Getting Old: Wise, or Missing Out on the Fun?

I think I’m getting old.

I can hear your sarcasm loud and clear already. Eric, that’s so amazing, you’re thinking. Weird how time marches on and people age. Yeah, yeah, whatever.

And before you older folks verbally accost me for the misuse of what appears to be my youth, hear me out.

The other day I was on wind hold at a Kirkwood lodge with a huge group of meetup.com pals. Ages varied, from those in their early ’20s to those of us not in our early ’20s.

The lifts weren’t spinning, nor were they going to anytime soon. Snow was blowing sideways at a rate of an inch per hour. Wisdom and experience said we weren’t going anywhere. So I joined two new friends, both of them grey in the goatee, for a few rounds of rummy.

Eventually the youngsters grew restless and decided to hike a ways uphill to take a few hard-earned powder turns. Several of them asked us older gentlemen if we’d like to join in on the fun. We took one incredulous look at each other and simultaneously said “you kids go on.”

That they did. I thought nothing of it at first, as my main priority was to destroy my rummy opponents. Later, when the the kiddies returned to the lodge exhausted, covered in snow, and jubilant, I had a moment of regret.

Maybe I should’ve went for a hike. A young Eric would not play cards waiting for the storm to pass. A young Eric would’ve went for a hike.

Sad story, right? Those of you who are many years my senior can now verbally accost me.

My point, though, is that maybe as we age, we develop a “been there, done that” mentality. We miss out on more opportunities to have fun.

Or maybe we’re a smarter bunch. How is a grueling hike uphill in waist deep powder considered fun, anyway?

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17 comments

      1. Yeah, way to make me feel better. “Eric, would you like us to roll your wheelchair up to the window for another round of chess? You can see all the pretty birds and tall mountains with young people doing young activities up there. Eric, are you drooling again?” Sure, go for it.

  1. Ah…you have approached the borderline where analysis of an activity is part of the decision making, not just where is the gear I need. Has nothing to do with age.

  2. You’re getting old. And I think you should listen to your gut and don’t allow it to happen. The youngest old people I’ve ever known were crazy active.. The oldest young man I ever met was on my way up a mountain in Girdwood, Alaska .. it was summer, but he was in his mid-90s. He was hiking with his wife.. very slowly, but he was hiking up a mountain the rest of us youngins were struggling with.. No more cards. Get up and hike! 😉

    1. Those “never say never” old folks are always impressive. I knew a guy in his 90s who would go white water rafting from time to time. Now that’s cool! You’re totally right. No more cards!

  3. Welcome to my world, Eric. Ingrid is right. Is it an even trade? Age for wisdom? No, it’s not! I want youth (my young bod) AND wisdom, damn it!!! Why can’t we have both? Now you know why the older set is always a little cranky. haha!

  4. Of course you’re getting old Eric, we all are. Considering the alternative, I’ll take it! You can look at this experience in a negative light (which is a very old person thing to do, by the way!) or you can look at it positively and know that you’re only expanding your opinions as to what you find fun and enjoyable. Entirely up to you! But yeah, I would have went for the hike….
    😉

    1. Yeah, but do I really fun rummy more enjoyable than hiking? I think the fact that I have a seasons pass to Kirkwood changed my opinion in this situation. Perhaps if I went up there for the day, and really, really wanted to go snowboarding, I would hike.

      Or maybe I’m just old. But you’re right. Considering the alternative, I’d take it too.

  5. Oh, this is a hard one for me…I want to be young forever in my heart and still be okay with aging and wisdom and life experiences, etc. I would even say, I would BET good money that you – Eric, Mr.Adventure Guy, have probably had more grand adventures in your young life than most people have even dreamed about. That will always be a cool thing….(and I’m sure you will be up for the next excursion!)

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