I’ve retired from my job of 31.5 years. What a stressful month or so it’s been leading up to this point and a pretty emotional time once I left. The hardest decision I’ve ever made. This is the only job I’ve had in my adult life as I hired on right after high school. My work place has been so much a part of my family’s lives.
Although I loved my job, some changes I didn’t like and I wanted to leave before it took more of a toll on me physically. I’m retiring earlier than I should but it’s a risk we decided to take. I used to have money but no time, now I have time and no money and the time is getting shorter and shorter as the honey-do list is getting longer and longer.
It was an interesting job. Over the years on the job I’ve seen death, drugs, sex, violence, domestic violence, the poor, the rich, roach and rat infested houses, criminal acts of all kinds, devastation from tornadoes and storms, some really neat places that are off limits to most. Done work for President Clinton, Vice President Dick Cheney, Russian President Boris Yeltzen, a few celebrities. Been dog bit several times, way too many wasp stings to count, flea bitten, fallen off of poles, near frostbite, near heat exhaustion, vehicle accidents.
Was an exciting time to be a phoneman. Got to see a lot of changes in the technology and industry. When I started it was still Ma Bell and a monopoly. There were still party lines and Touch Tone was optional, you couldn’t go buy a phone. During my career these were introduced… the fax machine, cordless phones, calling features like call waiting and caller id, dial-up data, internet, fiber, wireless, broadband, voip, broadband tv.
Last night we had a little celebration with my parents. They took us to dinner, got me a cake and gave me a generous gift.