ANOTHER DAY IN THE COUNTRY:   The editorial next door

© Another Day in the Country

For several weeks now, I’ve been sitting on an article I wrote about what it is like to get old and come to terms with dying, but for one reason or another I never got around to sending it in.

And then yesterday the paper came and I did my usual perusal of the front page, turned to the second page to check if “I’d gotten in.”

Ah yes, here’s what I wrote — it always looks different in print. It sounds different in the newspaper than it does on my computer too. Sometimes, my sister reads my article to me. I always like hearing the words spoken. There is a different slant to the content when it is translated through a voice.

I listen with my heart as she reads. Once in awhile I grimace, “Should have said that a little differently,” I think; but I don’t interrupt her flow.

Today, my eyes catch a headline just to the left of Another Day in the Country. It reads, “One of the First Steps of Being Old.”

“What?” I say to myself, “Someone else is thinking about aging besides me? Who is this?” My eyes search for the author. “Have I read something from her before?

I begin to read and there’s a tiny tingle as I digest the words — she sounds sort of like me. How interesting.

Now I’ve read all kinds of columns in Marion County papers through the years. Every writer has a unique expression. There’s a cadence, self revelation, the use of wit and vulnerability as one reveals to the wider world just who they are and what they care about.

The writer from last week told me things about herself that I could connect to: getting older, dealing with AARP, being categorized, and having gray hair, although I’ve been intimately involved with Miss Clairol for years! Right there in her first few paragraphs I discovered several things: she has a sense of humor, she’s been married, and she doesn’t like junk mail. I smile.

“I’m going to have to make it a point to meet her,” I think to myself. We have some things in common, we evidently think — at least briefly — along the same lines, although I don’t remember ever writing about AARP — good for her — she’s an original!

Through the years of writing Another Day in the Country, I’ve found myself repeating subjects, “Oh, there it is again,” I mumble, “Haven’t I talked about this long enough?” Apparently not! Usually, I go back and check to see if I’m just repeating myself. Sometimes, I just give up and think, “No one but me will remember.”

It’s another day in the country and my column on the subject of aging still hasn’t been sent. Who knows when I’ll decide it is time? I’m wondering if writers with a similar style often think along the same lines.

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