Tag Archives: aging

PFF9 ~ Road Trippin’

Friday Flashback

Welcome to my Friday Flashback! This post originally appeared here on August 2, 2018, a mere year ago.

Travel Musings

In theory, I’d love to travel to a bunch of cool places ~ England, Scotland, Ireland, Italy, Israel, etc. ~ but practicalities always quench my wanderlust. First, the cost. Second, the time. Third, my migraines. It’s not only long plane flights that mess with my head, but everything about changes in my environment ~ food, sleep, weather, etc. ~ are pain triggers as well. I also don’t like to leave my furbaby. Right now, it’s an emotional challenge for me to go away for more than two nights in a row, but luckily I have a trusted friend to come over and take care of Gatsby.

I thought I had blogged about my idea for a post-retirement (and post-kitty) epic U.S. trip, but apparently I only discussed it on Facebook. My previous plan was to take train rides from the Pacific Northwest across the country. I’d see Idaho, Montana, Minnesota, etc.; then onto Chicago, Philly, and NYC; up to Boston, Vermont, NH, and Maine; down to DC, Nashville, Atlanta, and New Orleans; over to New Mexico and Utah; smoosh Yellowstone in there somewhere… basically see lots of new places, plus old friends (and meet friends in person with whom I’ve been corresponding for decades). But I’m not sure this is a good plan any longer, given the state of railroads these days. Dunno if I want to drive thousands and thousands of miles alone when I’m old, but…

I have this fantasy that after I retire (and after my kitty has rainbow-bridged), I could get rid of most of my stuff and do this epic trip in a comfy vehicle. But still… so much driving! Oww, my neck hurts just thinking about it. After the trip is over (three-four months, who knows?), I could figure out where to resettle in California, in a less expensive area away from the coast.

Be nice to visit Canada at some point too. That reminds me: I still haven’t bothered to get a passport after all that fuss to finally obtain my birth certificate. Yes, I am legal! I know, it was iffy there for a while, lol. But all this road-trippin’ is only a fantasy. It’s not like this crazy vacay would be cheap ~ I’d need to stay in a lot of motels and buy a lot of snadwiches. Not to mention gas!

The furthest I ever go these days is the Bay Area, which luckily is fabulous, and not only because my awesome daughter lives there with her awesome fiance and their awesome puppy. But mostly because of that.😍

Time Pieces

She smashed the clocks,

Flung the watches off the dock,

Determined to outwit time.

She covered the windows

So day became night;

Not a ray of sunshine

Found its way inside.

Prowling the quiet halls,

She owned the darkness;

Her face remained unlined,

Her body graceful as a child’s,

As everyone she knew died.

Eventually, her house crumbled,

The walls collapsing to dust,

And she stood alone in the rain.

A new world sputtered to life,

Full of hollow fluttering things,

And she became its cursed ruler.

She stared at the silent lake,

That graveyard of timepieces,

And knew a different kind of chain.

Perhaps she had made a mistake.

~*~

Fandango’s Flash Fiction Challenge

FPQ27: Where’d My Fandango?

Fandango provocatively asks…

“If you could choose one — and only one — particular malady, condition, or disease for which a safe and effective treatment was available, what one condition would you choose to treat and why is that your choice?”

I choose to eliminate Alzheimer’s. It not only steals any joy and dignity from the patient’s final years, but it’s such an awful burden in every way on their loved ones. It’s better to die of cancer or heart disease imo than to waste away from this hideous mind-melter.

My mother’s death was a shocking tragedy because no one expected this vibrant person to get suddenly diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, but she was 75. I guess that isn’t really so shocking to someone outside the family. We all just assumed she would live much longer. But as awful as that was, at least it was over quickly.

My father however spent around a dozen years fading away as his once formidable brainpower weakened from dementia. His memory and thoughts became jumbled, and he reacted with confusion and anger. He became susceptible to every con artist that knocked on the door (and those evil assholes know to prey on the senior community). After my mom passed, he immediately jumped into a new romance, asking a woman to marry him after dating for only a couple months. (She said no.) Then he began getting lost and needing more care, often forgetting who people were, and which ones were still alive.

It was so hard on all of us. I hope hope hope I do not burden my children with this horror! Just shoot me.

No, not yet. 😜

Wot Mystery? 🐱

Gatsby here! Good mews everyone. Rawry just gave us a Mystery Blogger Award and I clawed and chewed it for a while… and then I mushed it under the sofa with my other toys. Not much of a mystery to me.

But thank you, Rawry! I love new toys to hide.

Anyway. Mommy says I have to answer the questions Rawry sent us. Gosh, more work! I was just keeping watch at the window for the squirrel and now I have to do more things? Life isn’t fair.

My Five Questions (from Rawry)

Which is your least favourite mode of transportation?

I hate riding in the car in my little pink prison cage. It’s noisy and bumpy and we always end up at the vet. Horrible!

Why, oh why why why did the chicken cross the road?

Probably to escape a coyote, which was very smart of her. Coyotes will nom up chickens and kitties too! Stay away from them. Of course, I like chicken…

What is the stupidist thing you have ever done – voluntarily?

One time I bited Mommy’s face while she was asleep and she screamed. That was so fun, but I guess it was stupid cuz she got so mad and smacked me.

When you have left this planet, as in your life ends, what do you think is next ….?

Some people say kitties go over a rainbow bridge to a big garden to play with their special person again and have lots of treats, but I think people just say that to make themselves feel better cuz I don’t know what rainbows are and can’t see colors besides. I think everything just ends right then, and hopefully Mommy will take good care of me and make sure I don’t suffer.

At what age do you think you actually became an adult?

When you have to start paying your own bills. But some of us are so cute and furry that we never have to, NEENER! 😛

Tick Tock [flash 99]

I don’t believe in denial or dime store philosophy. You age regardless of how you feel about aging. Death has you in its crosshairs no matter how much time and money you spend covering up the signs of years gone by. It’s great if you keep active, eat healthily, and dream more dreams, but the calendar still flips a page every 24 hours just as it does for the people with bad habits. Will you have more pages than the couch potatoes? Maybe, but no guarantees. Stop acting so superior! You just don’t know how much time is left.

~*~

Carrot Ranch 99 Words Challenge

Anniversary [100]

“Those petit fours look so luscious, Sandy,” Eva said. “They must have five hundred calories each.”

Sandy smiled. “Thank you! I thought we all deserved a special treat for the anniversary of our club.”

Jill shook her head. “My doctor told me to avoid sugar. Honestly Sandy. We’re all too old to splurge like this. You should have made something more suitable.

“Geez,” Sandy said. “You ladies are–”

“Hey hey!” Norm shouted. “Are we all ready to draw names for our partner swap?”

Sandy, Eva, and Jill rushed toward the front of the room, forgetting all about the petit fours.

~*~

May 2 Prompt ~ The Haunted Wordsmith

3-2-1 Quote Me

Di of Pensitivity 101 has kindly invited me to participate in this round, which is on the theme of inner beauty. Thank you, Di! 💖

These quotes appeal to the rebel in me. I appear to blend in, but so often I “fly away” to another place, a universe of pure words where superficial appearances don’t matter and only inner beauty shines (or not). The older I get, the more frequently I float off into daydreams.

Now I’m supposed to tag three bloggers to continue the challenge…

How about you!

And you there in the back?

And also you trying to slouch down and hide. Mm hmm. Yep. Gotcha! 😂

Tea Talk

I like to believe that I retain a youthful outlook on life, but I must yield to the facts. I’m a picky old lady!

Forex, let’s take tea, my favorite hot beverage. In my 20s, I dgaffed what kind of tea I drank… it was all fine. But as I’ve matured, my tastes have narrowed considerably. Unless it’s near bedtime, I want only black tea, and I prefer it flavored with orange spice. Occasionally, we can omit the orange spice and substitute something else yummy, such as almond or vanilla, but plain black? Meh.

Confession: I carry a supply of black/ orange teabags in my purse just in case I need hot tea when out of the house.

Cat? ✅

Homebody? ✅

Fusspot? ✅

Show & Tell

Warning: this turned into a rambling pointless bunch of jabbering. More than usual. 😂

Melanie haz questions:

1. Was the last thing you read digital or print?

I’m not counting online “news,” since that’s like reading cereal boxes. Actually, it would probably be more informative to read cereal boxes (note to self: buy some Cap’n Crunch). The last book I read on my Kindle was Not Quite Dating, which I already reviewed for the alphablog and am now done with all those posts, yay! So, that leaves Us Magazine, which hits my mailbox every Saturday. Why? I dunno! I’m certainly not paying for it. Somehow, a free subscription has been gifted to me and it shows up every week. I spend a couple minutes paging through and then toss it. Can’t remember anything much about this one except the spread of celebs in their wine colored dresses. Every issue has two pages near the front with a clothing theme. I do like themes. Oh, Kate Hudson was in this issue too. She’s 40 and happy. I’m happy she’s happy cuz I like her.

2. Are you more an extrovert or introvert?

According to the definition, I’m an introvert. My friends also call themselves introverts, but they always want to get together, which I find curious. Shouldn’t they need to spend lots of time alone, as I do? Granted, I have been more social than normal lately due to Game of Thrones, but that’s temporary. It’ll be over in a month. There is something particularly compelling about the ending to this dramatic and complex show that makes it fun to watch and discuss with others. Most of the time however I have no need for that and prefer to watch things alone. I crave alone time to think and read and write in peace and quiet. It recharges me. Too much peopling makes me literally crazy and I feel the air getting so heavy with noise and vibration and other people talking moving breathing that my body will crush and implode if I don’t get away.

3. How is your life different from what you imagined as a younger person?

When I was a teenager, I imagined myself becoming a career-focused professional, possibly a scientist. I wasn’t dreaming of marriage and children, but that is what I did. Next, I assumed I’d be married for the rest of my life; when I divorced, I thought I should find someone else. It didn’t occur to me until relatively recently that I would spend my life alone, but now that I’ve accepted it, I’m fine. It might be the ideal state for me, even.

4. Do you think about dying?   Does death scare you?  Why or why not?

I think about it a lot. It used to terrify me ~ when it first hit me that I would die and be erased, I freaked out. I was 12 and in a car with my parents coming back to NJ after visiting peeps in Ohio. I knew earlier that I would die, of course, but the impact of the erasure didn’t affect me until that moment. I mentioned I was upset and my parents dismissed my concerns. For a long time, I was angry at them over this, but I’ve come to understand they did the best they could.

I didn’t sleep for a year ~ at least, this is how I remember it. I stumbled through the days, exhausted but somehow not letting on I had this enormous burden. And I must have slept some or I would have died or become ill, but I remember all that year lying awake utterly terrified, making words out of words in my head. My schoolwork wasn’t affected, so no one knew or cared.

Eventually, I grew to live with the bleak erasure knowledge. It’s what keeps me sympathetic to religious believers. Of course you would take the comfort of an afterlife option if it were intellectually available to you! You’d have to be nuts not to grab onto that if there were any way to make sense of it. Unfortunately, I can’t make it fit into my logical brainspace. I wish I could.

Lately though, I’m not so afraid any longer. Maybe it’s because I am just so damn tired of being in pain every day. At least that will stop, which is something to look forward to, blissful non-awareness of aches and migraines. I also won’t have to think about all the things I’ve failed to accomplish, what a freaking relief. Not to mention all the mistakes I’ve made, gahhh. All erased from MY mind, since there won’t be any more “my mind.” And if others criticize or gossip, I won’t know, so I won’t care. Nice!

Plus, things are getting old as I’m getting old. Samey same same same. Sure, I still enjoy stuff, but meh. As someone I once loved said: “Do I really care about seeing the millionth issue of the New York Times?”

It’s his birthday today, btw. Happy birthday to the man who broke my heart. Still much older than I am. Still living in a big lonely house with his wife and their money. Now we’re all unhappy, great.

5. Gratitude challenge: find something you are thankful for in nature.

California mountains and beaches and sunsets and flowers, of course…

R is for Romancing [A2Z]

Romancing the Stone is an adventure romcom starring Kathleen Turner and Michael Douglas. I mentioned it in my review of the romance novel Heart of Fire because that story also involved a heroine trekking down to the jungle, etc. But in RTS we have a city girl (a romance novelist!) who is not an archaeologist and is totally unprepared to brave the dangers of Columbia. However, off Joan goes to rescue her sister, who’s being held for ransom by some baddies.

Joan encounters Jack (popular name for protags), who is also seeking the treasure map Joan needs to deliver to her sister’s kidnappers. Naturally, Jack is the antithesis of everything Joan dreams of in a man, but she changes her mind yada. I’m not too impressed with this storyline in my twilight years, since it mirrors reality too painfully ~ woman having to adapt to man instead of the other way around. In real life, you so often end up alone despite contorting or erasing your self to please Mr. Man, or you wish you were alone.

I mean, how many times are we going to need a snarky macho dude with lightning-quick reflexes to chop off a deadly snake’s head while we are trying to have a convo with him about something important to our heart? I’d rather have the empathetic verbally adept guy with mediocre snake-chopping skillz. Yes, I understand that it only takes the one deadly snake… so you spend your life adapting to snarky jerk just in case there’s ever a snake, and you never find anyone to fucking hear what you have to say.

Be that as it may, RTS is still a fun flick, and Danny DeVito is always hilarious.

Sorry to have digressed into a mini rant in the middle of this thrilling review series that no one cares about! 🙄😂🤪