“I am too young to be called wise and I am too old to be called young.”

Today is winter warm. The sun is shining and the sky is pale blue. In all respects it is a pretty day.

This morning I had a burst of energy. The laundry got put away, and the next load of laundry is leaning against the cellar door. I expect I’ll wash it later. I brought the vacuum up from the cellar. I washed a few cups and glasses. I even got dressed. It has already been quite a day.

Growing up, I never learned any household skills. My mother did everything. She even made our beds. When I was first on my own and the washing machine buzzed, I had no idea why. I took out the clothes, wrung them close to being dry and put them on the line. I had an apartment my junior and senior years in college. Almost everything I ate came from a can. Dinty Moore’s Beef Stew was a favorite. It had everything: meat, potatoes, and vegetables. I ate a lot of spaghetti with jarred sauce. I also ate several meals of hot dogs and hamburgers. They are still two of my favorites. When I graduated from college, I could wash clothes and understand the buzzer. I could sort of cook. I could also teach English.

If, when I was 11 or 12, I was asked what my life would be like when I was retired, I would have had trouble answering. Being old enough to retire was way beyond my ability to imagine. Even being in my 20’s seemed really far away., but I was sure of a few things. I’d travel the world. I’d write books about my travels. My life would be exotic. Auntie Mame and I would be kindred spirits.

Okay, how’d I do? I’ve traveled the world. Though there is still so much of it to see, I’ve done well. I’ve traveled on three continents. I have lived in Africa, an amazing adventure, an exotic adventure. I haven’t written a book, but I do write. That’s sort of a half-done. I never became an Auntie Mame. She was so flamboyant I could never pull off her style. I live for comfort. I suspect Auntie Mame would be horrified with my wardrobe.

Some things I’ve learned have amazed me. Cooking and baking are two of them. Doing needlepoint and crewel are two others. Never did I see any domesticity in my future. My 12- year-old self would laugh, heartily.


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4 Comments on ““I am too young to be called wise and I am too old to be called young.””

  1. Caryn Says:

    Hi Kat,
    Auntie Mame would probably not be horrified at your wardrobe. She was very open-minded about other people’s choices. I suspect that she would recognize you as a kindred spirit so you might be closer to that goal than you thought.

    There are things I’ve learned that I never expected I would learn. All the horse activities and terrier trials were things that I wouldn’t have considered doing unless I fell into them by accident which is pretty much what happened. Latin dancing is another accidental talent I acquired along with photography, kendo, iado, and tai chi.
    I’m a strong believer in Joseph Campbell’s idea that doors will open and unseen hands will help you on your path. They’ve apparently been pushing me hither and yon all my life. 🙂

    It was a reasonably lovely winter day up here. I walked around the block with the dogs this afternoon. I hadn’t planned on walking around the block so I wasn’t wearing a coat and had only flip-flops on my feet. It wasn’t bad. I only got slightly uncomfortably cold by the time we got back to the house.

    Enjoy the day.

    • katry Says:

      Hi Caryn,
      Thanks! I like that she would recognize me as a kindred spirit. She is one of my cinematic female heroes.

      The only thing of which I was certain was I would travel. That was a vow I made in the sixth grade. That I would live in Africa never entered my head let alone that I would turn into a good cook who can cook just about anything. I love what has happened in my life.

      You were about 5˚ warmer than down here. I just came back from an errand, and it was cold outside.

      Have a great evening!

  2. olof1 Says:

    It is snowing here again but it’ll be so warm that it won’t stay for long. I just wish the weather could make up its mind 🙂

    We had to start easrly with chores in my home and to be honest, we were better than our mother doing them 🙂

    I don’t think I had a clue to what I would do at all 🙂 Retirement was as You say so far away that I’m not sure I actually knew what it meant 🙂 I still don’t know what to do but I know this much, I will enjoy the first month to the fullest, doing absolutely nothing at all 🙂

    have a great day!


    • katry Says:

      We’ll get rain tomorrow but north of us will get snow. I’m mot complaining.

      My mother never made us do chores, and she did them herself every day except she didn’t vacuum or dust on weekends. Even with 4 kids, she kept the house neat and clean.

      I always figured I’d retire when I was 64 or 65. Imagine my surprise when I was able to retire at 57. I have loved being retired, even when I do nothing. Maybe that’s the best part!

      Have a great day!!

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