Posted tagged ‘aging’

Starting the Day (Slowly)

March 24, 2019

park sunrise

When I was in my twenties and thirties, I was a morning person. I suppose that was because I (thought) I knew who I was, where I was going and what I wanted from life. And I will admit that is partially because I have been a fortunate man. Although my life hadn’t been trouble free, the good had outweighed the bad by a considerable margin. Being young, I thought my good fortune was entirely self-made. Morning consisted of waking up, getting ready for work (or play on weekends) then diving right in. Yes, there were good days and bad days but it was a formula that seemed to work for Younger Eyes.



October 23, 2018

stagesOne of the primary reasons I write is that it leads me to insights that get lost in the maelstrom of thoughts often swirling in my mind.   An insight can appear at any time, dropping unexpectedly into the a.m. ramblings I call Morning Pages or appearing in a nostalgic piece on my high school years.   The latter was the case this week on my legacy blog, A Dad’s Legacy, also known as the best written blog nobody reads (yeah, I know … call the whaaambulance).  Looking back on my high school years coming to an end, I wrote, I don’t recall graduation as a big deal because I have always been a man who is ready to move on to the next phase of life.    (more…)

The Old Man

August 7, 2016

Sixty is the new forty probably uttered by some hopeful fifty year old.

old driverIf you take the time to notice, part of the fun of growing old is seeing how different being a senior citizen looks than you thought it would at forty.   At forty, you probably noticed how Dad would puff himself up when someone … usually a waitress or salesgirl … said, Oh, you don’t look that old!   You thought to yourself, She’s trying to get a tip or make a sale, Dad.   You probably listened to parents and grandparents talking about aliments and failing body parts in clinical, sometimes graphic, detail and thought, Man, I’ll never do that.  You may have set off every day for a run … or 30 laps at the pool … convinced that taking care of yourself would protect you from those little pains Mom was always complaining about.   You probably uttered the phrase, I think you are only as old as you feel, thinking that was always a good thing.   Then, you got there, and in the inimitable words of my Mom, you said, Well, I’ll be damned. (more…)

There IS a Free Lunch!

June 19, 2015

P1010610One of the great advantages of being a self-employed consultant is the flexibility to work both where and when I want.  When can be virtually any time that inspiration strikes … or, other times, when a deadline looms.   Where is frequently at a picnic table in Yorba Regional Park.  Yesterday, our housekeeper, Eva, was cleaning our house so I came to the park fully intending to spend most of the day.   I set up my office away from the office at a picnic table in one of the shelters near Lake Number 3.  I travel with a backpack that weighs about 40 pounds and when I’m spread out, my array of electronics (from laptop to bluetooth speaker and a camera just in case one of the park denizens stops by for a photo op) covers most of a table.   I was busy writing an email to a friend when a van parked nearby.  Suddenly I was surrounded by about 30 people.   There was a time I would have said old people but I’m less inclined to do that since at 71 I’m clearly in the club.  From the van, I could see they were from the Town and Country Manor, a retirement facilty, and it was pretty clear they were setting up for a picnic lunch.   Kidding, I said, If you want to have lunch in my office, you’ll have to feed me.   That got a few chuckles and appreciative smiles.  Then I went about my business while they set up table cloths and a food table.

A while later, someone came by and offered me lunch. I was only kidding, IT AND C 2 said, I’m fine. Then someone asked again, saying there was plenty of food.   So I had a lunch of fried chicken, baked beans and potato salad while I chatted with several ladies who stopped by to comment on my electronics or ask what I P1010609was doing.   I helped one woman get her digital camera working.  Just because we’re old, she said, doesn’t mean we can’t use electronics.  Amen.  One woman mentioned how nice it was to be able to walk around the park at her age.  Ever politically incorrect, I asked how old she was.  She was 75.  I’m 71, I said.   You don’t look it, she replied.  My wife assures me she was flattering me and if so, it worked.   When a gaggle of Egyptian Geese swam by and someone said, Look at the baby ducks, I politely corrected them and they appreciated the information.  By the time lunch was over, they were calling me Bud and I was one of them.

t AND c 3

It occurred to me that I would like to post about the experience so I showed them my blog on my laptop and asked a director if it would be OK.  She talked to everyone and they said yes.  It is a perfect subject for Older Eyes – Bud’s Blog because it highlights one of the best things about getting older.   I become part of a community that is, for the most part, kinder, quieter and more appreciative of the small things in life, like a beautiful day in the park.   My new friends were a reminder of just that.   As they were leaving, several stopped by to tell me what a wonderful place Town and Country Manor is to retire.  But I already knew that from watching the faces and the interactions of the people who happened to stop by for lunch in my office.  You can read about Town and Country here.

Monday Smiles – 11/17/2014

November 17, 2014

image Monday.  Smiles.  What a concept.  I am sitting in the park, blogging on my tablet connected to the internet via a small white mobile hotspot that costs a few dollars a month.  I’ve done the several things that cumulatively I like to call my Morning Practice and now I’m engaging in my avocation, writing, even though my company just brought in the largest contract we’ve ever had.   Financial security, flexibility and freedom are an uncommon Three F’s in this rat race world.  When I’m done posting, I will email a friend and maybe see if another is free for coffee and do an interesting task on that new job.   Yesterday, Muri and I went Christmas shopping for our three beautiful grandkids, always a treat, and next week, we will drive the almost 400 miles to share Thanksgiving week with them in our own Little House in the Desert.   There’s a crisp autumn breeze blowing through through my car and the lake in front of me is full of mallards, coots and fat Canada geese.  Walkers stroll … or stride … by in ones and twos, about seventy percent of them walking … or being walked by … two or three pooches.  I am a cat person, but even though I’m sometimes jealous of how dog people get to take their pets along, it’s fun to watch how much they enjoy them.  And when I get home, Mr. P will be waiting for me, meowing his Siamese head off.  I am a very lucky man. (more…)

Older Bodies

June 14, 2011

My sixties have brought not only Older Eyes, but an Older Body.   Older Bodies ache more, break more easily and take longer to heal.   They require more care and more maintenance.  Routine medical tests that were once required every ten years are recommended every three years, more frequently if family history or existing conditions dictate.  And with each passing year, the routine tests seem less routine.  Wednesday morning at 8:00 am, I’m scheduled for a routine colonoscopy, as if anything regarding a miniature garden hose and a human body can be called routine.  Today is my prep day, liquids only starting at midnight and several industrial sized doses of industrial strength laxatives in the afternoon and evening. (more…)

The Dog Guy

June 2, 2011

Twenty five years ago, when I thought exercise was the path to Nirvana, I worked out three or four days a week at the Independence Park Pool in Fullerton, California.  For the most part, the noontime swimming contingent was made up of serious lap swimmers, most of us training for triathlons.  But there was one old guy named Harry … he was probably a little older than I am now and had the same slightly out of shape, old guy physique.  Harry swam with what my high school swimming coach called a Red Cross Freestyle … not a complement … and he’d paddle a few laps just to look like he belonged.   Really, he wanted to talk.   I probably had my best workouts when he was in the lane next to me because if I stopped to rest, he’d start gabbing.   In those days, it seemed like no matter where I went, old guys came up to me to talk … Muri and I sometimes joked that I had a sign that said Old Guys, Talk To Me on my forehead that only men over sixty could see.  I suppose I looked like a nice guy and I was always polite on the outside … but I had an Inner Curmudgeon in training that was screaming, Take it somewhere else, Gramps!  Back then, my Inner Curmudgeon sounded a lot like my Dad. (more…)