What does getting old look like to you? Is it the women in their 70s who have had work done and can no longer move their faces? Is it the natural blondes in their 60s? Is it the wrinkles that appear on the side of your eyes? The spots on your hands? The inability to get out of a car or up from a chair or bed or couch without groaning and creaking? Using a handrail when walking up a flight of stairs? Wearing shoes that are comfortable and not at all stylish? Taking your glasses off to read? Yes, these are all examples of what “getting old” look like.
Should my neck not be able to sway back and forth in the wind? Probably not. Will I have surgery to make it look better? Probably not.
Last week I wrote a little bit about the sadness surrounding not having a visiting day to go to. I got to see bits and pieces of other family’s joyous reunions on a beautiful sunny day. Smiling faces, not a hair out of place (how do those ladies do that???). Everyone getting along for the allotted amount of time. Facebook is never more Fake-book than on visiting day.
Wouldn’t it be great if we could get some audio of the discussions in the car on the way up to camp and then on the way back from camp? Those are conversations I would like to be privy too. But it’s the Nine Days, so we won’t go there. And yes, I am finally getting to where I am going with this week’s ramblings.
Instead of continuing to mourn the loss of visiting day, Husband #1 and I decided to go on a hike. As I have mentioned before, a “hike” in my vernacular is really a “walk.” I tell Husband #1 it is a hike just because it sounds a little more adventurous. As you know, we are all about the adventure. The adventure of finding the closest bench in the shade… (Insert fake laughter here.) I have had a stack of those 201 magazines that I have slowly but surely been getting through and in one of the winter issues, I came across an article about the 8 Best Winter Hikes. Ok, it is now summer, but I assumed these places would be even easier to hike without the snow and sleet and ice. The first thing I look for in finding the perfect hike is the word EASY next to the word LEVEL. Anything that says MODERATE or DIFFICULT is quickly passed over. Also, any hike that recommends thick soled boots is quickly passed over. We also ignore anything with the words altitude, rocky terrain, loose rocks, climbing robes, or pickaxes. I don’t need a beautiful view as I am falling down from a high altitude holding onto my climbing rope after I have killed Husband #1 with the pickaxe. That is just not the relaxing Sunday vibe I am going for.
In any event, we found the perfect hike. Located in scenic Lyndhurst, New Jersey. Level Easy, paved paths, lots of benches and some of New Jersey’s most beautiful wildlife. Stunning views of the New York City skyline and, for some reason, it mentioned the stunning views of the New Jersey Turnpike. Who knew those were stunning as well? Hundreds of species of birds, an occasional fish, and an alligator that actually turned out to be half of a tire that someone must have thrown into the beautiful swamp. Interestingly enough, the “nature path” we followed is built on top of a landfill that was covered up with some kind of cloth and then thousands of pounds of topsoil so you wouldn’t know that you were climbing on a hill of garbage. Yes, welcome to New Jersey.
Anyway, I made a picnic (tuna sandwiches and Fanta, of course. Very romantic) and off we went on our hike. As we pulled up, we saw some of the other people that decided to spend their day at this park. I am happy to report that we were not the oldest ones there, but we got a bird’s eye look into our future. Couples wearing matching shorts and binoculars — just adorable. As we approach our 27th wedding anniversary, may God grant us the ability to grow old together and in decent enough health to always be able to hike the easy trails, and eat our sandwiches with our own teeth. Amen.
Banji Ganchrow of Teaneck is looking forward to the next session of Camp Babka. She needs to get to a good zoo before the summer is over!