My new book “Midlife Solo” is now available.

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I still seem to be sixty, for some reason

This celebration has been a full-time job for the past week and is still – though at last it’s winding down. Today was emailing thank you’s for gifts and help and writing thank you notes and responding to others who sent wishes. And getting the garbage out (there was so much that just before the truck came, I distributed my bags in half-full bins up and down the street, shhh, don’t tell) and clearing out the fridge – found SO MUCH food we forgot, shoved into corners – now trying to figure out what to do with it all. I went mad for red peppers on our last shopping trip and now have at least 12. What exactly was I planning to do with them? They were on special. And onions, bags and bags of onions. I was really raving by then.

Then, downloading the few photos I took or that were taken before the affair began, and emailing them to the participants and interested others. The bouquets of flowers – cutting back, fresh water. Laundry – the sheets and towels of house guests, the tablecloths soaked with wine and food. Sweeping and washing the filthy kitchen floor. Reconnecting with the garden, ignored yesterday. Back to business – bills, banking, forms that need to be filled out for my pension. Let me say that again – my pension. Yes, that sure sounds sixty.
But then I went to the Y, and dear Carol, who was at the party, asked if I would lead the first run of her class. So there I was, the slug who only started the huff and puff of very short jogs at the age of forty, leading the Runfit class around the gym. I am strong I am invincible I am Woman with a Pension. Well, as soon as I get those forms filled out. Thank you, Carol, as always a great inspiration. And then her granddaughter, aged 13, and the 11-year old daughter of another runner, led the runs – long-legged gazelles with a minus percentage of body fat. To every thing there is a season, and my season is puffing slowly. But still in the game.
And then eating leftovers, putting away gifts – my, what a lot of good wine I have now, and many boxes of dark chocolate – heaven. Cleaning up the stuff that got thrown into the basement, washing dishes, hanging up clothes, taking the party outfit to the dry cleaner. A call from the library – a book I ordered months ago is in: “Parisians: An adventure history of Paris,” by Graham Robb. Delicious. Yesterday I stopped at the heavenly Ben McNally Bookstore on Bay Street and bought “The Philosopher and the Wolf,” by Mark Rowlands, an author I’d heard interviewed on CBC. So – lots to read.
But spent the evening instead with the latest “New Yorker” which has a stunning article about how we do not know how to help the dying die. Very moving, beautifully written, highly recommended. I’m wondering, as I sit here in the city heat, how my friends are doing in their canoes in Algonquin Park, where there’s a thunderstorm risk. I am so very happy to be here in my little sun-dress, tapping on the sofa, surrounded by books and magazines and a piece of peanut butter toast.
My friend Kate just appeared at the door with a present – a huge box of yellow plums she just picked at her boyfriend’s farm. They’re delicious. They’re in copious quantity. Does anyone know of a recipe that uses red peppers, onions and plums? I know, someone is going to say chutney.
I think I’ll just eat them all raw. I can do anything now. I’m a senior.
No, I’m not. It’s utterly impossible. There must be some mistake.

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About Beth

I began keeping a journal at the age of nine. Nearly fifty years later, I started this online journal, sharing reflections, reviews, updates, and the occasional secret.

Some Blogs I Follow

Chris Walks
This blog evolves. It once was about travels. Now it’s a reason to be at the keyboard that I value.

Theresa Kishkan
Theresa Kishkan is a writer living on the Sechelt Peninsula on the west coast of Canada.

I walk on. With my feet, and in my mind as well.

Carrie Snyder
Wherever you’ve come from, wherever you’re going, consider this space a place for reflection and pause.

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