Lost And Adrift

The other day I was looking at some of the links to my webpage others have put up, and one of them said, “Creative Endeavors, Life Observations, Humor.”  I had never considered this a commentary on life, but it appears to have been labeled so by a few.

That is kind of nice.

Often in the morning, I sit here and try my best to come up with something new and refreshing for the day.  Every now and then I hit one over the fence, most of the time, I have to admit, I just try to get on base with a hit.  This morning, being no exception to the rule, I find myself sitting in front of an empty screen and wondering what it is that we will talk about?

This week I read an interesting book by Donovan Hohn, which was the true tale of 7,200 shipwrecked rubber ducks that rolled of the deck of a container ship in the stormy North Pacific about 15 years ago.  The ducks are not the story, only part of it.  It is about a quest in life, a passion that had to be fulfilled.  The author was so obsessed with finding out what happened to all these ducks that he quit his job as a English school teacher and set out to discover everything that he could possibly find out about these small lost rubber ducks.

Where they had been, where they are now, what was their final destiny after being shipwrecked.  That is passion my friends.  When was the last time you were curious, I mean “Really Curious” about something.  In my case, it has been awhile, I have to admit.

Following these ducks took him to the Northwest passage, Alaska, China and many places in between.  Who would have ever stopped to consider that chasing a flock of lost rubber ducks around the world, would lead to such a thought provoking work?  If you desire more information on this book, “Moby-Duck, The True Story of 28,000 bath toys lost at sea, you can find it at Viking for about $28.”

At 63 years of age, most of my passion in life, sad to say, has been used up.  I find that my get up and go, has gone and went, and my curiosity for the most part has peaked.  I am no longer thinking of moonwalking with Einstein, have lost the art of trying to remember everything that there is to remember in life, and lately, I have developed a little hitch in my giddy-up that tends to make me seek out the Aspirin bottle in the late afternoons.

Life … What happens when you are not paying attention.

When is the last time you stepped out of the box?  Ventured into something totally new and off the wall.  When was the last time you got truly excited about something that you were never excited about before.  If you are like me, it has been some time, an ocean of time.

I read where others struggle with this too.  Fun? Passion? Nope-nada.   Spending a little time on the net you can find other writers struggling with it too.  Are You Having Fun Yet?   No excitement in their lives, nothing left to shoot for, like my old man used to say, “I have done it all.”  I suppose that is the way of life sometimes, you cannot have your cake and eat it too, but a lot of us, would like it that way.

What is it about life that drains our passion, to the point, that we no longer even feel it remotely in our life.  What is it about life, that we no  longer wish to drink at the fountain of it, but rather just gargle.  Why is it that with age, we lose the drive the incentive to seek out new adventures, just sit back and do our best to be “just comfortable.”

I don’t know, I certainly do not have all the answers, most of the time, I have to admit, I don’t even remember the questions.

Perhaps I need to drive up into someone’s yard, get out of the car, grab one of their plastic lawn ornaments (Flamingo’s or such items) and take it on a trip around the world.  Photograph them in all these exotic locations (The Pyramids, Great Wall of China, Eiffel Tower) and make a scrapbook of it and return it (and the book) to its rightful owners a year later.  It is a neat idea, certainly nothing original it has been done before, just not by me.

What is it that I need?  What is it in my life, this inescapable “bucket list item” I have forgotten?  Do I need to find a seemingly impossible rocky crag and scale it … Locate one un-dammed river in this country and run it … Simply because they are there.  Perhaps it is time to make a road trip and burn some expensive fossil fuels.  Take my grand-kids on a trip and one more time, try and explain to them why history and why geographic monuments erected by the hands of man are important in this day and age.

Why Charlie Sheen, Lindsay Lohan, Tweets, Facebook and MTV are not.

Might be time to devote some serious time to study my root problem and find a solution.  Lay back in my hammock and take a well-deserved nap and consider something of an adventurous nature to do in the sunshine years of my life.  Which right now, seems to me, an impossible goal.

One constant in all this, and that is the weekend.

If it did not exist before now, I would have to invent it, because it is something that we all need.  A time to recharge, to readjust our priorities in life, or just “get away from it all” for a brief respite from what life has to offer.

Please enjoy yours, I am going to do my best to do the same on my end.


4 thoughts on “Lost And Adrift

  1. I remember the story about the ducks. something so small and yellow and funny . But following them showed him so much about currents and ocean behaviour. Your dilemmas have much in common with mine
    A couple of years ago we ran a piece on the ducks, it is buried in here somewhere, I remember it and how they had migrated from off of Alaska all the way around to the coast of Maine. And incredible amount of miles.

    And yes, there are portions of the book devoted to ocean trash, where it is, how it got there, what can be done about it. He learned not only a great deal about the ducks but also about life in general and his own part in it. Thanks for your comments on the subject.


  2. HMMM…curious….Now that is one that I will think about for a while…. I am curious about a lot of people that have waltzed thru my life…where they ended up…but not so curious as to REALLY dig into finding the answers. CURIOUS….I will think about that one!!
    Careful, you know what killed the cat, dontcha?


  3. Anytime you communicate what’s in your heart you’ve hit a home run. Your writing is direct from the heart, and people find that engaging. Even if it’s the kind of story we’ve heard before, we’ve never heard it come from you. You create a connection for us, and that is why we listen. Today you’ve hit a grand slam.

    Others, including myself, communicate indirectly, or with subterfuge like Socrates who teaches by questioning you until he has you defeat yourself. He knows where he’s going with his questions, but you don’t until you’re boxed into a corner and can’t come up with a solution to get out. That’s why you should never take the witness stand for the defense; the prosecutor will get his turn to cross examine you, and if he’s read his Aristotle or Plato, he’ll nail you.

    But I digress. The point you make about “stepping out of the box” to do something worthwhile is important, and can be sought through two paths, either physical-material or mental-spiritual. Each has innumerable possibilities, including, “Let’s skydive on our 95th birthdays!” or “Let’s try treating our wives today as if we’re on a first date!” At 95 you can “step out of the box” by doing both those things, but only if the pilot has a hellacious amount of insurance and if your wife doesn’t lock herself in the bathroom for fear you’ve gone wackers.

    Obviously, one’s diminished “zest for life” isn’t always due to a lack of will. It can be simply a matter of circumstances (sorry, sir, children under four feet in height and seniors over 85 can’t ride on the “Twister”), or, a matter of the body. Take my body, for example.

    As a kid I loved to play on swings and tried to go all the way around. Failing that, I would swing as high as possible and then bail out. In my thirties I got on a swing, excited to give it another try, but a funny think happened on the way to bail-out. I had a sensation in my abdomen that I had never had before. It was not painful, but it was decidedly unpleasant–actually, unendurable. Every time I got to 1.1 G-forces as I came down to the bottom of my swing and then started up, my gut told me to stop. I was as disappointed as a 3’11” child.

    Years later for the first time I told this story to my nephew, and he smiled knowingly and said that the same thing happened to him. Symptoms were identical. Now I’m wondering if men “hide” this secret, or is it they simply have no particular reason to share it? Whatever reason, it seems the physical-material zest for life depends upon having a body, and a healthy body at that.

    So with less verve and time growing short, a “bucket list” seems like a good idea to set priorities or goals. But I don’t think filling it up is as important as the old fashioned “skin test”–testing your skin to see if you feel comfortable in it. Both “bucket” and “skin” are mental signposts that death is encroaching, and anytime you reach 50, goodness, any time you hit 40, death–“Tweet! Encroachment! That’s 5-yards.”

    Like many men (and women) I once looked back and thought about “what have I done, really,” with my life. What I discovered amazed me. I stopped when I had a list of 40 things that I was very proud of having done. None of them made me any money or got my picture in the paper, which didn’t matter to me. What did matter was that right at the top of the list was my relationship with my son, a relationship that is in the top 1/10th of the 99th percentile of all father-son relationships on earth, and it started when he was one-hour old. So check yourself out and take a serious look at all the right things (big and little) that you’ve done throughout your life. I’m sure you’ll come up with more than forty, and most everybody else could probably do the same.

    Sure, there are more rocky crags to climb and more rivers to run, just as there’ll always be the moon and more stars than we can ever count to get to. But maybe you answered your own question when you said that perhaps it’s time to “take my grand-kids on a trip and one more time, try and explain to them why history and why geographic monuments erected by the hands of man are important in this day and age.” That kind of passion for life, that willingness to connect and educate those who will long outlast us on this earth, seems to me like the one essential ingredient to be added to anyone’s “bucket list.”
    Wow! In all the years I have been writing this blog, that is the first 815 word comment we have ever seen. Most lengthily comments are not worth reading, but yours was interesting as all get out, as they say in my neck of the woods.

    The mystery to me is this, “Why are you writing a blog?” you certainly have the talent for it. Might consider establishing one here on WordPress.com, they have the templates and all the stuff you require to get you going, and it is all free.

    Good job! Take one atta boy out of petty cash.



  4. Thank you for your very kind praise. Actually I started blogging six weeks ago right here at WordPress. I can’t remember how I got to your blog the first time, but I’ve visited several times since and always enjoy what I read. Cheers!
    You should include your address: http://www.soaringdragons.wordpress.com when you make a comment on someones site, it could increase your traffic.


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