You never slow down, you never grow old

One of my all-time favorite musicians is Tom Petty, and he cemented that spot in my heart the weekend before last when I finally got to see him in concert in Philadelphia, thus completing my quadfecta of classic rock concerts.

My first memory of Tom Petty is the song “Mary Jane’s Last Dance,” mostly giggling at the line, “She’s standing in her underwear” with my sister and the all-too-weird music video:

This is the first time I’ve watched the music video since 1993, when it came out and I was just a wee child. I was talking about it with my parents on the way to the concert that weekend and how all I remembered was him dancing with a dead chick. Such a bizarre video now that I rewatch it.

ANYWAY, one of my favorite lines in the song is:

Well I don’t know, but I’ve been told
You never slow down, you never grow old

It’s kind of become a mantra I’m living by these days, without even realizing it. Since I moved to Annapolis in December, my life has been pretty hectic. I’ve become a social butterfly like never before and I’m absolutely thriving in that environment. But since May 1, my life has been the definition of insane. I have not slowed down one bit. Here’s a sampling of what I’ve done in the past 3+ months:

  • Kentucky Derby party, complete with hat-making session, homemade hushpuppies and Arnold Palmers
  • Grandmother’s surprise 75th birthday party and nephew’s 2nd birthday party in the same weekend – I played photographer at both and had more than 700 photos to edit the following week
  • Boat trip to do some SAV sampling at Poplar Island for work
  • Went back to Elon, my alma mater, for graduation weekend
  • Spent my three-and-a-half-day Memorial Day weekend in D.C. for my friend Amy’s bachelorette party, leading to going out three nights in a row with a group of 8+ girls
  • Spent a weekend at home to celebrate my mom’s birthday and an early father’s day
  • Went on a canoeing trip for work to learn about the Mattawoman Creek
  • Spent a weekend in New York City to attend a youth summit about the outdoors in Central Park, carrying my entire life around in a backpack (two, by the end of the weekend…hello, swag from North Face…) and realizing that I would love to live in NYC someday
  • Traveled to Charlotte, N.C. for my friend Amy’s wedding as an honorary attendant
  • Independence Day party
  • Spent a long weekend in Ocean City, Md. with two coworkers/friends
  • Canoeing trip on the Sassafras River to remove water chestnut for work
  • Attended my cousin’s wedding
  • Drove to Alexandria, Va. immediately after a softball game to stay with a college roommate and prepare for…
  • …a long weekend trip to Knoxville, Tenn. to visit our college suitemate
  • Tom Petty concert in Philadelphia
  • Camping at Assateague Island for a long weekend with friends/coworkers
  • A day out on a boat for work to learn about oysters
  • Let’s not forget softball games once a week…
  • …going out every weekend night that wasn’t already booked…
  • …hanging out at the pool numerous days after work…
  • …Oh, and I’m leaving for Vegas on Saturday and not coming back until Wednesday morning.

I think it’s safe to say that I’m following Mr. Petty’s advice. I’m not slowing down and I’m enjoying every moment of it. Although, I have to say the fact that I have NOTHING planned once this trip to Vegas is done is kind of liberating. I’ve been living with calendars and schedules and looming trips since January. Slowing down a little bit might be a good thing, because even though I love it all, I miss nights to do nothing, spontaneity and just time to be by myself. But if I’m being truthful here, the calendar’s going to start filling up again soon. There’s no doubt in my mind. We’re young. We’re in our 20s. And we’re embracing it. Why not, right?

Oh my my, oh hell yes,
Honey put on that party dress,
Buy me a drink, sing me a song
Take me as I come ’cause I can’t stay long


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