Charlie shares his life experiences
HOW many of us say 'I could write a book about my life's experiences' but never put pen to paper (or fingers to keyboard)?
Everyone over the age of, say 70, has a wealth of stories to tell. Passing on these tales to family can reap many rewards. But getting them down on paper is a challenge.
One man who decided his life stories had to be put into print is 79-year-old retired-drover, Charlie Bridge. He believes family is everything and it is better to share your life experiences with them while you are still able to do so.
Charlie has written a book called Hard Knocks and Golden Opportunities filled with moving and absorbing tall tales and true stories.
"Books like this can open the lines of communication between generations," he said. "The younger generations can hopefully begin to understand older generations. It gives people a positive place to start talking."
Obviously in Charlie's childhood, times were easier, more innocent and simple, especially without the 24/7 electronic distractions.
"We made our own fun, made our own toys, and we had to engage in face-to-face conversations," he said. "If families sat down around a table and talked rather than texting it would give people somewhere to start so they can then work out how they feel, and discuss what's going on in their lives."
In his book, Charlie gives advice on how to cope when times are tough, how to stay determined and to see the opportunities when they appear, and then how to enjoy the good times particularly after the hard knocks.
Although childhood today is vastly different to that of yesteryear, Charlie believes many life lessons remain as relevant today as they were when he was a boy.
"Family history, as well as experience, is all important so younger family members can identify with the senior family members and learn to succeed," he said. "It is very important to look back for yourself and for your family. To let your grandchildren, and your children, know what times were like back in your time. And that they might now be experiencing something like you once did. This way, families can connect with each other and start to build a bridge between generations."
Charlie strongly advises all seniors to think about putting their own story down on paper, and he says it is not as difficult as you may think.
"I'd definitely say to seniors to write down their thoughts and stories. Don't keep their experiences to themselves. Too much information is lost between generations. And once you're gone, nobody knows anything about your life's lessons and they are lost. In the long run, experience is the most help to the next generation. Those who are willing to sit down and talk to their elders, will benefit the most from the advice given going forward."
For more information about Charlie's book, Hard Knocks and Golden Opportunities, telephone 0438749638.