So what does a retired person do throughout a day? More specifically what does Denvy do in a day this week?
"I'm up to watch the sunrise," I state, which around Ground Hogs Day allows me to sleep, or at least lay around in bed, until the summary of the local news just before the "Today" show comes on. During the warmer months of the year one has to roll out before the 5:33AM Stateman's Journal electronic news is delivered.
There's the early morning routine answer to the call of nature integrated with the awaking the computer and checking the overnight spam interspersed with some meaningful emails. It's these good emails that dictate what happens for the next couple hours, well, these emails and the ones on the to-do list which were formulated during the evening transition to sleep and the morning's awakening time.
There are responses to Wendy, a recent college grad, who is creating a new non-profit organization to help educate orphans in Africa, and specifically a new website on a new server. And the responses to Kirk, a former student, who is updating a website for the community baseball team he coaches.
Depending on the time of year and month, emails are exchanged with Katie for programming for the Western Compass campus ministry, with members of the pastor nominating committee regarding the status of candidates, with people helping setting up a pilot project to house and provide meals for homeless families, with church members for the Peace Justice and Mission business, with supporters of the Relay for Life fight against cancer and with those dealing with the computers at the Polk Community Free Clinic. The good news is that I really like what these groups are doing.
Then there's time to open the iPad and play a game of solitaire or check the weather or read parts of a book. That's my quiet time.
Did I mention starting the wood stove, bringing in firewood, preparing and eating breakfast, washing the dishes, feeding the dog, cat and chickens. Some days washing clothes, watering plants and cleaning house split into the agenda.
Then there's an opportunity to write policies and job descriptions, create rosters and contact lists, and contact people about volunteering for the homeless project. We received a letter yesterday indicating that our request for a $500 grant for this project was granted. Laying out plans and agendas for the pastor nominating committee are a part of this time in the day, and this can extend throughout the day.
This week Monday only had a weekly PNC meeting in the evening and Tuesday had a PJM meeting with a presentation on a proposal to introduce a health system similar to the Canadian system into Oregon. Wednesday had a 2-hour meeting with Wendy and the weekly bell and vocal choir practices. Thursday was full with a meeting with some interns in the morning, WC meeting at one, meeting with Kirk at four, dinner with WC at SingFay at five, and college basketball games at 5:15 and 7:30. However, it's snowing and everything is cancelled (waiting for word on the basketball games) and so there's time to write this blog entry.
Continuing on with words about the remainder of the week, there are four Skype interviews with pastoral candidates between 9:30AM and 3:00PM on Friday. Saturday has a funeral at two, a Valentine Day dinner at Falls City at five, and two basketball games that evening. Sunday seems routine except for Dr Lace apple cider making event about the same time as church and so we will miss that.
It's nice to catch some lunch about midday and nicer still if it's at 1:00 so we can manifest some silliness by watching the archived Zorro show. Today the show interrupts an ongoing news broadcast following the snow storm which has closed schools, businesses and highways.
For variety in the day there are opportunities like pruning trees, mowing lawns - even in the winter, cutting firewood, working in the wood shop, pulling weeds and the like. During colder days there's organizing pictures, writing the family history, painting on the paint-by-number project - for color blind non-artists, or stoking the fire.
Evening, if there's no meeting or scheduled event, may see us watching Dr Martin or a Blazer's basketball game on television while Gail does some handwork and I play at website design.
Oh, there is the final act of crawling into the waterbed and falling asleep as Jay Leno talks to himself. That is what a monologue is, isn't it?