One of my all-time favorite movies is the Best Exotic Marigold Hotel (if you’ve not seen it, put it on your must-see list immediately). The plot involves seven elderly British retirees that travel to India to take up residence in what they think is a luxurious, but affordable, retirement community named the Marigold Hotel. As it turns out, the hotel is a falling down physical and financial disaster. The good news is Sonny, the charming, enthusiastic young Indian entrepreneur that owns it, manages every issue and always promises profound satisfaction. He says gleefully, “I’ve created a home for the elderly so wonderful that they will simply refuse to die. Stare death in the face and say…what are those men doing?” Soon his charm wins them over, and their new life emerges.
My favorite line from the movie has come in handy on many occasions, but especially now with the pandemic experience. Sonny says boldly, “Everything will be alright in the end, and if it is not alright, it is not the end.” It takes a lot of trust and faith to believe it will be alright. When in the middle of chaos, it seems hard to believe that things will ever be right again. As a nation and a culture, we want answers and we want them now! We are tossed around by the news reports that change daily. It seems that the stock market is a metaphor for our moods – up and down, up and down. But the Elders in this movie are full of wit and wisdom and teach us much. Mrs. Greenslade says, “Nothing here has worked out quite as I expected.” Ms. Donnelly answers, “Most things don’t. But sometimes what happens instead is the good stuff.” Greenslade nails it again when she says, “Initially you are overwhelmed. But gradually, you realize it’s like a wave. Resist, and you’ll be knocked over. Dive into it, and you’ll swim to the other side.” I’m going with Sonny’s enthusiasm, “Everything will be alright in the end, and if it is not alright, it is not the end!” Join the conversation on Facebook at Just Now Old Enough.