We attended another funeral yesterday, this time of a good friend whose heart finally gave out after some years of sputtering along. He was 77, a very respectable age even in these times of increasing longevity, but many of those at the cemetery were stunned at his early departure. A visit to the cemetery turns one’s mind to questions of life and death and a whole slew of whys and wherefores and if only he had…, or perhaps they should have…? There are no answers. It’s all part of the mystery of life. Not everyone is destined for their 80s and 90s and not everyone has the health, luck and genes that pull one along to those ages.
The search for long life is in full swing and the results are quite spectacular and will become even more so in the coming years. Insurance companies are having problems with long life and are racing to update their actuarial tables. Birthday parties are hitting new highs and wedding anniversaries are making it past the 60th and even the 70th. There are a couple of residents here in the retirement home in their mid-nineties who are still driving. Will we be seeing 100 year old drivers texting on their iPhones while doing four-wheel slides around the corners in the years to come? Frightening thought, isn’t it?
People have strong ideas about why they live longer. If you ask the Japanese, it’s fish and vegetables. If you ask the Chinese, it’s green tea and ginseng, the French say it’s the wine and the Americans swear by exercise. In a current Longevity Genes Project, sixty percent of the subjects said it was due to being happy.
Whatever it is, enjoy every moment of your time on earth!