Friday, 27 September 2013

WordPress Daily Prompt: A Bend in Time

When you’re giddy with excitement, does time speed up? Slow down? Tell us about the experience of anticipation. 

Photographers, artists, poets: show us WAITING.

Waiting for the train Solothurn station

Waiting for the train, perhaps with excitement that a dear friend is arriving, someone you have not seen for some time. You might be departing for the airport, taking a long wanted holiday or just a shopping trip in another town. Under the worst circumstances, the train will take you to your work place. Or course it might be that you have killed someone and are using the train to escape.

A Bend in Time: yes, with time my back seems to have acquired a permanent bend. Me? I am cool these days. When I was a kid I could not wait until the visitors arrived, especially if they were bringing someone of my age. Christmas seemed to take a long while to arrive : a family party on Christmas Day meeting my cousins, aunts and uncles and having a good time. There was plenty to drink, to eat and of course the presents. The supreme hit was no-one really remained sober, although come to think of it they were all approaching golden oldie age.

I could not wait to get rid of my two bumps which eventually arrived in the shape of two sons two sons in due course, wondering what sort they would be, the colour of their eyes (ok they all have blue eyes when born), and if they have hair, will it be curly or straight?

The years pass by, working years, cooking years, and housekeeping years:  there is always something to do. Of course looking forward to events is still there but the day eventually arrives that you have looked forward to all your (working) life; the day when you do not have to arise in the morning to arrive in the office. The day when you can at last do what you want to do and not what you have to do, known as retirement. You even get paid for it, the problem being that apart from the usual cost of living, what do you want to spend it on? New clothes are ok, but mine go now more in the direction of jeans (short or long according to season), t-shirts and sneakers. High heels, skirts, costumes – forget it. Perhaps once a year for a celebration of something, otherwise practical shopping gear. Your parading days in the office are finished. And one rule: never visit the office after you are retired. No-one really wants you there, you have done your deed and now someone else is sitting at your desk. You now belong to yesterday; the tomorrows belong to those that are glad to see you are no longer there.

I survived and I have arrived in the happy retirement grounds. Even survival is something to be thankful for. I drove to and fro to work every week day and with my perfect knowledge of the roads and car, it is not so natural that I came through it all. I could have caught some sort of dreaded modern disease, such as chicken ‘flu, been the victim of a bank robbery.

I am now a golden oldie and I can do what I want, but where is the excitement? What am I waiting for (except for my Pulitzer/Nobel/Man Booker prize for blog of the year). I am waiting for the Daily Prompt from WordPress which more or less arrives every day at 14.00 hours. Admittedly I am then taking my midday retired sleep, but all the more a surprise when I arise, fit up my computer, switch it on and see the task of the day. I do not get excited about it, just take it in my stride.

Today is Friday so I might clean the shower this afternoon: just a matter of an hour. No, I do not become excited about cleaning the shower, but just a little excited knowing that when it is done I do not clean it again for another week.

In olden grey haired days, when your joints do not move with the supple lubrication they had ten years ago, when your daily routines consist of taking the right tablets at the right moment, time passes at a supersonic speed. I think you can compare it with a Formula 1 race, but no-one really wins. You are even too exhausted to savour the rewards. The only anticipation today is waiting for the result of a doctor examination, knowing whether you should start thinking about writing your testament today or tomorrow.

My father reached his 98th birthday this week. I can still remember visiting him and my mother in England with Mr. Swiss and the kids. We would make a sightseeing trip around London, go shopping, have a meal somewhere in the West End and there would be perhaps a family gathering. It is as if it all happened yesterday, but it was many years ago. My mother passed on, my father can no longer walk so well.

I no longer look forward with excitement to anything or cannot wait until something happens. I just take it easy, little steps at a time. Of course there are various things I look forward to, but to be quite honest, growing old is not something fantastic. I have often heard golden oldies say if they only knew what they knew now when they were twenty or thirty years younger and I have joined the club. Life would be so much easier.

Not wanting to end this blog on such a dark and dismal note, I hope to be going to London next month for a week to see my dad, all going well. You can all look forwards to not reading my blogs for a week while I am away. You will be warned in due time. My three felines have now reached the golden oldie age of 11 and 12 years, being quite ancient in human years, but it does not
seem to bother them. They sleep twenty-three hours a day and spend the 24th hour searching for a place to sleep. They are all eating well, throw up a hairball in between to show that their reactions are still 100%, and even have a hissing session now and again. The only thing they look forward to and cannot wait, is a plate of tuna fish on Wednesday and Sunday evening.

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  1. When I'm anticipating travelling over the Atlantic to see Joanne and have a holiday with her, time most definately seems to go slowly.

    During a typical working week, the eagerly-awaited weekends seem to flash by in an instant!!

    It seem quite a few people have been waiting for me to make an appearance on FB!! Their wait is over :-))

    1. I noticed Mitch - sent you an invite to my Angloswiss site, although it is mostly reposting from WordPress. I think you set up the record for friends, I have never seen so many friends made in such a short time in FB - we were all waiting for you.