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  • Writer's pictureJane Leder

Some Food For Thought

Experts predict that the number of centenarians — people who live to be at least 100 years old — will continue to rise in the coming decades. While genetics play a large role in healthy aging, physical activity, social support, and where you live also can influence your chances of living a very long life.

Now I have a friend or two who have no interest in living to be 100. They figure their "business" will be wrapped up long before and have no interest in hanging around, particularly if they have to manage physical issues more serious than the standard aches and pains.

But most women (and men) that I talk to will gladly take as many years as they can get to carry on. So, back to the above question: What would you start learning or doing now? Mastering a new language? Travel? Pursuing a new career or picking up painting or writing or acting?

Since I started learning Spanish, I've forgotten French. And I was fluent! I read Sartre in French. Wrote essays. Talked up a storm. Now I'm lucky if I can remember how to say, "Where is the bathroom?" So, one of my goals is to brush up on my French. Then a requisite trip to France or Morocco or another French-speaking country will be in the cards.

I got a jump on things when I launched my podcast, "Older Women and Friends" at the end of last year. I am about to upload Episode #20 and, little by little, I'm becoming more comfortable and spontaneous behind the mic. Podcasting is a tough sell these days because there are millions of us out there trying to find a "lane" and develop a listenership. I'm heartened by the number of experts who've guested on the show and the listeners who keep coming back for more.

I'd love to create a home recording studio so that I no longer have to worry about the construction next door, trucks beeping as they go in reverse, birds chirping, dogs barking, phones ringing, people talking, lawnmowers mowing, and guests without external mics. (I did pay for a couple of hours of time in a recording studio. It was a bust! The "engineer" had virtually no experience with podcasting. Music, she said, was her thing. I recorded with an echo until she got things ironed out. I had to rerecord a guest interview and a new introduction. A disaster!)

Although it sounds corny, I want to take these coming years to be a better friend, mother, and wife. And I want to be grateful for all that I have--to stop all my minor complaints and whining. I'm working on it!


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