Friday, November 8, 2013

Slow Down and Enjoy the Music

Even in semi-retirement, life sometimes seems to be on a fast track. In fact, that may be even truer than in one's years of youth when office hours regulated the day. Now there are activities, chores, and opportunities and they don't always come in a nice neat order.

One consequence of rushing around so much is that my resolve to lose a significant amount of weight this year has crumbed under an assault of excessive visits to buffets with dessert bars, and other culinary delectations. At one time during the summer, I was down 7 pounds for the year, but now I am at just minus-1. It does not augur well for any immediate weight loss that we visited a wonderful Southern bakery today to pick up a cake for my birthday.

On a positive note, I have acquired two more fitness books for my large collection, and for less than $5 total. The A.C. Moore crafts store, which my Dear Wife loves to visit on weekends in search of doo-dads, usually has a rack of cookbooks and fitness volumes that are practically giveaways. I picked up a copy of "Fit to Live," by Dr. Pamela Peeke, for just $1.66 (original list price, $26.95). In this tome, she takes an expansive view of fitness, including not just physical dimension but things like getting your finances in order and decluttering your house. I will go straight to the sections on stress reduction; I need that. There are bound to be several ideas far exceeding $1.66 in worth.

Then, to pad an Amazon order sufficiently to qualify for free shipping, I obtained a copy of "Fitness Over Fifty," an exercise guide from the National Institute on Aging. I know -- sounds exciting, huh? But it has an introduction by former astronaut and U.S. Senator, John Glenn, and a whole bunch of suitable-for-seniors exercises, many of which exercises I could probably do. If I could ever get off this computer, I could try some of them.

On the negative side, I lately have been experiencing a bit more of a ringing-in-the-ears sensation than  usual. I have dealt with this irritation occasionally over the years, and I swear I think the problem is partly just a consequence of thinking about it instead of putting it out of mind. I find when I practice relaxation techniques, I can make it calm down. And when I use ITunes to listen to bluegrass while writing, it offers no disturbance at all. I did invest $20 (another Amazon order) for a Sound Spa, a radio-like device to put bedside and which enables you to dial up numerous natural sounds, such as rain, thunder, the ocean, a waterfall and the like. I have found that I am actually sleeping sounder than ever with the help of this aurally soothing spa.

Yes, Superdawg and I continue to walk daily, but we need to stretch it out and start spotting some fascinating birds again like the Pileated Woodpecker and some Great Blue Herons if we are lucky. Attuned to Nature, you leave behind all the stresses and irritations, and soon you are humming lines like "I left my darling in the springtime,"and "Darlene, Darlene, with eyes so green, how long I wait for thee…."

                          © Robert G. Holland 2013


  1. Happy Birthday, Mr. Holland!

  2. Hey, thanks Gary! Got lots of gray hairs and earned every one of them.


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