Not sure if you got the memo or not, but
For real now, as of about 9:45 on July 22nd. I completed my remaining 14 days of service that were required to Top Off My Tank and put me at a Full Thirty Years, and now I'm Officially Done.
It's...anticlimactic, thus far, really. I'm on Summer Vacation, but it's starting to sink in, thanks to all the Back To School commercials and displays everywhere. I'm still scatterbrained and fragmented, but I'm trying to pull it together so that Rick doesn't stick me in a Home. To that end, I thought I'd dump a little of all my Cranium Crud on you. Lucky, lucky.
~*~ For the 14 aforementioned days, which I referred to as My Fake Job, I unpacked 72 cartons of a Scholastic Guided Reading Program for an elementary school. I diligently unpacked 60 books and 2-4 plastic tubs per carton, put a sticker on each book and 4 stickers on each tub. Then I repacked each carton carefully so the books would not incur any folding or bending, then stacked the cartons back up. I was in the room alone each day. The best part was the book titles. The ones for the littlest kids were so unintentionally funny. One of my faves: Chickens Aren't the Only Ones. Some seemed sort of ominous, like I Know Karate and What Is It? And lots of them had exclamation points, like Look! and We Like to Play! I got extremely confused when I unpacked the Nonfiction Focus carton and found a Harry Potter book and an Ursula K. LeGuin book about flying cats. Hey, not my problem. Retired!
~*~Rick bought me a GPS for a retirement present, and although it is not yet in my car, I am spending more time driving. I am also trying to listen to the radio more, now that there is more quiet in my life. True, I listen to NPR instead of music, but I'm starting slowly. Which brings me to my next topic: Oh, NPR, when I try to imagine for whom you are designing your programming, I become disoriented. Sitting in horrific traffic last week, cursing and making terribly dire assertions about the character of people I didn't even know, I suddenly became aware that the person on NPR was carrying on at length about the predation of bush pigs and how it was affected by the full moon. That is almost a quote, by the way. Come on, NPR! That is as bad as the last program that made me break up with you, which was the endless segment on Norwegian Folk Metal Music.
~*~Male readers--and former students who are easily embarrassed-- may want to skip this part. It would seem, and I am typing one-handed whilst the other hand is rapping on the end-table--that my body has seen fit to shut down all of its Monthly Bullshit. Finally. Because let me tell you--and my children will attest to this--it has been no lawn party for anyone. Alrighty then. (It figures, I had just gotten the Massive Multipack that takes up the entire undersink cabinet, Boy Scout that I am. Like undies, not the sort of thing you sell at a garage sale....)
~*~ We got some gorgeous wines on our jaunt to NotL, about 5 cases. We were focused on reds, having drunk reds all during the fall and winter. (We'll drink up all or most of our whites and roses this summer and restock those in October.) I behaved myself and stuck to my vow to only taste reds, but Rick was all in--he tasted everything. We found a really fun fruit wine this time, a plum wine at Caroline Cellars. It's not real sweet, but very light and frisky, almost as if it were carbonated, but it's not. With a good chill on it, it's the perfect summer patio drink. It would be lovely with spicy Asian food or tequila lime chicken wings. Our uberscore was a case of '07 Merlot from one of our favorite Bench wineries, Vineland. This wine was a special deal, and we couldn't resist. Unlike Miles from Sideways, we do enjoy a Merlot, and this one is drinking so well right now. Very nicely fruit forward with lots of dark cherry, cocoa, and a little mocha in the finish with smooth tannins. We won't make this one wait. And there are more, so many more! And new wineries, too.
When people find out I am retired, the first thing they say is, "Congratulations!" The next thing they say is, "What will you do now?" Everyone expects more from me. I don't know what to say. Maybe I'll just make things up, like, "I'm going to medical school" or "I'm taking a wing-walking class" or "I'm selling Amway." That last one would shut them the hell up.
Not sure if they got the memo or not. I'm retired.