Boundaries and Routines

When most folks get to our age, older than dirt, we get comfortable in our routines and things we like to do. We tend to eat the same food, go to the same places., and like to do business with the same people. We have a regular line which we rarely cross, and if we do, it is to slip a toe over the line and move back to the comfortable boundaries as soon as possible.

The days of having a carefree, adventurous, no holds barred lifestyle have become days of planning ahead, careful decisions, and concerns about health, medicine, and doctor appointments. Taking a walk requires more than just grabbing a jacket, putting a lead on the dog and heading out the door. And suddenly, an obsession with the weather takes an important part of each day.

Honestly, it is just too much trouble to learn how to do new things, unless they are an extension of what we already know. The Mr. mucks about with computer and science stuff that is so far over my head it leaves a wind as it goes by. I muck about with literature, writing, cooking, and doing craft stuff with my grandchildren with they come around. Things the Mr. finds boring beyond words. But that is fine, we rub along well with a multitude of things from music to politics.

This past weekend we went to our local Japanese restaurant and I not only stepped over the line, I jumped right into a foreign place that I swore I would never try out. I ordered a bento box lunch. It had the tempura vegetables, chicken, and something I had never heard of, but hey, it couldn’t be that bad with the other things. Imagine my horror to see that the unknown item was sushi. Gag, gross, blech! But I actually ate half of the rolls in the box. I even ate one with the sea weed wrapped around the crab, avocado, and bamboo shoots. If you know me, you know I can’t stand sea weed. It smells like rotting fish to me. I admit I took the sea weed out of the other two I ate. They were, surprisingly, quite good. I even added fresh ginger, but not the wasabi, the last time had that it took hours to get my taste buds to work again. But by heaven I DID IT. It was a great feeling to step out of the routine boundaries, even if was trying a new food item. It was moment of both fear and excitement, something I didn’t know I was missing until then.

I know that its kind of pathetic to you young folks who haven’t had to learn to be careful. But children, when you get to our age, remember this lesson. Try, no matter how trivial it may seem, to find something to take you out of your boundaries. Reach for something new, no matter how small. Remind yourself that though you may be old, you aren’t dead, and until that time comes, even small adventures are needed to keep your spirit reaching for joy and excitement.

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