How Time Flies

Don’t  you just hate the way time flies? You finally get all the Easter grass vacuumed out of the corners of your ancient Berber carpet and it’s time to dig out the Christmas glitter. Weren’t we supposed to have a summer and an autumn in between there somewhere? How did we miss Hallowe’en and Thanksgiving?

This sort of thing happens to me too often lately. I think it’s Tuesday and it’s already Friday.  I just got used to October and here it is almost December. If it weren’t for my bank statement and my Visa bill rolling in once a month I’d totally lose track.

I finally decide to blow some money on a pair of cute summer sandals I’d been wanting and now everyone else is buying UGGS. Is it just me living in the past, or do we all have this problem?

When we were children the hours dragged, days were never-ending and a week was an eternity.  All I wanted was to be older. Life finally began to very slowly pick up a little speed about the time I started school. By then I really wanted  to be grown up but it seemed as though it was taking forever. I’d be stuck in school for the rest of my life. When would I start living?

The months and the years crept by and I finally made it into high school. Life began to move a little faster, but still not fast enough. By now, time was playing tricks on me, sometimes flying, sometimes dragging. That was partly my own fault. In high school I picked up a bad habit, I began to lazily put off my six week homework assignments from each class. There was lots of time ahead to do those, Why rush?

The days passed,  then a week, 2 weeks, still plenty of time. Suddenly all 6 weeks had sped past  and I was left the night before those assignments were due, cramming until the wee hours of the morning in an effort to get the work done.  Trying to convince my parents that a bunch of mean teachers had dumped the lessons on me that very day never worked either. With the parents I had I never got by with much. They were on to me by then.

Time passed, as it always does, sometimes creeping, sometimes flying, and the decades disappeared. What I used to do in an hour now takes all morning. Maybe this is what  “time warp” means?

How can these big, busy adults with the beginnings of wrinkles possibly be the babies I cuddled so recently?  I couldn’t wait to get them weaned, then out of diapers, then up and walking and finally into school. Now they’re in their 50s, 60s and 70s. Wasn’t I just in my 60s and 70s? Tain’t fair, why can’t we get a second chance? Would things be any different if we did?

I keep thinking of that old saying, “When you get over the hill you pick up speed.”  All too true. And then there’s the one that goes “Time flies when you’re having fun.”  Somehow that one doesn’t make a whole lot of sense to me. A lot of my time that has passed wasn’t fun at all.

I’d like to grab old Father Time by his scraggly, coffee stained beard and shout  “SLOW DOWN” right in his hairy ear just as loud as I can. Somehow I think he’d just shake me off and keep shuffling right along.

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What Would You Do?

If you knew you had just one week left to live, what would you do? How would you spend that week? Cry for seven days straight? Keep it to yourself or tell everybody? Maybe squeeze as much life into those days as possible?

I’ve been giving this a lot of thought and the many possibilities boggle my mind. I think I’ve decided what I’d definitely NOT do. I wouldn’t waste one minute sitting around taking my pulse, watching the clock or moaning “Why me?”

My first instinct might be to jump off a cliff just to get it over with before the suspense killed me. I never was good at waiting for things to happen. The problem there would be realizing halfway down that a mistake might have been made.  They could have gotten my records or my name mixed up with someone else’s. Then what? Change my mind? I’m NOT jumping off any cliff. Cross that possibility out. It won’t happen!

A lot would depend on circumstances, too. Had I suffered a long, debilitating illness, been  ditched by my one true love, or was I on my way to serving a prison sentence for life with no chance of parole? If so, maybe I’d actually be ready to go in a week’s time.

I kind of doubt that;  I’m more the live-it-up type. I might round up all my far-flung nears and dears, the ones who were still speaking to me or to each other, we’d have one humongous week long reunion eating, drinking, hugging and yakking and we’d never count the hours.

Or I might rob a couple of banks and fly off to Tahiti, spending my  last week in Paradise, living on the freshest seafood and lots of red papayas with lime. What could they do if they caught me? By then I’d be long gone anyway.

I could look up my old boyfriends, just to see if I’d wasted my life, but I already know the answer to that one. My life couldn’t have been better. Besides there weren’t that many boyfriends and it definitely wouldn’t take a whole week to find them.

I might set off on a whirlwind trip around the world, cramming as many of the great museums, cathedrals and heritage sites into my trip as possible. The Louvre, the Prado, the Hermitage,  Notre Dame, Xian, China, the great Golden Buddha, thrill after thrill. All tempting to dream about until I recall an incident that occurred a few years back as I stood gazing in awe at the majesty of Chichen-Itza, the marvelous Mayan pyramid in the Yucatan.

A young man with a backpack and a camera ran up, shoved the camera at me, asked breathlessly if I’d take a picture of him, dashed off,  climbed the lowest steps of the pyramid, and glanced up toward the top. I snapped the picture, he dashed back down, grabbed his camera, muttered a hasty “Thanks”  and ran off at full speed, leaving me standing there with my mouth hanging open. That is definitely not the way I would want to view any of the world’s wonders.

I really haven’t come to any conclusion as to how I might spend that precious week. I guess I’ll find out when or if the time ever comes.  How about you? Give it some thought!