I now look back to that wonderful meet I had with my buddies a week ago. It’s been a long time since our last get-together lunch. And Siena’s 14th floor condo home was still as lovely as ever with the same old view ---still breathtaking and mind-blowing view. I stayed by the window admiring the breathtaking panorama spread out before me while the rest of the ladies chattered on with their hello’s and hi’s. You won’t believe it but one hello means miles and miles of stories attached to it that you’ll never know where it began or ended. Anyway after my romance with the view tapered down I walked over to join them at the table with the lively chatter still in full swing.
Such a feast (quite predictably) Siena had prepared for us – grilled chicken on sticks, mushroom soup, lasagna, fresh vegetable salad, potato salad, and homemade pizza pie! Plus an assortment of desserts to choose from - fresh fruits, pastries, peanuts, candies, and ice cream. For drinks we could have either – fresh coconut juice, iced tea, lemonade, or a cola drink. Yummy!! Oh yes, that never gave us reason to leave the table up to the last hour of our meet. Coffee punctuated that sumptuous feast, but of course.
After saying grace led by Siena, we then pointed our forks at the one dish we wanted to taste first before the other mouthwatering dishes. And by unspoken consensus it was the – lasagna. Perfect, just perfect! Then I went on to get a little of this and a little of that remembering to eat slowly as I was sure that the conversation would stretch and I mean s-t-r-e-t-c-h. Oh boy!
The conversation was a potpourri of subjects, experiences, perceptions and insights. After all we haven’t seen each other for six months or so, I think. So a lot had accumulated in our respective lives in that span of time spread out between us. You’ll be surprised how sometimes so much can happen to us in just a month, a week, or a day.
So I was pleased at how the conversation was getting along. I love these ladies because they don’t gossip. Only when some dire news is heard about do they express their concern and sympathy but quickly ends right there as they accord due respect for its people and their lives.
I will try to snatch bits of the conversation which transpired over lunch. Forget that the chat was among ladies because the topics were generally what most of us would be concerned with. By the way, I posed a question to them and their answers can be seen below.
--- So how do you feel now at the threshold of your golden years?
Friend#1 - Ugh! Feeling new aches and pains in my bones --- Am looking at new pills in my purse along with my other stuff.
Friend#2 - Lonely. The children now have all grown and are living lives separate from me. They don’t need me anymore.
Friend#3 - Scared. I begin to wonder what the future holds for me now.
Ordinary question, familiar answers – and these could come from either man or woman. Age or aging is as regular as waking up in the morning -- happens to everybody. Life is all about being born, living, growing old, and dying.
Growing old may seem so depressing, dismal, and sad --- But only if we allow it to. The body may slow down, perhaps atrophy, but the mind does not nor the heart, not that fast anyway. It can be made to burst forth with fresh interests, ideas, inspiration, and even new dreams. It need not go stale --- but only if we do something about it. That can make a load of difference.
If health becomes an issue then one must strive to adopt healthy habits – healthy food, good regular exercise, and seek correspondingly food for the brain and for the heart and soul. If the children have began living their own separate lives then one must embark on a fresh quest for new interests, knowledge, and wisdom – engage in activities that would fill up the empty days of one’s life. If the thought of the unknown future seem so scary then one must teach oneself to learn how to live life one day at a time. A day would be enough to fill us up with sufficient joy, experience, and wisdom – same with sorrow, hurt, and worry. There is no need to carry tomorrow’s burdens today.
Two things one can do when confronted with age or aging. A choice must be made.
One is to sit back in our rocking chair and reminisce on the years gone by – relive those old memories of good times and loved ones, yearn for the good old days.
The other is to step out of that rocking chair, look out to the world outside, and appreciate what you have and where you are at. Embrace life anew. Thank God to be here. That is the biggest blessing of all.
Frankly, I don’t know how the ladies took this but I think I have given them something to ponder on in bed back in their respective homes.
We also talked about marriages --- its joys and sadness. But I think this would deserve its own space some time in the future. The views and insights presented were very interesting. Also there was talk about the corporate life (three of us were working girls while Siena was the princess in her golden tower Lolz) - its perks, frustrations, and buckets of stress. We discussed about friendships --- the good and bad ones we had, others we lost, and a few we still keep to this day.
It was a lovely day with the ladies and I wished that the next one would come soon. They shared the same sentiment too. Well, we made arrangements to meet in two weeks time, perhaps take our meet to a different venue – up in the mountain city of Tagaytay where the climate is cooler with the view of a volcano situated in the midst of a serene lake to boot. Now wouldn’t that be simply grand?!! Will post on that one. :-)
posted on Wednesday, April 18, 2007 8:38 AM