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Cape Fear Voices/The Teen Scene

Cape Fear Voices/The Teen Scene

Cape Fear Voices/The Teen Scene

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An Acquired Taste

An Acquired Taste
Dan Dodge

I never thought I was going to live to an old age.  The thought was always in the back of my mind that I would not be married for very long, would never see grandchildren and, of course, never collect Social Security.  And yet, in 2022, I will turn 70. I will have been married for 33 years, I have 9 grandchildren and, yes, I’m on Social Security.  I guess it’s a good thing I didn’t pursue a career in fortune telling.

Since I have retired, I feel like I have been asleep.  I seem to go through the day on auto pilot.   I get up when our dog barks at people walking by, I stumble into the kitchen, I make a cup of coffee and head into the office where the television is and where the chair and I become one for the next few hours.  I have a routine—a ritual, if you will.  I have acquired a taste for the quote on my coffee cup, “nothing to do, nothing to do, oh happy day, nothing to do.”  Looking back, I see that 2020 melted into 2021 and my routine became more rigid.

Now that I have reached this milestone, I’m going to try and do different things this year.  First, I’m going to enjoy the life that my husband and I have built more than I have.  I tend to focus on wanting bigger, newer and better instead of looking at what we have and saying, “this is good.”

I’m going to meet more people.  I find solace in writing and exploring things on the computer for hours.  I often miss opportunities to interact with others, preferring instead to hang around one or two people I know.  Over the years I have said, “everyone loves Tony, but I am an acquired taste.”  But that’s because Tony is outgoing and looks for common interests among people he doesn’t know very well.  I need to be more open to new friendships.

This year, I’m going to do a better job of reaching out to my grandchildren who live in the Northeast Ohio area.  I can’t let after school activities or sports get in the way of connecting with them.  They have a grandmother who lives in the area and I want them to know me like they know her.  I can send cards and letters; I can ask for one-on-one time when we visit Ohio and I can make a difference in their lives.

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About the Contributor
Jan Morgan-Swegle
Jan Morgan-Swegle is the Editor of Cape Fear Voices.  She has been writing for CFV for almost 3 years.  She is originally from the Cleveland area and moved down to Leland 12 years ago.  She and her husband, Tony, and their dog, Dixie, enjoy sitting on the lanai listening to music and sharing wine (Dixie likes white wine but only gets two finger tips full!!)  They have 3 children and 9 grandchildren living in Cleveland, Ohio,  Charlotte, North Carolina and Lakeland, Florida.