“Ain’t No Sunshine When She’s Gone….” Bill Withers 1971

Welcome back to SOLO at SIXTY!

Not sure about the weather where y’all are, but our weather has been so crazy in Charlottesville. We have seen the coldest temperatures of the season AND some fairly mild days. We’ve experienced Winter, then Fool’s Spring (plants started budding), then Second Winter (to kill the buds), and soon it will be Spring of Deception! Just give me SUMMER and those long, warm days filled with sunlight!

Ever listen to the radio and a song comes on that causes you to go “ohhhh… that song reminds me of…..” or “that was ‘so and so’ and my song back in the day.” Your breath quickens, your heart races a little, and for a few seconds you are transported back in time. And if you close your eyes you can remember just how you felt. This happens to me a lot – mainly because I listen to either the 70’s channel or Yacht Rock Radio on Pandora at work and XM Radio when I travel. I’m the first to admit that I am a sucker for the oldies – I mean, that music was the BEST!  Right? And those songs are the ones that “get” me, reminding me of my days in high school and college, of dating, old friends… so much fun, so many memories.

“All it takes is 1 song to bring back 1,000 memories.”

But music is not the only thing that evokes old memories. Reruns of old TV shows also take me back. When I got home Saturday night and turned on the TV, I was pleasantly surprised to see an old episode of Saturday Night Live. One that first aired on January 17, 1976. 1976 y’all! Back when SNL’s stars were Chevy Chase, John Belushi, Dan Aykroyd, Garrett Morris, Gilda Radnor, and Jane Curtin. Who remembers Weekend Update with Chevy Chase, the Norge Refrigerator Repairman, or Cheeseburger, cheeseburger, cheeseburger, chips? Pepsi, no Coke? And Roseanne Roseannadanna? The musical guest on this episode was Bill Withers and of course he sang “Ain’t No Sunshine When She’s Gone” with all 26 “I knows” sung in a row. Watching that SNL episode transported me back to when I was an 18-year-old high school senior, a cheerleader, and already accepted at The University of North Carolina Chapel Hill for the fall. Life was good, life was fun, life was pretty easy.

“Memories are special moments that tell our story.”

What were you doing in 1976? Can you believe that was 44 years ago? Made me stop and look back at the past 44 years. I mean, in January of 1976, I was loving high school, was not nearly as close with my sisters as I am now (one was newly married, other was in 7th grade), had not met my future husband, had not even laid eyes on the campus of UNC (yep, applied there, even though I had never visited!), but I was cheering for UNC basketball! (Still am, even though this is a challenging year, to say the least.)

As good as the 70’s were, so were the 80’s. When my younger daughter was home with me over Christmas, we were talking about a TV quote I often say: “Thank you RAY DON!” This is from one of my favorite 80’s shows – Designing Women, which I think was WAY before its time. So what did we do? My daughter found the old episodes on Hulu and we binge-watched the first season, which included the “RAY DON” episode! I think she loved it too! Brought back lots of memories for me. As much as I loved the 70’s, I also loved the 80’s (though not the music as much). I was a newlywed and then a new momma in the 80’s. Life was good, life was interesting, life was very meaningful.

“A millions feelings. A thousand thoughts. A hundred memories. One person.”

My favorite trip down memory lane is when I search for baby pictures of my kids to post on their birthday. Oh my goodness my kids were the cutest! (I know, every momma says that!) I love going through my many bins of old photos, looking back and remembering their precious childhoods and all of our fun family times. I am always so thankful for each of them. And trust me, I have bins and bins of old pictures! (Similar to my Christmas Sweater bins!)

I’ve been looking back and taking stock of my life lately. Realized that as happy as I am with where I am in my life, there are a lot of things that I will probably never get to do. It was a bit sobering. And I am ok with that. Kinda. Decided I would start my bucket list, which so far, is relatively small and fairly simple (Hawaii, NYC again, one more half-marathon). I have a friend who has an impressive bucket list and is wasting NO time crossing the fun and amazing items off the list. Not sure I’ll ever accomplish the things on my list, but it sure is fun to dream about them.

“Memories take us back, dreams take us forward.”

Do you have a bucket list? Dreams of what you would like to do or see? Things you would like to accomplish? What’s holding you back? Opportunity? Finances? Fear? Honestly, all of these things are holding me back. That and the thought that I will have time later to accomplish some of my dreams. Maybe after I retire? But do we have plenty of time? Why risk it? Why not go for those things now? Mark the fun things off your list. Make those memories. I’m gonna give it a go. Let’s not wait, because as we all know, none of us is promised tomorrow.

“The purpose of life, after all, is to live it, to taste experience to the utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer and richer experience.” – Eleanor Roosevelt



PS… “Well, Jane, it just goes to show you. It’s always something. If it’s not one thing, it’s another.”  Roseanne Roseannadanna, SNL

One thought on ““Ain’t No Sunshine When She’s Gone….” Bill Withers 1971”

  1. Les – I loved this blog. Since we are the same age, and we experienced high school, college, “newlywedhood” and new motherhood at the same time, I could totally relate to the songs and SNL references. Such fun times!!! Love you.

    Liked by 1 person

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