Sunday, October 02, 2016

My Sunday Feeling

 Yesterday was the 5th anniversary of my exodus from public service. It seems like 5 days.  The older I get, and I don't feel all that old, the faster time seems to speed up.   

Truth be told, it didn't really hit me until a week or so ago.  Then again, I'm pretty busy with a lot of stuff nowadays.  At least too busy to engage in a great deal of navel gazing.  And too busy to play cards at the AARP meeting room down the street.  

What a difference 5 years makes.  When I first "retired" I felt like a fish out of water.  Indeed, I left the government because I was tired of the job.  Not because I was tired of working.  It never occurred to me that I would not be doing something full time pretty quickly.  And, truth be told the first 6 months or so were pretty awful.  

After all, I had always had some kind of job since I was 14.  Not working was unthinkable for me.  Hence, the "fish out of water" feelings of cognitive dissonance.  Insert "alone on an island", "out on a limb",  or your own favorite metaphor for self-pity here.  

But guess what?  I am so over that shit.  And have been for some time.  

The following is an example of what I get to do instead of practicing law all of the time. Friday's exchange with a 5th grader went like this:

"So you still do lawyer work?" she asked.

" Yep."

"Do you have an office?"

"Yeah.  In my house."

"Are you a millionaire?"

"Yes I am."

So I'm not really a millionaire.  That was a "fib." It's only a lie if you put it on a financial statement.

I saw no point in explaining the concept of "solvency" to a 9 year old.  But is this funner than hell or what?

I am light years removed from 5 years ago.  I'm in a great relationship with someone who a friend described upon meeting her as "very tall and way cool."  I am pretty much in-house counsel for a small business here in town and I have enough people wanting me to do stuff for them that I have broken down and bought malpractice insurance.  

I spend a lot of time at Catholic High down the street and a little at St. Edward's Middle School where the above-exchange took place.  I used to do more writing than I do nowadays.  I think it's because I got hit with a lazy stick after teaching full-time last semester.  That's OK.  Never really had the opportunity to be worthless before.  I'll get over it one of these days.  Maybe.  

I wouldn't say that I worry about money but I think about it more than I used to.  Then again I've got a pretty good amount of money socked away that I have never touched.  Every month the eagle screams and I get a check sufficient to finance my slothful ways every month.  I will continue to receive it until my expiration date or World War III, whichever comes first. 

As an aside, I need to do something about my car.  I need to do some repairs or buy another one.  For some reason a new tightwad version of me is in full flower.  M says I need to quit thinking about this stuff and go buy a damn car.  She's probably right.  But I need to think about it.  Now I understand why the elderly ruminate overmuch on these things.  They have time to do it.  This self-revelation is frightening. 

Of course, if Donald Trump pulls off the con of his career and places his hand on the Bible in January, I will quit joking about such mundane subjects.  And I will start checking out real estate in Quebec or New Zealand.  

The state of my personal union 5 years out-knock on wood- is far better than I deserve.  I have my health, friends and family.  I do fun things with interesting people, some of whom are a little mouthier than is necessary. But that's OK.   Folks repose trust in me and I never forget what a sacred thing that is.  

All is well.  I am at peace.  

And I do not take it for granted.

But really.  It's been 5 years since I walked out of the Federal Building?

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