Nothing To Do

I have nothing to do.

Sure, there are things that need to be done, yet still I have nothing to do.

I could string up the outside Christmas lights, but it is 12°F and snowing. Two days ago, it was 65°F and the sun was shining, but I couldn’t think of anything to do then, so the lights remained buried at the bottom of their tub somewhere in the garage.

Now it is too cold.

Speaking of the garage, my wife wants me to rearrange the shelves to make room for more stuff.

The last thing we need is more stuff, so I let that chore slide.

I could clean the gutters of leaves and twigs, but again it is too cold and wet for that.

Maybe next spring.

Or the spring after that.

I could do something about the door in the second bedroom. It hits the wall when swung too wide – a situation that cries for a door-stop.

A simple fix.

Simpler still is to open the door carefully, that way I don’t have to do anything about it.

I spent much of the fall working on the farm and loading hogs for market, but harvest is complete and the pens are filled with young hogs, so they don’t have anything for me to do.

To be honest there are plenty of chores I could tend to and all of those things I will eventually get to, just not now.

This may seem like procrastination, it is, but it is something more.

I look at it this way, there are things that life asks of us and things we ask of life and so much of our time is consumed with the little things that life demands and so little time is allocated to our simple desires.

Like something to do.

I never thought of this in the past, because I was too busy. There were computer systems to design and endless 14 hour days on the farm to work during harvest. All of these things were so much more important than the Christmas lights, garage shelves, gutters, or a bathroom door that keeps punching divots into the sheetrock.

So I didn’t have to worry about the little stuff.

It is bad enough not having vital and interesting work to occupy my time, because it leaves me exposed to all the little things that reach out and say, “now, you belong to us”.

It is why I desperately need something to do.

Author: Almost Iowa

www.almostiowa.com

25 thoughts on “Nothing To Do”

  1. When I began to think of retirement as doing what I want to do on a limited income, I realized that I ‘retired’ about 1990. To the outside world, I’m still working full time, but in truth, I’m enjoying myself while keeping body and soul together — even though those ‘little things’ around the house and such often get shoved to the side. I know they’re around; I can hear them whispering to one another at night. When they start yelling, I might do something about them.

  2. This has been my life, all my adult life. All the house things are the same level of priority so they just don’t motivate action. There’s no end and little satisfaction in completion.

    My number one problem is sleep. Then it’s more difficult, like finding a life purpose. 😀

    1. It is pretty much why I started blogging again. With Covid, I chased the classic C language down a rabbit hole and had quite a bit of fun with that. Fooled around with Linux too. The problem is, it only showed me how far behind the programming curve I had fallen.

    1. That is exactly what I am thinking!

      As I type this, my driveway is filling with snow. “You ain’t the boss of me,” I am telling it, “you can wait until spring.”

    1. They say retirement doesn’t hit you for a few years. This little essay is an acknowledgement of that. When people think of retirement, they think of all the time they will have to do the things that they want to do. And they do them. Then comes a time when they begin to reflect on how trivial it all is.

      A lot of people then find something to do, like volunteer for the church, the library, meal on wheels and that is all good – but it is not quite the same.

      1. My husband is struggling with it. There’s always plenty to do…. but it’s more a matter of aging and feeling unproductive. Put out to pasture. Finding a new routine has been hard.

    1. I wholeheartedly agree on that beginning, middle and end thing, however, around here instead of a celebration, all I get is, “when you are done with that, can you…?”

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