Saturday, April 07, 2007

Ninety and Still Going Strong

Every morning, rain or shine, 90-year old Amsterdam hotelier Pierre Wynnobel wheels his bicycle across his backyard, opens the gate to the alley behind his pensione, and rides off to do his daily shopping.

It's not uncommon to see older men and women riding in Amsterdam, a place that curiously has more bikes than people. But even by Amsterdam standards, bicycling at 90 is unusual.

I just returned from seven days in this romantic city (that's me, at left, on a canal tour), where I had the pleasure of staying with Pierre, my husband's second cousin.

Watching this remarkably robust man practice the piano each evening (see photo above), I was struck by how much he still enjoys life.

Although Pierre admits he's depressed to have outlived his friends, he spends far more time laughing than lamenting.

Who is to say whether Pierre's attitude and bike riding have contributed to his longevity?

But they certainly haven't hurt.

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