Trek finds new traction

My bride once asked me — while we attended the 10-year reunion of my Portland, Ore., high school class — why I wasn’t reuniting with the female classmates gathered at a city park where we all met.

My answer to Kathy Anne: I was “painfully shy” as a teenager. I was uncomfortable talking to girls, I told her. Less than four years after graduating from high school, the sensational young woman whom I would marry broke me of my shyness … if you know what I mean.

I recently declared my intention to return to the world “social interaction” since losing my dear bride to cancer this past February. I am a lot more socially skilled than I was a teenager. I like talking to “girls” these days and if you’ll pardon my candor, I am pretty good at it.

I still get a bit jittery at the prospect of asking someone on a date. I still don’t always say the correct thing at precisely the correct moment.

I also realize something else. I am nearly 74 years of age. Thus, time is not my ally. I figure that if I am going to find someone with whom I want to spend copious amounts of time in my final years on Earth, I had better get busy.

Thus, my journey through the post-mortem grief of losing the love of my life is getting brighter seemingly each day. It isn’t quite so dark these days along the path I have been walking since I bid farewell to my beloved Kathy Anne.

My destination still is to be determined. As I shake off the shyness that inhibited me as a youth, I know I’ll find that place sooner rather than later.