This retirement gig is a great thing, The Boomer tells me the other day. But there’s a big downside to it.
What’s that? I say, startled, because I really don’t want to hear there’s any downside to being retired, free and lazy.
There’s no time in it, says The Boomer, and he’s serious.
But you’ve got all the time in the world to do whatever you want, I say. Don’t you?
There’s the problem, says The Boomer. I want to do everything and all of it at once and can’t seem to find the time to squeeze it all in.
I kind of thought, you know, he says, I’d retire to peace and quiet and a new motorcycle or join a rock band. That at long last I’d get organized in life. You know, pay a bill the instant it arrives. Fix up the garden. Repaint the house. Put on that new addition all by myself. Let the wife slap together the Hail Mary of honey-do lists, then rip through it presto-chango with all that free time. So sweet.
You don’t? I say. Have the time, I mean?
Hell no, The Boomer says with a theatrical sigh, I spend more hours each day at retiring than I ever spent at work. There’s the morning sun to feel bright and warm on my face. Couldn’t do that when I was at work. The afternoon breeze whirling through my slightly thinning hair (which I’m going to shave off for kicks). That cardinal over there singing out of the bamboo stand in a corner of the garden. All the books I want to read. The old friends around the world I’ve got to visit and catch up with. The trips to India and Timbuktu. That cousin in Colorado I haven’t seen in years. And, best of all, finding my own Rocket 88 to shove in the garage and rebuild and paint fire engine red with yellow flames down the sides.
But you’re doing all that, I say, confused and slightly amazed.
Yeah, that’s the problem, says The Boomer. No time for anything else. Know what I mean?
© 2016 Steven Hardesty