Wednesday, August 4, 2021

On Turning 80

         I've been lately thinking about my life's time

All the things I've done, how it's been
And I can't help believing in my own mind
I know I'm gonna hate to see it end
                                                    John Denver
                                                     "Poems, Prayers and Promises" 

Yesterday, August 3rd, I celebrated my 80th birthday and began another year on this green earth – another year to wander forest and field – to see flowers and trees, streams and insects, rain and snow, wind and sun.

Who’d a thunk all those years ago – when I headed for college, or a couple of years later when H and I met, or when our kids were born – that the years would pass so quickly and now we have more yesterdays than tomorrows. 

As I’ve aged I’ve discovered a geologic phenomena in the northeast, an area usually considered to be geologically stable. Over the last ten years the hills have gotten steeper than they were. Not only are they steeper, but they seem much higher. In fact, they are so much higher that the air must be thinner, making me breathe harder and more rapidly as I gain elevation. 

But the air still smells as sweet, scented with the aroma of damp soil and dry leaves. The streams still gurgle over rocks and waterfalls, both large and small. 

The trees still reach to the sky and turn color in the fall. The wildflowers still bloom. The birds still sing and the deer still feed in the clearings. The quiet and the whisper of the breeze have not changed over the years. And my appreciation for all these things has not diminished – indeed it has increased.

And so, at the beginning of my 81st year, another round of taking a photo of the natural world on each day of the year begins. Those photos will be posted in November, February, May and August – stand by.

And to end this post I'll quote those who have said: Live each day as if it were to be your last,  for someday you will be right.


Yogi♪♪♪ said...

Happy Birthday!!
I love your attitude. I am only 66 but I love nature more than ever. Not just the big spectacular things but the little tiny hardly noticed things as well.

The Furry Gnome said...

Happy Birthday Woody! And be glad you can still be out there wandering forest and field! Make the most of it while you can.

Jenn Jilks said...

Happy birthday! That is a milestone!

Barbara Rogers said...

That's a great milestone for your lifetime! Congratulations...and may you continue to enjoy each day, looking through your viewfinder at such beauty, and sharing it with me here! Thanks.

Rain said...

Happy Birthday Woody! 80 years young as they say! :) Lovely post. Interesting, I never thought of having more yesterdays than tomorrows...I guess today is all that matters! :)

Robert Folzenlogen said...

Congratulations and best wishes for many more years of exploring Mother Nature! I look forward to seeing your photo log. Robert Folzenlogen

Woody Meristem said...

Thank you all. It's been a good life -- and it ain't over yet. I've been extremely fortunate: finding a wonderful lady, receiving an excellent education, having an interesting job that changed often enough to keep it interesting, living in a place where we could experience both town and country. We're both always grateful for our good fortune while always remembering that to a certain extent we all determine our own destiny.

Jacqueline Donnelly said...

A moving and thoughtful post! I will be 80 in May, so I too am trying to treasure the life that remains to me. Luckily, I live among some of the world's most marvelous natural treasures, and I still retain the capacity to be struck dumb with wonder by them. And also luckily, I still retain sufficient bodily strength to get out among these treasures, even if they require a hike or a climb or a paddle. Thank you for sharing here on your blog some of the natural wonders I will probably never see near my home.

Marcia said...

A belated happy 80th birthday! Sounds like you have many many more of this green blue orb we call Earth.