This week i met interviewee #4 for my Countryside service project. i started my interview, as i do them all, asking for name and birthdate. While i was trying to calculate the age of this gentleman, he noticed my concentration (math is not my strong suit), and said “Yup, 94. And I just finished playing golf.”
i listened to his tales of his first job as a paper boy at age 7 and how he came to work for Standard Oil. At age 9 he witnessed a shooting in Chicago that killed a man. He fell in love in high school and was happily married for many decades to follow. He has hit five holes-in-one on the links- and has proof, in case you doubt him. When asked if he has any advice for those younger than him, he said quickly “The glass is always half-full, not half-empty. Everything you do has to count for something; for you and your family.” He cited his children as his greatest accomplishment.
Having survived the depression as a soda jerk and several threats of cancer, i found his stories interesting and i was truly invested. He looked at me and said, “I think you’re good for this kind of work. You seem really interested.” i smiled and told him, “that’s because i am.”