I often talk with my sister Eileen about aging while I’m driving. Even though she passed away more than 15 years ago, she still answers me, most of the time.
I tell her, “you wouldn’t like this, you know. Being in your eighties isn’t so easy!” “I know you were beautiful your whole life, but now you would wake up with your eyes swollen (as I do) for no reason. Your stomach would stick out no matter how thin you are and I’m pretty sure I’m shorter so you would be too. Our feet are funny now, and you know that small waist I used to brag about to you? It’s gone too!”
Sometimes there is an exercise that not only helps the body, but also clears your head and feeds your soul. Hiking in the mountains is one of them. To go in the forests and to think of nothing but your next step is so Zen and pure. You have no time to think of mundane realities that play a big part in your life – – only the next step. I love hiking and hope to do it until I can’t. When will that day come? I have no idea.
As much as I love the beach and the sand, that’s how much I love the mountains. I love the fresh air, the feeling of being away from everything and the strength that takes you every step. Hiking makes me feel I can do anything, if I put my mind to it. It makes me feel strong and, ok I’ll say it, young! I know. I know. I’m fooling myself, but if it feels good and it’s good for you, who does it hurt?
I’m in one of the most beautiful places on earth right now, Sun Valley, Idaho. The streams and the mountains and the Aspen trees shaking so gently in the breeze has me mesmerized. The town itself is wonderful, but the mountains really do it for me.
Even though, SV is beautiful, mountains anywhere will do the job and have throughout my life.
Hiking is it for me! Do it!
“The trees were friendly, they gave me rest and shadowed refuge. Slipping through them, I felt safe and competent. My whole body was occupied. I had little energy to think or worry.”
– Aspen Matis, Girl in the Woods: A Memoir
Sadly, I went to a memorial service last week for a dear friend of my kids. He was a great kid who had grown up next door. He was way too young to die! Then, I heard a friend of ours had died. A friend that had taken good care of herself. A good woman who had battled fiercely for her life. More sadness, I went to the Dr. and he said, “let’s look at some issues of yours when you return from your vacation. Just have a good time.” It was all too much!
I needed an escape from reality for a couple of hours, where you don’t think of anything, but instead listen to great music and look at pretty faces. The newest Woody Allen film always does it for me. It really doesn’t matter which one it is. Of course they’re not all Annie Hall. But they are close enough. There is always someone playing Woody and then he has a slew of the newest and prettiest faces in the business saying what he thinks about life. It’s a great gig for him and for us. He gets to do a movie a year and we always know there is another Woody Allen film right around the corner. I love the skylines of whatever city he is filming and invariably he ends up in the city he loves the most, New York. Every scene is a love letter and I get totally caught up in it. For two hours, I am his. I know what he thinks about love, death and sex (his favorite topics) because he says it in every film using different actors, in a different period, in a different city.
As we get older and we all are so vulnerable and looking for an escape, we need a good book, a great movie, or a wonderful concert. We need something to carry us away from reality and yesterday this did it for me.
See Café Society, it’s a good summer movie!
Tonight on television I watched the glass ceiling come tumbling down! I watched history being made and I was in awe. This was not about politics for me. This was about history. This was about my grandchildren growing up in an era where they have seen a black president be elected, serve, and be reelected as President of the United States of America, and a woman be nominated for that same highest post in the country.
They do not see anything unusual about this. When I grew up both of those were impossible feats! Both of those were not imaginable. Not for young girls, nor for young African American boys to even dream of. Not possible! Tonight it was not only possible, but a reality. I was chocked up from Donna Brazil on. We saw Bill Clinton in a whole new light, painting a picture of his wife as someone he chased after, as a mother, as a caring person and a change maker her entire life. As one commentator said, “The dots came together on Hillary tonight. Everything she has worked for her entire life led to this.”
Even with what we have all been through together in this country during the last few years – terrorists and shootings and brutality to black lives and blue lives – I still believe we are the greatest country in the world! Tonight made me proud to be an American again. Tonight Michelle Obama made me proud and cry, and was a model for all young women to aspire to. I’m sorry Donald Trump supporters, but after watching all the poison being spread like germs into the air last week I just felt sick.
Tonight, I thought, we have a chance! I cried with Meryl Streep, I cried with Alicia Keys. We can improve! We can try if we all pull together. We can make our world safe again with openness, and bridges and no more guns. Is that Polyanna? I don’t know, but I know it made me happier with these thoughts than the ones of hate I heard last week. I know politics is politics and you can’t believe everything anyone of them says, and believe me I know no one is perfect, but there is a difference between trying for some change with qualifications to do so and just self gratification.
We live in an amazing era. From medicine (where in my case I live with 9 stage IV tumors, and other diseases I would have died from 20 years ago), to all the technical advances that have changed our lives. From planning our visit to Mars, to finally hearing that crash of the glass ceiling. I’m overwhelmed with being an American and to have been able to live this long to see all these changes come to fruition. I was born in 1934 and I wonder what took so long? But then I’m grateful it’s here! I want to help. I want to make us better. I think we can do it.
I would only love to be able to see what our grandchildren will do with this world with all the new knowledge they have now and will have in their future.
You know what? I think they’ll do just fine!!!!
I thought this was the end of my blog but then I watched the other nights of the convention. Each speaker blew me away, including Hillary herself. The tone of the convention was elegant and eloquent! She provided us with what she stood for and what she will do as president and how. She said this all quietly and confidently! She showed (and beautifully, I felt) that every little girl can dream to be president and be taken seriously.
I didn’t mean for this to be a speech, but I am moved! America is still great!
BTW, if you haven’t guessed, I’m with her!!!!
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