A strange expression turning 64. If I keep turning the same way I'll get older. But what if I turned the other way? Would I regain my youth? Do I want to? I can think of one or two reasons.
I was a teenager at school when the Beatles recorded When I'm 64. I remember working out what year it would be when I became that great age. Now 2010 has come and soon it will be gone.
This is the second birthday I've spent in India. The first, three years ago was in the Coorg rainforests. This time I'm in the Himalayas, the mountain range that arguably sustains our Earth. They are troubled mountains, struggling with hotter summers, less snowfall and therefore less water. The water that creates the great rivers sustaining a huge percentage of the world's population and countless flora and fauna, is reducing. Glaciers are melting and the likelihood of uncontrolled flooding from the monsoons is growing.
We are in an unprecedented time of change. My generation in the West has had a full, bountiful life fuelled by oil. A time of plenty, technological advances that change and develop leaving us breathless, wondering how we could ever have done without this and that. But how much do we really need? One thing for certain is that constant growth isn't sustainable and we have yet to discover the price to pay. Nothing goes on forever.
I'm glad I've reached 64 and know I have to get off the path that carries on regardless. But which way do I go next? Maybe there's still time to sit and wait and muse before choosing. Maybe.
That song was good. Still is. But now I know the answer to the questions it asks. It's YES.
Thank you, one and all.