I have been lifeguarding part-time at a local community pool for about twenty years and I love it. Each shift is 2-4 hours and I talk to over a dozen people on each shift.
The conversations are short. A listener standing in a dripping bathing suit does not lead to long discourses. Just a short hit on one topic and they’re off to the locker rooms. My wife correctly says I have become an expert on the 2-minute conversation. More than 5 minutes and I am in trouble.
These quick conversations are focused and often contain gems. A while ago, I was joking about senior forgetfulness with a man in his late seventies. “But,” he explained, “there is one area where my mind has actually gotten better with age. I can see the big picture much easier now. I can see the forest and the trees.”
The big picture is clearer now, whether about political changes, business cycles, or life itself. On reflection, my own life seems to have followed a detailed script—each person, including you, playing their part, large or small, to perfection, coming in right on cue, adding to the continuing plot.
Take a bow, all of you.