Last night friend Jerrold took us out two-stepping. A fateful power outage occurred leaving the bar without electricity. A generator was brought in to run the lights. It was over at 100 degrees; the packed bar of dancers soon got to me. So I two stepped out the door and on to the porch.
As I waited for the others to give up, I sat on the veranda and contemplated life. It is curious how a hot summer night often makes me thoughtful. I realized most of the people I know are retired. And they are content. Jerrold is as happy as I have ever known him. My father is the same. The Lovely Neighbor and our local circle of friends – none of them work. The list goes on and on.
I admit I am envious. I like my job but if I could retire, I would. What I envy most is they ‘have theirs” and I fear I will never retire. I sense I will be deprived of this. For one thing there is my health. I have a lot of risk factors for a heart attack; I am more likely to keel over than retire.
Then there are the financial issues; I support another, and we live in a house worth only a fraction of its purchasing value. My attempts to save money are thwarted by daily living needs: gasoline, medical expenses, repairs etc. There is always something sucking up funds.
Even if I should avoid premature death I fear the economy will collapse just in time to see social security and my mutual funds disappear in puff of smoke. Perhaps nuclear annihilation or The Rapture (3rd attempt) will snatch up my savings.
So I work away, for I have little choice. I admire and envy the lucky ones who ‘got theirs’. But, like waiting in a long line at the supermarket, the ‘Closed” sign will go up just as I try to unload my groceries. It’s a disappointment.