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Make the most of every moment

I feel like the old gray mare. I kick and wrestle against the bar of life, but still the whiffletree of years ravage my body. (Knowing what a whiffletree is dates me — it is the bar that stabilizes the harness behind a team of horses).

I have basked in the sun, watched weekly as a local sandhill crane fed in a neighbor’s field. As a wheelchair-bound working mom I defied the odds of courts and society as I raised a strong and resilient daughter to womanhood — my greatest contribution to this world.

People often ask me how I survived the challenges that shipwrecked my life plans. I always cringe as someone said, “You have done so much. I couldn’t have done it.”

My life is no different from anyone else’s. We each have our unique trials, pains and conflicts. I don’t know anyone who escaped life without being forced by circumstance to learn and grow.

And so, as I sit watching an adult quail try to balance on a thin willow stem outside my window, I think of the quail that perched on the palm stump weeks ago as he stood watching as his brood fed. I am like the quail, perilously balancing on a willow stem bending under my weight and standing guard over those I love.

I have survived to adulthood, but I still love balancing on the edge of safety. I still love new experiences. I still want to hang onto life and see my brood grow to their potential.

Samuel Ullman (1849-1924) states my feelings in his poem, “Youth.”

“Youth is not a time of life; it is a state of mind; … it is a matter of the will, a quality of the imagination, a vigor of the emotions; it is the freshness of the deep springs of life… Nobody grows old merely by a number of years. We grow old by deserting our ideals.

“Years may wrinkle the skin, but to give up enthusiasm wrinkles the soul… there is in every human being’s heart the lure of wonder, the unfailing child-like appetite what’s next, and the joy of the game of living. In the center of your heart and my heart there is a wireless station; so long as it receives messages of beauty, hope, cheer, courage and power from men and from the infinite, so long are you young.“ ( http://uu-life.com/Essay/106-poem_Youth_EN.htm )

My body is kaput! There is much I long to accomplish, but I may never finish. Still my mind does not see the wrinkles in the mirror, but rather the roads I long to travel. While one doctor says I “defy all odds” another thinks I keep so many projects in the fire that I just don’t have time to die.

We all have challenges, we all will come to the autumn of our life. I cry out to all, young and old: Be optimistic. Do those things that will keep the wrinkles of worry and sadness from shriveling your soul. Have that “unfailing child-like appetite” for what’s next, and enjoy to the very last moment the joy for “the game of living.”

Learn something new every day, perhaps a new word or a friend. Most of all — dream. And live that dream. If you are able to travel, do so. If you love to share books, start a book club or organize a social gathering to learn or do one of your favorite pastimes with new friends.

Maintain a positive perspective. Each day is a gift, open each day with anticipation and awe. Notice the lizard, the sparrow, the budding flower, the person you pass on the street and greet each with a hello and a smile. Care for your body and mind. Take a walk, even if you use a mobility aid. Enjoy the company of sharing nature with a friend or the ducks at the park. Be social, go to the library, read a book, work on a puzzle.

I may be an old gray mare who isn’t what she used to be, but “my heart and mind will forever be set as a kid” (author unknown).

Cat Trico has been a resident of Boulder City since 2003 and is a past president of the Senior Center of Boulder City and co-founder of the Decker Lake Wetlands Preserve. As an author and editor, she contributed to “Rights, Responsibilities, and Relationships” for youth. She can be reached at cat.circa1623@gmail.com.

Alumni events, marriage and a real Nazi

Ron’s column from a few weeks ago inspired me to tell a story about a weird event from my past. Mine is not as exciting as his in that there is no wrestler named Silo Sam. But there is at least one Nazi. And, no, not the current “I disagree with your politics so you are a Nazi” version. An actual card-carrying member of the party.

Las Vegas Veterans’ Memorial to Boulder City?

Veterans’ memorials can be found all over the Silver State. They are well deserved. They honor individuals who served the nation, and also commemorate battles and events regarding the many military anniversaries in Nevada.

City manager bids fond farewell

I may be leaving Boulder City, but it was not an easy decision. From the first time I came in and met the staff and community leaders, I saw a city filled with people who truly care about where they live and work. I am grateful for the opportunities I have had to work with some incredible people.

Is the grass always greener?

Many people in the past played a golf game to cement a business deal, didn’t they? They also played golf to socialize. Has Boulder City recognized lessening play on golf courses? Or, from another perspective, what happens when million-dollar homes are placed around our open space golf course with views of the McCullough Mountains? Do fewer people play golf on the Boulder Creek golf course?

Parting is such sweet sorrow

Shakespeare was the man when it came to comedy and tragedy. His ability to make people feel the intense emotions of the characters is still imitated today. The past few months have been filled with a bit of excited anticipation at City Hall as several longtime and high-level employees have found new roles in other acts. I’m here to borrow some Shakespearean lines, the first being from Ophelia, “We know what we are, but know not what we may be.” (Hamlet)

Me, my brother and Silo Sam

Recently, I’ve been enjoying watching shows on A&E related to professional wrestling back in the earlier days, with profiles on wrestlers I grew up watching as well as classic rivalries.

Let’s talk about the ‘D Word’

OK, as a starting point, I must note that it’s weird to think that I might be writing something that would put me in agreement with the Language Police.

Make a new plan, Stan

A plan is a method for achieving a desirable objective. It’s a program of action, usually memorialized in writing. Plans start with goals and ideas. But ideas alone (even good ones) don’t constitute a plan.

Time to recognize unsung heroes

We have so many functions within the Boulder City Police Department, from school resource officers to road patrol to the detective bureau. The work that they do keeps Boulder City among the “Safest Cities in Nevada” (newhomesource.com, alarm.com) year after year. One unit is the backbone of our public safety response: Public Safety Dispatchers.

Honoring National Public Health Week

In my eight decades of this amazing life, I have worn a great many hats: son, brother, father, major (USAF), grandfather, council member, state representative, state senator.