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Saturday, August 1 and Sunday August 9, 2015 were primo ocean days at the Jersey Shore and maybe all along the eastern seaboard. Wave intensity, water clarity, and a crisp but not icy sea temperature united to make for endless frolicking in the ocean. The waves rolled, pounded and crashed to the shore. I dove in, again and again, always trying to avoid those annoying boogie boarders. But if I didn’t manage to dive in at exactly the right moment, I was tumbled and tossed and somersaulted to the shore. I loved it, despite the fact that I acquired a few black and blue marks from the aquatic twirl.

And therein lies the rub.

As I move farther and farther from the right side of 59, I know my days of being able to take on an ocean of that vitality and volatility are numbered.  Probably not next year, or even the year after that, but at some point between 62 and 70, I will need to be wise and stand aside for a calmer sea.

Even now I know that on rough ocean days I am not the person I was when I was young, (and I mean young like 56).  I am aware of a slight difference in my durability to go one on one with a mighty wave and it bums me out because it will be one more fun thing (like partying till 3 am and then going out for breakfast) that will bite the dust.  Ok I may, under certain occasions be able to make it until 3 am, but I’m not going to a diner for eggs when the night is over.

With the ocean, I just have to recognize that one day I will be standing on the shore while others plunge in on those primo days. So for now every dive is cherished and placed in the memory basket to be hauled out when I’m 90 and tell stories about back in the day.