The changing of the seasons is just wonderful. I have never felt it so much as this year, although this year is a little different to others. A lot has happened in my life over the last year, perhaps that is the reason. I left England 50 years ago for Switzerland leaving behind mum and dad. The world was getting smaller, plane journeys were more affordable, and so I still saw my parents at least once a year. They would visit Switzerland and I would go to London with my family. There was something I did not realise, that at the same time we were all growing older. The body was no longer as young and lively as it was. Mum was a worrier, but dad was managing.
Over the years mum passed away and dad was left on his own, and really alone, because I was in Switzerland. However, he had good friends and neighbours and managed OK. He was perhaps 80 years old when he made his last journey to Switzerland and I was surprised how much he had changed. I was meeting an elderly bent gentleman at the airport, and not the lively dad I knew from the days gone past. I would visit once a year, I could not manage more. I had a family and was a working lady.
Last year dad passed away, at the age of 100 and more. Dad was no longer there, and for me neither was London. I realised that I was no longer under an obligation to make the journey to London, which I must admit was becoming a burden. My health was not so good as I was also diagnosed with MS last year, although had the disease at least 30-40 years and it was always diagnosed as something else. For some years my walk was more similar to something for the Ministry of funny walks and people now and again passed a remark . So last year was a turning point in my life, but life goes on.
And now I have the first Spring of my life with no obligations, no have to’s, I can relax and enjoy – at the age of 70? That is the other side of the coin. We all look forward to retirement, to becoming an oldie with the golden as the adjective. I can now take walks in the wonderful Spring weather which are limited to half an hour as more is no longer feasible, although there are benches placed in strategic positions for a rest helping the half hour to be a little bit longer. I now take my cane everywhere outside the appartment for safety and support.
I am lucky to live somewhere where nature is my neighbour. I noticed yesterday that the catkins on the hazel bushes are appearing already. Yes, I am enjoying the beginnings of Spring this year. I am now driving again, after almost 2 years. We are not getting younger, Mr. Swiss being ahead of me by a few years. We are not cut off from civilisation where I live: have a local train to the next town, and connections to other parts of Switzerland, but having a car to use makes a big difference for me.
And so today what are we two golden oldies doing? Another day dawns, the fridge is half empty (or half full) and a safari for new supplies will be embarked upon. Off to the supermarket (with me driving or not?) which is only 5-10 minuites driving time away: cook lunch and take a golden oldie sleep after lunch. It is funny with that after lunch sleep. I never did it earlier, regarded it as something really unnecessary. We sleep all night, so why during the day? Mr. Swiss was another opinion and did it all his life when possible. I tried it and discovered is had its positive side as it seemed to regenerate my body for further adventures in the afternoon and I no long fell asleep in the armchair whilst watching the TV in the evening. Part of the afternoon is reserved for “me” time on the computer.
I even enjoy housework today, because it gives me a good feeling after I have finished. I am not an ideal housewife, but I can see the positive side of things. I am not only cleaning or hoovering, I am completing another job to be able to move on to more interesting stuff. And of course the computer. Do not forget the computer, the occupational therapy for all golden oldies. I no longer think about buying new more fashionable clothes, I study the newest developments in the computer world. Windows 10 has arrived – the next windows is just around the corner. My mobile phone is iPhone 6, iPhone 7 has already arrived. Shall I or shall I not change my phone? And there is photography: just going for walks is OK, but taking photos is more OK and so I am always interested in new developments in cameras and lens. No more knitting here, my only finger action seems to be either peeling potatoes or on the keyboard to the computer.
The things that come to my head in the early hours of the morning, now 8.30 a.m. and time to move on. There are things to do, places to see and a life to make the most of, even if I do have to think about it for a few minutes before leaving my bed in the morning. Will I make it to the door or not – one of the exciting moments in the life of a golden oldie.
Enjoy the day, make the most of it, it will not be your last, but a day less in the life of a human.