Retirement is great, providing freedom to do whatever you want when you want, but…….
Well, after a few weeks of rest and relaxation, the first thing I found was how much time there was to fill in a day! When I was working flat out there was no time for anything, but now time started to drag. It might have helped if I could take the advice in Simon & Garfunkel’s “The 59th Street Bridge Song (Feelin’ Groovy)” – “Slow down you move too fast, You got to make the morning last”. I am not very good at that though.
The second thing I noticed was the lack of stimulating company. Pupils are surprisingly stimulating – you never know what they will say or do next and what you will have to deal with! Living alone probably emphasised the lack of company – no doubt a partner would reduce this. On the other hand, a partner who thinks organising their wife instead of their office or spending all their time with their wife (who has no doubt got her own perfectly good activities and friends) is something I am very glad to miss!
As time has passed I have also noticed that I have no longer got a particular roll in society, which I found I do actually mind. That surprised me a bit!
So……it became necessary to find things to do that would fill up chunks of time, provide some stimulating company and preferably provide me with some sort of role. I thought I would share some of my attempts to do this and those of some of my friends and give our opinions on how satisfactory these have proved to be.
Why retire? Well I suppose there must be many reasons but, as well as reaching retirement age, surely tiredness or stress must be among them?
Personally, I didn’t reach retirement age and I was no more tired than I had been for years and probably a bit less stressed than I had been for the few years prior to retirement. So why did I decide to go? The main reason was that I no longer enjoyed it! I had always found teenagers quite amusing and had some sympathy with their “growing-up pains”, but I got to the stage where I didn’t want to know. Some of the pupils were still delightful, but an increasing number were just a pain – meaning I was out of sympathy with their thoughts, activities and aims.
In addition, I wanted to move back to the town (well, city actually) of T and I couldn’t find the sort of teaching job there that I would consider.
Probably the final straw was when I found one of my university “gang” who was the year younger than me had been retired a while! O.K. – not a good reason, but it was the final thing to push me to go.
So – I went on the preparing for retirement course, checked that I should have enough money to live on with some over for fun things and for emergencies and handed in my notice…..
And so the new adventure started!