My normally calm husband was in an agitated state. Did you see that, he wanted to know, and then rushed on to explain that when he opened the hood of my car to check the windshield washer fluid, a cat jumped in his face. He was muttering about a near heart attack and I was thinking how strange it was because we haven’t seen cats in our area for years. Yes, strange.
I’m pole walking. Not to be confused with pole dancing, which is beyond me by thirty years and thirty pounds – okay, forty.
A line of people striding through the park this summer gripping what looked like ski poles had me rubbernecking down the main drag. Then I read a timely article on the benefits of this exercise. Aha! My enthusiasm swelled. I could burn 46% more calories walking – something I enjoyed doing anyway – with poles. Count me in.
After twenty years of remote country living, it was a shock to be thrust into a hubbub of friendly, nodding, waving, dog loving, nature enthusiasts. This summer we waved to more people than the royal family.
Who would have thought that a forty-foot box with a dozen windows and a covered verandah could provide such bliss? We took the plunge and bought a ‘summer place’. A park model with all the conveniences of home, even a built-in desk so there was no excuse for me to miss a deadline.
Kids hated having braces on their teeth and old geezers would never admit to needing a hearing aid. Well, all that has changed.
Now kids beg for braces – change colours from lime green to black or pretty pink every few weeks. Maybe they consider having their school colours or prefer to show support for their favourite sports team every time they open their mouth.
I’m a happy napper. Not every day, mind you. Maybe only three or four times a week.
It’s a habit, and from all I’ve read, it’s a healthy habit. It’s been called everything from having a snooze, grabbing forty winks, nodding off, dozing, catnapping, and even re-charging the batteries.
Could 90 be the new 70? Now, more than ever, nonagenarians enjoy good health and active lifestyles. More than two or three times in the last few weeks, I overheard conversations about birthday parties for those celebrating the Big Nine-Oh. Oh sure, Aunt Sally or Uncle Joe always had a little reception to honour a special birthday, but I’m not talking tea and biscuits in the Home’s activity room – not that there’s anything wrong with it. The shindigs I heard about were elegant affairs. Picture a formal wedding and you’ll get the idea. And why not?
Social media was abuzz with people vowing to curtail all travel ‘down there’. We’d already invested in our trip so …enough already.
A friend was recovering from surgery and needed a pair of comfortable walking shoes. We hit the stores – my least favourite pastime. Our first stop seemed like a winner. She found a pair she loved. But they didn’t have her size. Sure, they could order them but she wanted them now. We’ve all been stung by that back-order nightmare.
My dog wants to say hello, she told me. I looked from her to her dog. It was a strange moment. I mean, how often does someone stop you on the street to make introductions…to their dog? Wish I’d said something clever like, Oh, I’d hoped the attraction was mutual, or at least pulled out my phone for a selfie. Come to think of it, why didn’t I?
The woman explained. She noticed you earlier at the other end of the street. And when she saw you now she got excited. She likes you. I can tell. She patted her rump affectionately – the dog’s rump.
Our lives took a turn when an entertaining habit declined into obsessive enslavement.
Life in the country had been good. Lots of time spent outdoors in the fresh country air. Sometimes the air was a little too fresh, if you get my drift. We kept busy maintaining the yard and the gardens. Playing with the neighbor dog, Lola. Talking about the weather. You know, regular country stuff.