Monday, August 6, 2012

An afternoon with Jimmy Buffett

Today was the last day of my "staycation"; all of my house guests had departed and my son was away for a couple of days so I had the afternoon to myself, and when the morning clouds cleared out and the afternoon promised to be hot and sunny I decided the place to be was on the pool-deck. It seemed a shame to spend such a beautiful time alone so I invited my old friend, Jimmy Buffett, who knows more about how to relax in the sunshine than anybody else I know, to join me and reminisce about some of his own vacations and adventures. 

It turns out Jimmy and I share a vision of how to relax on vacation.  Here's how he recounted his experience on a charter boat on the Amazon River while celebrating his fiftieth birthday: 

"...I am a contented fellow, just moving with the motion of the boat through the relatively calm river water, staring out at endless miles of nothing.  It is exactly what I came to do.  I don't have a care in the world...I am not in charge, nor do I have even the slightest urge to be. I make like a native, curl up in my hammock, and just watch the world go by...while for one whole day I put my life into neutral."
(I should probably attribute this quote to Jimmy's book, "A Pirate Looks at Fifty", copyright 1998 (I'm a little behind on my reading).)

OK, I was floating on a tube in my pool instead of on a boat on the Amazon, but the effect was exactly the same - relaxation is a state of mind and being on vacation is all about relaxing, where ever you happen to be. On this point, Jimmy and I agree.

 Jimmy has something to say about setting one's priorities in life, too, and again I found us to be two peas in a pod when it comes to what we consider to be important when it comes to living a good life.  I'll let Jimmy tell you in his own words:

(My dogs are labs, but these Goldens illustrate the point pretty well, too.)

When the conversation turned to current events, politics and the economy, as it always does, Jimmy again had just the right answer to put things in proper perspective, at least for a soul-mate like me - you may disagree.  Here's what he said:

So yes, we still have a lot to drink, and think, about but somehow it all seems less overwhelming when Jimmy puts it in those terms. 

When the sun finally went behind the clouds and it was time to get out of the pool, I thanked Jimmy for stopping by to help me put my vacation, and life in general, in the proper perspective.  It really is all about "...changes in attitudes...", no matter what latitude you're in and his visit was just what I needed to remind me that daily life can be a grind but you don't have to let it wear you down.

And now I'm going to let my puppies run before it gets dark.  Some vacations are better than others - mine was a great one by any standard and I'm glad Jimmy stopped by to remind me of that.;

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