Today’s post is brought to you by a guest blogger – my Dad! He regularly writes articles for our church magazine and I thought it was about time his work reached a wider audience and immediately thought of you, my readers on the Mushy Cloud.
So here’s my Dad’s thoughts on retirement:
I have been retired from full time paid employment for nearly 5 years now and I thought I would make some sort of list of all the things I really miss.
First, obviously is full time employment wages, and then there’s…..well, on second thoughts, how about a list of all the things I definitely don’t miss??
The daily traffic jams on the M60 now seem like a distant memory. Driving in fog on snow and ice is now optional – if the weather’s bad I can either stay in or use my bus pass and let someone else drive.
No more boss, so no more daft ideas from that direction either. I retired after 44 years service as a senior engineer and it always narked me when my boss – who wasn’t even born when I joined the company – used to try and change or stop altogether all the established and proven engineering practices we employed.
There was a brilliant Dilbert cartoon a few years ago that showed the latest “bungee boss” who was going to change everything quickly before he was re-assigned. It really summed up the situation in a lot of industries at the time. I kept a copy of the cartoon on my workshop wall for years, but none of my bosses ever commented on it.
The dreaded Annual Performance Review, or APR, is something else I’m well rid of. You must be aware of these horrors yourself, and all the daft questions they contain: “Where do you see yourself in 5 years time?” or “How do you see your career developing in the future?”. “What are your daily and weekly goals?”, “How are you serving your customers?”. You couldn’t ever answer these questions honestly could you?
- In 5 years time I’d like to see myself sipping tequila sunrises whilst lounging round my own pool on a Caribbean island.
- My career won’t develop any more because you keep promoting all the toadies and all the good workers are kept with their noses to the grindstone.
- A weekly goal would be to get to 4.15pm on a Friday afternoon, and I don’t have customers you idiot – I’m a senior engineer doing experimental work!!
I think it was in the mid 1990’s that bosses seemed to be indoctrinated in this way – perhaps they all went to the same business school – maybe they are all clones – who knows? It was when British Rail and British Airways no longer had passengers but had customers instead.
I recently reported a crime to the police, and was surprised to receive the following week a “customer satisfaction” letter, asking if my experience had been a satisfactory one.
Enough of this though. I can laugh about it now and I wouldn’t have missed it for the world. It’s true what they say about retirement too – I’m busier now than I ever used to be, and I couldn’t fit full time work into my busy life at the moment.
Jobs planned for the near future include building a partition wall at the Church Hall, re-decorating, re-pointing, a bit of flag laying and finishing re-building one of my bikes. I’m also doing the Manchester to Blackpool bike ride for charity this summer.
I should add to this that my Dad is a very young at heart 64 year old who has worked for BT (and when it was the GPO before that) since he left school at the age of 15. He is the Church Warden at my church, and has so many interests it is hard to list them all. He is never happier than when he has either a book or a tool in his hand! I hope he will agree to write some more for me in the future – he has got so many hair raising stories of his escapades on the back of a motorbike that it wouldn’t be fair for him not to share them!!
I hope you enjoyed his post today; I will pass your comments on to him.