I was playing poker last night at the local RSL club. At the final table I was inbetween a 22 year old apprentice mechanic and a 70 year old local bloke who was a matured mix of tough and kind.
The kid was full of swagger. He was upbeat, cheeky and fun loving. The older guy was patient and thoughtful, enjoyed interjecting with the pithy quip now and then. I enjoyed my vantage point. Come from one place, heading towards the other. Part of me wanted to give advice to the young fella, about what to expect, how to ride the highs and lows, how to truly relish the halcyon days and wonderful shared experiences that youth peppers you with. But, nah, he'll find it all out in his own time and way.
Then I thought about the amazing voyage that life is. You make it to fifty and you really have seen plenty of action. Both sides of the coin. Good and bad in all it's variations and shades. Experience truly is the greatest of teachers. You learn by doing. Getting in there. Getting dirty. Taking those hits and tumbles along with the sweet rides and the barren stretches, mouth parched and nose bloody.
I felt at peace there, at the table. The old fella dropped out and the young gun and I ended up sharing the victory - split the cash and the glory. Poker is one of the many things that I love. And so are people. And life - with all it's twists and turns, challenges and delights. It's the greatest game there is.
I'm all in!