-- Francis Bacon
English philosopher, statesman, scientist, jurist, orator, and author Francis Bacon was only 65 when he died in 1626. So we'll never know if he would have been singing the same tune in his 70s, 80s or 90s.
But many of us sharing his philosophy will have the chance to find out. The average life expectancy in the U.S. is just a shade under 79 years right now. If we live that long, will we insist that old age begins at 93?
Most of my nursing-home friends already consider themselves old. Though they're almost all widows or widowers, and miss their late spouses terribly, I don't know that many of them regret their age. Most seem to be at peace with it, and ready to move on to their heavenly eternities; the only part they're dreading is the actual act of dying.
It's an attitude that rubs off on you if you spend much time with them. Which is another great reason for visiting elderly nursing-home residents just as often as you can. As inevitable as aging is, who doesn't want to be able to greet yet another birthday with peace and even joy?