Typical day in my favorite coffee shop.
“We’re sorry Sir, but we don’t have a wifi connection since this morning,” said the barista when I ordered my regular brewed coffee.
Around 1:30 pm every afternoon, I am in my favorite coffee shop. It is my anti-stress therapy., I go to my favorite coffee shop. It’s my anti-stress therapy.
It is also my way of getting away from the boredom of home, and to do part of my writing time.I do it for two reasons: First, to get away from the boredom of home, and, Second, to do my writing.
Not that my home is lifeless and non-exciting. My helper sees to it that I have a load of both. She never does anything unless told, and she always changes every instruction given her.
Thanks to her, my home is a place of constant stress. She makes the anti-hypertension pill I take every morning practically useless.
Well, nobody’s perfect…
Surprisingly all I said was, “Aw shucks, I will be spending an entire afternoon doing nothing. No writing, no surfing, no nothing.”
I would have bitched and fumed and complained to High Heavens for denying me my little pleasures in such circumstances. It was a catastrophe. But all I did was shrug my shoulders.
As a writer, like all writers, I have become a wifi junkie. It is my umbilical cord to the outside world. I can’t imagine life without it. Without a connection I would wilt and die, like a plant denied of water for so long.
But aging carries with it some bits of wisdom, and wisdom dictates that there is no sense in fretting over things I have no control of, and to improvise when things are not as expected, like today.
So I ordered my coffee and found me a place to get settled and started ruminating.
Where’s the Toilet:
The first thing that came to mind was how to get to the nearest toilet as fast as possible.
Four days ago, I ate something that gave me a bum stomach. Since then I have been having a slight pain in my gut, and off-schedule bowel movements.
It’s unlike regular diarrhea that comes in torrents. Mine was squirts of soft stool that beckons me to the toilet more often than usual.
So while slowly enjoying my coffee, my mind was busy monitoring the slightest tremor – like a volcanologist keeping close watch of an active volcano – of my stomach.
I carefully put up a toilet strategy for a quiet but fast exit, just in case. Dirtying my pants in the middle of a crowded coffee shop is totally unacceptable even for an elderly like me.
I am sure you know how it feels. It’s kind of sitting on smoldering coal. You have little beads of perspiration on your forehead, fervently hoping that you will have sufficient time to make a clean getaway before eruption starts.
With my strategy safely tucked in place, the next concern is making use of the rest of the afternoon.
With no wifi to do Internet things, I had to improvise.
Old Age – an Age of Revelations:
I went back up to my laptop which, without a connection, was as useful as an Apple2e, my first desktop.
But it can still give my thoughts some form and substance.
As I stared into the blank screen, a lot of age-related revelations started pouring in.
For example, aside from my lower back pains, and my knee pains, I now know that my stomach could no longer tolerate an avocado smoothie left in the ref for more than three days.
I also realized that my days are getting scarcer while I still have a lot of things to do.
I don’t want to bow out feeling sorry for not having done the things I have always wanted to do.
Born to be better:
You and I are born to be better, to live beyond our self-imposed expectations.
No, you don’t have to run the Boston marathon, or a champion in an age-based weightlifting competition (though nothing is stopping you from doing them).
But you can do a lot better on things you passionately care about. You can do a lot better if you are not so scared of getting out of your comfort zone, of your self-doubt.
You are too scared to fail, afraid to be ridiculed. You think you are not good looking enough, not masculine enough, not rich enough, or intelligent enough.
Maybe you are right. Maybe you are the ugliest dumb ass in the neighborhood. But should you accept that for the rest of your life? To mope and sulk until you are buried six feet beneath the ground?
For what it’s worth, nobody ever succeeded by talking a walk in the park. Nobody ever achieved happiness by wishing to be happy.
You have to work for it. You have to have a sweat in your brows to achieve a fulfilling life.
Nobody succeeded because he was born rich, strong, good looking, or intelligent.
Every endeavor of man is littered with people who think they are born to succeed; that they have a birthright to fame.
No. Success is only bestowed on people who believed in themselves; people who surmounted all the difficulties they encountered along the way. People who, despite having fallen so many times, got back up and continued with the race; people who never gave up.
I want to be recognized as a good writer. I don’t know how long it will take to get there, but I must get there.
I want to see places I have never been to before. I don’t know if I can cover them all, but I must set foot on those that are on top of my bucket list.
I don’t want to go remorseful of not having seen the places I am curious about. Before I go, I want to give a good shot at things I’ve always wanted to do.
You may think these as too ambitious. Maybe yes, maybe no. But it is definitely a lot better than gluing my butt on my sofa, watching inane soap operas.
In closing, let me pose this question to you.
When the time comes for people to toss dirt to cover you, would you want them to simplay say,
“He That he was a good man, a good father, and a good husband?”
“He lived a full life, always on the go, always trying to do more, discover new things, and be of value to others?”
Maybe it doesn’t matter to you. But it does matter to those you left behind.