“Will you still need me? Will you still feed me? When I’m 64?” So asked the Beatles way back when.
I am currently 57 (not yet 64) and tonight I met two iconic women. I am so honored to have talked with them and I can only wish to be half the women they are. I want to be like them when I am 64, 74 and even 84! Let me explain.
Here I am on Saturday night, truly my Tuesday night. I am mosquito bitten having provided a feast like a cheap Chinese buffet, still flush with the heat, sweating as usual, and wet from a shower. I am also inspired, tickled, and just plain old happy. This, my friends, was a good night.
Earlier, I was bored and frustrated. One too many tourists got on my last nerve and any other nerves I may have had. It was not a good state of mind. It has been a long and hard summer, with too much heat and not enough outside. Now the mosquitoes make it impossible to enjoy a cooler evening out. I am fatter and lazier and trapped. I can feel cooler temps on the winds. I am antsy for a change so I can get my ass back outside, move ahead, move more, move on. Hell, so I can just MOVE again.
During this rough patch I have also been struggling with my diet, or lack thereof. I eat when I am bored and I eat whatever I want. Well, until my clothes start to fill in a bit and my waist starts to blend in with my belly jelly. I am not going to be a body hater, I just like it when I feel more in shape and lighter. I feel better when I feel stronger with more endurance and agility. That has not been the case this summer. I also like my drink after work. I usually stick to one, sometimes have none and other times have one or two.
Tonight I had some Rose, and ended up polishing off the bottle. It was not a full bottle, so there is that. I was again getting bored and restless. I decided that a walk would do me good. I was in my lounge clothes, Chacos and put on headphones with some good tunes. Music is a great way for me to fully experience my emotions and to just let loose.
I was just going to hang outside near my house, wander up and down the road. But, I broke one of my own rules and actually walked through the desert sans proper gear. I consider myself a local and one who knows enough to be safe, or at least to know what to look for. I am sure the Rose’ did not help my decision making, but I am in familiar territory. I mean, this is my home turf, right?
There I went to wander and jam and let loose. I did little dances to the music and enjoyed a cooler breeze in my face. I ended up walking all the way to where I work. Then, I ended up walking to a nature trail to see the sunset. I ran up and down the hill, which did my body good.
But wait, let me back up another moment. Yesterday a co-worker asked me if I had made a reservation for any older ladies with a British accent. I said no, I had not. I was on the lookout, however, as I understand one of the ladies was quite difficult. Low and behold, here comes two older ladies to register and check-in. It took me a few moments to locate the necessary information to determine that yes, in fact, they were registered with me and they were in fact staying at the facility I help manage. Here they were, the two women I had been told about. I was not sure if they would be difficult or fun or what. I entered our conversations with caution, watchful for any signs of angst. They ended up quite the hoot. After some fussing around, they got all checked in and I shared some recommendations with them for their time in my neck of the woods.
Fast forward to the nature trail I danced my way to. A trail that I previously recommended to the ladies and who I found hiking down just past sunset. They were very happy with the recommendation and I was thrilled to see them there, loving their moments in my desert.
I was busy playing my music, running up and down the hill, getting eaten alive by the mosquitos. I passed them a couple more times on the way out of the trail area and they offered me a ride home, which I politely declined. I needed to walk and run and get some of this energy out. Mosquitos be damned, I was making it home on my own!
I later realized that these two women, probably around 25 to even 30 years older than me, were killing it! They were out here, living on the road, hiking their asses off, or what is left of their asses, fussing in the park and at the campgrounds. They are actually hiking trails in their entirety and then hiking some more. These two are my heroines and who I want to be when I grow up. Yeah, sure, I can run circles around them now. But, will I still be able to do what they do when I am 64? Let alone 25 or so years from now? They move slower, they demand more, they know what they want and they are not afraid to ask for it. I admire them. I love them!
I learned they are sisters and they can be pretty difficult. So can I. Maybe I will not have a sister with me, or even a travel companion, and maybe I will be as much or more difficult, or maybe not at all. In any case, I can only pray to be as active with their stamina and verve. I can only pray to be on trail and traveling in my 80’s and then live to do it again the next day.
Cheers to the people who rock it in their formative years, who are still out there into their 70’s and 80’s and beyond. Who may be slow but who fucking do it just like people more than half their age, just like they want.
Cheers to giving me a glimmer of hope for the years ahead.
Cheers to when I’m 64 (and beyond)!
One Comment Add yours
So interesting–thank you for sharing! Loved it. Day-by-day, you are doing what you are meant to do, Michelle! Continue to be thoughtful, insightful, and give yourself grace. The aging process is not created equal for all individuals–that is my opinion. Much of this is determined and driven by available financial means, genetics, life’s stresses and responsibilities along the way including family care giving, and plain ole’ circumstances (including community) and support. Positive attitude and “not letting the old in” as Clint Eastwood says does play a significant part as you walk through the years. However, I do more involvement from those other factors hover heavily as well. I admire your strength and desires to be a pilgrim, still! Be well in all you choose to do.