Fire Cloud...
An irregular marking on the exterior of Native American pottery: usually resulting from burning fuel coming in direct contact with the vessel during firing

Saturday, 13 October 2007

Retirement Anomie

Sarasota, Florida

We struggle now to find some direction or purpose.

The last two years have been a constant steam of new places. During the summer, we visited the Mediterranean, Canada, Alaska, crisscrossing the US. We find ourselves stopping now with no real plans. I think we may be stuck in the life planning process, unable or unwilling to make decisions.

I got a call from the dermatologist yesterday. Both biopsies came back positive: a recurrent basal on the temple and a new squamous on the ear. They want me to see a specialist. That puts a small crimp in our ability to quickly move on.

We think about traveling to a small town in North Carolina to purchase a home. The town is called New Bern. It’s on the coast at the confluence of two rivers. It’s in an area they call “the low country” and has a population of about 20,000. I’m filled with nagging doubt about this course of action.

Mrs. Phred thinks I need a job again. I wonder about that. It’s a way to mark time and fill hours, but not much more.

I envy Mrs. Phred’s sister and husband. They made the bold decision to move to Venice for a year and to immerse themselves in Italian language lessons. On the other hand, I was bored with Venice after two days. Maybe I suffer from a short attention span.

We search for the lodestar. It's obsured by clouds. In the past we lived near employment, educational or family opportunities.

So what to do? Take courses at a University? Rent a flat in Paris? Keep moving? Buy a house? Flip houses? Visit Vegas and find the chicken tic-tac-toe masters? Go to the Keys and catch lobsters? Sign up with an Alaska crab boat? Run moonshine? Join the Peace Corps? Work on a political campaign? Search for the bones of Amelia Earhart? Apply for a position with Blackwater?

(to be continued)

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