say, I can thank my mother for that.

Do you still pray much?

All the time. Well, I don’t know what that means exactly. If anything is bothering me, that’s what happens. I have a great deal of faith. I guess that’s what you want to call it.

I’m told that on your birthday, you were doing a little bit of dancing.

Oh yeah, I like dancing. I’ve always been a pretty good dancer.

What kind of music do you like to dance to?

Well, I like it all. I like waltz, but I also like to dance to fun, faster music. I wouldn’t say I like anything in particular.

Thank you for meeting with me.

When is this going to come out? Maybe it won’t be good at all. With any luck, maybe they’ll check it out and say, ‘can’t you do any better than that?’

Was that OK?

It was perfect.

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