The big three emotional holidays for us widowed folks are gone now: Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Yearís have passed and now we can look forward to Easter. Each of these days has memories for some of us; some more than others for different people. For me, itís the little daily activities with my wife that I miss most, not the big holidays.
The world did not end on December 21, as some people believed the ancient Mayans predicted. I wasnít too worried about that. I mean they didnít even have cell phones. We had plenty of snow for Christmas so Santa could make his rounds. Thatís always important to those of us who still believe. The huge lighted ball made its descent at midnight New Yearís Eve in Times Square without Dick Clark. The wranglers in Washington, D.C. kept us from tumbling over the Fiscal Cliff at the last minute in dramatic style. I was fortunate to be able to have New Yearís breakfast with friends. So now we are ready to begin 2013 in good shape.
Oh, I know that there will immediately be people who will say, ď2013 will be a bad luck year,Ē and all that, but if they arenít Mayans or Incans, no one will pay much attention to them. Look back at 1913; those people survived. William Taft was president and war clouds were forming over Europe. Sounds familiar doesnít it. I guess Iím not too worried. Anyway, I havenít seen that hand basket my grandparents predicted we were going to hell in 70 years ago yet, so I think weíre OK.
Have you made any New Yearís resolutions yet? Me neither. Over the last few years I have modified my lifestyle to suit me more; nothing formal, I just do things different. I donít run to answer the phone like I used to. Iíve got an answering machine and caller I.D. so Iíll get back to you. Iím trying not to hurry so much whether Iím walking, driving, or eating. This isnít really too hard for me. One of my elementary teachers once said, ďAl, youíre the slowest kid in the county.Ē Today I would take that as a compliment. I try not to get upset at little things. I donít treat clerks from the insurance agencies on the phone to my sarcastic wit any longer, or at least I try not to! In other words, Iím trying to be friendlier. All of this has come about since I turned 80; itís sort of New Decade resolutions rather than New Yearís resolutions. Oh my gosh; Patti Page died. I had a terrible crush on her in my late teens and early 20s. She was 85. I guess I really never had a chance, but a guy can dream canít he?
I started writing this column as sort of therapy for myself and anyone else who wants to come along for the ride. It has helped me and I hope that it has helped others, too. Recently there has been some discussion about my true identity. Iím not going to lie about who I am; Iím not a good liar. So if you ask me, Iíll tell you. But Iíd still like to have you think of me as Al Owne when you read this column. Heís still trying to cope with being alone and youíre helping him get through it.
Say ďHappy New YearĒ to everyone you meet this week and smile when you do. Alnada2704@gmail.com, or care of Winona Post, P.O. Box 27, Winona, Minn., 55987.