Sometimes that frightens me. I thought last night of the time I lived with a disembodied spirit in Thailand. One night it seemed to be calling and I thought it wanted me. The man who was with me when this was going on didn't hear that summons. Now he is dead, and I wonder who was wanted that night--or even worse if time had folded in on itself, as I now believe it can. Was it his spirit coming through the spiral of what we think of as linear, trying to tell both of us to hold each other tightly while we still could?
Will these thoughts become less frightening and more comprehensible as I age? Will I be able to write about them without fear as I now can write about things that used to hold stark terror but are all part of the spiral shaped story that I set into words, hoping someone may want to read them? These are the kinds of questions that make me curious about growing old.
I know of people who think of aging as an adventure. So far I think they're wrong. The process isn't, any more than the physical changes of puberty were. Aching muscles are as tedious as acne or menstrual cramps. What's an adventure is life itself--the discoveries, the experiences, the story.
The other day I was caught in a hellish rain shower and a man on a street corner sold me a hotel umbrella for 4 dollars. As I paid him from a roll of laundry quarters, he decided "You're a really nice lady. I'm going to give you something," and from a plastic supermarket bag, he pulled an opened package of large pink-frosted cookies. "Have a cookie--take two," he said.
I didn't because I don't particularly like cookies, but I'm grateful when presented with something that comes with a choice. We don't always get that and sometimes what's offered isn't so palatable. But if we're lucky, there's a good story attached, either visible within the present or folded and wrapped in a spiral of time.