A Conversation About Cars with a Five Year Old Girl.


We were driving and the conversation between the Mr. and I turned to what kind of car we would like as the ultimate car (I already have mine), and what color we liked best on a car. To include Addie I decided to ask her what she thought about a car. The conversation went like this:

Me: Addie, what kind of car would you like when you grow up.

Addie: A Jeep. A pink one.

Me: What if you don’t like pink when you grow up?

(I got the look that says Nana is crazy and has lost the plot.)

Addie: Nana, I’m a girl. I will always like pink.

Me: Not a lot of cars are pink, they might be hard to find.

Addie: (In a some what annoyed tone.) Well, I can have it painted pink.

Me: Why do you want a Jeep.

Addie: Because my Barbie has one. I want one just like hers.

Me: Because you are a girl?

Addie: No, Nana. (Very annoyed now since I am not getting it.) I want one because I have blond hair.

Me: (Working hard not to show amusement.) Oh, so your car has to match your hair?

Addie: Yes! (Relieved I finally got with the program.)

Me: So, what happens if your hair turns brown when you get old?

Addie: Isn’t it obvious? I will just dye it back to blond.

Me: (Think to myself, Obviously? She’s five!) Oh, Okay. I guess that would work.

Addie: Yep. I have it all worked out in my head. It will be perfect.

Me: Well, that’s planning ahead.

Addie: Of course. That’s the smart thing to do.

The conversation turned to her favorite Barbie and why and that she needed to find one that could ride a horse and a Barbie horse to go with it. I saw a Christmas present list being formed as we spoke. She cracks me up with her grown up vocabulary and word usage. She listens to us too, planning ahead is our biggest thing.

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Spring Is In The Air


I think the squirrels in northern Mississippi have a genetic disposition to suicide by car. It seems to become a problem of epidemic proportions in the spring. Maybe it is from being cooped up in trees all winter, or the incessant rain that starts in February and lasts until May. Wherever the reason, the little rodents are out in full force just waiting for the unsuspecting motorist to come around the bend or over the nearest hill. At which point they will run into the road, stop right where a wheel will surely smash them flat, and dare the driver to hit them. Or, if they are feeling particularly frisky, they play dodge the car by running out into the road, stopping, waiting for the car to get close, then dodging one way or the other, stopping, waiting and daring the driver to miss them. They must get a real kick out of seeing the panic on the face of the driver as they swerve and slam on the brakes, trying not to run the little beasts over. They probably have parties and laugh themselves silly when a car ends up in a ditch playing dodge the squirrel with them. Cute only goes so far when they play stupid games.

Then, just when the squirrels get distracted with other things, the box tortoise and snapping turtle contingent decides that it is time to find mates – across the road of course. They don’t dare the cars like the squirrels do, nope, they just flat don’t pay attention to anything but the urge to find that woman on the other side of the street. Drivers get to play the guessing game of, “Is that a rock or a turtle?” No one wants to squish a turtle, so the swerving commences, and the occasional thump squish sound is stomach turning. But darn it, they need to start wearing bright orange if they want to cross the road in the dark, where they blend in with the tarmac.

Later come the frogs and toads. Big, little, fat, skinny, loud croaking critters, they always wait until dark to come hopping on the road, right in front of the car, when the driver is going at speed, with no chance to stop. Suicidal as the squirrels, only much less intelligent, the frogs and toads just wait for the bright light to appear before them, then jump right smack into the car. Maybe they think they are seeing a heavenly messenger, but no matter what they think, they get to meet their version of heaven. One would think the shallow end of the their gene pool would empty out, but each generation must breed a whole new crop of brainless creatures since they just keep on coming.

And don’t even get me started on insects… talk about institutional suicide. Spring is in the air, time to play dodge the critters.

What’s Up With That?


People are strange. Maybe it is because I am old, but I find human behavior baffling, and sometimes, annoying, on a daily basis. Everyone is so tied up in themselves or something that they don’t seem to see the world around them, or participate in the moment. I will keep people watching, I can’t help it. I don’t even have to go to a zoo to watch their behavior, it is all played out right in front of me. For instance:

I noticed a woman driving in car, holding her phone as she talked into it. Nothing new about that, but she was also waving her other hand around as she talked. What I wanted to know was how she was driving the car if both hands were busy? Was she using her knees to steer, her feet, or was a short person in her lap steering while she talked with her hands? With all the pot holes in the streets of Memphis, she was taking a real chance on wrecking if she didn’t have some sort of hold on the steering wheel. What’s up with that?

I have noticed that a lot of folks talk on their phones like that. They hold them flat, talking into one end held close to their mouths, while listening to the speaker – generally on as loud as it can be. I call it the pizza talking position, as if they are going to take a bite of the phone. All of us in hearing range get to be spectators to the conversation. Conversations that, need I say, should be private. This is something that happens in very public places like restaurants and doctor’s offices. If I were one to gossip, the stories I could tell you would be shocking. What is up with that?

I have noticed, not that I could miss it if I tried, women of very round proportions wearing leggings on the verge of splitting. And yoga pants so tight that it is obvious to one an all exactly what kind of underwear they have on, or not. I, myself, am a well rounded woman. I am not standing in a position of a skinny Minnie fat shaming women. I simply cannot understand why anyone would want the world to see every single lump and bump of fat on their body. It is not pretty, sexy, or alluring, and it leaves them open to ridicule. Women of a particular size can be all those things without wearing clothing that points out all their less attractive attributes. But they don’t. What’s up with that?

I have noticed that any group of women, no matter what group, tends to get louder and more shrill as time goes by. Communication takes place on multiple levels. Verbal is the most obvious, followed by hand and body movements, but the most complex and interesting are the verbal tone and facial movements they make together. They can say a nice thing, but if you look at the raised eyebrow, the slightly off tone, the look they give one another, an entirely different meaning of the words they say comes forth. And the most interesting thing, is that men are oblivious to the Female Code of communication. Unless, of course, they are a metrosexual, emasculated male or gay. What’s up with that?

I have noticed that older couples often sit at a table in a restaurant and never speak to each other. They are on their phones, or simply ignore each other. Granted, some might simply be tired, or dealing with issues, but not everyone. And they don’t smile, at anyone. I can’t imagine not having something to talk about with my husband, even if it is nothing more that a chat about the kids or grandkids. I can’t imagine not smiling at people, especially cute little kids who always deserve a smile, or the servers who are working so hard. But they don’t. What’s up with that?

I am going to keep on people watching. I can’t help it. I keep seeing new ways that they astound and baffle me.

A Short Holiday


We went on a brief holiday over the past four days. The more I am around people, the less I like them. Maybe it is because I am old, and I was raised with manners, expectations of certain social behaviors when in public, and on threat of perpetual grounding, expected the same from my children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren. Things I witnessed this past week makes me wonder about the safety, sanity, and abilities of future generations.

Story One:

We were in the resort restaurant for the dinner buffet. The place was packed, as they usually are. After getting our Addie settled with her meal, I wandered off to check out the grown up menu. A woman pushed past me, and as she did I noticed she was wearing a bikini top and a pair of pajama bottoms with a pair of mukluk boots. Now, granted, we were at a place where the main attractions were the pools and slides, but at first glance she looked like she had jumped out of bed in her bra and pajamas to grab a meal. First of all, she was everything I hate in people. Loud, pushy, obnoxious, and demanding. Secondly, she was downright tacky. It is one thing to grab a snack in your swimsuit at the snack bar, but it is far different to turn up to dinner dressed like that. And don’t get me started on just how tacky it is for a grown woman to be running around in public in pajamas. How hard is it to throw on a pair of trousers or jeans, descent shoes and a top? I don’t even care if you need a bra and don’t wear one, but really, put some damned clothes on.

Story Two:

Same restaurant second day there. We were at the Breakfast buffet. (It’s cheaper and there are more choices.) I get in line behind a family of a mom with her two boys of about seven and nine. She is on her phone. The older boy grabs a plate and starts filling it with eggs. Four large serving spoons of scrambled eggs. Mom says nothing. He hits the bacon next. He scooped up no less than twelve pieces of bacon. Mom says, “Honey let me have some of that bacon.” She takes one piece off his plate. He dives back in and puts four or five more pieces on his plate and heads for the hash browns. By now the first plate is full. He gets a second plate, mind you he can come back for more. He fills the second plate with hash brown potatoes and covers them with gravy. Then hands the plates to his Mom, who takes them, and he heads to the cereal dispenser. He fills a bowl with Fruit Loops and milk and heads back to the table, where the server is setting down his hot chocolate and orange juice. Their table is right across from ours. Because I had never seen a skinny kid that age eat so much, I wanted to see what he would do. His mom nibbled her bacon and sipped on her coffee while she stayed on the phone. The boy ate a few bites of cereal, had a few sips of hot chocolate, and didn’t touch anything else. His mother never noticed. They got up and left and she was still on the phone. Someone needs a lesson on wasting food and greed. Oh, and on parenting.

Story Three:

We decided to take a drive up into the mountains to see the National Park. We went to a very cool place that has a drive through living history thing. That takes everyone to see the old settlement in the valley. It is about eleven miles round trip and there are loads of places to stop and take photos and go into the old buildings. We ended up behind a car with a family of five. Two parents, three kids. Like everyone, they had their windows down. Two of the kids, one on each side, were sitting on the window sill of the doors, hanging outside the car, leaning back as far as they could go. Granted, the speed limit was about ten miles an hour, but there were a lot of sudden stops as people would decide to leave the road and park to take photos etc. We followed them for about two miles, and ever single minute, I expected one or both of those kids to fall out of the car. I kept falling back as far as I could, terrified I would run one of them over after they hit the ground. Finally, they stopped and we got past them. About half a hour later they turned up at the ranger station. Someone called out to the woman in the car and asked her why she was allowing her kids to do something so dangerous. Her response had a lot of F words in it, and basically said it was no one’s business what she let her kids do. The first woman said it would be everyone’s business if one of those kids got hurt. More than a few folks agreed. The woman was on her phone and smoking her cigarette, the kids were running wild, trying to climb on everything they weren’t supposed to climb on, and she basically told everyone to go do something anatomically impossible. The dad never got out of the car or engaged with anyone. The rangers made the kids leave the exhibit after the two girls started fighting over stuff. Unbelievable.

Story Three:

Back at the restaurant the next day at lunch. Vastly busy. We were seated next to a table full of pre-teen boys between ten and twelve. There wasn’t a single parent near them. The tables were next to windows that looked out over the wave pool and water slides. Two of the boys turned around and were kneeling in their chairs backward. Then they started rocking them back on the legs and banging the backs of the chairs on the windows. I asked the wait staff if that was a good idea, the guy shrugged and said, “The windows are supposed to be break proof.” At my surprised look he said, “They’re being kids.” Then walked off. I called him back and asked to see a manager. I explained that all glass has a breaking point, all it takes is for the right amount of pressure to be applied at the right point. Even if it is shatter proof, it will crack, and sometimes it will fall from its frame causing the window to come crashing down and the kids could fall out of the window. She said she understood, but that they were not allowed to correct other people’s kids. So my husband got up and went over to the boys and said, “You know, banging into the windows might not be a good idea. If they break and you fall two stories to the walkway below, you could hurt yourselves. That would make the rest of your vacation suck.” They stopped, turned around and finished their meal and left. How hard was that? If you don’t say anything, kids will just keep on doing what they do until someone gets hurt. Especially boys that age who still haven’t learned to fear getting hurt.

Story Four:

Parents and phones. If you are going to spend upwards of three hundred dollars a day for a family to go on a holiday, why are you on your phone? It is supposed to be a FAMILY adventure. We saw kids from the age of three up doing their best to get their parents attention. The parents never put their damned phones down for a second. Two little girls about Addie’s age, somewhere between four and six were playing in the water right in front of their mommy. They were thrilled to get up the courage to go into the water up to their knees. They were having a great time, squealing and jumping around. “Mommy look! Mommy watch me! Mommy, Mommy, Mommy!!!” She had a phone in her hand, face buried in it. Not once did she look up, take a photo, or interact with them. It was no wonder that in minutes they were whining and crying. All they wanted was five seconds of Mommy’s time. That enraged me. Those poor kids. And it was like that everywhere we went at the resort. Parents on their phones, at the pool bar, ignoring their kids. Why the hell bother to take them anywhere if you aren’t going to enjoy time with them? I never took my phone out of the room while we were there. Neither did my husband. And Addie got every bit of attention she deserved.

Story Five:

I was waiting for the elevator to go to our room. Waiting with me was a mother and three teenage girls. The girls were surly and snarly. All of them complaining of different things. One in particular that I pegged around the age of fourteen was really snarky. The elevator comes and the doors open. Instead of allow the people on it to get off first, the mother and all three girls shoved their way on. The other family with four little children almost ended up with one child left behind. I got on just as the doors closed. The hateful girl sighed and rolled her eyes at me. When I asked if she could press the floor button for me since she was standing in front of the controls, she moved and snarled, “What am I, your slave?” I looked at her mother, she had her face buried in her phone. I pushed the button for my floor, then the brat stood back in front of the control panel and pushed down on her floor button. Her sister asked what she was doing and she said, “I don’t want to have to wait for anyone else to get on. Its and old fireman trick.” I said, “I don’t think that works on these new elevators, most of them require a key to make them stop working.” At that time we stopped. The people waiting were going down so didn’t get on. I didn’t say anything. We got to my floor. The girls piled off, I waited for the mother. She was still on her phone so I got off. I heard her say something, but didn’t understand her. I asked her what she said. She told me I was rude for not letting her get off with her daughters. I pointed out that the doors were getting ready to close so I kept them open so I could get off. She gave me a nasty look. So I said, “While your learning some manners of your own, why not teach some to your daughters as well. You aren’t the only people who are paying to stay here and we have just as much of a right to use the elevators as you and your daughters. If you don’t like people sharing the elevator, take the stairs.” I got the expected F word response. It wasn’t worth my time to deal with her idiocy. I figured she would get her karma response in dealing with those hateful girls of hers.

Story Six:

We had a great time. Addie loved everything from the swimming and wave pools and slides, to painting ceramics with me, and doing sand art with her Papa. She loved the ranger station where they helped her learn the life cycle of moths and butterflies, and she got a Junior Ranger Award for answering all the questions correctly afterwards. She got to have Old Time photographs with fancy costumes along with her Papa, and she ate at a real diner for the first time. We all stayed up too late, ate too much, and wore ourselves to a frazzle. It was too bad so many other kids weren’t having fun with their parents or grandparents, and so many parents were acting annoyed to be there. Addie was in her element as the center of our attention, and the one melt down she had was quickly under control because a time out sitting in the middle of Nana’s bed with nothing to do is no fun. Next holiday, I think we need to go somewhere that has a lot fewer people and a lot more nature.

Rant…Driving Makes People Idiots


So, I was driving to see my local vampire, AKA, my Endocrinologist for a blood test today. I was in the right hand lane, stopped at the light on Getwell and Church Road behind a pick up truck. On the left two vehicles pull up. One is an SUV, the other a dinky sedan. When the light turns green, the sedan doesn’t move fast enough for the SUV, and the driver honks at her. She moves, very slowly, across the intersection. The truck in front of me bales like his house is on fire, and I speed up a bit. The SUV, cuts in front of me, pulls back in front of the sedan, then brake checks her, I slowed down because I had a bad feeling. Sure enough, the sedan cuts me off. I ended up going off road to avoid her back quarter panel, well, lets just say it was close enough that there wouldn’t have been a back door if I had hit her, and my husband’s car would have been totaled. I went from scared to pissed off faster than Mario Andriette could get off the starting line.

I caught up with the bimbo at the light and told her to either pull over and talk to me, or I was calling the cops on her for dangerous driving and anything else they could throw at her. I had photos of her tag, the SUV tag, and the tag of the truck in front of me, and the other car that passed me while I was getting back on the road. She pulled over into the grocery store lot. I blocked her in. Then I got out of my car and went up to her window to speak to her. “What do you think you were doing? You ran me off the road, and nearly killed me. If had hit you, your friend in the back sea”t would be injured or dead, and your friend in the front seat would be seriously injured because she would have hit the window. And you would be injured or dead because you would have taken out the SUV. Her answer. She giggled. I wanted to grab her by her hair and pull her out of her car via the two inch gap in her window.

You think this is amusing? You are driving a six thousand pound or more weapon. It is a deadly weapon capable of killing you or anyone in it, and anyone you hit with it. Do you not understand that? It isn’t a toy, and if you are going to use it for fun, get the hell off the road and go play a video game instead of driving a real car. This isn’t for fun, it is a responsibility that is very serious.” She started saying sorry over and over. I wasn’t through. “ Sorry won’t get it when you cause an accident that kills or injures a family or a mom with a baby in the car, or someone’s daddy. Sorry won’t mean a damned thing to the person you put in the hospital with serious injuries. Sorry won’t mean a damned thing to your parents if they have to bury you before your next birthday, or heaven help them, have their daughter be an invalid for the rest your her life.” She started tearing up. I almost left. But….

Her guy friend in the back seat rolls down his window and says,)I Apologize for the language) “Why don’t you just shut the F..k up you stupid bitch?” [Note: he is gay, and pissy from the get go.] I looked him over. “Well, this stupid old bitch was smart enough to save your pathetic life today. You should be thanking whatever you worship – be it God or the Kardashians – that I have good reflexes for being bitchy and old instead of being a rude little rubbish heap.” His response, “F….ing old bitch, you just need to shut the F…l up and let us leave.” Now I am pissed off again. “Look sonny, calling me an old bitch doesn’t upset me, I am old and I can be a real bitch. Not that I have….yet.” He says, “F… You.” I have to admit, I snickered when I said, “I thought, by the way you talk and act, that you liked men. Either I got it wrong, or you really need glasses, child.” So he screams, yes, screams, “You f….ing homophobic bitch!” Well, he is verbally challenged when it comes to his vocabulary, but he did use another word. I laughed out loud.

“Sonny, I don’t give a flying damn who you sleep with, or in your case, since you are both ugly and dumb as a stump, who you wish you could sleep with, not my business. Or since you are sharing, that is too much information.” So he calls me the C word with the boring F word in front of it. Being the smart ass that I tend to be when really pissed off, I asked in all sincere sarcasm, “Do you know that you just called me the slang word for female genitalia? Honey, I know you are envious that you don’t have that, and that instead, you are just an arrogant prick. And not a big prick either, just a little prick that nobody give a flying damn about.”

The girls in the front seat are sitting like frozen ducks. I tell the driver, that she needs to know that if she injures or kills someone with her car, she will go to jail. One for reckless driving, the other for manslaughter. She is fortunate that I kept her from facing that today. And, that I expect she be aware of the danger driving a car poses. Just because she was behind the wheel, didn’t mean she was safe.

The screamer in the back seat said, “What the F..k do you know about it, are you some kind of cop or lawyer?” I just smiled. “It doesn’t matter what I do or don’t do for a living, prick. Today, right now, I am the judge and jury, and I am giving her a way out of jail. I suggest she take what I say to heart, and straighten up. Next time she won’t be so lucky.” He flings his hair out of his eyes for the millionth time, “She doesn’t have to do sh*t that you say. She is an adult since she is over eighteen.” I smiled again. He turned a bit pale. I do that to people sometimes. “So, she is an adult. Game over. No excuses or juvenile out for her. She would be charged as an adult. Sucks to be a grownup, doesn’t it, prick?”

The driver turned to him and told him to shut up, using the F word of first of course. The entire time, the other girl in the front seat just sat there, looking down. As I started to my car, her window came down, I braced for another tantrum. She was bright red with embarrassment. “Ma’am? I want to apologize for everything. I told her to slow down and not to be stupid, I saw your face when you drove off the road. I know it scared you. I’m so, so sorry.” I thanked her then told her that it wasn’t her fault her friend drove that way, and maybe she would think before getting in the car with anyone who drove like that again.

Screamer said not to listen to me. I looked her in the eyes and asked her, “Who do you think has more experience with life, me or the ignorant ass sitting behind you? Ask yourself this, how did I get to be so old if I were as stupid as he/she/it – whatever he calls himself – thinks I am? Been there done that, raised kids, grand kids, and their friends. Choose your friends wisely, they could kill you with their idiocy and arrogance.”

I got in my car, and still made it to my appointment on time, without speeding or driving like an idiot. Some days, I really think I should have just stayed in bed. I am still pissed off. The driver got a scare and she had to face how her idiocy effected me. The other poor girl needs better friends. And I still want to kick that little prick’s ass from here to Memphis and back.

Where is Walter when we need him?


When I was a kid, back in the dark ages, we had one main news source, and his name was Walter Cronkite. He was solid, and everyone knew he was trustworthy. The nightly news was a cornerstone of American culture. Times, as they say, have changed.

I pretty much loathe the people who “read” the news today. With twenty four hour news station, the broadcasters are desperate to fill hours without being boring. So they opine, gossip, argue, posture – anything for an audience. The talking heads no longer report, they tell us how we should think and what we should do. And the crazy thing is, weak minded, lazy people follow right along nodding their heads and moving their mouths in sync with the talking heads. No one thinks for themselves any longer.

Today, I was driving in my car, and a song came on the radio that tells the true story of the “news reporters” and how they see the world. It’s by the Eagles. Dirty Laundry. You can listen on YouTube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8KOzJ7gNb7Y Holy Cats! Did they ever get it right!

“Bubble headed bleach blond…” “Kick them when they’re up, kick them when they’re down…. crap is king, we need dirty laundry…..” Go on people, have a listen. The Eagles were ahead of their times, prophetic, even.

There are no longer news stations, there are only talking heads and vicious agendas designed to destroy, divide, and decimate people. Can’t trust any of them to tell you the whole truth, and they feast on the sorrow, hurt, and misfortune of everyone. Then make it even worse by twisting the knife in the back of the suffering.

If you want to know the truth, think for yourself, research, and turn off the talking head who are the “wanna be” famous. Trust me, they aren’t even in the same category as Walter was.  Where are the Walters of today when we need them most?

I Love My Car!


I have the MOST serendipitous moments happen to me. I was driving my little car, top down, playing Manhattan Transfer’s song Operator (look it up) and got stopped at the stop light from hell in Southaven. (a three minute wait, every single time.) A car filled with teenage boys pulled up next to me. they had their windows down. When they got even, they all started singing along with the song. I was surprised 1. that they knew the song, and 2. that they had such great harmony. As the song ended the boy in the back seat leaned out and yelled, “call me!” I laughed and said, Honey, you just want me for my car! He fell over laughing and said, Dang, you got me! The light changed and they turned left while I went on my way. I LOVE MY CAR! I also LOVE MY MUSIC! Nothing like having worries taken away when I cruise in my lovely Posh!

“Inaction is not an excuse for failure to thrive.”


“Inaction is not an excuse for failure to thrive.”

I’ve noticed lately that a lot of people my age tend to simply stop. They stop doing fun things, they stop being involved, they stop thinking and growing intellectually. They just stop. Then they sit about and complain about how boring life is, how hard it is to do things they used to do, how much they wish they had done such and such before they got too old. They are failing to thrive in the late years of their lives. And there is no excuse for that- period.

I know, things are a bit harder to do when knees hurt,backs don’t want to bend, and the body gets tired much easier than it did at the age of forty. We all have to slow down,but that doesn’t mean we have to stop. It may take longer, but there is no reason not to at least try.

Years ago there was a movie entitled Cocoon followed by another, Cocoon Returns. If you haven’t seen them, I suggest watching them at least once. It starred a lot of “stars” who were getting quite elderly. All stuck in a nursing home, waiting to die, fussing at one another, etc. Until things change due to a visit from the aliens. Look, I know it is really a sappy story, but what I loved about it was the willingness of almost all of the elderly folks to embrace that which was different. If their youth didn’t return, their joy for life certainly did. And, at the end of the day, their inaction became action, and their lives infinitely better.

Another movie I loved was Driving Miss Daisy, a stellar performance by one and all. Again, another character that defies the tendency to just sit down and stop. Fried Green Tomatoes is a fantastic film. Kathy Bates and Jessica Tandy were great together and the flashback between Mary-Louise Parker and Mary Stuart Masterson is equally dynamic. At the end of the day, we are still not sure which woman Jessica Tandy was as the elderly friend of Kathy Bates. Ambiguity saturates the film, while turning Katy Bates’ character from a meek doormat into a woman filled with confidence. And, of course, the character played by Shirley Mclaine in Steel Magnolias is just like I want to be when I get old.

I see many older folks off and doing things all over the world. They travel, explore, serve missions of compassion – regardless of sore knees and aching backs. They move, act, and they live every minute of every day. That is what I want to do too.

When our youngest son went off to college, my husband and I decided to work our way around the world. Eight years later, we finally returned to the US. As we were raising our granddaughter, she went right along with us. We lived in London, Hong Kong, and New Zealand, and only came back to the US due to health issues and the awful Socialized Medical care in NZ. We traveled all over each region and were enriched many times over by our experiences.

But I was in my forty’s when we did that. Now I am sixty, and it is going to become more difficult to do some of the things we did. So, we chose other things to do so we could travel. A cruise or four, a road trip across the US, and our big adventure this year is to travel across country by train. I don’t hike for miles any longer, but I sure can sit and enjoy the view from the train.

So there is no excuse not to thrive, people. Just get up, take a few steps, find a hobby that fulfills you, volunteer as a surrogate grandmother to rock babies at the hospital. Volunteer at the schools or libraries to help kids with their reading skills. Go help out a nursing home if you have a talent like playing the piano. There are a multitude of things you can do to overcome the lack of inertia and sedentary inaction. For me, being with my grandchildren is one of my greatest motivators. I write, I hang out on social media sites, I keep up with friends and work on my family history, and I am planning on taking art lessons. I have always wanted to learn how to paint. That will be so much fun!

So, you are old, so what? Inaction is not an excuse for failure to thrive. Just because your body is starting to creak and moan, it doesn’t mean your brain isn’t functioning. (Unless you have a serious condition, of course.) With all the medical miracles out today, most of us will live well into our eighties or nineties.

I have a friend who is ninety-eight. For the several decades, she has traveled the world following the performances of the operas of Wagner. All on her own, she would jump on a plane and off she would go to Italy, France, Germany, or any place in the world that the operas were being performed. What an amazing lady

who just kept on going like an Eveready Battery. She is running down now, but she is still in control of her life and decided to go home until the end of her days. It is heartbreaking, but at the same time, what a life she has had! Even now, she keeps busy with doing her family history and chatting with her friends and family.

Even if you are homebound, unable to walk, unable to drive, so what? There are a million things you can do to keep your brain healthy and busy. Never just stop and wait to die. We all have a finite amount of time here in this life. I could spend it worrying about death, or I can just get on with living while I am still here.

The more we let inaction rule our lives, the less likely we are to live a long life. Not just because our bodies need to move to function well, but because our brains atrophy at an alarming rate. Inaction is not an excuse for failure to thrive. But it is only you that can take that first step. I can’t wait to become a feisty old woman who says exactly what she wants to say about everything.

Come on people, get up, find a cause, reason, purpose, or passion to fill your life. Go on!

 

Finding A Way Home


 

Finding A Way Home

 

There is a homeless Vet who sits at the off ramp from I240 and Getwell. He is there everyday, rain or shine. I don’t normally stop and give money to homeless people (I do a lot of donating to shelters etc.) especially if I am alone. But one day I was prompted to do so by that annoying little voice that always expects me to do the right thing. All I had on me was a ten dollar bill.

 

I prevaricated, then motioned him over before the light turned green and handed it to him. He looked down, saw the amount, and tried to give it back! I just shook my head and told him to share what he could with those that had less and pay it forward. I still see him every time I am down that way, and if I have some cash, I will give it to him. But even if all I do is wave, he waves back.

 

Some days he looks like he is doing better, cleaned up, not so hungry, not drunk, some days he looks like he hasn’t slept in a week or two and needs some TLC. The point is, none of us know when that might be us sitting at that corner. Most of us are only a few paychecks away from being homeless in today’s financial quagmire. All we can do is work hard, pray hard, stay focused, love those who love us, and do our best.

 

Sometimes the hardest things seem beyond our best coping skills, but later, on down the road, you will wonder how you managed to overcome and move forward. One day, that Vet won’t be at his corner ever again. He will either find a way to fix himself, or he will give up and become one of the millions who die of sorrow every year. Either way, until he disappears, I will continue to offer what spare cash I have, and at the very least, acknowledge him as another human soul who simply wants to find a way home.

 

Why Is It Number Four


Why is it, as soon as I put the hard top back on my car, the sun comes out?

Why is it, that having the top down makes me want to play my music really loud and drive really fast?

Why is it, that every time a young person sees me driving a sports car, they seemed shocked?

Why is it, when an old person sees me driving a sports car, they all look confused?

Why is it, when a person gets past 50, everyone expects them to slow down and be stodgy?

Why is it, that when a person gets past 50, every single working part of the body decides to retool and redefine their working order?

Why is it, that some women freak out and spend thousands on plastic surgery and products to look younger, when time will catch up eventually and they will look like freaks AND look old?

Why is it, that everyone is scared to death to be round? Round is a good shape. Comfy, and easy to maintain.

Why is it, women under 60 freak out about being a grandmother?

Why is it, that women under 60 come up with stupid names for their grandchildren to call them so they won’t be known as a grandmother? I mean, really, MoMo?

Why is it, getting old is a sinful thing instead of something we have earned?

Why is it, that the young never appreciate what we know and the wisdom we have to share until it is too late to make a difference in their lives?

Why is it, if a couple is out dancing and having fun, and they aren’t young, people think it is either sweet, cute, or disgusting?

Why is it, people stare if I hold my husband’s hand in public? It isn’t as if we are doing anything gross, like snogging.

Why is it, all little babies and toddlers know that I am a Nana? Hormones?

Why is it physically impossible to stop myself from cooing over little babies, snarling at kids between 8 and obnoxious, and loathing kids between oh, teenage and forever if they are impolite, gross, or disrespectful?

Why is it, no one offers to help mom’s who are struggling with kids in public instead of complaining and making rude remarks?

Why is it, the older I get, the more I love the old guy I married so many years ago?

Just asking.