We were boarding our chartered bus about to start a three-week tour of Britain with 30 strangers from all over the world. My mother, surveying the group, turned to me and whispered “Watch out for the old ones. They’ve got nothing to lose!”
I laughed. At the time, I was just 26. My mother’s warning conjured images of desperate men and women cornered in a final gun battle with the police. With nothing left to lose they were capable of anything.
These old people I was about to spend nearly a month with – what kind of geriatric desperados were they? Every day they defiantly stared down the Grim Reaper. They knew each day could be their last and they sucked the life out of every moment with gusto.
These bright-eyed people with nothing left to lose had done the hard work of living – jobs, mortgages, spouses, children, in-laws and all the other myriad adult decisions we have to make in a lifetime – done and dusted.
Now they could throw all caution to the wind. Carefree and thoroughly engaged in the world, they didn’t give a damn what anyone thought or said about them. They wore whatever pleased them. Said what was on their mind. They stayed up all night talking, laughing and dancing and ate pie for breakfast, if they wanted to.
As I remember them now, those people with nothing left to lose had it all.
6 thoughts on “Nothing left to lose”
I love this, Audrey. I catch myself more and more these days trying to ensure that I’m not taking ‘stuff’ too seriously. It’s easy to get caught up in the day-to-day as if it’s life or death, when in fact, most of it is not worth the energy. I’m trying to have a more ‘say what I need to say and whatever happens, happens’ attitude, and it has been somewhat freeing!
Good for you, Lori! I guess the key isn’t to be perfect, it’s just to keep growing. Learning to not sweat the small stuff is a big thing to (re)learn!
Love this! geriatric desperados indeed! I so hope to be one….just spit into the wind and defy life…Old people totally rock…I love them…God bless them! My mom was getting more and more like that toward the end and had she lived to 94 like my Grandmother she would have been fearsome! lol They definitely have a thing or two to teach us ‘youngsters’ lol
LOL! I don’t particularly want to grow old – not if it means old and incapacitated. But I can be called fearsome, Thea, then I will be very happy!
Audrey….Another great observation my friend.
This is so me! I love pie for breakfast(or cake, or cookies haha). I wear what I want and just worry less about things I used to worry about. The old body aches and pains so I know I am getting old but for now I am having fun doing it.
YOU have had pie for breakfast, Brenda?? I am in awe. I always said I’d do that, but have yet to. That’s gotta change. But I hear you. Much less stresses me and I’m turning in a grumpy, eccentric lady but I’m happy! 😉