As we get older, we tend to create our own bubble.  I don’t mean going from 14 to 17, I mean going from 40 to 60 and beyond.  We sail along until some event slaps us in the face.  It can be something as gentle as encountering a friend one has not seen since childhood or it can be something harsh like a health issue.  Sooner or later you will have an event that makes you ask, “When did I get so old?”  Of course we always knew, but we didn’t, not like that.

My friend is 75 and I am thinking his bubble hasn’t popped, yet.  Last winter I told him he needed a generator.  Back then it was snow that was the precipitating event [pun intended].  Well, as a staunch Republican, he refuses to aknowledge “climate change.”  He told me that if his power went out that he and his wife would simply go to a nice hotel.

Well, Sandy arrived.  My friend lives just outside Trenton.  He told me that he had never heard such wind for so long.  It sounded like a train that went on forever.  Fortunately, his house is still intact, however, he says he will be without electricity until around November 5.  Cell phones do not work, of course, because the towers are down.  He can receive calls on his land-line, but he cannot call out because his phone reports that all circuits are busy.  He heard on his battery-operated radio that the food in his freezer went in the first 24 hours.  The food in a “full” freezer is good for about 4 days.  One that is half full is good for 2 days.  Fortunately his vehicles have gasoline and he has cash on hand.  He even has 10 cases of water.  The problem is that he only has Sterno, no camp stove or Bar B Que.  He has to last 6 more days with no heat and beyond cool soups and water, I am not sure what else.  He said the very nice restaurant, at which we ate when I visited, was open.  They would go there when they wanted to eat.  He said there won’t be a lot of people going there because it is expensive.

We do not appreciate what it is to grow older until we discover that we can no longer do something that was so easy before.  For me, it was 10 years ago, when I went bowling.  I didn’t mean to loft the ball. I just thought I would be closer to the floor when I was ready to let go.  What a surprise that was.  Up until those moments, we compensate.

The older we get, the more we compensate.  I am afraid Michael’s bubble will burst with a bang.  I asked if there were any shelters near by.  He said, “Yes, but we couldn’t go to any of those.”  Condescension was dripping from his voice.  I hope my friend can make it one more week without electricity or something upon which to cook.  Maybe I can send in FED Ex with an Amazon order.   We will see.  Probably not, I am worried about his bubble.