Days Off

Blog No. 33

Freedom 35

Can a guy retire before he even starts a career?  I’m not asking practically, I mean physically.  Also I mean me.  Could I really stand being in my early thirties and retired?  Spending my days sleeping in, watching too much TV and always having more time than I know what to do with it.  The dream is glorious, but how long would it take before I went insane?  Retirement is one of those things that sounds good on paper, but so does a steady income and a full day.

But I’m getting ahead of myself again.  I have a day off today and every one seems to end up the same way.  Working with the public as I do (and have mentioned many times) I don’t have what most people know of as a weekend.  I get most Mondays off and occasionally another day or two in the week.  It depends on a lot of factors that I have no control over.

And don’t you dare start thinking that my life is any better than yours because I don’t work most Mondays.  Monday is only what it is because it is the start of most people’s week.  I work on the weekend so Monday is my weekend and Tuesday is that much more draining because I only had the one day off.  Granted there are the odd weeks that I only work three or four days but much like retirement that really only looks good on paper.  (Brought it back!)

Working that little has a few interesting side effects.  The big one is the lack of incoming funds.  I’m not the first to mention that the days you don’t work costs you twice as much as the days you do work because you aren’t getting paid and you’re spending money.  There is also the issue that comes up when you do work the equivalent of a full week.  It’s like a marathon.  There was a time when I was in school full time, working two jobs and volunteering.  Now I work three consecutive days and I’m ready for a vacation.

Of course time runs differently when you don’t have any consistency.  I am never working the same thing from week to week.  I could be working a nine-hour shift on Tuesday then a five hours night shift on Wednesday and another nine hour on Thursday.  I may get Friday off but I may have to work a double on Saturday.  But that’s the thing.  I never know, it’s always different and could be at any time of the day.  That sort of schedule is draining and doesn’t lend itself well to routine.  (I am part of the group that does best with a routine, or at least I tell myself that all the time).

At the risk of repeating myself (again), I am awesome at doing nothing.  I love it.  I have blown summers in the basement and had nothing to show for it, but I don’t feel like I wasted that time.  I loved it.  Nothing is really relaxing and no matter how much you are doing “nothing” you are really always doing something.  The question is how long can I do nothing before I can’t do it anymore and do something self destructive like take up golf?  I don’t think it’s as much as it used to be.  I still have my days that go “wasted” but more and more I’m being productive.  This blog is a central part of that.

I’m telling you all this in a (very) round about way to get to the point that I get a lot of random days off like today.  They always end up the same.  I go to be the night before swearing that I am going to get up early.  I tell myself that I’m going to exercise and write, then I’m going to clean up around the house and get all my stuff in order before making a healthy meal and maybe going out in the evening to see some friends and be social.  They always end up the same way though.  I sleep in, watch too much TV and wonder where my day went.  Except for today because I am writing this post.  Look at me go.

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