I think that the most common question that I’m asked now that I’m retired is: What do you do? Then the added ..all day? It’s a difficult question for me to respond to in truth and timely. What do I do all do? Hmmm….so here’s my attempt at an answer.
I do so much and yet, I feel at times that I have accomplished nothing at all. My days are full and filled with all sorts of activities and chores and by the end of the day I wonder what I’ve done all day. I am also constantly astounded at how quickly the days, and weeks, go by. They fly! I start out the week, and the day, with a list of things I want to accomplish: yoga, walk or run (which is more like a saunter at 11or 12 minutes/mile); then write (my memoir- more on that later). I haven’t mentioned breakfast, lunch or any other meal, yet, which seems to occupy a large amount of time in my day. I also add gardening to my list of daily activities- this can be anything from weeding to watering the areas that get no irrigation, to planting new bulbs and plants, to cutting off the new and magnificent blooms that I am awed by every day in our Spring garden. If I do get into the garden, as planned, I end up spending way more time than I imagined tending to the flower beds and potted plants, many of which are from pieces I have broken off from neighboring gardens and try to re-grow in our own. I find that taking small clippings from other gardens and watching their progress as if like a mother over her new babes, gives me the greatest amount of pleasure. My Mom did this, showing me how to restore life to something so fragile and barely able to survive, then flowering into a masterpiece. I think of her as I plant the stolen clippings into the soil and wish them well on their way. I check up on them daily….today, I saw a bright pink flower emerge from a piece of succulent I collected along one of my walks in the neighborhood. It gave me so much pleasure.
Then, perhaps, I might attempt to do the New York Times crossword puzzle. I manage the Monday and Tuesday, with a little help from my man , and by Wednesday I give up and hand the newspaper, yes, in print, over to Chuck. There are calls to make. Appointments for doctors, dentists, eye exams, prescriptions to order. I look through the fridge at what we have, think about what I can make for dinner, go on line to find a new and exciting recipe to follow for dinner. The ingredients are all in place except for one small item, maybe cilantro or something a little more significant in the recipe, like onions, which I suddenly discover we are all out of.
A quick trip to the store turns into a few hours, particularly if I venture to Costco! But that’s lunch taken care of, since I sample many and often of the samples they are handing out- today it was lobster ravioli- I didn’t care for that at all, but the cream cheese on crackers I thoroughly enjoyed. Back from Costco, the unpacking takes some time. Then it’s a call to Dad- have to catch up on all of his going ons as he seems to be as busy if not busier than I am. I prepare dinner. Change out the water of the fresh flowers we have displayed all around the house. I make a mental note to discuss some arrangements with Chuck who is out the door to yoga and then to meet friends for dinner. I am just about to sit down and write, my intention for the day, when I remember that I need to look on line at hotels in NYC as we want to visit my 97 year old mother-in-law. I go on-line to look at hotels. They are so expensive in May…I look at 5 different sites. Nothing reasonable under $300 with tax. I give up looking.
The sun is starting to set and I am exhausted. What did I do today? What do I do all day? I make sure that the dinner looks good and isn’t over-cooking in the oven. I pour myself a glass of wine and slump down on the couch, turn on the TV to try and catch some of the news.
I am tired and retired, and I am loving it!
sending love to you all…..