Since I turned 60 in 2013, a few new through lines have defined my life. Here is one of them.

Photo by Tim Mossholder on Unsplash NOT ME

What on earth does it take to master something? Do I have to master anything? What does incremental progress look like? Should you and I take on new challenges as we age? After all, what’s the point?

With any luck I will give you a window on that. I’m a 68-year-old woman who happens to love adventure travel. Didn’t always do that. Nor did I always pick up new skills like kayaking or bungee jumping.

When I turned 60 I…

Photo by Callum Shaw on Unsplash God I love this photo.

Reading stupid listicles about what I’ll regret when I’m older. No. Really.

At the risk of really pissing off a few folks who love to pen their endless how-to listicles, I stumbled on one today that I hadda read. Now that I am nearing 70 I wanted to assess where I have screwed up (at everything, kindly) and where I might have nailed it (only my middle finger with a stupendous hammer blow but that’s a different story).

I think the piece was by a Millennial. Not sure. Doesn’t really matter, maybe it does. No clue. However, what struck me wasn’t what was included but what was missing. Here then is the…

Photo by David Pupaza on Unsplash

This is NOT how to make a million on Medium. You guys know me better. I’m actually going for the jugular here.

I’ll start with Unsplash, and drop my tightey-whiteys right up front. In preparation for this article, I typed in the word “FAIL” and got 66 options. Most of those photos have nothing to do with failure as I understand it.

Of course not. We can barely say the word except for putting it in a meme and feeling self-righteous. We don’t celebrate it. We bark and mumble about the importance of failure but by god we will die from pent-up gas to avoid farting in public.

I don’t have that issue. I found that being able to let loose at…

And here’s why.

Photo by Kaysha on Unsplash

I cried a lot yesterday. That’s a good thing. Stay with me here.

The Diversity feed over on LinkedIn is likely a lot like most other social platforms. It’s basically Facebook, with all kinds of non-business utter nonsense ranging from kitty videos to product pitches. It isn’t very pleasant, but for now, I tolerate it. Not easy.

However, a meme came through that really speaks to where I stand regarding jealousy, envy, and professional hate.

I can only recall the gist. Effectively the message was that you and I shouldn’t be mad at some successful (in this case, Black) woman for achieving something. That she did it means that you can too.


One of my neighbors having a drink Julia Hubbel

How you know it’s time to go.

Spectre was on in the background, and I could hear Bond introduce himself through my dining room windows. The weather finally cooled off around here enough so that, even as we bake in the afternoons, I can enjoy the cool breezes of the fir forest around my new home in Oregon most of the day. In a few weeks, a small fortune in blinds and SPF film will be installed to help control the heat and cold transfer through the glass.

I am almost done with the Really Big Projects.

Time to go.

I was patting potting soil into a huge, chipped Mexican…

Zak bringing it on stage Julia Hubbel

The audience rose to its feet as one. It was late in the day, and a great many of us were hoarse from shouting encouragement at the folks who were on stage. Our friends, our family, folks whose journeys we’d been watching.

At this moment, however, we were honoring the journey of Zack Childers, A 31-year-old man with cerebral palsy. As a young man, Zack’s doctor told him he would never walk.

He not only walked across stage, out of the joy of his accomplishments, he ran back. Wobbly, but he ran. That he was even upright on the stage…

The audience, cheering. Julia Hubbel

I watched a well-deserved standing ovation. Stay with me here.

Just a few hours ago, an audience stood to cheer, very very loudly, for an award. The young man on stage staggers a bit when he walks, but he walks. Not only does he walk, he won an award for extraordinary hard work, accomplishment and dedication in the face of unbelievable odds. I am doing a separate story on that young man, but this is about a commenter’s utterly inappropriate comments which touched this person, and the community around him

The Cecil Phillips Classic is Eugene’s all-natural bodybuilding event. For whatever reason, my new home town is the center for…

Photo by Clay Banks on Unsplash

Choosing which doctors to listen to can kill you off, or ensure your thrival. Choose carefully.

“Trust me, I”m a doctor.” Sure, Sparky. Sure.

And with that, we hand our health away.

Look. To be fair, there are plenty of good docs. The problem is finding one. Or two. And as you and I age, even harder, because, well, ageism. Sexism. Racism. I could list a hundred reasons. First, because doctors are above all deeply human, frail, susceptible to bullshit as we all are, but given massively more agency because of the moniker, “doctor.”

Those of you who know my writing know that I’ve got a bone to pick, if you’ll forgive the pun, with the…

A Love Letter to Post-Covid Restaurant Patrons.

Photo by daan evers on Unsplash

Food rant, inspired by one too many CNN stories about the restaurant industry.

Been out for a meal lately?

Notice that it takes longer to get service? Food? Get seated, even though there are plenty of tables?

Getting pissed? You waited all this time for a nice meal at your favorite place and THIS is how you’re rewarded?

Whatcha doing about it, Skeezix?

Abusing your servers, punishing them with fewer tips?

Screaming at them in front of all the patrons until they cry?

Calling the manager over to abuse them in front of everyone because your salad was missing a lettuce leaf?

Putting on my Mommy hat:

Get out of the fucking restaurants, you selfish assholes, and go…

Photo by Eric Welch on Unsplash

A quick lesson in building community from a small, lovely part of the world.

Medium reader John O'Rourke lives in Scotland, and in the mornings he goes on walks with his dogs. Said dogs on occasion cause him to tumble, as they get tangled in the tangled brambles. We were exchanging thoughts about blackberries the other day.

What charms me about John is that in this small, magnificently wild part of the world, a fine gentleman with whom I happen to share a bit of Irish heritage (only that both have a few Irish bubbles in our blood, just saying somebody jumped the fence a while back), sometimes reads my stuff in the mornings.

Julia E Hubbel

Horizon Huntress, prize-winning author, adventure traveler, boundary-pusher, wilder, veteran, aging vibrantly. I own my sh*t. Let’s play!

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store