Cheer up old Man

Cheer up Man

March 3, 2011

Cheer up ManPosted on March 3, 2011 by gerard oosterman

There is nothing like home. You can imagine the people’s plight on being stuck renting on a 6month lease basis. I can’t understand how anyone can cheerfully change their home being at the mercy of a 6 month lease.

Yet, before we came out here, renting was the norm and most people would spend their entire lives just in one property.  I ‘earth-googled’ our old address back in The Hague. Sure enough it is as if we left it yesterday. The street is unchanged, the doors and windows still the same, and not a brick has changed. No doubt, all those living there are renting the same as when we lived there. Perhaps, central heating and bathrooms have been added and kitchens with hot water. We lived on the top floor. At the bottom floor there were gardens and many of those lucky bottom dwellers kept chickens. A city still had chickens and veggie scraps were collected each week by horse and cart.

Yet, going back to Revesby whose architecture is far more recent, all has changed and our house hardly recognizable, the walls covered with colour bond weather board and a solid terra cotta tiled roof instead of the cement tiles that were put on when built originally… Many of the houses have had stories added, some with columns holding up little Romanesque like triangle bits of roofing or other odd bits of architecture.

Coming across some old photos of my first year here in Revesby, I can hardly believe how time has passed, and yet, I don’t think I have hurried the years unnecessarily.  Have I stood still but the houses and surroundings changed? Would this, not having moved from Holland, have produced the reverse?

You’re getting old with retrospection a sure sign, many would argue, as if years ahead for them are still numbered in multiple of decades. Yet, reading the obituaries’, it is not uncommon for people to cark it quite happily at the age some of us are in now. Makes you think, doesn’t it?

Cheer up, old man. The best is yet to come.

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5 Responses to “Cheer up old Man”

  1. Elisabeth Says:

    There’s nothing like the passage of time to unsettle us. I find the more the years fly the faster they seem to move while everything around them moves more slowly.

    A Dutchman by the name of Douwe Draaisma writes about how memory shapes our past in a terrific book called’ Why Life Speeds up as you get older’. Draaisma offers this analogy. Life is like a stream, a river. One man ‘s life can be measured by the pace of the river as it flows. In childhood and the early years the man manages to sprint alongside the river and the pace of the river seems comparatively slower. In the middle years the man slows down such that the river and the man are fairly evenly spaced in terms of pace. In his later years into old age the man slows down even more to the point that the river now runs faster than the man and eventually the man stops altogether and curls up alongside the river to sleep, namely to die, while the river continues on its journey at the same pace as in the beginning of the man’s life. This metaphor is useful to a point but is not one to betaken too literally. I enjoy it nevertheless, as I enjoyed this post, Gerard. Thanks


  2. gerard oosterman Says:

    That is a lovely analogy Elisabeth. Glad you liked mine as well even though not in the same league as that by Draaisma.
    I really never give much thought to age or ageing but when I happen to pass a mirror I have no option but to adjust to the notion that time has gone by.


  3. Charlton Estate Trust Says:

    I think everyone feeling down (including myself) should get together with others and have a life-swap. 🙂


  4. Dan Tesic (@Ne0Tesla) Says:

    I moved a lot, and I love the idea of home. However, I hate the idea (and moreover the practice) of mortgage. In my precarious existence, the threat of losing the home and having to go back renting is ever more real. The thing that I particularly hate about renting is that it is barely possible to find a landlord that will allow pets. Which is the reason I keep postponing to get me a cat, which pains me. In short, life is, if not hell, then limbo at best.


  5. gerard oosterman Says:

    Dan Tesic.
    Yes, one is lucky to get out alive. Love your photos. We have a pet dog ‘Milo’, a Jack Russell. We are not supposed to in the Strata Title compound, but we just did it.
    Our days of moving about has stopped.


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