Wednesday, November 07, 2018

Elder Excitement

Without Ramans's exclamation point :). This is a joint posting project by Ramana and myself. Here's the link to his post.

I had posited to him that the reason he read thrillers was to create excitement. Getting that adrenalin rush. To revisit that type of feeling we had as children and younger adults. What do we do and think and feel to create excitement as elders? Living in an independent senior complex as I do I get to observe elders intimately. Not much excitement is visible but there could be a lot of it behind closed doors, who knows?.

This all brings me, of course, to what excites me in my seventies?

I'll list them but not in any kind of order:

Music, always music
A good story
An excellent film
Designing a new knitting piece
One excellent photograph out of many that I took of a scene.
Stimulating conversation (last night at a friend's for instance)
Helpless laughter
A sunrise
A sunset
A roaring fire
Watching the birds soar and swoop as they're doing right now as I write this
My thriving African violets on my windowsill
Live theatre
Waking up pain-free
The open road
The crashing sea
Dogs, any dog.

And I am mindful of that old adage: Measure wealth not by what you have but by what you for which you would not take money.

This: Freddie Mercury and Montserrat Caballé 1987. Barcelona. Sublime.

Now tell me what gets you excited?


  1. Wow, what an interesting duet.

    I have a fair amount of overlap on the things that excite me so I'm partially stealang your list. Mine are (also in no order):
    My sons
    And my husband
    Travel - just about anywhere
    The ocean
    And pretty much any other body of water from creeks to lakes
    Laughter and conversation
    Sunrises and sunsets and light bouncing off the leaves.
    Any bird or animal in its natural habitat (including my yard)
    Cooking or just eating good food
    Time with friends, old and new
    Being alive

    1. Very similar lists, I was thinking just now as my daughter and I made a date that that always gives me a lovely thrill. Along with when I'm meeting my niece who is like a daughter to me, another lovely thrill. Certain friends also, that lovely frisson of anticipation of being stimulated and affirmed. I could have added my performances and public speaking too.

      On and on I go :)


  2. I love going to people's homes and seeing the art on their walls.

    1. Gigi: You put in mind of seeing a lovely new painting on a friend's wall last night, that gave me quite a thrill it was so lovely.


  3. There's happiness and contentment and gratitude, which I feel often, and then there's excitement, quite a different thing (for me), and more rare. My list, not in order of importance:
    1. the first chapter of a Really Good book
    2. a moose when I'm out walking, before it trots away
    3. the beginning of any movie I've always wanted to see
    4. a real good show of northern lights
    5. the stars on a clear night out here on the farm ... AWEsome
    6. a headline that says a comet might actually be an alien probe ... now that would be exciting if it were true! I hope I live long enough to learn there is life on another planet
    7. a new Joni Mitchell CD would excite me, but we're not going to get one, are we
    8. the opportunity to meet, in person, one of my online friends like you
    9. holding a newborn grandchild for the first time; thrilling

    and last but not least,
    10. any time I see one or both of my two sweet sisters


    1. What a lovely list Kate. I did get such a thrill meeting quite a few of my online blog buddies. As good in person as they were in print :)


  4. How old are the other elders in your complex? Age and health problems can make a big difference. When we were waiting in the doctor's office yesterday a couple we know was there. The fellow is 92 and mentioned it when I asked how things were going. Andy will be 92 in less than nine years, which is really scary. I'm five years younger than he is but I will be there soon enough at the rate time flies. I'm more concerned about the hole in my life if something happens to him, and he feels the same way about me. So we're making the most of the time we have left.

    1. A good age range and levels of contentment and joy has very little impact. One 92 yo starts each day (in tights and leotard) waltzing through the meandering vast halls. :) The youngest is around 55 and is quite wretched, always complaining. I am grateful for this field research :)

      "Making the most" is brilliant advice. No matter what.


  5. I think that the differences are because of our understanding of the term ‘excitement’. I understand it as something that creates great enthusiasm or arousal. I can be as excited about finding lost things or solving a difficult puzzle as you appear to be. My reaction to the outcome however would be a restrained satisfaction rather than a big hoopla.

    1. Probably a lot to do with personality. I am told I make most noise about very little - a hummingbird, an orchid. So maybe that has a lot to do with it.


    2. WWW, I'm glad I'm not the only one! Years ago I asked Andy if a person could be a manic without the depressive. He said I shouldn't worry. He didn't think they would institutionalize me or anything.

      Your comment about the 92-year-old gives me hope. You made my day. LOLOL!

  6. I get excited by many of the same things you mention. As I said elsewhere, I think the only difference that comes with age is that I probably get just as excited about things but I don’t show it in the very visible way that kids do – jiggling about, exclaiming, grinning etc.

    1. Rectitude. LOL. I exclaim and jiggle. As I said to Ramana, that could be personality. Though I have to admit to the faces around me being baffled when I rave excitedly about a painting.


  7. Being with the grandchildren.
    Buying presents for the unsuspecting.
    Hearing the geese, arriving or leaving.
    The smell of wet earth in spring.
    The first metallic whiff of snow in the cold air.
    Visits to or from my far-flung children.
    Glimpses of the ocean.
    Sunrises and sunsets.
    That first delectable sip of hot tea.
    The anticipation of a new book by a favorite author.
    Stepping into my beloved cottage after an extended stay away.

    1. Oh what a lovely list. Every single one I relate to. I marvel at the birds every night all densely packed winging their way home to nests unknown. I'm delightedly reminded of the subways in Toronto at rush hour.


  8. A good meal I don't have to cook for myself. :)
    Cloud shapes.
    Fall leaves
    Unexpected hugs.
    Seeing someone I haven't seen for a long time.
    Clothes that fit and are comfortable as well.
    Making someone else smile or giggle.
    Lake Superior
    Getting my brothers to smile at a wry comment.
    Jovial isn't the first word anyone would use to describe them.
    A good belly laugh.
    Seeing my dog making hunting leaps after a rabbit. (She is not a hunting do. She weighs about 100 lbs. It is beautiful flight.
    First tomato.
    Some things are just light and simple but bring me great joy.

  9. Between all your commenters my list is already written here! I also get a thrill from dew drops trembling on leaves in the early morning; fir trees poking through fog in N. CA; and greatest of all, the view as your plane approaches Shannon from N. America on a clear morning. It's been too long. I need that particular thrill again real soon.

  10. Corey Amaro is one of my favourite bloggers and recently posted this article about excitement as expressed in the languages of the French and the American. Thought it might interest you too.

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