Dead Head

Captive in a comfy chair
in the resident’s lounge,
she serves me bitter coffee
with watery milk.
Not the way I like it.

The others stare absently
at their sippy cups,
remembering
the days of dancing
down the aisles,
deciding what’s for tea.
choosing favourites,
The ‘meals for two’ special offers
that came with a bottle of wine.
To share.

No alcohol here.
Dining room misery instead.
Tasteless food, mushy in my mouth,
school dinner puds
washed down with childhood squash,
all consumed to the tune
of coughing and cursing,
and the shout of instructions,
and endless questions from
lost minds.

Wheeled back to the room
for my ‘nap after lunch’
we pass the locked route to the garden.
The clematis needs pruning,
and the dead roses still droop on the bush
out there, in that life giving air
that once I breathed
in my own beloved space
of borders and pond,
and sandpits and slides.

I stare from the window
people pass below.
They hurry to work
clutching their coffees,
driving their cars,
catching buses,
pushing prams.
Their hectic lives an inconvenience
but what I wouldn’t give to
be busy once more.

 

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As you see me

IMG_0312Posted in response to the Daily Post weekly discovery challenge – this week’s theme ‘Portrait’.

Ok, I’ll fess up… I didn’t take the portrait, but I did take the picture of the portrait, if you see what I mean!

When my daughter told me that she’d received an old polaroid camera for her birthday, I was quite jealous. Enchanted by the idea of ‘instant pictures’ I remember badly wanting one when I was younger. Of course, that was way, way, before the digital camera age and now photographs are ten a penny and disposable so  I was surprised at how excited she was.

The film thingy’s are very expensive, and she was still getting used to the camera, and she warned me that the results were not so much ‘sharp’ as ‘interesting’ but in fact I love this shot.

I love the fact that, although you get the gist that its me, my features are blurred, and that she’s captured my expression of thoughtful bemusement at the world exactly how I would like it to be captured.  To put it bluntly – how I want other’s to see me.

The thought has been growing in my mind ever since it was taken.

I’ve always had problems trying to find a ‘suitable’ profile picture which encapsulates my overall demeanor without showing me baring my wonky teeth in an insane grin, or wrinkling up my eyes, or losing my real chin amongst the others.  Problem is, in my head I am still youthful, slim, and lovely so it’s always a bit of a shock to see the reality captured in a snap.

I have the same problem at the yoga studio, the one where there is mirrors.

‘oh blimey, who is that baggy old biddy who looks like a squishy sack of potatoes?’

‘oh poop, it’s me.’

I guess a lot of people of my age feel the same, and really, I’m fit and healthy so I shouldn’t worry about what I look like, right?

It sounds like a cliché, but speaking to my friends I gather I’m not alone in still feeling young on the inside whilst my body tells the bitter truth in photographs. It’s depressing.

So from now on I’m steering clear of the lens and you’ll just have to take my word for it that I’m a happy soul who moves my sylph like body with the grace of an angel and whose face is as blemish, and wrinkle free as an Egyptian sheet in a five star hotel. 😉

 

 

 

As time goes by

I can barely say it out loud, but I’m facing one of those big birthdays this year.  You know, one that ends in a  fat ‘ol zero. In my case, if you were counting your fingers you’d have had to go on to your second hand. Yep 60.  Big fat 60.

Of course, I’m not really 60, I’m really about 23.  Well, that’s how I feel (most days… Sometimes I feel 103).     The funny thing is, that I’m not thinking ‘my god, I’ll be 60 this year’, no, I’m thinking ‘my god, I’ve been eligible for saga holidays for ten years already’ and worse ‘my god, in ten years time I’ll be 70’ .  And the one sure fire thing about getting old is that ten years is most definitely not as long as it used to be.

I remember, in my youth, seeing a science programme where James Burke talked about the ‘relativity of time’.  And its true.  We all know that the ten minutes at the end of a working day can seem to drag on for hours, and yet, ten minutes lie-in under a snuggly duvet flies by in what seems seconds. Time can drag when you’re bored or race when your busy.

I can be blissfully unaware of time passing when I’ve nodded off on the sofa (a sure sign of advancing age, or perhaps too much partying??), waking up not knowing whether I’ve been asleep for five minutes or two hours.  Often the TV channel has been changed and I don’t realise it until half an hour later when I say ‘where’s that baddie bloke gone?’ and am told that that film had finished and we’re way into the next one now.

The other time when you are blissfully unaware of time, or anything else for that matter, is under anaesthetic.  They can move you about, prod you with instruments, cut you open and sew you up again, and you know nothing.  Absolutely nothing.  No pain. No discomfort. No timescale.  I comfort myself that that’s what death must be like.  A void in which you are unaware.  Completely.

Going back to the year’s going faster, I found this explanation on the Naked Scientist website, and although I agree with the main reply, I think the far more likely explanation is discussed further down in the responses, and it tally’s in with what James said all those years ago.  A year now, represents a 60th of my life, whereas when I was 10 it was only a 10th. Little peeps are almost living in dog years compared to me.

Well, I guess doing nothing so time goes slower is not really the answer.  Rather, I should cram as much in as I can.  Don’t waste a single minute and try and fill the next thirty years with wonder.  I listen to the Chris Evans show on Radio 2 in the mornings, and every day he speaks to a child who is doing something for the first time that day.  The next day he speaks to the same child and asks them to mark their new experience out of ten.  Almost without exception they say something like ‘a gazillion and twenty five’ even if its something as mundane to me as a swimming lesson. That’s the sort of enthusiasm I want to regain. Of course, its much harder to find new experiences when your older, but I’m going to do my best to be Adventurous, Brave and Curious.

What was the last ‘new experience’ you had?