I’m not spring chicken chronologically speaking. I feel the aches and pains that are sometimes attributed to being old. I also experience pain of disease. This makes me feel what I would classify as ‘being old’. Then I pondered on many of the ‘Old folks’ I’ve known in my life. One of my favorite people is Ms. Mary Reilly. No not the one that Julia Roberts played in the Frankenstein movie. This Mary Reilly is real. She lived to be 99 years old. She drank a whiskey before bed every night (Irish Medicine) and liked beer in the afternoon while watching the telly with her boys (grandsons). Although Mary was 99 she never ever seemed ‘old’ to me or anyone who met her. She was fun and engaging. Old was never a word I would associated with her ever.
When I was in my early twenties and her Grandsons would have parties she always sat by the beer keg. I asked her once why she sat there because it was kind of smelly. She said she loved young people and talking to her when they were filling up gave her some one on one time with them. We all remembered and loved her. When you are 99 a lot of your friends and family have died off leaving the deceased with a small funeral. Not Mary…She had a two-mile line of cars to the cemetery and a packed church for her funeral when she passed.
Once my cousin Jackie made a comment. ‘She wasn’t of the same vintage’. His meaning was there was an age difference and they had nothing in common. I hope that in my lifetime I will never have a “vintage”. No matter the number of my age I hope to have the hope of youth, the knowledge of middle age and the grace of later years. Who knows in 50 years whether I will be fun like Mary or crotchety like Donald Trump. I just hope I’ve got a lot of my cousin Mary in me! I think I’m off to a good start because I’m pretty sure I’m a 12 year-old trapped in the body of a 47-year-old, lol.