When I was working, I liked to take two weeks of vacation at a time. After one week, I would just begin to remember how to relax. After two weeks, I had time to relax and was ready to get back to work and in the routine. Also, two weeks was enough time to get most of the places we wanted to go and get back.
So far, retirement has felt like a relaxed vacation. The last two weeks have included plenty of time on the computer, grocery shopping once a week, almost daily hikes or bike rides, time to help my parents, and time to house-sit for John and Jackie. Compared to most of our vacations, this is a very leisurely pace. I expect this pace to continue in the third week of retirement, but this week is also a reality check. I will not be returning to work after a vacation – this is our new way of life.
What do I like so far about retirement? Tom and I have almost every evening together and we can plan things to do during the day also. I like our quiet times side-by-side, where we are both working or reading. And I enjoy doing things with him, even if it is cleaning the RV or looking at yummy foods at a new grocery store. When we were working, we felt like ships passing in the night. Now we can relax and laugh and play and enjoy each other.
I also am really enjoying time to concentrate on one task. I spent a lot of spare time scanning pictures and mementos over the last two years. Because I worked on it when I could snatch a few minutes here and there, the pictures and other files are a hodge-podge mess. Most of them are at least ordered by year, but the files make no sense and there are some things that were copied several times. So my project for July is to get these files in order (Karen’s vaguely obsessive kind of order) and get both back-ups consistent with the main computer’s files. I can spend several hours at a time on this – no interruptions, no other urgent business. And then Tom and I can go for a bike ride together. Lovely.
I do miss my church folks, but I miss the hanging out times with them – the relaxed time to enjoy chatting with folks. I don’t miss the meetings, the funerals, the hospital visits, the problems, or the stress. Sitting and talking at a softball game – yes, I miss that. Getting the call that someone is in serious condition in the hospital at 6 a.m. – not so much.
Retirement – Week 3 – so far so good.