Tuesday, April 09, 2013

Halftime Report

So here I am today, the big Five Oh. Doesn't feel any different. I remember the hearing the adage "Forty is the old age of youth; fifty is the youth of old age," but I was told this weekend that fifty is The New Forty (or even The New Twenty according to one friend), so we'll see how it all works out.
I mentioned this to a few friends when the subject of milestone birthday crises came up -- "OMG you're fifty are you freaking?" -- but my big crisis year was actually when I turned 29. I always thought that my freakout had something to do with it being my last year in my twenties, one more year and it's all over etc, but looking back now I wonder if it wasn't something else: I remember at that time realizing, after years of physical inactivity, that I was fat and flabby and falling apart -- I'd been exhausted by the minor physical labor of a plant inspection not too long before, while my 70-year-old boss had breezed through it, and I bought my first bike only a month before my birthday. I suspect that there were other things in the air too, since I'd been out of school and into my new career, and independent living in a new area, for about two years; I liked these things, but I wasn't doing much with my life other than working, and I was starting to realize there was more to life and if I didn't find it before time passed I'd miss it. That's pretty much guaranteed to bring on an early "midlife crisis."
So anyway, my life changed over the next few years, and my thirties were much better than my twenties, and much richer, and things continued that way until about five years ago, when I met Anne and my life got richer still. And now...
By the way: rode last night (towpath), and may ride again tonight (Sals?) if the weather holds. Spring is definitely here.

Monday, April 08, 2013

After The Ball

Well the party's over, but I'm still forty-nine for one more day...
A good time was had by all by the way, and we had some really good eats and drinks -- we did a bunch of shopping at the Allentown Farmers Market on Friday, and started the bread oven Friday night to build some residual heat then had it going all morning Saturday, and after some amazing loaves of bread we roasted a huge piece of beef, and a leg of lamb, and some ribs. Meantime, Anne made me a huge birthday cake (four layers of chocolate, with coffee-cream-butterscotch icing). And of course, we had our sixtel of Irish Red ready to go in the backyard.
People started arriving just before eight, and by 9:00 or so we had a packed house.  Many friends from the biker crowd and some from other circles, and It was good to see my brother and parents too, who came out from NJ. Most people brought desserts and veggie appetizers, so we were in good shape there, otherwise it would have been a very carnivorous spread, and great fun was had when Donna broke out her cupcakes with the X-rated decorations... There was a lot of drinking and carousing, but the basic format was "dinner party," and most people took off around say 11:00 or so, with a core group staying until a bit later. We did an abbreviated cleanup after the last guests took off, and were in bed by about 1:30.
The next day, Anne and I got up at the crack of 11:30, had eggs over the pork and beans that were the last thing cooked (over Saturday night) in the oven, did some more cleaning up, and then hit Nockamixon for some mountain biking -- it was a beautiful day, warm and pleasant though greenup still looks a week or so away, and the trails, though not overcrowded, were definitely getting their share of use. Home after that, for leftovers (roast beef and lamb sandwiches), a quick nap -- hey I'm old now! -- and a trip to Brew Works, for the punctuation mark at the end of a great weekend.