Sunday, October 3, 2021

An End, A Beginning

We thought we were so clever when as youngsters we came across the phrase “Today is the first day of the rest of your life.” Wow! Who had ever heard of such wit!? 

Indeed today is just that. I worked my last shift, I am retired, I turned in my ID card, my door key to the Police Station my locker padlock and my headphones yesterday and walked out of work for the last time. 

I was lucky my last day was spent working with two friends who reminded me of the very best of times, those shifts spent in easy camaraderie coping with the job taking time to talk of this and that between calls. The day passed easily. 

The landlord has his notice and we will leave the house come what may by the end of the month and probably sooner. Layne’s dentist is backed up and her last dental check could only be had later in the month so we may be hanging around a little longer than anticipated but that’s okay. Key West is a good place to hang around for a while. 

I have read of the loss of identity that comes with retirement but I confess for me the loss of friends is harder for me than having to say “I used to be…” especially as  my retirement is combined with a total life do over! 

In a life that now suddenly has no deadlines, no imperatives to be or do, to meet expectations, I am totally at home. 

I am free now to say or do what I want, to no longer be a small cog in a vast machine that I represent publicly. I have no great revelations to make, no scandals to lay bare but if I do behave badly in public I now do so in my name, not as an ephemeral and unimportant employee of a public agency. That feels rather pleasant. I am liberated of expectations and responsibilities. 

I am me now, merely the driver of the Golden Van, Rusty’s dad and Layne’s co-conspirator. 

If you have a complaint about leaf blowers don’t call me! I am no longer responsible…I saw a photo of a house on fire and all I could think was - not me. I know nothing. They managed without me.  They always have. They will be fine and so will I.