Monday, January 23, 2012

young enough

I am no longer reckless like I used to be.  I know SB wishes that I still had more of the old wild streak but after a few years of living, I have discovered that I am impeded by knowledge of risk.  In my twenties I didn't think about how fragile the human body really is; I certainly didn't consider what I had to live for or more importantly, what I would have lost.  Now I know.  I can look back at my wonderful life and my beautiful love and feel a twinge of pain at the thought that I might have missed it all.  I could have easily missed it all because my old joie de vivre was synonymous with reckless stupidity.  At the age of 23, when I almost drowned in a flash flood, my thoughts as I was fighting to keep my head above the raging water were simplistic: anger, bewilderment, exhaustion.  I hadn't experienced enough of life to feel regret or sorrow.  There was nothing to be missed.  Oh how things have changed.  I now look before I leap.  I use logic over adrenaline (usually). 

But I was young enough once.  I was young enough to live for the moment, head empty of all thought except that rush of joy.  Today as I turned down a ride on M's new, red Ducati I remembered a very late night in Texas on the back of Burt's Kawasaki Ninja as we flew down I-10 at 140mph.  I recall my somewhat hysterical laughter as a combination of air differential and acceleration dragged me backward while I gripped frantically to his waist with my numb fingers.  What a rush that was.  How frightfully stupid.  Exhilarating.  Back then I didn't know that the feeling was soon going to be diminished by caution signs.  I would have bottled that joy had I known.

2 comments:

Gweipo said...

Funnily enough I was thinking along those lines too during my retreat. I did some pretty stupid things in my youth, and survived them all. I'd be horrified if I knew my kids were doing that stuff, but a little sad if they didn't, in case they missed out on living ...
I'm just glad as hell that everything I did didn't end up on Facebook or on someone's iPhone or camera ...

architart said...

Somewhere there are pictures of me dancing on top of a bar in Ciudad Acuña that will prevent me from running for public office under the conservative banner. Oh well.