Friday, April 4, 2008

Texas, and a tangent

Whew! Did we ever need that!

Our recent whirlwind tour of San Antonio and Corpus Christi, Texas, were welcome diversions to an otherwise dreary Colorado winter (I’ll be 49 this year, so EVERY winter seems dreary, not to mention longer than the last). The wife and I, along with our son, took the opportunity afforded by Spring Break (formerly known as Easter Break pre PC) and headed south for warmer weather and old friends. After the short respite from cold weather we had in the Lone Star state, I now understand why older folks move to warmer climes after retirement: because warm weather opens up so many options, an especially important consideration when you begin to realize you won’t be around forever.

One thing that dawned upon me after I returned to Colorado’s second-largest city was how much I actually missed my old pal, Gary. You know, in the area of friends, women have it much easier than men as they age. A woman can maintain lifelong friendships because all she needs to keep them going is conversation. Men, on the other hand, relate to each other by doing things together: watching/playing sports, fishing, hunting, etc. As they age and take on familial/financial responsibilities/obligations, the time just doesn’t seem to be there anymore for these friendship-enhancing activities. It doesn’t help when distance separates the parties either. A woman need only pick up the phone and call her friend in another city or state and her friendship is refreshed. When the same amount of distance stands between men, however, it’s usually the beginning of the end. Activities are difficult to plan and execute regularly at long range. Plus, after a certain age, it seems most men’s capacity for making close friends diminishes. Such is life.

Getting back to the mini-vacation, we had a wonderful time and did all of the touristy things: the San Antonio river walk, the Alamo (hey, I know it’s a shrine to Texas' independence from Mexico, but what a needless, wasteful battle), the caverns tour, the botanical gardens, and the beach in Corpus Christi.

I think one of the reasons this getaway was so nice was our loose agenda. We’ve been on vacations before that were too stacked with activities to enjoy them. Another reason was our hosts’ hospitality; they were simply wonderful. A big thanks to you both!

Take care.

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