Apologies to my loyal readers (all 5 of you) for the long delay between posts. I’ve spent the last 3 weeks working on my Ukraine report, a truly interesting country fraught with political turmoil and courage…just ask me anything you want to know!
Now back to some of my aimless observations...
I love movies and have more than 13 movie screens within a two block radius. So… one Monday afternoon on the spur of the moment I went to a 1:30 showing of “The Big Short”. I always leave lots of time just in case the line is around the block (at 1:30 pm, what’s wrong with me?!). I wound up carefully choosing just the right seat in a very large and very empty movie theater at least a half hour before the gazillion trailers and previews were set to begin. At the start of the feature there were approximately 25 people in the entire theater, 3 of them scattered throughout my row. Amazingly a woman came in 10 minutes after the movie started and stopped to ask if the seat next to me was taken-no it wasn’t but neither were the other 400 empty seats in the theater(I didn’t say that out loud!). Sure enough she sat down right next to me and immediately started chomping away on a jumbo box of popcorn, after finishing the popcorn and annoying me for what seemed like forever, she proceeded to open and crunch away on a large box of M&M’s, THEN she unwrapped and happily sucked on a lollipop (a grown woman, seriously, you can’t make this stuff up!). I found myself becoming fascinated by her sugar tolerance not focused on the movie.
OK, I know people are allowed to sit wherever they want and eat whatever they choose and you are probably asking yourself why didn’t I just get up and move… I have no idea! Now I have to go back and see the movie when I can actually hear the dialogue!
- move immediately if an annoying eater sits down next to me
- bring extra coats and hats to leave on every seat in the immediate vicinity
- or wait for the movie to come out on Netflix!
PLEASE RESOLVE NOT TO :
text when I’m behind you, especially on the subway steps, I’m always in a hurry!
take up two seats on a crowded subway train (or even if it’s not crowded).
clog up the checkout counter while you slowly and absentmindedly put your credit card or cash away, or even worse…. get to the checkout counter and dig through your oversized bag to find your wallet (how come you don’t know what you are required to do when you get to the cashier?!).
Push in front of everyone waiting for the traffic to clear at the corner so you can wait for the traffic to clear first!
eat your onion laden salad or sandwich on my subway car or on my flight.
forget that your iphone flashlight is still on after you’ve finished reading the restaurant menu or found a seat in the darkened theater, it’s shining right in my face!
AND to all my wonderful friends, family (and loyal readers:-) I will trust you to make your own resolutions, but to me you are perfect! Keep being your loving, supportive and amazing selves. I am truly grateful to each of you and send my wishes for many more years filled with good health, happiness and the opportunity to fulfill your dreams.
In my attempt to be a disciplined blogger I’ll begin this post by addressing the first point in my December 25th blog which, of course you remember was, “how do I fill the days without just filling the days?”.
Well….in addition to devotedly attending pilates sessions two mornings a week all year I signed up for two weekly discussion groups, one focused on social and political issues and the other on foreign relations. Not only am I very interested in the topics but they had the additional attraction of beginning the first week of my “retirement”. Next I signed up for a contemporary art appreciation class at the New School. It turned out to be an amazing learning experience for someone who knows very little about the art scene. My friend Merry who introduced me to the New School class also introduced me to some great women and we wound up having lunch every week before the class (maybe my favorite part of the day!) Our class homework consisted of visiting galleries and museums exhibiting the work of artists chosen by the instructor as topics for his weekly lecture.
In addition to becoming an art expert (hah!) I discovered that it’s important to pay attention to the museum and gallery hours-it’s not fun to “shlep” all the way downtown to the Whitney on a Tuesday only to discover Tuesday is the one day of the week the Whitney is closed! I also discovered that gallery visits feel less intimidating when I am fulfilling a homework assignment rather than, as on previous occasional visits, fighting the uneasy feeling that I was taking up space when I was only window shopping. Without the guilt I felt the gallery staff seem almost appreciative that I paid them a visit!
It was very surprising but only logical that by filling my days with things that interest me I would meet many new likeminded and interesting people (hence numbers 1 & 2 on my list converge). This happy blending has provided opportunities to attend events I might never have known about or, even if I did, never planned to attend. One such event immediately springing to mind was a Saturday evening performance of gospel music performed by artists who had never previously sung professionally. At this concert, held in an auditorium in the heart of Harlem on a hot July evening, I once again came face to face with the magic of embracing new experiences even if , at first, they appear to be out of my comfort zone.
I was looking forward to starting this blog in partnership with my pal Renee on January 1st, 2015 my first day of retirement… life got in the way for both of us and it is now December (almost January 2016) are we finally ready?!
I loved my work as the Executive Director of a non profit and learned so much about the human spirit (more about this later) and spent two years planning my “stepping down” (notice avoidance of the word “retire”). I was positive I was going to be the first person who ever said “what am I going to do to fill up the days” rather than the ad nauseam “when did I ever have time to work?”. My inner scream was constantly being activated by well-meaning people telling me how much I would love this next step. Full disclosure, I didn’t step down until I was almost 70….ish, how did that happen? When did people stop looking at me in amazement when I said I was a grandmother and when, despite adopting my youngest looking stance and expression, did young “upstarts” begin offering me their seat on the subway?!
What do I plan to blog about ?
- Filling the days without just filling the days
- Meeting new and interesting people
- Tips on discovering how to get along with yourself, sort of.
- Enjoying new opportunities-learning to embrace them rather than thinking of them as obligations I got myself into and can’t get out of because the tickets were purchased or because I’m bringing the wine.
- Senior (hate that word) beauty and health tips that may not work but aren’t harmful and may even be worth the effort!