There I was working away in a large multinational, travelling the world, giving people the benefit of my 40 plus years of experience and wisdom, next thing I was retired.

The first thing I did was take a holiday, which was very enjoyable, free from all the stress of work. When I got back I was surprised how often I was checking my phone to make sure I did not miss a call from someone important. It took most of the 100 days, but I have now managed to kick that habit.

What have I learned since?

I have learned that no matter how hard you try to change your contact details on all those apps you use, which worked perfectly well on the office laptop, there is always one you have missed. Usually discovered as the kids shout:  “Dad, the broadband has gone dead”

It is amazing how much “that mob” in HR actually do. I suddenly had to try and understand pensions and actuarial reductions, VHI policies etc. The interaction with the car insurance companies was inspiring to say the least.

Being over 62 my jobseekers social welfare payment miraculously arrives in my bank account every Friday. No need to queue up to sign on every week like all those younger folks. I knew there had to be an advantage to being old.

A trip to the supermarket to “help” my darling wife brought rapidly into focus the old saying that retirement is about trial and error.

Wives are faced with a retirement problem too. They always wished for their husbands to spend more time with them. Now he is retired she has twice the husband, and only half the salary.

It takes time to let go of 40 years of institutionalisation, and to re-adjust to the freedom to choose what to do next.

I have thoroughly enjoyed the learning experience and, having settled down with a great new life.  What I cannot understand is how I ever found time to go to work.

Now, if only I could remember where I left the car keys.

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