Lisa and I visited Emmittsburg Pa. yesterday and one of the many RV dealerships in the area. Since she is on call this weekend – we have to plan our day trips to not take us farther than an hour from the Hanover hospital. It was an enjoyable day and after looking at countless new RVs – all too expensive for us, we visited some antique stores and saw old things too expensive for us and so we then headed back to our campsite. But we had a good time.
But all day something stuck in my mind that the RV salesman we were talking to said to me. He had taken our information and asked if he could contact one of us to tell us about their latest “deals”. I gave him my number and said I was retired so he could call me anytime – I really didn’t care. “Every day is Saturday for you, huh?” He said that and laughed and so did I. “Yup, every day is Saturday”.
And that bothered me. Saturdays are only good if the rest of the weekdays are somehow different. You can only appreciate Saturdays if the other days are perhaps not so good. In other words – you have to work to enjoy Saturdays.
People my age will understand what I am about to say – when I was a kid nothing (and I mean nothing) was better than Saturdays – especially Saturday mornings. It was three or four hours of nothing but cartoons – wonderful, mindless, silly cartoons. The afternoons were full of things like riding bikes, climbing trees, running, jumping and just being free. But Saturday mornings man – that was what I lived for. Saturdays were great for me because I hated school so much. I had to endure the week long hell of getting up and doing something I really did not want to do five days in a row. But then it would be Saturday – I was free and there were cartoons.
Cartoons were a rare treat for us as kids since we only had three television stations. I remember watching the test pattern until finally the TV came alive and started the day with a rendition of the national anthem. Then it was on to cartoon heaven. I could not have enjoyed cartoons as much if I had access to them all week. I could not enjoy Saturdays if every day was Saturday. We cannot enjoy peace without chaos, health without illness, good times without bad, life without death. It is the great paradox we live with.
So all my life I have looked forward to Saturdays and yesterday I was hit with the reality that all my days are Saturdays from now on and it scared me. But before anyone thinks this is a “woe is me” diatribe let me say retirement is wonderful and it has given Lisa and I the opportunity to travel and to do things we have wanted to do for years. But it has thrown my life pattern for a loop. I no longer have the dread of Monday morning but I also no longer feel the joy of Friday afternoons or the great expectations of a Saturday.
Who knows what God will do with me and I fully expect to work again. This retirement thing may be short lived. But then again – Lisa is loving her travel job and we are already looking forward to her next assignment. In the meantime I will adjust to this new freedom and find ways to stay busy.
But don’t be surprised if you find me one Saturday morning with a bowl of Cap’n Crunch looking for a test pattern.