Getting old is a curious thing. I really can’t recommend it but if you insist, here are some things I noticed.
First, it creeps up on you, like fog, with little cat feet. At least for me, the last several years have produced no defining moment that screams “You’re old!” But suddenly I am.
Second, when age gets here, it is all around. For example, I used to grocery shop like everyone, after work, on the weekends, before big holidays. Now I can go during the day, mostly looking for something for lunch. At the store, I am surrounded by old people, people with walkers, canes, riding those little carts. Old people, attended by younger women, shop languidly in the rows.
On the way home I see old Buicks driven by old men. I see lots of cars driven by old women with even older men as passengers. There are lots of lovingly restored ’57 Chevys, driven by old men.
Third, the known world is slowly dying. It is interesting to note anecdotally the number of famous people, movie stars, rock stars, politicians, and other worthies that die in their late 60s, early 70s. The paper is full of obituaries and we remember when they were young and vital, making the headlines, the impossible catch, the great discovery, for that song that meant so much.
But, fourth, my world is slowly collapsing around me. Things that were once doable, now present endless challenges. The world contributes much to this – it seems that everywhere we are confronted by crazy people.
But much of the smallness of my world is self-inflicted. I give up too easy. I wait to do something tomorrow or next week, month or year. I concentrate on a small number of things, the study of French and German mostly but often even these are only time fillers.
Even the realization that I am in the fourth quarter or even overtime, it is not enough to move me.