Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Don't Buy Green Bananas

My oldest son sent me a list of humorous sayings about growing old.  “I’m retired-I was tired yesterday and I am tired again today.”  “I’m not old, I’m chronologically gifted.” Or my personal favorite: “I’m so old I don’t buy green bananas anymore.” 
High school students were challenged to dress as senior adults.  Of course, they came to school in hospital gowns, on walkers, and in wheelchairs. Unfortunately, for some senior adults with failing health that is the reality. For many with relatively good health the post retirement years can be the best years of all. I like to call those of us who fit that category: Semi-Seniors.

With more people than ever living to see their 90th birthday, what do we do with the extra 25 years we have been given post retirement?  Some may choose a new hobby or volunteer activity.  Others decide to take a risk and embark on a second career. At age 65, my late bloomer husband, Charles, and I formed our company, Consulting Aviation Services. He patented two inventions to change the flying characteristics of aircraft and during the past ten years, we have been testing those devices in wind tunnels and on various airplanes.  Before the summer is over, we will travel to California to visit the Mojave Desert for an Air Force flight test and back to Maryland for more wind tunnel testing. I often ask myself what else could we be doing with these later years of our lives? 

Aerospace engineering is Charles life’s work.  His story of success and failure and perseverance in spite of challenging circumstances and motivated by his faith in God needs to be told. My interest in writing and his life’s work are about to merge as I start writing his memoir with the working title “Reaching for the Sky.” I will start the first draft of his book in a nice cool hotel room while he is hard at work in the desert heat at the Air Force base. His story will be a good companion to my memoir, “Born Three Times.”
Oliver Wendall Holmes is attributed with the quote: “Most of us go to our grave with our music still inside of us.”  It is a balancing act to grow old gracefully, but not fall into the stereotypes that others—even our own children—ascribe to us.  It is much more difficult to challenge ourselves to take bold steps to make the last years of our lives the most interesting and meaningful of all. 





  1. I'm looking forward to reading the new book!!!

    You should seriously make sure to have a big bunch of green bananas on the kitchen counter when your oldest son comes to visit. ;o)

  2. I will be praying for you both during the time you are in CA. You both deserve each other. Two find old birds living life to the fullest. I will look forward to reading your book about Charles. We all have a story to tell that can bless someone else.

  3. I always enjoy your blogs, Frieda! This one is certainly inspirational, as well as a challenge to all those who are continuing their careers or embarking on new adventures Looking forward to "Reaching for the Sky!" The best to you both!

  4. Your book about Charles will be interesting to read and I am looking forward to it. I agree that the green bananas should be on the counter top when the kids come over. You two will be here to enjoy them when they ripen.


  5. I'm hoping the trip to California is successful. Will look forward to hearing all about it. I know your time writing will be time well spent. I can't wait to read Charles' story.

  6. I too, love your articles... especially this one! Charles has realized his dreams in so many ways and one of those dreams is YOU!
    You are both enjoying these wonderful years God has granted to you. That's the way to go!

  7. Hope all the tests go very well. I know the book on Charles will be very special and your Middle Sis will enjoy it. Love from Middle Sis