Saturday, May 13, 2006

The first day...

of the rest of my life. Wow! I did it! I retired.
Thursday, the hospital had it's official "retirement tea" for me. About 50 people showed up, I think; I really didn't get to count. The VP of my division came and made a little speech recounting my accomplishments at the hosptial during my tenure, then I had to make a little speech, too.
I put up a little display showing my boat, the route I will be taking on the Great Loop, etc. I handed out a lot of cards for people to keep in touch. The cards list this website, my email, the mail-drop address I'll be using in Florida, etc.
My staff surprised me with more gifts - a log book, a journal and a beautiful fountain pen.
The hospital gave me a folder with some really nice gifts and told me I could choose one. I picked out a really nice pair of binoculars, something that's always useful on a boat.
Yesterday, I didn't do much at work. I just went around to people who didn't come to the tea and said my goodbyes. Then my boss took me out for a drink.
And that's it. My career in healthcare is ended. "Free at last, free at last, thank God almight, I'm free at last."
Today, I start on the adventure that will define the rest of my life. I'll be making a trip to the marina today to make a last check of the hull, tie on my docklines, drop off the bedding and a few other items.
Monday the boat will get her feet wet for the first time since October. Then I will start in earnest to disengage myself from the house. Over this coming week, I will be moving out of the house and onto the boat. Then I can give the house a good cleaning to make it ready for the buyers.
I have to pinch myself. This is really happening! Wow.

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