I have so many blessings it’s tiring me out!

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I seem to have so many blessings it’s tiring me out lol! Life is so full of good things, my wonderful family, incredible parties and BBQs, sailing, plants and allotment, great friends, writing, blogging etc. I just wish I had extra energy to enjoy it all more! Now approaching my 67th birthday and having to “pace myself” somewhat it reminds me of the saying that life should be lived to the full not limping to the finish line but skidding into last base lol!

God has been good to me and my more frequent times of rest are punctuated more and more by my heartfelt thanks and appreciation of all He does for me on a daily basis.

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Lifegiving Moments.

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Still and quiet, the whispers drift towards me, borne on placid lake waters.

Sunlit glimmers, pearlized soft blue and pink waters are picture framed in the squared wood lookout of the old bird watcher’s hide. Breathless, I gaze enthralled, the intense beauty unreal.

Startled I turn. I’m not alone. Joined by an old man, his face weathered as the wood beams. We speak in quiet tones of heron and egret, of terns and the ever-present grebe. We don’t look at each other as we speak, our gazes entrapped by still water, the play of light, and the gliding, skimming shapes of birds.

We speak of grandchildren, of I pads and smart phones, of the few still able to partake of the immense beauty of such golden moments.

Such a nice feeling!

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I’m a very happy bunny today! Why? Whilst discussing UK retirement ages the lady beside me said, “You don’t mean to say you’re 61?” (my age when I retired) She looked genuinely amazed and even more so when I told her I was actually 66! What was it Shakespere said about women and vanity? lol!

(Actually I have to give all the credit for that to Jesus – considering my very adventurous life it’s a wonder I’m alive at all! lol!)

Age is not the enemy.

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Modern western culture portrays old age as somthing scary, ugly, the end of all the good stuff, to be fought veheminately. Celebrities go to great lengths to stave off its onslaughts with diets, creams and cosmetic surgery till they look like walking skulls.

I remember the East where old age is venerated due to its wisdom, the old retired couples in China dancing in the park every evening, dining out surrounded by their children and grandchildren and how natural it seemed.

Part is due to the much healthier lifestyle (you seldom see old Chinese with a stick let alone a walker or wheelchair) and family ties are far stronger. The widow or widower helping with the grandkids seldom find themselves lonely. Old age is seldom lamented, rather seen it as a time of well deserved rest and enjoyment. There’s almost a holiday spirit about it.

How far have we in the west strayed from the natural concept of age. I came across the phrase, “old age is only disappointing if we find ourselves older in years without growing closer to God.” This also set me thinking. Feeling our lives have been well lived, looking back with satisfaction and forward with expectation gives peace.

The frantic striving to live every second because there are new wrinkles etc. so full of fear, for cancer, for strokes, for disabilities, drains us of the joys of old age. Growing closer to God brings peace and wisdom and with it the ability to enjoy this golden age slowly, deeply, like a vintage wine. We once knew this.

Age is opportunity no less

Than youth itself, though in another dress;

And as the evening twilight fades away,

The sky is filled with stars invisible by day.

(Henry Wadsworth Longfellow)

Soul Windows.

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The face was old and wrinkled,
But the eyes were still the same.
They still retained the twinkle
She’d seen upon that day.
Some things there’s no erasing
Though the years may flood on by,
The flesh may see corruption
But the spirit never die.

The morning after.

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The morning after Christmas dawns

The tree bedecked with lights adorns.

But loved ones scuttled to their homes

No more the joy and laugher roams.

Only photos mark the place

And filial love and fun replace.

 

And yet, if I’m to answer true

My head is pounding, and I rue

The ceasless round of food and drink

I’ve got too old for this I think.

 

Not too old for joy, and hugs,

Not too old for cuddle bugs.

Love each moment with my kids

And their offspring and their vid’s.

 

But at my age I need to pause

Rest, recuperate from chores

Listen to the still clear vioce

That makes the inner me rejioce.

I am so blessed in all you see

I think old age is suiting me.

strange bonding.

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He had to go – one last time, while he could still make the climb.

His companion was not the best, but everyone else “had commitments”. He’d met him in the park sleeping rough, a turbulent young fella Chase was, with hard, rebellious eyes.  He hadn’t understood but he’d been willing, for the pittance Jim was able to pay, (already sleeping rough, what had he to lose?) He was sullen, but, considerate of Jim’s aging frame, he carried the rucksack, appreciative of the new sleeping bag and use of bed and shower as they prepared.

The slope steepened, the going was harder. Jim had to stop frequently to catch his breath.

“Why are you doing this?” Chase asked. “If I were your age I’d be curled up in an armchair.”

“ You’ll see when we get there.” Chase thought the old duffer mad, but he’d been kind, besides he liked crazy folks, he was half crazy himself. He didn’t care. Help the old duffer up the mountain and maybe he could doss with him for a while after, till things turned sour…

The road lay far behind, the car a matchbox toy. Things were quiet up here. They sat and ate sandwiches feasting their eyes on the growing panorama.

“Wait till we get up.” Jim whispered, “It takes your breath away.” It was beautiful, Chase thought, but not worth this whole expedition – Jim must be in his seventies, maybe more! A cold thought hit. Suppose the old man was to peg out up here, would they hold him accountable? He’d have to leg it if something happened…

Nothing did happen. They camped under the stars, Chase gathering wood, Jim starting the fire. Chase watched the flames as the bacon and sausages sizzled on their sticks and the foil wrapped potatoes steamed. Jim knew what he was doing that’s for sure.

“You must have been a bit of an adventurer when you were young?” Chase ventured. He wasn’t much for conversation, but he was curious.

“You could say that,” Jim beamed. He went on to tell tales of his youth and how he’d found this place. Chase listened entranced. Despite himself he liked the old duffer.

“So why the mountain?”

“I was pretty wild back then. I could be myself up there. It puts everything in perspective, everything is small, seen from up there, only the important things are big – like the sky! … and you can see the horizon…”

They made the summit next afternoon. While not requiring much in the way of hard climbing it had been long and arduous, Jim was exhausted.

“Just help me on that big rock up there and I’ll rest a while.” Chase was concerned. Shedding the pack he picked Jim up in his arms. He was surprisingly light.

“You’re a good lad Chase,” Jim whispered. “Don’t let folks ever tell you otherwise.”

Together they sat above the world looking down on scattered clouds, distant hills, and swathes of pine forest. Chase gasped, awestruck, head turning to appreciate the 360 deg. horizon.

“I think I understand now,” he breathed.

“I thought you would. It’s not something you can explain, but I just had to feel it one more time before I go, kinda get me ready.” Chase looked alarmed. “Now don’t worry son, I’m not gonna peg out on you, still got a bit of strength left. I just need to rest a bit”

“Just as well, ‘cos I’m sure not gonna carry you all the way back,” Chase teased. Then he realised – yes, he would if it came to that, and bugger the consequences. He liked the old duffer – he liked the mountain too.