I was listening to Bryan Adams recently, and one of my favourite songs – “The summer of ’69” made me prick up my ears and listen more intently than usual. I’m sure you all know this classic song and love it like I do. The lyrics say it all – “Those were the best days of my life” …… “I guess nothing can last forever” ……. “Look at everything that’s come and gone”.
It got me thinking – did I have a ‘Summer of ’69’?
The wheels of my brain started whirring and I decided that I did – it was the summer of ’65. The Year 1965, the whole year in fact, but for the purposes of literary convenience I shall say the ‘summer of ’65’.
It was the year I left high school, the year I went to college, the year I won the school track and field championship, the year my head was filled with all the dreams and hopes of new beginnings, new challenges and new futures. I listened to The Shirelles, The Beatles, The Stones, The Righteous Brothers, Del Shannon and the Kinks. The summer was carefree, the sun shone, hours were whiled away with my girlfriend making plans, enjoying the freedoms of youth. College was all I had hoped it would be, new friends, new interests, new perspectives and I felt I had begun to grow up. My life ahead dawned and it felt great….. put well by Tom Petty “The sky was the limit”.
“Oh, when I look back now
That summer seemed to last forever
And if I had the choice
Yeah, I’d always wanna be there
Those were the best days of my life”.
Fast forward 50 years! Yes, 50 years! It is now the “Summer of ’15” – 2015.
50 years …… where did they go? My life has been led. Mortgages have been paid, careers have been begun and ended, children have been brought up and have lives of their own.
The lithe body that excelled at track and field, and latterly at rugby and skiing is now not so lithe. I look in the full length mirror and groan……. despite the fact that I am currently only 6kg over my ‘fighting weight’ of those halcyon days.
My recent health problems have inevitably led me to look back over my life. It’s not as if I am ‘old’ it’s just that the future is uncertain. Either way you look at it 50 years is a long time. A lifetime for sure.
Was it a life well led? Did I achieve all my dreams? Did everything turn out as I had hoped and planned for?
These questions, like many, are only answerable in the heart.
Do you have a “Summer of ’65?”