Half the fun of traveling is collecting stories along the way. Last week, I flew to Nashville for the millionth time in 4 years to see my girls. Upon boarding the plane I found my way toward the back, right in front of some “older” women. It seemed like a quiet spot compared to the many rows of small children. I could not have been more wrong. These women, whom I soon found out were in their 70s, were anything but quiet as we taxied down the runway, in fact, they were rowdy!
Let me start by saying that our plane had a 7:15 am departure from Denver and while most people were still trying to catch a few more hours of sleep, these ladies were not. I couldn’t tell what their story was; were they co-workers, related, friends? Okay, yes I was eavesdropping, but it felt like these ladies were going to be a story. They had spent the previous evening at a hotel near the airport since it was an early flight and I daresay they may have started their so-called “party” the night before. At points there was so much laughter I could barely understand what they were saying. I persevered.
Shortly after takeoff the flight attendants came around offering coffee, tea, juice, water or whatever anyone wanted at 7:15 am in the morning. These ladies all ordered hard liquor with a side of juice. They were not messing around.
Before long they had all of us chuckling to ourselves. First, they started retelling a story that had happened earlier that same morning. Apparently they had taken a shuttle from their hotel to the airport. One of these lovely ladies struck the driver’s fancy. Upon arriving at the airport he handed them their luggage and gave this woman a rose. They had no idea where the rose had come from, but like a magician he had made this gift appear out of thin air. He told her she looked sad and he wanted to brighten her day. I think she may have been hung over rather than sad, but it was sweet nonetheless. I mean who wouldn’t like a flower from a random stranger?
My favorite story though was about the home office that one of them worked out of. This woman could barely tell this story without laughing. It was the kind of laughing that is contagious. You know the kind that makes you laugh uncontrollably and you don’t even know what you are laughing about? I am pretty sure all of us within earshot was laughing. This woman proceeded to tell the story of how her neighbor who happens to be a man in his 70s likes to workout in his driveway, which happens to be within view of her home office. He opens the garage door every morning and pulls out his weight bench and free weights. Apparently the garage is way too confining for him. He then gives her a wave and begins his show, I mean, workout. Can’t you just imagine it now? And just in case you are wondering he does take his shirt off when he gets too hot.
These ladies and myself, were eating up this story and just when we thought it couldn’t get any better she BROUGHT IT HOME! This same man also likes to spend time on the side of his yard which is secluded from everyone’s view EXCEPT, you guessed it…her home office. She made a point of letting us know that when he spends time in his side yard, he does not wave or try to draw attention to himself in any way. However, he likes to sunbathe in the nude. This in and of itself would seem to be an attention grabber wouldn’t you say?
After laughing for what seemed an eternity she very calmly said, “I’m never moving. I have the best view in the neighborhood.”
I had so many questions, but alas I was eavesdropping and felt that it might be a little inappropriate to comment on the naked neighbor. So, when we landed I had to stand up and make conversation with these lovelies. We traded pleasantries and they offered up that they were all in their 70s and that they were all grandmothers. I asked them if they had plans while they were in Nashville and they simultaneously told me they were there to “party!” I could barely keep standing. They were killing me. They had rented an Airbnb for 5 days and they were starting off their trip with a day at the winery. I wouldn’t have put anything past these grandmothers. In fact, I half expected to see them doing a pedal tavern or a party bus when I was downtown on Saturday night.
As I walked off the plane I had a smile on my face and I thought to myself, “YES!” These women are amazing examples of living, loving, laughing, sharing and celebrating life to its fullest. This is what we should all be doing whether we are 25, 45 or 75. Let’s get out there and really live our lives.
And if you are still working at 70 I really hope you have a view!