In which the author entered a new decade
Here’s how a man rings in his fortieth birthday: in full diving gear, he enters a secured cage submerged just below the salty sea surface far off the coast of Baja, the waters freshly chummed up with bloody tuna, watching as the world’s apex predator—the Great White Shark—comes sniffing around, champing at the bit.
So, was it as awesome as it sounds, you ask?
Well, here’s the thing. I didn’t do it. I’d been talking about for about five years though. Does that count?
When I turned 30, I went skydiving, and thus told myself I was going to do something wild and extreme at each decade birthday. My “Big 4-Oh,” however, came and went. No sharks. No chummy water. Instead, I spent it with my best chums—my sons, and of course, my number one, my wife. She had carefully reminded me that I’m a father now, and should I really be putting myself in shark-infested waters.
It’s not her fault my fortieth was ho-hum. It was mostly my fault. Several weeks prior, I was in a bad mood and declared I didn’t want anything. No trips, no party, just a quiet day doing regular family stuff, tending to the kids per usual. As the big day approached however, I got a little nervous and threw together a road trip just an hour north of where we live. We checked into a hotel, then spent the next few days and nights eating at diners, staying up late, and going to petting zoos and donut shops.
Was it as awesome as it sounds, you ask?
Hell yeah! I can’t imagine a better way to spend it than with those I love.
As for those sharks, I’ll get to them. Maybe at my fiftieth. It’ll be here before I know it.
Photo credit: Robert Couse-Baker.