Friday, October 19, 2007


People my age tend to complain occasionally. We find that tasks around the home and lawn now take longer. A job that once required one hour now uses up two. In addition to the several hours (or days) we spend convincing ourselves that the job really needs doing. Age often brings on some aches and pains. And more frequent bouts with assorted illnesses. And more trips to the doctor. Then there are the ensuing clinic and hospital bills. And the Medicare and health insurance forms to deal with. At times a veritable mountain of paper that we try to understand and make sense out of. And, before we know it, we are complaining that the “Golden Years” are not all that we were told they would be. Kind of like that new coin we call the “gold dollar” (or “millennium penny”), they look more golden from a distance than they do up close.
But then, age also has some good points. If we keep an open mind we start to notice some things we should have recognized years before. We suddenly find that much of what we once thought to be of the utmost importance really doesn’t matter at all. At one time it seemed almost a necessity to try to please everyone. At work, it was often fundamental to stay in the good graces of superiors, fellow workers, and our employer’s customers. But after retirement, we can re-think that one.
It’s a free country. And everyone is entitled to his or her own opinion. If someone doesn’t like me, so be it. It is that individual’s privilege. I certainly won’t waste any time or lose any sleep worrying about it. Or trying to solve the problem.
I prefer to spend my time counting my blessings. My wife, family, my home, my writing, and all of the other things that make life worthwhile. And I am thankful for an ample supply of friends and probably the best assortment of good neighbors that can be found anywhere. Also tons of memories.


Days and years I’ve left behind
Tend to clutter up my mind,
Various memories and
Thoughts of days gone by,

Some times happy, others sad,
Good experiences, and bad –
I could not forget them,
Even if I’d try.

Trekking down life’s long, hard trail,
Striving to succeed – not fail,
Often my best efforts
Were not quite enough.

Times when persistence and pluck
Needed help from Lady Luck.
Looking back, some of those
Days were fairly rough.

Now and then nothing went right –
I’d have to hang in and fight.
At times, everyone this
Bitter cup must quaff.

Later on, I came to know
Time softens most any blow.
Looking back now at most
Bad times, I can laugh.

In our youth we crave and yearn,
Work and slave and save to earn
To buy things we feel we
Just can’t do without.

Age and years open our eyes,
Then, in time, we realize
What this thing that we call
Life is all about.

Each morning the eastern skies
Now are a treat to my eyes.
I’ve been granted one more
Chance to pass life’s test,

‘Though some things may go awry,
I’ll just give it my best try.
I’m sure I’ll be all right
If do my best.

If good fortune smiles today,
Or just bad things come my way,
I’ll smile and play all the
Cards dealt to my hand.

There’ll be actions I must take,
Some adjustments I must make,
I may need to “hang tough”
And take a firm stand

One fine day you, just like me,
Will smile and look back to see
Works and deeds you’ve done that
You can view with pride.

For, as near as I can tell,
If we have spent our time well,
Life will have been worth this
Rough and the bumpy ride.

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