As I get older I keep waiting for the “wiser” part to kick in so I thought I would read some words of wisdom that another elder has written.

The book is called “Fishing the Rivers of Time” by Tony Taylor.

Taylor is a geologist and a naturalist who spent a few years in the Cowichan valley, BC, back in 1968. The author had a part in reviving the West Coast trail as well.

He was returning to the valley 40 years later from Australia to meet his grandson for the first time. He was hoping to teach the grandson something about himself, fishing and how life works.

Taylor does a wonderful job of blending his love of nature, geology, philosophy and his apprehension about meeting his grandson.

Here is an excerpt I enjoyed:

“As I lay there in front of the fire it seemed to me there are five things a person could do every day to be healthy, hopeful and happy and I wanted to pass these on to my grandson. I knew I couldn’t just tell him; I had to demonstrate by my example.

First, is to develop friendships. I always smile and greet people politely giving them a chance to speak if they want to;

Secondly, being physically active is always important, for your mind as well as your body;

Thirdly, everyone every day until the day they die should foster curiosity about the world. Doing this achieves the fourth and perhaps the most important thing;

Fourth, is continuing your education throughout your life.

Fifth, is not to think about money all the time. Instead offer help and services to all.

These five things maintain a good mental health.”

Valerie and I have found that volunteering in our community of Peachland has greatly expander our friendships, sense of worth and feeling a part of our community. I think it keeps one youthful as well.

This year Valerie has been volunteering as a leader of a bereavement group at the Peachland Wellness centre, host of a bereavement weekly walk through the hospice society of Kelowna and is a “Caring Clown” that visits the extended care and hospice facilities.

I have been the VP for the Peachland Chamber. This year I will be a Sherriff on the Kettle Valley Steam Train, and working at the Silver Lake Kids Camp