Tag Archives: think young

While Walking the Dog

It’s quite amazing the different things I see when walking around the suburb with Lotte, the Tibetan Spaniel.

Smiling boy

Photo - Pavel Lovesky

For instance today I saw a little boy, maybe 5 years old, giving his baby sister a lick of his ice-cream because she had dropped hers.

I didn’t hear any coaxing from the mother for him to do this but I heard her giving him lots of praise.  What a lovely thing for this child to do.

I walked further along and saw this elderly couple (older than me?) walking along holding hands.  I was somewhat envious that they are spending their final years together in harmony.  Well it looked like love and harmony to me.

Then I turned a corner and beheld an amazing sight.  Spray painted onto the pavement/sidewalk was the following:

“I could write you a letter or sing you a song or I could just tell you that I think of you all the time, you are the air that I breathe and I love you.  I would have said yes if you had asked me.”

I now wonder who wrote those words and what the outcome was.  Is there some desolate soul pining for his lost love, or is she pining for the lost opportunity.  I wonder whether we will see the next episode written on the pavement in the next week or so.  I do hope so and I hope it turns out well for them both whoever they are.

And this reminded me of something I saw a couple of days ago when walking on the beach – Will you marry me?

How very romantic and I do hope he or she said yes please and they went off together to celebrate.

Yes, I am a romantic at heart.

And what else did I see today?  Children playing on the swings and slides at the local park and lots of budding ballerinas coming from dancing class dressed in pink tutus.  They all looked frozen as their mothers hurried them off to the waiting cars.

Dancing class

Dancing class

And this reminded me of the card my elder sister sent me for my birthday.  She remembered us as ballerinas when we were very small.  She gave up quite early but I kept going until I was too tall to be a ballerina any more.

She thought that this card was very appropriate and I agree.  Well done elder sister for finding it.

I saw two dogs fighting and their owners/handlers trying really hard to get them apart.  It was a little frightening as one of the handlers was a youngish boy.  But they managed to separate them and each go on his way.

I saw a girl delivering flyers into letter boxes.  More junk mail.

I saw a neighbor with her two young children bringing them home from kindergarten.  I always have to stop and speak to the elder of the two girls (she is almost 3) because as she told her mother and father today ‘We are friends”.  She often waves to me from behind the blind in her bedroom when she is put down for a nap or to go to sleep at night.

I saw my next door neighbor walking his dog.  A very young, strong Labrador who needs a lot of walking.

I saw a group of pensioners from a rest home going to the movies.  The van was parked at the door and they all disembarked laughing and thoroughly enjoying the outing.

I really love this suburb in which I now live.  It is like a village but only 10 minutes by car or bus to the center of town.

Wellington city bus

As a senior I can travel on the bus for free during the off-peak hours and so I take advantage of this and leave my car at home when I go to town.

So this is one perk for being older.

And today’s quote is on age or as Shirley MacLaine has it “Sage-ing While Age-ing”

The other day a man asked me what I thought was the best time of life.  “Why,” I answered without a thought, “now.”  ~David Grayson, 1870 – 1946  American journalist and author.

I am Becoming the Woman I’ve Wanted

“I am becoming the woman I’ve wanted,
grey at the temples, soft body delighted, cracked up by life
with a laugh that’s known bitter but past it, got better,
knows she’s a survivor –
that whatever comes, she can outlast it.
I am becoming a deep weathered basket.”
Jayne Relaford Brown, American poet and teacher of Creative Writing.

This poem Finding Her Here opens the book I am Becoming the Woman I’ve Wanted.

Today’s blog was ‘inspired’ by a comment received on an earlier post.  I am sure that the commenter did not mean any disparagement but said words to the effect that he was surprised to find such a well-written blog and by a 72-year-old widow at that.

So I began to think what do others expect of older widows?  Granny duck

  • When my eldest grandson was at kindergarten the class was asked to talk about their grandmothers.  Most children apparently, gave glowing comments on how their grandmothers baked or knitted.  James piped up that his grandmother wore a hard hat and went on building sites – I did.
  • I wonder how Ruth Rendell’s grandchildren would describe her?  Ruth Rendell is a Socialist baroness and is the author of the highly successful Inspector Wexford mysteries  Including those of Wexford, she has written more than 70 books and is still writing well into her 80s.
  • And Barbara Walters is well known to all who live in North America.  This vibrant  American broadcast journalist and author also is in her 80s.  A year ago she underwent heart surgery and she is still involved and asking probing questions on air .
  • Isabel Allende is a Chilean novelist, author of several novels and a short fiction collection, as well as plays and stories for children. Born in 1942,  she has received international acclaim for her writing.
  • And the list goes on – Jean Auel, author of Earth’s Children® books, a series of novels set in prehistoric Europe is 75 and still writing;
  • Kuki Gullmann of whom I wrote in an earlier post is 68 years old.  Novelist and founder of the Gullmann Memorial Foundation in honour of her husband and son who were both killed in Africa;
  • Maya Angelou, born 1928, is an American author and poet who has been called “America’s most visible black female autobiographer”.
  • Apologies to the many amazing older women I have left out.  This is not because I think the accomplishments of those listed here are of greater worth, but simply because I would need to write for a couple of weeks to cover them all.

So to the person who made the comment – I thank you for the gracious things you said about my blog, but draw your attention to the fact that I still have many more years to live and many more adventures to have.  Writing my blog is just one of them.

Granny on computer

“The strength of women comes from the fact that psychology cannot explain us.
Men can be analyzed, women merely adored.” –
Oscar Wilde


Where’s the fun?


I have been looking back over the last few blogs and see that they are serious.  When I started on this blogging journey I wanted to share things with you that I had learned over my life, but also wanted to make it fun.

While we can’t make racism or litter humorous, there are many other things I can write about with a funny twist.

How about the dreaded dentist? Ambrose Bierce(1842-1913) got it right when he said :

Dentist:  a prestidigitator who, putting metal into your mouth, pulls coin out of your pocket.

Well along with many people I know, the dentist is without a doubt my least favorite person.  He may be (and in my case is) an absolutely charming fellow out of his surgery, but once he dons his whites and mask he becomes an absolute monster.

DentistMine thinks he is funny.  ” Take a seat” he says like I am in any state to think straight or do anything but sit down.  “Now we’ll just give you a shot and then all will be well” Well, I could have used the shot when I walked into the surgery waiting room 20 minutes ago.  And anyway who is this “we”.  I look around and only he is there.  But wait, then into view comes this gorgeous, svelte blond nurse(?).  She looks as if she should be in the movies not masquerading as a nurse/dental assistant.  Luckily she isn’t some gorgeous hunk.

And I am sitting with over sized lips, mouth wide open and he decides to put an instrument in my poor mouth.  At this point I think of Johnny Carson and his quip ‘Happiness is your dentist telling you it wont hurt and then getting his hand caught in the drill”.

OK I am still wishing hurt to him as well as to me.  And for those of you too young to have missed Johnny Carson’s Tonight Show – his was the not to be missed show for all of us whatever our age.  The show ran for 30 years from 1962 until  his retirement in 1992.  Click here to see Johnny Carson with Jim Carey.

I have the choice of listening to music or watching something on television while he works.  He tells me it will distract me from what he is doing.  How ominous is that?  Why do I need distraction?  What is he about to do?

Anyway I opt for music as the sight of 30 strong young men running around chasing a rugby ball doesn’t do anything to distract me (the rugby was his choice and I suspect he was watching it while keeping me waiting for 20 minutes).  So the lovely Lucy – yes he did introduce us – put on her favorite radio program.  Again that is nothing that will distract me; she’s young so her taste is different to mine.  I manage to tell them, over sized lips, numb tongue and all, that I would prefer something a little less rowdy.

OK so now we are ready for said monster to look into my mouth.  And then I get a look at his tools – now I really am in a torture chamber.  Why would anybody with a kind heart want to inflict the pain that these tools can bring?  I revise my opinion of the dentist.  He certainly is not a kind and caring man after all.

Having endured several minutes of his huge hands in my mouth, poking around, looking for holes – does he think he is a gold prospector – and finding none, he  says in a falsely hearty voice ‘You’re done.  See you in six months.  But before you go make an appointment with the hygienist”  See he can’t just let you walk out of his surgery happy that he found nothing wrong.

Toothbrush and tooth

So I walk out into the sunshine knowing I am safe from the monster and his tools for the next six months.  But wait; oh no; he and his lovely wife (Lucy the nurse) will be at the dinner party I am invited to that night.  Shall I smile at him and greet him like a friend or as the hidden ogre that I know him to be?  Guess I shall just play it by ear.

Today’s quote has really nothing to do with the dentist but here it is

When you get into a tight place and it seems you can’t go on, hold on, for that’s just the place and the time that the tide will turn.
Harriet Beacher Stowe 1811-1896, American Writer.

Giving Thanks Each Day

Since I wrote about Mavis Lindgren the 90 year old marathon runner, I have been told of many instances of older folks competing in marathons and one woman Ernestine Shepherd who is a 74 year old body builder.  I am completely ‘blown away’ at what these women do with the ‘best years of their lives’.  And it’s not only women.

Tatsuo Okawara was the oldest finisher from Japan in the December 9th,
2007 Honolulu Marathon.  At 90 years old, he completed the 42.19 kilometers
(26.2 mile) course in 8 hours, 11 minutes.  And Buster Martin at age 101 while still working as a plumber in London, trained for the London Marathon in 2008.  He also planned to walk the Appalachian Trail.  See details of that journey here.

What amazing people and they certainly show us that if you keep using your body and mind through exercise then just about anything is possible.

I often talk to my clients about creating an Attitude of Gratitude.  My children have been brought up knowing that we have to give thanks for what we have and I trust that they are passing that on to their children.

And even if we lose everything, we still have plenty for which to be grateful.  We are fortunate to live in New Zealand surely one of the best and safest  places in the world; although we have had a major earthquake recently that has set us all back a little, but on the whole we live without major disaster looming over us.

So can I suggest that we all look to these ‘older’ examples of how to live our lives and always remember to say thanks for what we have.