Sunday, April 23, 2017

Gray Day. Gray Thoughts.


Though the gardens are starting to blossom and color is bursting forth, we have had a lot of wet, gray days as of late. Well, it is spring, it's only April, 'tis to be expected. Can't have those May flowers without those April showers.

But this is the third weekend that The Missus Herself has been away and damn it, I miss her. Sure the cats are good company, but brilliant conversationalists they're not. Well, I'm not either, perhaps that's why we all miss her. But missing the love of my life isn't the only reason I'm feeling a bit down today.

Yesterday's post with those pictures from Frost of Pensacola was a great deal of fun to put together. After all, I get to look at all the aircraft pictures first. But it reminded me of just how long ago my baby girl got her wings.

Nine years.

Now that phase of her life is over and she's moving on to newer things. While she won't be wearing a flight suit and strapping on an F/A-18F anymore, she's still involved in Naval Aviation. Working in the sim out at NAS Lemoore. So far it sounds like a great job, and the pay ain't half bad as well. I'm tempted to head out there myself, but I'm a New Englander born and bred, so I guess I'll stick around.

I am a bit jealous though.

I used to wonder what was next. Now I know what's next, retirement. No new careers to pursue, just looking for the chance to "down tools" and enjoy life. Spoil the grandkids, that kind of thing. First though, gotta pay off the mortgage and clear a few other debts, a couple of years should do it.

At least work keeps my mind busy while my missus is out west, doing what she has always done, support our kids. I'm glad she's of a mind to do so. She's a good Mom. Pretty fine wife as well.

So, it's me and the cats and time to curl up with a good book.

It's a gray day and I'm feeling a bit down.

Hopefully it will be sunny tomorrow. The plants might need the rain, but my morale needs the sun.

This too shall pass.



38 comments:

  1. The following is a short list of the bad things about retirement.

    There are no bad things.

    Whenever I think about returning to the workforce I ask myself, "John, other than from your wife, do you ever want to take an order to do something from a human being, and do you ever want to be on a work schedule?"

    It is the intoxicating freedom that I enjoy the most.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Intoxicating freedom. Yes, that sounds most excellent.

      Looking forward to that.

      Delete
  2. I'm with you, albeit a few years behind. I started to realize the next change would be big. I've worked for other folks since I was 14. I hoped to work for myself into my retirement, but then the oil price fell.... That's the major money maker down here. Next stop is retirement, and I'm not sure what to expect. Just like any other change, have to get you head around it, then give it your best.

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  3. Retirement is great (I think). When everyone at the college kept asking me what I'm going to do when I
    retire I would tell them that for the first year I'm going to do absolutely nothing. Being the hillbilly
    that I am, that was truly my plans but so far that hasn't worked. I'm in my 4th week of retirement and I
    haven't had a day yet to just chill out and do nothing! I'm really hoping that tomorrow I can just sit on
    the deck, drink my coffee in the morning and have a couple of oatmeal stouts in the afternoon while I catch
    up on my reading and just watch the world go by.

    And by the way, you have provided me with a great list of authors and books in your posts for me to get
    caught up on for my reading time. Please keep posting them.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I shall endeavor to point you in the direction of a good read as often as I can.

      For now, one name, Jeff Shaara. Anything by him is worth your time.

      Delete
    2. Sarge, have you read any John Milton? I get ads in my koobecaF feed all the time, probably because I've "liked" the fb pages of John Sandford, Vince Flynn, and others.

      Delete
    3. John Milton as in Paradise Lost? That John Milton? Civil servant under Oliver Cromwell and 17th Century writer and poet?

      Or is there another John Milton I don't know about?

      I hadn't heard of Sandford either, though I read everything Vince Flynn wrote, God rest his soul.

      Delete
    4. Just took a look at Jeff Shaara's web site and I'm definitely interested. There's a year's worth of
      reading there!!

      Delete
    5. Easily. Let me know what you think.

      Delete
  4. Sooner or later, the sun rises. Drive on.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You do what you can. It's all one can do.

      Delete
  5. One of the great mysteries of life. Why do the rainy days appear when I want to be out and about, and the bright shunshiny days when I want to curl up with a book? Almost makes me believe that god has a sense of humor.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh, He most assuredly does. It's why we laugh so readily. We were built that way.

      Delete
  6. Feeling the same pressures Sarge, along with the same questions. And, No, I don't have many (any) answers. I know I don't want the requirement to answer to anyone (except, as John says, my wife) and I certainly don't want the headaches that go with being in charge, but I'm afraid that if I don't do something, things will come undone pretty fast.
    As to the steps towards getting there...we did visit a financial planner this past week. Getting the answers back from them will go a long way to reducing the stress of not knowing whether we can pull it off.
    Maybe a Sarge and Juvat series of posts "What I did this week to get ready to retire"?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Between the Air Force pension, the company pension, and Social Security, I should be fairly comfortable. As long as all the big bills are paid off. Which is what we're working on over the next couple of years.

      Of course, if things fall through for society as a whole, I figure I can get a gig as a tribal shaman somewhere. Just need to find the right sachem.

      Delete
  7. That first winter after I retired, not having to drive into work when it snowed(upper Midwest) was just so...relaxing. After 3 years my parents health took hits and they moved in with me. Was their caretaker for 5 years for Mom and 7 for Dad. Now I have to get used to a empty house...different steps along the path I guess. Home almost paid for, enough $ to live comfortably and a little more time to fish and enjoy the guns. Time does fly. Enjoy the moments with the family, Sarge.

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  8. Too tired to notice not using Nylon12 as my nom de plum.... (darn garden) for the 3:28pm post.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ah, secret identities and such. I tried to stay behind the "Old AF Sarge" identity as long as I could, too many people know me in real life.

      Nylon12 is a good nom de plume.

      Delete
  9. Since you have no one there except the cats, it might be a good time to write that Clancy-esque book! Hope you get that sun you need, either when she returns, if the clouds break tomorrow, or if you decide to visit us in the land of fruits and nuts.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The sun did come out on Sunday, hallelujah, a very lovely day.

      I might get out to Sandy Eggo this year, oddly enough, for work. Which is different.

      Delete
    2. Give me some advanced notice and we'll whoop it up.

      Delete
    3. Roger that. Right now it's just a possibility.

      Delete
  10. I can sit around and do nothing quite nicely now (studying the bourbon industry as a hobby takes some effort), thank you! I was able to slide into full retirement time "management mode" by flying a friend's corp LR-60 and CE-560E as a full time hire with part time duties. Whatever you decide to do, you (and Juvat) have served honorably and have paid for your citizenship and the privileges other enjoy by serving our nation; something fewer and fewer do. As such, you've earned the privilege to do as you want; enjoy it! regards, Alemaster

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Why thanks Alemaster. I might take up studying the beer industry myself.

      Delete
    2. I wasn't ignoring Tuna, it just seems as though he's got some time to go before considering the next step? regards, Alemaster

      Delete
    3. Yes, Alemaster, Tuna is still a callow youth compared to Juvat and I.

      Delete
  11. I hope you get sunshine tomorrow. Retirement is what you make of it. I feel sure that you will do as well with it as you have with the rest of your life. My best thoughts go with you.

    Paul L. Quandt

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Paul. Sunday turned into a gorgeous day.

      Delete
  12. I'll bet your daughter misses that flight suit, but I know I'd feel that she was a whole lot safer on the ground.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's nice knowing that she won't be doing the whole carrier and deployment thing.

      But I know she misses it already. But she is a devoted mother and her kids come first, last, and always. I like that about her.

      Delete
  13. Tell your wife you miss her and do something nice when she gets back.

    Talk to folks like Old NFO--he retired last December I think and he makes me tired with all the running around he shares on his blog. I can't think of anyone I know who is reasonably healthy who doesn't wonder how they ever found time to go to work, they have sooo much to do in retirement. So, invest in getting the big bills paid off, and in maintaining your health. If you find you just can't deal with not working, see if you can be a consultant, or go part time, or go volunteer at one of your favorite places. I know RI pretty well, but am drawing a blank on military museums there...lots of history there and museums on CT and MA, both of which are close.

    When I moved to MI, I paid off all the big bills, and not having to pay a mortgage is true freedom. So I made the decision to go part-time as my expenses dropped by 50%...stupid NY taxes and cost-of-living. I still work so we have extra money to do fun things (ie: new roof on barn, concrete floors in the barn and sawmill shed, new windows in house, vacation to Mt. Rushmore, International Farm and Machinery Show in Louisville, KY, going to the CT shore with Mom and Dad once a year, etc.) as well as a chance to get out of the house at times.
    Just to be very nice, I am sending you some of our sunshine...it was 70 and sunny here today...you should get it on Monday. I am so solar powered...sunny days are always much better days :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. And lo and behold, here it is Monday, and the sun is shining. Thanks for that Suz!

      Delete
  14. You are stuck in the final grind of working - that part that you require in order to have freedom to work if needed. That grind, no matter how enjoyable the job, just plain sucks. You can see the escape hatch, it's just right over there...

    A good way to break the dark feelings and sad thoughts is to recollect all the stupid stuff you did as a child and young adult, and then figure out if you'd laugh at yourself or be aghast at yourself. I know when I am in darkened places that oftentimes remembering particularly hair-brained stunts and how I managed to survive them (the 55 gallon gas-powered accidental pulse-jet, the homemade blackpowder, firecracker-in-tangerine grenades, trying to actually recover a case of Japanese grenades from their sunken home in the early '70s, oh holy carp, how did I ever live past 15????) can cause me to bring a smile to my face still.

    Or, as one friend does, go play (safely) with actual explosives. Nothing brightens up one's day like blowing stuff up, or setting stuff on fire, or just going "Office Space" on some recalcitrant piece of office equipment...

    Good luck on getting over the gloms. Try some Vitamin D. Seems to help with those who are adversely affected by stormy skies and winter weather.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sound advice Andrew.

      I often wonder how I survived my teen years.

      Delete

Just be polite... that's all I ask. (For Buck)