SOL Tuesday An example

I take the final strides of my mid-morning jog across the invisible finish line. I step into the drive next to my apartment building and bend over to catch my breath. I’m a sweaty mess but a slightly proud sweaty mess. An elderly gentleman with glasses approaches, chuckling. He asks a question in German I don’t quite catch. I ask him to repeat it.

“Laufen Sie Marathon?” (Do you run marathons?)

No, I answer. Once upon a time, but not now.

He tells me how he used to exercise – on gymnastic apparatus into his 60s and then regular stretching and running almost every day for years. He’s the secretary of a local gymnastics club.

Do you know how old I am? he asks with a big smile.

I say No as an invitation for him to reveal it to me.

86! he says with verve. Every day I do a little something. That’s the way I keep myself going.

You are an example worth following, I tell him. He seems pleased with this and begins his trek uphill.

I wonder to myself when I’ll reach that age that I’m eager to quiz people about how old I am. If I’m lucky, maybe I’ll be in the same or better shape than my neighbor when the time comes.

8 thoughts on “SOL Tuesday An example

  1. Sherri – your writing is so clear; I see you bent over, sweating, catching your breath; I see the old man glowing with pride (as well he ought to); I also sense his interest in the world, in people, and his desire for conversation, and I love how you relay the dialogue without quotation marks that would slow it down. An organic interaction with layers of lessons and meaning for us all to ponder… beautifully rendered.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. One can only hope that this will be us as we age – not only that we’ll be physically active, but also that we’ll take on and enjoy challenges of any kind throughout our lives. I can picture this whole story – you coming to the (blessed!) end of your run, this chance encounter with an amazing human being. It’s wonderful.

    Liked by 1 person

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