Goodbye, 2011

Only one more day in 2011. For me, 2011 was a wonderful year. Our extended family grew through marriage and the arrival of a baby, our son started his MBA at the University of Virginia, we achieved a level of financial independence that allowed me to join Mike in retirement, and we were able to spend time with people that are important to us.

We started the year traveling to Antarctica with Lindblad and National Geographic. We boarded the ship in Ushuaia, Argentina, after a short cruise on a catamaran through the Beagle Channel.

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Here is the Antarctica welcoming committee.

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Counting the days?

I’ve been asked so many times whether I am counting down the days until my retirement.  My cousin gave me a little display that does the job for me, so I know the answer:   35 days from today.

But the reason I named my blog “Destination Now” is to remind myself to fully enjoy the present moments, and not be so eager for a future event to occur.  And quite honestly, I’m not looking to speed up the calendar.  I will definitely miss my “village”.  I’ve been fortunate to have many of the same customers for the past 10 years, so what started as a business relationship has evolved over the years into a friendship.

Of course I will miss my colleagues.  The office has been a central gathering place where I could always find smart, interesting people with whom I shared common goals, celebrated successes and commiserated with when things didn’t turn out as planned.  I’ll definitely miss the camaraderie.   I’m  realistic enough to recognize how hard it is to maintain friendships when the central reason for the relationship no longer exists.  I also know how busy life is for someone with a full-time job and family responsibilities.  So, while MY time for relationships will be expanding, my work buddies will have the same intense schedules that consumed my waking hours for the past few decades.

So, no, I’m not rushing for the end of my MetLife career.  I’m fully enjoying these final days and am stockpiling the memories.