The Retiree: December 11, 2013


Every year since about 1977, I’ve written a Christmas letter, and so far the Messenger hasn’t had it thrust upon them. This year, it seemed to be a good idea to do so. Now I will be able to say it went out to thousands of people. Typically, I highlight the things that went wrong, since there are more of them than the good things. Here it is, modified for public consumption.
Christmas 2013
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you all! There. Let's get that out of the way before the furnace blows up or the water heater leaks.
The year 2013 should have been a warning for us all. Thirteen is said to be unlucky, with the exception of our daughter’s birthday, of course, but if that superstition held true, it would explain a few things.
To start the year, our septic system froze. We got through the winter by having our tanks pumped out and not bathing, flushing, washing clothes, doing dishes, or drinking for a month and a half. You may have noticed.
Then the old Bronco decided to revert to two-wheel drive. The repair involved a second-hand part. Nobody makes new parts for a 25-year-old vehicle.
Next was tires for the Rendezvous. And a new coffee maker. The toaster oven quit. We replaced the patio door. Pontoon boat wouldn't run. Front steps were rotting. Deck needed refinishing. Computer conked out. Printer wouldn't work. Summer was too hot.
Bad things happened to friends and relatives. We mourned and sympathized way too much, and continue to do so.
Wife did a lot of quilting. Fun for her, and maybe a sign of restlessness or boredom. I continue to sketch and write a column from time to time, and we both try to maintain our aging home.
We escaped to Virginia with Wife’s brother and his wife—where we knew nobody, and that was fine—and learned a bunch of history that nobody taught us in school. Everyone should go to Williamsburg and Jamestown at least once.
Grandkids dispersed into Spain and Wisconsin as well as their regular Caribbean haunts. Hard enough to keep track of kids. Add a generation and it gets tougher.
We keep on exercising, taking pills, using our seat belts, flossing, brushing, and avoiding stress. We feel just fine. You do that, too, okay? We need all the friends we can get. You may not live longer, but it will seem like it.
Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us. – Matthew 1:25.