They were blissfully unaware of me as they walked by, or rather shuffled past.

A generous guess would put them at sixty five, he had a stick and shock of white hair, she was firmly tucked into his free arm as they slowly passed the window where I sat slowly enjoying a rare coffee. (On advice from my doctor I have distanced myself from my beloved caffiene in an attempt to stabilise this crazy brain of mine.)

It’s not really working!!

For some reason these two pensioners sent a jolt of joy through my being, they will never know the effect that they had on a random stranger just by being themselves. And that is the marvellous thing.

All they were doing was being themselves, laughing at something that only they knew, as they made their way to wherever on a Friday afternoon they impacted me more than anything has in a long time.

For too long I have looked on old age as something to be dreaded, the thought of finding any joy anywhere beyond now has been such an alien concept that I looked upon advancing years as a curse rather than a blessing. Yet here were two people who in spite of advancing years and obvious ailments were just revelling in that moment.

Perhaps his refusal to age in a boring fashion helped, he was dapper and well turned out, he had not descended into the beige or pale green of most pensioners, she too had an underlying style that shone through the effects of time.

This too appeals to me.

Maybe I am in a reflective mood today as my wife ticks off another birthday in another country or it could be that I am finally thawing out from my enforced ice age (here’s hoping) either way I welcome such thoughts back in.

Fear has never been a feature of my life in any respect but recently seeing the elderly has drawn feelings to the surface that are most unwelcome. Decrepitude comes to us all if we are fortunate enough to survive that long, it need not be something to be dreaded if we have the correct attitude to it, I haven’t yet fully arrived there.

Having two teenagers in the house keeps my brain plugged into the flow of the now and protects me from settling into the dull  The energy that they naturally exude is as contaigious as the cold the eldest has given me this week. I love their inate enthusiastic ways which are a foil against my propensity towards the boring.

Growing old is inevitable,  it is something that I feared may not be my lot but all being well I just pray that it may be in the fashion of my two sources of inspiration today.

The rest of their lives may be marked by pain, sadness and disappointment but in the ten seconds that they touched my life they imparted more joy to me than I have felt for a long time and for I am infinitely grateful.











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