For a retired person…

Over the summer a friend of mine and I, while trying to figure out a shorthand for “Sorta unemployed, except with four careers,” settled on “Retired,” as the best description for my work status.  Sure, I still work, most retired people do, but that’s not the dynamo running my life.

So as I did my Sunday phone calls today, it struck me how very, very busy I’ve been.  I left the house at 8am on Wednesday and didn’t get home again until Thursday.  I put nearly 200 miles on my car between Tuesday and Friday.  I feel like I’ve been just seconds away from falling dreadfully behind since September.  This is the most unrelaxing retirement ever, and when people ask me what I’ve been doing I just stare a bit and go, “Er…I’m not sure.  Everything?”

Some of it has pictures.

Drawing first.  Some of you may recall a few years back when I was birthday-gifted with a tablet and declared that to be the summer I would finally conquer my childhood dream and learn to draw.  And I spent a lot of time drawing.  Not so much learning.  I’ve got an ego, but even I can tell when I suck that badly.  Drawing lessons it is.  And because Madison is not one with the rest of reality, a nine week class with a qualified instructor can be had for under $70.  Oh yes.  The best part, I actually did learn stuff.  The two drawings everybody is going to hear about forever are the shoe, and the hand.The perspective is a hair wonky, but that’s my shoe.  I wear that and its companion when I’m either pretending to be 30, or a Republican.  Anybody who looks at the picture, and has seen my feet on a Tuesday morning will, without struggle, say “Hey, that’s your shoe!”  Yes it is.  Because I can draw.

More impressive, that’s my hand.  I should do a bit more shading on the bottom fingers to round them out, but we ran out of time in the class.  Also, that’s a version of my hand slightly more qualified to play the piano than my actual hand (my fingers are a touch shorter and fatter) but that’s essentially it.  I’m particularly proud of the knuckles on the index finger and the fleshy bit near the thumb.  Do you know how many embarrassing doodles of hands I’ve produced in meetings over the years?  Take that, fine motor incompetence!

I also fixed my oven.  The controller went nuts last weekend, leaving me with a kiln instead of a kitchen appliance.  When the replacement part arrived Thursday, I wasted no time in dismantling the oven (thank you, internet) and swapping out the parts.

Aside from learning how truly, disgustingly greasy ovens get inside the seams, and the ribbon connecting to the control panel taking a hair bit of damage (totally caused by me, but not my fault, and I don’t need the 5 key anyway), this went fairly smoothly.  All stories about a wrench getting trapped inside the oven door are lies spread by dissidents and terrorists.  There is no wrench trapped in the oven door, and there never was.

Besides.  Now the oven’s fixed, there can be cheesecake.

There are apples and caramel hidden in those creamy depths.  Yum.

And because I’m retired, tomorrow I’m catching a train to New Orleans.  Don’t look at me like that.  It’s been a whole two months since the last time I went on vacation, and I’m selling my soul to the Recall when I get back.

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