Saturday, August 06, 2011
I've been practicing for my retirement. This coming school year will be my last. This summer, I've only done what there's time for in a day and let the rest go. I rise early, greet the sun (or the rain or the mist or the heat), do a little yoga, a little house work. I take an afternoon nap, rummage in the garden for fresh vegetables for supper (always pulling a couple of weeds here and there to keep ahead), ride my bicycle for a few miles, and take a book to bed. Each day I try to add in one of the million other things I want to do (draw, paint, write, go to the library, watch old movies, visit the grandchildren, etc.). I’m sure if I had a plan book I would pen in such activities, but I like the freeform-ness of my days. I wouldn’t remember to look at the plan book anyhow.
Come fall and winter I will once again be at work, thereby severely limiting my private time. I will have to fill out the date book in my purse, stuff more things into the weekend hours, push against that heavy Monday-morning feeling that settles on my shoulders at bedtime Sunday night. But I am building memories for my retirement-in-the-offing, memories of hummingbirds deep in the hollyhock blossoms, of cardinals singing me awake and crickets singing me to sleep, of time just to sit and think. I will fetch a packet of green beans from the freezer in the dead of winter and remember the heat on my shoulders as I picked them from their leafy rows. I will open a jar of pasta sauce and recall this summer's tree-high tomato plants, or make a pie with the berries I’ve picked and put by. I will remember the quiet time, the rush-less days, the easy waking, and the restful nights. And I will look forward to the coming summer, knowing all these will be mine in full again.
From here, retirement looks mighty good. My friends wonder if I might get bored with such easy living. I tell them the only time I can remember being bored was when I was stuck in some building, working at some job that didn’t keep me busy enough. Once I no longer have to work, I imagine boredom will just disappear along with that plan book.
photo credit: www.artexpertswebsite.com/ pages/artists/