My name is Diana, and I have recently retired. Well actually I had not formed the intention to retire but as I have not had paid work for over a year, I might as well call it retirement rather than saying I am unemployed. I thought I might dread it but in fact I am strangely excited. Even the prospect of spending my old age in comparative penury does not completely dismay me, as my needs are few. As you can see, I have been quite busy designing and building this website, starting with zero knowledge and much research, trial and error, reading computer books, studying Computer Active magazines and visiting numerous websites, together with hints, help and teaching from various people. I have been collecting books for years, always hoping to read them, but having conflicting calls on my time with too many diversionary things to do. Imagine having shelves and shelves of books all ripe for reading, and at last being free to pick even the longest of them, knowing you can wallow and ruminate to your heart's content. What freedom, what luxury! ......... and then being told by your opthalmologist after an eye test that your eyesight is getting worse.
I am ashamed to admit that I was so short of book space that I have even been storing them in boxes. My first task, at my daughter's instigation, was to start sifting and ruthlessly disposing of all the books I am unlikely to read, or have already read. I was very reluctant to let go, but knowing she was right, I have managed to part with several bags of books, and it is no longer necessary to have them stacked in double piles on the shelves in disorder - they have now been distributed to their new owners.Farewell to my BabiesI will no longer be involved in management of a business, so out went The One Minute Manager (but I quickly re-read it first) ; out went Industrial Psychology (not only unread, but also extremely out of date); Time Management went because I have no intention of managing my time or anyone else's, and I know how to make lists and "To Do" notes; out went Linda McCartney and several other vegetarian, casserole and slimming cookery books, all unused because I usually just like to make up things with the ingredients in my kitchen, and if I need a recipe, I go to Madhur Jaffrey, La Rousse Gastronomique, Robert Carrier, Elizabeth David, Cranks, Betty Crocker, Jewish, Middle Eastern and Asian recipe books, and a motley crew of amateur anthologies collected over the years. Favoured cookery books are greasy, floury and chocolatey and only the clean ones have gone; I have discovered that the web provides a wealth of good recipes and useful information such as the difference between, and uses of, Baking Powder, Cream of Tartar and Bicarbonate of Soda - life's little mysteries which are not properly addressed in most cookery books. I reluctantly said goodbye to Anna Karenina, which I loved, and a duplicate dictionary and thesaurus. Exodus and other war books went because I couldn't bear to read them, and a bit of pulp fiction because they were bottom of my reading list and I knew I was never going to read them.
More soon - Diana