formerly Diane's Addled Ramblings... the ramblings are still addled, just like before, and the URL is still the same...
it's just the title at the top of the page that's new

Monday, May 14, 2012

Speedo? What Speedo?

There is a small lake located on the outskirts of Pigsknuckle, and when I lived here 25 years ago, I used to go there to think; to contemplate life and the decisions I had to make (or had messed up); to let my dog swim. It was MY place… quiet and peaceful, surrounded by copses of trees, open fields, and a big red barn. It’s still quiet and peaceful, except that now, in addition to that big red barn, it’s surrounded by big, expensive houses. Sigh. I don’t go there very often now, but I had the occasion to pass by on Friday evening, on the way to my book club, as one of our members lives in one of those lovely homes that borders my little lake. I was a bit early, as usual, so I pulled into the parking lot near the boat launch and I sat, warmed by the sun pouring through my windshield, and just listened to the quiet.

There were a few other people there, too, fishing from the bank. In the distance, a canoe made its slow way toward the other end of the lake – the part I’ve never actually seen (I must remedy that one day). But one person caught my attention… and held it. He was an older man – 70 at least – standing on a paddleboard in the middle of the water… in a Speedo. My first inclination was to cringe and giggle, as one does when ones sees any man (especially one in his 70’s) in a Speedo (that’s not just me, right?). But I resisted the urge.

You see, I’m trying hard to live in a less judgmental way these days; trying not to concern myself with things which, well, don’t concern me. So instead of shaking my head at this man’s questionable fashion sense (because really, as a prime candidate for 'What Not to Wear,' who am I to judge?), I just watched him.

Lean and well-muscled, tanned and white-haired, he stood straight and tall on his board, never faltering – not even once. Upright paddleboarding takes a great deal of balance and core strength, even in still water (I’ve tried it… and failed) and the ease with which he held himself upright spoke to many hours of practice and patience. He switched his paddle from side to side, cutting the dark water with long, even, powerful strokes – strokes that didn’t make a sound or splash. It was mesmerizing – watching him move silently, slowly, almost effortlessly across the water in the glow of the late-day sun. I could clearly see his focus, married to obvious relaxation, and I found myself admiring (and more than a bit jealous of) the look of sheer contentment on his face.

And I forgot all about the Speedo.


Cheri @ Blog This Mom!® said...

I love this post. Except for the part about the Speedo. Although I forgot all about it until the end.



Diane said...

Mwah! Thank you!

Anne said...

What Cheri said. I forgot 'til you reminded me at the end.

Ronda's Rants said...

So wonderful to "hear" your voice! I admire his confidence...especially since I am getting older and less confident although, I doubt I ever had enough confidence to wear a speedo :)

Darin said...

Speedos are ok!

Diane said...

Oh, Darin, how I do love your (woefully misguided) self! ;)

Pauline said...

It's hard to be nonjudgmental, isn't it. We see things through such personally clouded lenses - it's good that you could watch that man for what HE was about and not what you were about :)

So pleased to see you posting again. Thanks for stopping by my site and leaving a comment.

injaynesworld said...

Hi, Diane. Good to see you again. What a lovely post about seeing past the superficial things that often separate us and seeing instead the totality of a person. Excellent piece and excellent lesson.

And good for him for rockin' a speedo! Once we reach a certain age, we've earned the right to not give a crap about what others think of us anymore.

hebba said...

So nice to hear from you again! I have missed you.

Maybe he was European?

SueAnn Lommler said...

How beautiful!! Wonderful tribute to the power of confidence!!

dianne said...

A lovely post dear Diane, it is so good to hear your voice again, I have missed you.
I think as we become more mature, we become less judgemental and are more tolerant of things that would once annoy us. I am jealous too, I cannot stand upright on a paddle board or a surfboard, good for him for being so fit and confident.
xoxoxo ♡

rosaria williams said...

Funny how we begin to wise up about the world a bit at a time, and only after we've lived a bit recklessly.
It was good to get a visit from you at sixtyfivewhatnow, and I've signed up to follow you because I love what you wrote here, and I don't want to miss anything else.

Sometimes Sophia said...

Do not judge lest ye be judged... You've said it beautifully. It is such a pleasure to read your words again. You have an ability to make us recognize the good in our ourselves. I'm so happy that you are writing here again.

Jen said...

Love this!!! I was only going to read one post, and now I might be hooked, darn it all. :)

Warwick said...

Hi Diane
Glad to hear you eased up on your attitude to the speedo! Why shouldn't men have the luxury of swimming without excess fabric? - just like women do!
Speedos are still commonly worn here is Australia, as it was Australians who gave the world this little swimsuit. Yes, you can blame the Aussies for giving the world this piece of fashion.

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