I thought when I retired I'd really enjoy my money. Forty four years with the same company, all the time fantasizing some hazy state of carefree abandon...If only I'd honed in zoned in on some location or even pastime through that haze I'm sure I wouldn't be feeling this way.

    Annette my wife has come into her own these last fifteen months since it happened. Those diaries she kept which I used to surreptitiously read for the first five or ten years have been discovered by Alan the lecturer at her creative writing class. Seems she's been hiding her light under a bushell all these years. She's had two collections of poetry published in less than two years, and a good third of that was spent traveling with me overseas.

    It was nice of the company to have kept me on as a consultant that extra year, I guess it did ease me down gently. Maybe moving cities, states was a dumb idea but I definitely picked up a real estate bargain at the time, or so I thought until the crash. Now I won't sell until there's another peak in the business cycle - if I live that long. Anyway the kids all moved except John before we did, so it felt right at the time. Now the most fun I have is watching the stock page on the teletext of my TV, and sending off faxes to my broker to buy or sell - pathetic isn't it - whatever happened to carefree abandon? I often ask myself.

    I seem to have descended into a blue funk. I resent it when Annette makes me heat up my own dinner in the microwave because she's at some editor's house being wined and dined - and that bloody train trip with the rest of her literary mates, I didn't see her for six days. I had to force myself to go out and eat in restaurants spending a fortune and not enjoying it.

    Even when some old friends stayed for three days, if my wife hadn't organized a day's excursion to the hinterland, I would have been quite happy to inculcate the husband into the joys of teletext...

    Yes I suppose that was fun. I was driving and couldn't resist several very snide comments disparaging Annette's skills as a navigator. Probably because the others were listening she took unusual offence and before I knew it everyone was getting stuck into me like I was a grumpy old bastard or something.

    I must confess the only things I find funny these days are the financial misfortunes of other high or at least middle fliers. I got a bit of a drubbing but at least I didn't lose everything...

    Some ex-acquaintances of mine being too smart for their own good tried to get me in on the real estate boom in the city but I stuck to my Blue Chips, it's laughable really, one killed himself some of the others are bankrupt and on the dole whereas I Mr Corporate Conservative have survived pretty much intact.

    My body isn't up to becoming a hobby farmer, I guess I realized that dream wasn't going to come true by about forty. Sitting behind a desk all day with the occasional car and plane ride thrown in over the years has not been great for me physically. My early penchant for French restaurants and abhorrence of any kind of "rabbit food" has given me heart problems which preclude too much effort. Pity really I remember enjoying the odd romantic bush walk when we were first married and I did enjoy water skiing on our honeymoon - it wasn't as common then...

Oh well that will do for now...