The longer I live, the more beautiful life becomes.
--Frank Lloyd Wright
|Sunset - The Stone House on the Hill|
My 65th birthday, celebrated in Greece on Monday, was one that will be remembered as being both bigger and better. Let me tell you why. . .
Age is a bad traveling companion.
|Hundred year old olive trees|
|Speeding towards Hydra island a few weeks ago|
It is an age that comes with constant reminders of how fast one is speeding towards ‘the ultimate finish line’. About six months ago the first 'red flags'; the paperwork and forms began arriving to apply for retirement. In other words, I took the first steps towards becoming. . .ahem. . .a ‘pensioner’. How can that be?!?! (The good news is that next month my first 'pension' payment will be deposited into my bank account.)
Our last forwarded mail packet included a letter from the U.S. government. Inside was my Medicare card. . .the U.S. government’s mandatory health-care program for senior citizens. The directions said to put it in my wallet and never leave home without it. Thus,I am now a card-carrying old person as the card I carry identifies me as a Medicare recipient! (BTW, it doesn’t cover U.S. citizens outside the country.)
|A contemplative moment on Kefalonia island|
Bottom line: No longer is the world at my/our feet, just waiting to be explored on future travels, someday. Now, I am thinking of travel planning as a race against time:
'Let’s go (or do) while we are still able.'
'We can’t keep putting off (certain activity or outing); we need to do it while we still have hips and knees that work.'
'Let’s save that for when we are really old gummers.'
Travel and change of place impart new vigor to the mind.
-- Seneca, 4 BC Cordoba, Spain – 65 AD Rome, Italy
In recent years we’ve forgone those wrapped birthday gifts choosing instead a ‘birthday trip’ (what would you expect from travelers like us, right?) A mid-July birthday falls in the height of travel season and the height of high temperatures, so we’ve learned to delay my trips to a more tolerable time of year. On the other hand, why put off travel even for a month or so? Perhaps we should go somewhere soon. . .
|Gerolimeneas harbor - Peloponesse|
'Aging is an extraordinary process where you become the person you always should have been.'
-- David Bowie
|The Stone House on the Hill - July 16th, 2018|
Well, I decided to celebrate as I had planned to do a few years back.
[Back story for those of you new to the blog: We came to Greece to purchase our home in July 2014. Closing was set for the day before my birthday. I’d planned to celebrate the new home and the birthday at some Greek taverna, flinging my napkin and shouting, 'Opa!'. The deal fell through. We spend the birthday bouncing between the bank and hotel room, wiring our funds back to the U.S. Not the celebration I'd envisioned. Fast forward. . .]
So . . .I finally had that party at a Greek taverna. . .at the edge of the sea. . .within walking distance of our home.
|Voulimeneas taverna overlooks this beach|
|Let the party begin|
|The setting was perfect. . .Elena made sure everything else was as well|
|Bouquets came from my own Greek garden|
|The Scout picked the lemons from our tree and I made the cake|
|Friends and neighbors helped ease me into 65|
|Sunset from Voulimeneas taverna|
Age is irrelevant. Ask me how many sunsets I’ve seen, hearts I’ve loved, trips I’ve taken,
or concerts I’ve been t. That’s how old I am.”
That’s it for this week. Wish I could have invited you all to join us – what a party that would have been! But we do hope that where ever your travels – in real life or armchair – take you this week that you will find a reason to celebrate something. Fling a napkin into the air and shout, ‘Opa!’ – you’ll feel 10 years younger, I guarantee it!
Linking with:Through My Lens
Our World Tuesday
Travel Photo Thursday –
Best of Weekend