I’ve learned to redefine what it takes to enjoy a vacation. Enjoyment and enough being the key word here. Non stop activity has largely vanished as something to be desired or enjoyed while vacationing. It’s been replaced by a more laissez faire point of view.
In the mornings, no longer do I have to hit the streets running which is good because that would literally be an impossibility with asthma and hip bursitis. It’s rather delicious to linger in the morning for much too long over my cup-o’tea. I can leisurely check my email, stare at the beautiful color of apple green that I painted on an outside wall, and idly wonder what happened to the butterflies that were supposed to be inhabiting the butterfly garden in front of my house. They were here en masse the last time we visited. At some point, it will feel right to take a shower and consider making the bed while deciding which colorful t-shirt to wear to complement this bright and sunny day. Continue reading “New Ways to have Enough fun on Vacation while approaching 80”
A noun is the name of a person, place or thing. A sock is an article of clothing pulled onto a foot. Why mention them together? They both seem to take joy in disappearing just when needed. Add reading glasses to the mix too. For many years, reading glasses and socks seemed twined in a disappearance conspiracy. Sock learned the trick early on. Reading glasses must have been a quick study, because one day, she pulled the same stunt, although obviously not in the washing machine. Even if bought in multiples, they all cleverly figured out how to vanish at the same time. Somehow signals must have been sent to each other. Continue reading “Disappearing Acts”
Something gets lost in birthday celebrations between 8-80. Anticipation can turn to dread. Excitement can fade. Parties can seem self-indulgent and contrived.
My husband turns 80 tomorrow. To say that he’s not happy about it is an understatement. If our family had permitted it, he would ignore the changing of the decade. But we all concluded easily that he must celebrate and that we must unite behind the celebration.
He put me off more easily than he could our daughters. I soon gave up the challenge of getting him to yes. Our daughters seemed not to have too hard of a time getting him to agree to something “small.” Thankfully, they took over the planning and he cooperated. He likes to make them happy.
I’ve had a small journey of my own wrapping my head around the reality of my husband becoming 80. Despite all the euphemisms and nonsense such as The Golden years, You’re only as old as you think you are and Just like fine wine, you grow better with the years.
I’m hoping this experience will be good preparation for me when I round the corner myself in a few short years. I will want to celebrate. Maybe if I start dieting now, I’ll be able to wear a size 8 dress and everyone will remark, You don’t LOOK 80! Continue reading “the Big Eight Oh!”
Flashback! The year, 1960.or ’61. The sound, jazz. The feel, beatnik wanna be. The setting, a dingy nightclub under railroad tracks in run down industrial city.
It was the T Club. I had one or two friends who I could easily convince to come along with me. In order to get there, I had to get my Mother’s car. That required some white lies, which I could easily justify to myself. If I had told Mom the truth, she’d never would say yes. She probably would think I’d lost my mind.
It was a summer thing. About once a week. Head up a very long and dark flight of stairs to the closed-door at the top of the stairs. Enter the dark and smoky T Club. Take a seat at a small table near the stage. Order cocktail(s). No id’s required. Smoke ciggies. Feel very devil-may-care. Look around to see if my current crush might be there. Rarely, but one could hope. Zone out to the sound of jazz. Look cool. Feel cool. We didn’t call ourselves beatniks, but we were under the influence for sure. Continue reading “The T Club Flashback”
It was was dark outside. All I could see were small clusters of lights as our plane came in to land, but I knew the unseen rural New England landscape well. In years past this landing meant I was coming home from college or in later years for a visit with my ageing parents, my young children by my side. Feelings now, as then, were a mixture of anticipation and melancholy. The melancholy was from the recognition that time was closing in on the remaining time left between me and my parents. Those disturbing feelings are a visitor that accompanies advancing age, deepening recognition that the clock is ticking and adding a bittersweet quality to events that were once never given much thought.
The empty airport concourse signalled immediately that no one would be there any longer for my homecoming. It had been decades ago, but happy images of my mother and father waiting for me remained alive, however impossible. The Christmas decorations on display looked a little cheesier to me than they had in my youth. Mounds of dirty snow were the only remainders of last week’s early snowstorm. The cold air seemed colder than I’d remembered. The winter coat I’d brought with me in defense of the cold warmed me, but felt heavy and oppressive.
I’d come to visit a dear relative who is being treated for a grave illness. I was relieved to finally visit, but apprehensive too. Continue reading “Going Home!?”