Sunday, March 25, 2012

In between time

In between what time?

Seems some people - including me - view my time as planning a trip, going on a trip, or being between trips. My sister once suggested that we're taking all these trips because I'm running from something. I don't think that's the case any more, since my visit last year to the Nebraska cemetery where my mother's grandparents are buried. However, I know we'll slow down. We're getting older. Our energy level has diminished. We have aches and pains. At the moment my husband is looking at knee replacement. I have a chronic back issue. We're probably not going to be doing any more inn-to-inn hiking as we did in Ireland 13 years ago, or any more group hiking trips, as we did in the UK and in Iceland ten years ago. I have a niece/friend who's 41. I read her Facebook page and I am exhausted by the pace and number of her activities. I used to do that myself!

Now that we can see our elder years coming along, the trips we take are sweet and special. Whether a road trip to see where my family came from, or a weeklong adventure with my sister to California to visit an old and dear friend, or a flight to Cancun to celebrate the wedding of a daughter - none of them are idle ventures. I make my list of places I want to see, and the ones that float to the top are the ones that might be too much for us a few years from now. Like Australia and New Zealand, Antarctica, and Africa. Maybe they're all too much now. I can't muster up the enthusiasm I once had for these more exotic destinations. I used to have disparaging thoughts about elderly people on cruise ships in harbors, taking day trips. Now I can see to a place down the road where they'll be just right, maybe.

What defines me still, though, is curiosity. For one of our Kentucky nights next month, we're staying in a lodge in a state park rather than in a motel in town. Why? I expect I'll meet more Kentucky people in the park. To talk, to see how we are different and how we are the same. Maybe to meet someone who's related to me, since my grandmother's family were coal miners in Kentucky for generations. On six of the fourteen nights, we'll be staying with other empty nesters, members of the Evergreen Club. One night, at the request of our host, I'll be speaking to the Lions Club of Shelbyville, Tennessee. On the topic of my choice! I'll probably combine the Evergreen Club, the genealogy, and our book into some theme called "community". See where curiosity gets me?

Our book sales are coming along. We're getting good comments, especially from vets. We're taking copies to seven Vet Centers in Tennessee, Kentucky and Virginia. Art comes home with $17 and says, "I sold another book." Who would have guessed a retired "lineman for the county" would be doing this?

I'm thinking my life is still interesting, just different. I'm probably entering the "wisdom" part of my life. I've got no regrets so far about the part that's gone, because new stuff comes up constantly.

Isn't that great?






23 comments:

Perpetua said...

Indeed it is Linda, and you seem to have found a good balance of activities for you both.

Terra said...

You are wise to travel while you can, and that is cool that your husband is finding buyers and readers for his book.

rosaria said...

You are living!
And that's what we all must do. You also know your priorities and understand when limitations will occur. I admire all of it.
You are an inspiration for all of us.

Jake said...

We are also avid travelers. However, we are older now, but plan on getting as many trips in as possible.
However, for the first time, we had to cancel a week in Hilton Head for hubby's birthday this week. He pulled a muscle 2 weeks ago and could barely walk and is taking therapy. He should be good by the end of this week.
It was disappointing to cancel as I love road trips but since the idea was to golf it didn't make much sense.
We are doing a European river cruise in May so he wants to be sure he is in tip top shape for all that walking.

Jake said...

Thanks for dropping by and following me. I've been following you for quite a while and I just love your blog title, I often worry about being a bag lady!!!

Linda Myers said...

It's funny. Writing about it, I got over the fear!

June said...

For the last several years, I've been telling myself that life is richer in some ways now that I am . . . mature. Of late I have felt as if maybe I'm at the pinnacle and the only way forward is down. But! I happened across an article wherein the author recounted all the things that she felt free to do now that she is in her seventies . . . she had felt constrained in her sixties.
So I have new hope. :-)

Blissed-Out Grandma said...

Yes you are one of the wise ones. An elder of the tribe, if you will. Still learning, still putting things into perspective, and in many different ways (book, blog, speaking, chatting with those you meet while traveling) sharing your insights with others.

Ms Sparrow said...

It seems like doing what you enjoy is what you're supposed to do when you retire! Go for it!

Sandi said...

I always thoroughly enjoy reading about what is going on in your life! You seem to have the perfect retirement perspective. I'm taking notes!

Simone said...

You have a great way of scheduling your adventures. You'll know when it is time to slow down. In the meantime, enjoy! Hooray for book sales.

MerCyn said...

A great way to look at and enjoy life. We love to travel and are between times. Hub still works full time but can work from almost anywhere, so we travel when we can and plan around his business trips and appointments.

Olga said...

We had travel opportunities that I would not trade for all the money in the world. I imagined we would continue travel in our retirement, but my husband has a very different take on things now. I can strike out on my own--and y grand kids are willing travel partners.

Teresa Evangeline said...

I have great admiration for your life choices. You've done traveling I've only dreamed of and you are still well aware of the possibilities at this stage, also. The night at the state park lodge sounds great, as does your speaking engagement. You have a wonderful life.

Retired English Teacher said...

There was a time when I thought I want to do that someday, but I let life's demands get in the way. I wish I would have had some of the adventures you had in the past when I was younger. Like you, I still want to get out see places and do things, but I am also limited these days by physical limitations. We are on a short trip now. It was badly needed.

DJan said...

I m always impressed by your commitment to travel. Your Ecuador trip was so delightful that I cannot imagine anything being more special than being able to experience something like that. But as you said, it will become less frequent, but for now... why not? :-)

Linda said...

You have a wonderful attitude. You're exactly right about doing things while you still have the energy. You"" have wonderful memories to keep you company when you're no longer able to travel.

Arkansas Patti said...

It is called adjusting and you are doing so well at it. Do what you can, while you can and DON'T procrastinate. Just go for it and enjoy.

Out on the prairie said...

Such lovely thoughts to share, Kentucky sounds very nice.

I wondered if you had see Warren Buffets daughters book .

Jenn Flynn-Shon said...

It IS great! And all that curiosity in meeting people along your travels is certainly the Writer in you coming through. People are characters no matter where you go and its always great to be inspired by them along the way. Who knows, you might get another book out of your time in Kentucky, or anywhere. How does that adage go? "Age is just a number" :-)

Galen Pearl said...

Curiosity--that word caught my attention! What a great attitude towards life. When we are curious, we are not so fast to judge or label something. We are open to it. Great post.

Dr. Kathy McCoy said...

It's wonderful that you follow your curiousity wherever it takes you while you can. I so often hear people who can no longer travel talk about how they wish they had gone here or there before they grew too old or disabled. My husband and I don't travel nearly as much as you do, but --like yours-- the trips we do take are sweet and meaningful to us.

Friko said...

As long as you enjoy what you're doing, do it. When you stop, do something else.

My husband's travelling days are over and I don't want to go travelling without him, so we stay at home and admire the beauties that surround us. I have found that people are much the same wherever one is.