I had my 72nd birthday cruising to the Florida Keys from the upper reaches of Chesapeake Bay. I fully intended to make that trip again this fall, but mother nature has a way of taking her toll when it comes to aging, which is not usually a graceful process. Now, at 77, my aging mind continues to make my body can no longer keep. Tomorrow, I'm sailing about 30 miles to North East, Maryland to have a skinny, marine mechanic dive into my engine compartment and adjust my stuffing box, which I can no longer accomplish.
Ironically, when I went on a day sail 10 years ago, the essentials were: a small Italian Hogi, a 12 pack of Coors Light, a bag of potato chips, and a bag of ice. Now, I carry an oxygen generator, a rescue inhaler, and a supply of pills, just in case I stay out later than anticipated. And, when I pass a topless honey skinny dipping off her boat, I just cast a passing glance, wave, smile, then turn up the oxygen generator a notch.
So, my advice to all you youngsters out there, those that are still in good health and physical condition, sail ever chance you get. Enjoy every minute of every day to the fullest, do a little fishing, girl watching, drink the best booze and don't worry about the red meat and fat consumption - they don't make a damned bit of difference anyway. You never know when all this will suddenly come to an abrupt end. I know this stuff first hand - I'm an old fart!