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Perspective

Perspective

by Steve on July 27, 2011

We all have “Aha” moments where someone makes a seemingly insignificant comment that reaches out and slaps us across the face in a “I needed that” fashion. Dear Dad had his computer taken out by a lightning strike and in a true catch-22 found he couldn’t order a new computer without getting online or even look up the 800 number he needed to do it the old fashioned way. So he called me to get him connected again. Once we got past the basics of what he needed and over the shocking news that this would force him to learn a new operating system (Windows 7), we talked a little business.  Farming stuff mostly – planning, taxes, improvements to avoid the same. He’s been doing some negotiating and the other party was pushing the financial gain angle. Dad’s response caught me off-guard: his basic counter was “my life expectancy at this stage of the game is only about another 13 years – I don’t need the money.”

13 years. Maybe more, maybe less. I live too far away and only get up there around the holidays. That’s once a year for maybe a week – in a good year I’ll squeeze in a second visit. Given current conditions, that only gives me 26 visits at best. I’m not willing to accept that – something’s got to give. I turn 48 at the end of this month and I’m feeling it more often than I used to in surprising ways.  A weekend of muscling boats around left me feeling slightly crippled – such activity used to be routinely shrugged off without a second thought. My morning 1.5 mile walk now starts out slow sometimes and reminds me of a drug commercial that preaches “A body in motion tends to stay in motion.” I sure hope so because I don’t intend to stop any time soon.

I used to think I understood the saying “Time is money” but I had it all wrong. Time is not something you exchange for an hourly wage, time is the currency of life. Spend it wisely and, more importantly, don’t waste it.

{ 2 comments }

Brigid July 28, 2011 at 17:09

Beautiful, and so true.

You think you have it all, all the time in the world. Then you wave goodbye to someone thinking “I’ll see them tomorrow, next week” and you never see them again.

Enjoy every minute.

DonaldMac July 29, 2011 at 4:38

I’ve had five people I knew (ranging from someone I’d see almost daily, to an old boss who left the office ten+ years ago) pass recently. Like one a week for the past five weeks.

Only one was truly expected, almost to the day. He was the youngest, at 35. My daily coffee friend, in his late 70’s also was a “known”. The other three, no.

Whew.

Two years ago vacationing, while doing some float plane flying, another flying bud pulled out one of those cheap tape measures. He said to pull it out to about 83 inches and place my finger on my age, while he was holding the dumb end.

I did. Then he said “Ok, Don….what are you going to do with the rest?”

Problem is, I really enjoy my work.

You do start to wonder, like Brigid observed.

And I’m glad my folks live about 10 minutes from me.

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