There was a time some thirty or forty years ago when Route 66 was fast becoming the road less traveled. This was a unique time in the history of that illustrious highway, an era when it and the businesses that depended on the ebb and flow of traffic for survival hung suspended between vitality and abandonment.
Today, this old highway is in many locations almost as busy as it was when the neon lights were as the beacon of a lighthouse. Its popularity is now overflowing and prompting adventurers in search of vestiges from the past, a break from the sterile generic age to rediscover the wonders of the Lincoln Highway and US 6, US 50 and US 1.
In turn this has prompted a new generation to rediscover the adventure of time travel that is cruising the old highways in vehicles manufactured before they were born. When I was a kid this meant the vehicle were from the 1930s, the 1940s, and even the 1920s. Now it is cars of the 1960s, 1970s, and 1980s.
Still, it is the Harley Davidson and the rental car that spearhead the voyages of discovery in the old two lanes. More often than not at the wheel or in the saddle are drivers for whom English is a second or third language. This has truly added a unique, exciting, and fascinating dynamic to life along the venerable old two lane highways.
This advertisement for a rental company that specializes in Harley Davidson rentals says it all, “We rent Dreams.”
One of the problems with growing older is dealing with change and continually needing to adapt to new technologies, societal evolution and all that this entails. Those who can’t become old and bitter. Those who can, thrive and grow old with a smile. In between are those who toss aside convictions based upon truth and wisdom garnered from years of living to embrace a never ending childhood that results in emptiness.
In recent months I have read bitter tirades about the fact the first generation mini van now qualifies as an antique vehicle, that senior citizens are tearing down the highways on Harley Davidson’s, and that the younger generation is going to hell in a hand cart. It is so easy to forget that when ever we live it is a blending of the best of times and the worst of times.
I found this bit of wisdom from a ninety year old quite refreshing and a delightful opportunity to renew my perspective about the future.
Written By Regina Brett, 90 years old, of The Plain Dealer, Cleveland , Ohio “To celebrate growing older, I once wrote the 45 lessons life taught me… It is the most-requested column I’ve ever written. My odometer rolled over to 90 in August, so here is the column once more: 1. Life isn’t fair, but it’s still good. 2. When in doubt, just take the next small step. 3. Life is too short to waste time hating anyone… 4. Your job won’t take care of you when you are sick. Your friends and parents will. Stay in touch. 5. Pay off your credit cards every month. 6. You don’t have to win every argument. Agree to disagree. 7. Cry with someone. It’s more healing than crying alone. 8. It’s OK to get angry with God. He can take it. 9. Save for retirement starting with your first pay check. 10. When it comes to chocolate, resistance is futile. 11. Make peace with your past so it won’t screw up the present. 12. It’s OK to let your children see you cry. 13. Don’t compare your life to others. You have no idea what their journey is all about. 14. If a relationship has to be a secret, you shouldn’t be in it. 15. Everything can change in the blink of an eye. But don’t worry; God never blinks. 16. Take a deep breath. It calms the mind. 17. Get rid of anything that isn’t useful, beautiful or joyful. 18. Whatever doesn’t kill you really does make you stronger. 19. It’s never too late to have a happy childhood. But the second one is up to you and no one else. 20. When it comes to going after what you love in life, don’t take no for an answer. 21. Burn the candles, use the nice sheets, wear the fancy lingerie. Don’t save it for a special occasion. Today is special. 22. Over-prepare, then go with the flow. 23. Be eccentric now. Don’t wait for old age to wear purple. 24. The most important sex organ is the brain. 25. No one is in charge of your happiness but you. 26. Frame every so-called disaster with these words ’In five years, will this matter?’ 27. Always choose life. 28. Forgive everyone everything. 29. What other people think of you is none of your business. 30. Time heals almost everything. Give Time time. 31. However good or bad a situation is, it will change. 32. Don’t take yourself so seriously. No one else does. 33. Believe in miracles. 34. God loves you because of who God is, not because of anything you did or didn’t do. 35. Don’t audit life. Show up and make the most of it now. 36. Growing old beats the alternative — dying young. 37. Your children get only one childhood. 38. All that truly matters in the end is that you loved. 39. Get outside every day. Miracles are waiting everywhere. 40. If we all threw our problems in a pile and saw everyone else’s, we’d grab ours back. 41. Envy is a waste of time. You already have all you need. 42. The best is yet to come. 43. No matter how you feel, get up, dress up and show up. 44. Yield. 45. Life isn’t tied with a bow, but it’s still a gift.