|Attitude - it's all how you look at things|
Later in the day after learning how to age gracefully we headed into town in search of food, a shower and a grocery store.
Not knowing where to go we stopped at the first place that presented itself, Sweet Darlene’s Bakery and Restaurant. I’ve never met a bakery I didn’t like so we ambled in and gazed at the long tables that were packed full of people eating and ordering. Squeezing our way down to the far side of the room we took two chairs at the end of a table and waited for the waitress. And we waited…and waited…and waited.
This is understandable when you have a major population explosion in a small town so we just went with it and chatted until we were brought menus. Our waitress was delightful. She had forgotten her glasses and so borrowed someone else’s, which kept falling off her face unto the table. Her arms were inked with tattoos and there were as many gaps as teeth in her mouth. She was delightful and full of personality and quick to smile. Her was a woman comfortable in her own skin.
None of the waitresses were young, come to think of it I can’t recall seeing anyone in this town under the age of fifty…we feel right at home. About the time she was waiting on us a large group sat down next to us, with the exception of one lady who was attempting to sit on the other side of the group.
Our waitress quickly chastised her and ordered her to sit down “over here” pointing to the seat next to Left Brain. She then explained that she could sit over there by that other handsome man, but that didn’t happen to be her table. This was how we met Lila, my new role model.
This cute little lady smiled and parked herself next to my husband and immediately struck up a conversation starting with the standard “where are you from?” We volunteered that we were from Wisconsin and learned she was from Iowa – ahhh…Midwesterners finding one another in Quartzsite.
There was a sparkle in her eyes and a smile on her lips at all times as we swapped stories. She is 89 and her husband, sitting to my left, is 90. They had done the full time RV thing for many years before settling into the SKP park in Coarsegold in a park model. They joined Escapees long before we did. For example, our skip number is 68640 – their number only has four digits in it.
She shared the story of being in the California earthquake in the 80’s when their home slide down the side of a hill while they rode it out, with her in the bathtub. It just goes to show that everyone has stories to share and that is one of the best aspects of this new life – meeting people like her and hearing the stories. Her only regret was that she did not keep a journal of their RV’ing years. I gave her my card and explained that I had started a blog to record our experiences. This seemed to delight her and she borrowed her friend’ card, writing her name and email on it and asked us to send her an email...and I have every intent to do so.
I can only hope to have as much vitality and sparkle as this woman when I reach her age. In my family people seemed old before their time and most had died by the early eighties. Now I can see that a person can be alive and full of wonder well beyond this. Thank you Lila for affirming my lesson on how to age gracefully.
Long Live the Queen of Growing Old, Gracefully or Not