Now my predict-a-text is really second-guessing me. I wrote "a", as I began my title and it leapt in with "-hunting we will go." No, no, a little later, is all I meant.
I returned to yesterday's blog late in the day and now it's early the next day. That's what I get when I go to bed too early. I sleep enough and then no more. I don't enjoy most of the thoughts that come unbidden, so I get up and bring tea back to bed. I do the weather, my diary, check Weight Watchers, read over the piece I've been working on, fine-tuning as I go, plan my day and menus and here I am. It's too early to swim so you are stuck with me.
I have a friend, younger than I - she won't be 80 until September - who is at a frightening crossroad of her life. I woke thinking about her. She has lived, as they say a rich, full, productive life, and she is wondering what to do now. Her children are grown with families of their own, and they are good to her and she loves her grandchildren and sees them. Most of them live in the same city, a great blessing. Her brilliant husband had an accident several years ago now and never recovered his full competence. She has been his primary caregiver but the care has proven physically impossible for her to continue, dangerous for both of them. He has entered a long-term and very pleasant facility and she visits him regularly, like every day. What now?
Certainly she has some welcome time to herself and she is very resourceful. Sadly, one of her favourite resources is slipping away. She has macular degeneration and cannot see to read a book. Okay, she has an electronic reader with back light and big print and she's going to investigate audio books. But she's looking at ten to fifteen years of what? (Her mother died in her 90s.) She wants to redefine her purpose in the life she has left. She says it's all very well for me because I have my writing, I still have a goal.
Yes, well, I said, all my life I've been trying to climb this ladder I set against a house and what if I've set it against the wrong house? Too late. Don't look down!
So we both must look ahead. And here I am, writing a book about aging. I should have thought of this. Well, I have, in a way, but not so closely. I'm still working on my own ladder and haven't given enough thought to other peoples' rungs. What do I say? Climb with me. The best is yet to be. Well, maybe not the best. But it's pretty good when you consider the alternative.
Maurice Chevalier is supposed to have said that. I'm not sure; was his English that good?