Moving the Goal Posts

Farm Landscape

More than at any previous time I feel a goal line was crossed when I left full time work last spring.

So what’s next?

I don’t anticipate buying a fancy television with new, matching easy chairs to put in front of it.

My late aunt and uncle had that. When we visited their Alabama home our conversations turned to the evangelical Christianity their family had undertaken. It was a distance from the socialist and Catholic household in which she grew up with her brothers and sisters. I suspect aunt and uncle watched FOX News, although we talked the entire visit without turning on the T.V. Dinner was a tuna-noodle casserole taking me back to a time I hardly remembered. Mom never made tuna-noodle casserole at home. My uncle died shortly after we left them and she died soon after that. All that’s left are memories.

My fear is if we had a digital television I’d sit back in an easy chair, watch too much, and my mind would succumb to the blather that invades people’s lives from cable news. I’d spend the rest of this life talking about, to and at the television.

There is only one answer to the question, and that’s to stay active physically, emotionally and mentally. That’s really a lie. There are plenty of answers, although doing these three things can form a foundation upon which an answer can be built. Maybe that’s what I’ll do.

Birds eat from the feeder and a freezing rain falls on the county. Snow melt is filling the ditches and running toward the lake. Soon there will be floods in Iowa as the crazy weather continues.

Tomorrow I return to the farm for the first round of soil blocking. They already started seeds in the house, but these will go into the greenhouse despite the coming cold spell. I’m waiting another week to plant celery. At 120 days, celery has the longest plant to pick cycle.

Will farm work bring catharsis to my search for truth and meaning? I don’t know, but I’ll be spending time with friends again and that means something.

I’ll get to see the lambs, those sad but cute creatures destined for someone’s dinner table. I’ll be careful not to get attached but new life is always a pleasure. That’s what I need in the rainy, snowy, flooded Iowa I call home as the cycle of the growing season begins anew.

Moving the goal posts once they are set is not a good option in retirement. We may only get one chance for new goals and it’s important to be sure. I’ll be thinking about that as I make the soil blocks tomorrow morning. I’m looking forward to getting started.

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1 Response to Moving the Goal Posts

  1. Jim R says:

    Retirement for us freed up a lot of time for other pursuits besides the grind of work. We explored the online world of blogs and such. It was fun and new. We talked about it to our son who was wise for a young man in his early 20s. His advice was to always get plenty of RPT (Real People Time). Step away from the computer. It was good advice.

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