Barely a day goes by, that there isn’t some symposium, book or report (not to mention a blog or three like this) about an aging world, longevity and retirement. We even have on line longevity calculators that can tell you how long you’ll live. It’s an aging obsession.
Recently on vacation in Italy it was refreshing to be a silent observer of how others seem to be navigating aging in their own small worlds. Not to be obsessed, just to observe. No blog, book or candle.
As Ted Fishman says in his, Shock of Gray – “…although the aging world is the sum of choices made by large populations, how we navigate the future of this world – how we love and care for ourselves and those we cherish – will also be an intensely personal matter.”
Of all places that speak to navigating an aging world – in Venice, as I prowled the lesser toured neighbourhoods, I couldn’t help but notice the number of older women who in a quiet walk, go shopping dressed in their best, in a guarded tolerance, slowly moving against the grain.
In one morning scenario standing on a bridge in Santa Croce, I was called at from behind “mi scusi, spostare parte!”. An 80ish woman, shopping bag in hand, in arm with here son sauntered their way over that bridge as they likely do most days without me. I reminisced, me and my mother – the same, going shopping years ago. Yes, sometimes it’s an intensely personal memory.