Six months into semi-retirement (having left the daily newspaper business to teach University at Albany students how to enter it), here’s what I’ve learned:
- Getting dressed is overrated.
- Full-time, part-time and no-time employees spend weekdays doing the same thing: Slurping coffee while scrolling Facebook, shopping online and playing Words with Friends. The only variation is the paycheck.
- You find unfulfilling the transition from bossing around humans to
giving orders to a housebound cat (Get off my keyboard! Stop throwing up!), despite similarly indifferent responses.
- You feel less guilty about time spent watching cardinals at the bird feeder, but more guilty about not keeping it filled – and a little sorry for the cat yearning to be free.
- The exertion of an afternoon reading “The New Yorker” is enough to warrant a nap, even if you only read the cartoons.
- No longer pressed to plan and do the week’s grocery shopping on crowded Sundays, you end up running to the store on Monday — and Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday (if dressed).
- Every day is Saturday.
- You make lists of all the things you must or might or ought to do that day, and feel a sense of accomplishment for having washed, dried and folded the laundry.
- A spouse still working full-time wonders what you’ve done all day, but not enough to want a rundown (even though it was his laundry).
- With practice, you keep a straight face when people ask if you miss working.
- You suddenly have 40 discretionary hours a week and still not enough time for the gym.
- When you do go to the gym for mid-day, mid-week tennis, you discover you’ve joined a secret society that unapologetically does whatever the heck they want whenever they feel like it.
- You wonder why you’re trying to polish a blog post at 11:39 p.m. when, after all, you’re done with deadlines.