You Gotta Get Up

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Okay, so it was the sound of my alarm that awakened me from a sound sleep this morning. Of course, the downside is that my alarm also awakened the General. Let me simply say: “That is not the best way to begin our day. The General simply asked: “Your not getting up are you?”

 

So was it a rhetorical question? Was it one of her signature series questions where the correct answer is implied and there is only one correct answer? I simply answered: “Yes” and got out of bed.

 

Today marks my first full month of retirement. Seriously, it hasn’t been a negative experience. I haven’t accomplished nearly as much as I’d hoped, but I’m making progress. I’ve discovered that I don’t have to awaken at four in the morning to greet the day. It is still there even as late as I opted to sleep today.

 

Yesterday evening I voluntarily took a few minutes to pull some of the weeds I hadn’t planted out of the General’s rock garden. River rock looks good unless there is the emergence of green vegetation coming through it. It looks something other than picturesque when that happens.

 

If you’d been looking for an opportunity to video a contender for “America’s funniest home videos”, the jig I danced when I realized fire ants were having dinner on my legs was a Kodak moment for sure. Needless to say, there is still some green vegetation emerging through the General’s rock garden. I’ll get back to it, but I’ll do it more carefully next time. I guess you can live and learn.

 

Somehow I’ve mostly avoided a lecture from the General about doing stupid things since I retired, but sometimes all-good-things come to an end. The General would tell you that no one in their right mind makes a favorable response to an unsolicited call from a roofer making random calls to inspect for hail damage. Actually, I thought it was a thoughtful gesture on the roofer’s part.

 

The General closely aligned the call to one of the many ways old people unknowingly set themselves up for trouble. I know, you’re probably wondering whom she was referring to as old? I had the same thought.

 

She likened the experience to someone paving roads and having asphalt left over and willing to “make you a really good deal”. More often than not, it isn’t enough to do the job you wanted done, but they’re half finished with the “good deal” you agreed to when you both discover that’s all there is.

 

She must have dreamed that story up. I don’t know anyone who ever had that experience, but it did give me pause for concern. Of course, when I met the fellow who called, he had a real business card, a nice new truck and he represents a company in the area. I even checked consumer reports and the better business bureau. It is a highly rated roofing company.

 

Sometimes the General can be an alarmist. The one thing I’m now sure of is that we need a new roof. The old one is only fifteen years old and the shingles are 30+ -year shingles, but it would be a stretch to think we’ve got another couple of years before the roof starts leaking. Frankly, I don’t want to have that experience. From my perspective, having a new roof is like having new tires. It is good insurance.

 

So at this point, I’m waiting to see if State Farm is a good neighbor. Only time will tell. Regardless, it is time to be off with the old and on with the new. And yes, for the record, I will get a second opinion and a competitive bid.

 

What I most miss about going to work is the traffic. It is a good kind of miss. Sometimes you have to be on the other side of a situation or circumstance to look back and wonder how you ever managed. Take for example, the years that I commuted from Midland to Henly and back every weekend to go to church. At one point, in a ten-year period I discovered I’d only actually had one weekend at home. Had it not been for an ice storm, I would have missed that one as well.

 

Seriously, I’m not sure I’d want to duplicate that experience again. While I was in the midst of it, it wasn’t an issue. It was the right thing to do and I guess you could say: “I was just along for the ride.”

 

Seriously, even a hundred and two mile round trip commute to work and back every day isn’t really that big of a deal until you try making it in stop and go traffic. Sometimes it took four times as long as it should have taken.

 

Okay, so I miss the people with whom I worked, but they are still friends. Who knows, maybe I will even get the nerve to drive back across Austin one day and stop in for a visit. In the interim, all is well.

 

All My Best!

Don

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