I’m just like thousands of others – I make New Year’s resolutions.
This year’s one is simple and easy to comply with. No use revealing it. Barbara tells me that having a drink before dinner and eating fried foods isn’t good for me, and I should eat more salads and stay off fattening desserts – all not good for me. Don’t drive too fast, go to bed early, eat oatmeal with prunes, don’t eat so much red meat, etc.
All good advice and required for a long life. I’ve listened to her for 59 years and to my mother with same advice for the previous 30-some years, so I’ve had that long life.
My question is, when do I consider that I’ve had this long life, and I can or should I relax all those rules, or am I in such a habit that I can’t change now?
I’ve had good health; I had all the childhood diseases, including mumps when I was 37 years old; broken ribs when I was 91; still playing golf; and the height of optimism, I bought some property and tired to get a life insurance policy for 15 years to guarantee payment.
I’ve told many stories about my childhood during the Depression, making wine during the Prohibition, stories of combat in fighter airplanes in World War II, Korea night combat and jet fighter operations in Viet Nam.
Of course most were true, and who is around to challenge them? That is about the only advantage I have in my really old age.
I did learn lots of things, like being polite to my elders, take off my hat indoors, say ”yes sir” or ”yes ma’am,” don’t cuss or take the Lord’s name in vain, hold the door for ladies and most importantly: don’t track mud in the house.
It is easy to say that times and young folks aren’t like they used to be.
Yes, that is true, and aren’t we lucky they aren’t? I still want the old courtesies but I desire advancement with the times and changes to match our lifestyles as they did with my generation and those for many previous ones.
When I was young, prior to age 18, I thought it would be marvelous to travel at over 100 miles per hour or go to the moon or make money enough to be comfortable, have indoor plumbing, go to college and a myriad of other things. Here we are able to have all those things if we strive, and a certain amount of good luck.
I’ve traveled over 2,000 miles per hour, we are comfortable in our retirement, I’ve had employment that seemed more like a hobby than a job, my family all has good health and we have that indoor plumbing.
But most of all, I’ve had a wonderful wife to keep me on the straight and narrow path.
What a blessing.