Recently, I found out why I feel so old. I’m not biologically “over the hill”, mind you, but still, I have my days.
It all began when I made a shopping trip to the supermarket. I was being checked out by an obviously newly-hired cashier. He was trying hard to perform his duties correctly, but I think his shaking hands were the chief cause of his errors. And, the more mistakes he made, the more flustered he became. At one point, I questioned the price of a cucumber, and it rattled his adolescent nerves so bad he had to summon the manager to his rescue.
Finally, he came across a bottle of Sherry, an item that, whether used in Ginger Pork, or swigged by a haggard cook, required an ID. He didn’t “card” me. Instead, he cast a glance, then keyed in “my birthdate.” I then paid for my purchases. I thought I heard him mumble a small prayer of thanks as I left the store with my groceries in tow.
At home, I checked my grocery receipt to make sure no blunders had slipped past my watchful eyes. That’s when I saw my “birth date.” As clear as the blue ink printed on the white register tape, it read, “Sun Nov. 11, 1903.” Nineteen Hundred and THREE!?!? I could hardly believe my eyes! Cashiers are typically kind souls who wink at me and key in “1967”. The oldest birthdate I had ever been given previous to this was “1970”, and that was cutting it close. Even then I wondered what I had done to offend the cashier, or if Miss Clairol was failing at her job.
I pondered the register tape, and finally arrived at these conclusions:
First, the cashier, though inexperienced, had already managed to pick-up some of the lingo of the trade, and he considered me to be an “old bag.”
Second, calculating my age again, I discovered why, when I get out of bed, my “get-up-and-go” feels like it has already “got-up-and-went!”
And third, I should have waited to buy prunes when they were on sale. But, then again, when you get to be “my age”, there’s no time to waste.
Being the mature person I am – did I say “mature”? – I was able to laugh about the entire incident and put it out of my mind. (They say the memory is the first thing to go.)
I suspect some lingering effects, though, and I tend to wonder about them every morning when I pull on my support hose up to my knees. I guess you can expect some quirks in your life when you’re NINETY-NINE and holding on!