When I was 18 I was immortal. I never used to think about the passing of time, even though time structures our lives.
At school, I looked forward to playtime and home time. At work, I would arrive at my newspaper office on time, attend courts at the stated time, report on football matches at full-time, write reports on time to meet the deadline.
One of the first things we learn is to tell the time because our days are regulated by the clock.
“I’ll meet you at seven — be on time.”
We learn to keep time, to make time for friends and family, find time to do domestic tasks. Some clock watch at work, wishing time to fall away.
We waste time. Sometimes we kill time. Both should be punishable offences.
As I grew older, time took on a different meaning. Ambitions were never quite fulfilled within the time I hoped. They took longer. But when they happened, the good times rolled.
Before I knew it, middle age arrived and I was aware of the end of time. Bit worrying that.
Still, I kept busy as a journalist, writing books, drinking ale and producing grandchildren by proxy and time passed. Quickly. Now it’s going like an express train.
Funnily enough, time as a concept no longer bothers me. We are all on the same journey; we all have a finite amount of time. It’s there to be enjoyed: every day, every hour, without worrying of what the future might hold. Life is good fun. Best just to live it.
American humorist Art Buchwald paraphrased Charles Dickens, then gave it a twist, when he wrote: “Whether it’s the best of times or the worst of times, it’s the only time we’ve got.”
So embrace the joy of now.