Where does the time go?

Wow,  13 days since I made a blog entry.  It must be because I recently joined Facebook and have been doing most of this kind of thing over there.

Given the two recent deaths in my family I’ve been doing a lot of introspective thinking.  I’m 40-years old now, and while that isn’t nearly dead by far, I also realize there are a lot of people out there now that would look at me and think I’m the crypt keeper.  OK, just using that reference makes me sound old now.

Being this age with the recent happenings also gives me a chance to see just how much I’ve done in my life.  Most of my fellow Americans will NEVER leave the United States.  Ever.  Not even for a quick out and back over the Canadian or Mexican borders.  My brothers are among these people (so far).  My grandfather was 94 years old and he spent a week in Canada, back in 1950-something.  My mother went to Mexico for a few hours on the cruise she went on two months ago, but she has also been to Canada and the Bahamas. The point I’m making here is that my immediate family rarely goes anywhere, and if they do it’s next door.

I, on the other hand, have in the past 15-years been to Mexico, Canada, the UK, The Netherlands, Germany, South Africa, and Swaziland.  I’ve also been to nearly every US state.  I’ve been on nearly opposite sides of the planet during my two most far-flung trips.  Those would be Seattle, Washington US and Swaziland.  I believe the opposite side from Swaziland is out in the Gulf of Alaska, so I’ve been about as close as one can get and still be on land to opposite sides.

Outside of travel, I’ve also met or attended an audience with some interesting and influential people.  I do not claim to know or even be friends with them, but among them are the Chairman of the American Red Cross, a US Ambassador to a European country, two Secretary Generals of the UN, 3 Speakers of the US House of Representatives, a US Supreme Court Justice, a Former US Secretary of State, 3 US Senators, 2 US Representatives (non House Speaker).

I’ve seen Nelson Mandela’s prison cell in South Africa, I’ve been to a concentration camp in Germany, I’ve sat at North Korea’s seat in the General Assembly of the UN in New York (probably one of only a handful of American’s that has had permission to do so), I’ve seen the office of the US Secretary of Defense, the door to the offices of the Joint Chiefs of Staff in the Pentagon, seen our US democracy in action in the Supreme Court, galleries of the Senate and House of Representatives, and been inside the White House.

All-in-all quite a list.

This is going to sound like I’m whining… Why do I feel like I’ve accomplished nothing?

I’m sure this is temporary.

Better things to come soon, I’m sure.

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One Response to “Where does the time go?”

  1. I think what you are feeling is typical. There was a recent article in The Economist (well, the Christmas 2010 issue) entitled “The U-bend of life”
    — see, if possible, http://www.economist.com/node/17722567?story_id=17722567 — which explains that while we are generally happy as young adults, we start getting less and less happy until we turn 46, after we turn 46 things start looking up.

    So better things are to come and you will start feeling better about yourself, but it will take awhile.

    Keep in mind that I am younger than you so I have even more time to get depressed and sad.

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