I did have some relatives in Melbourne - men - who were retired. One was an official high up in the Police Force who claimed that he went back to work the day after he retired. He didn't last long in retirement because he died within a few months. I did have one other relative - a man - who survived Gallipoli and was supposed to have health problems. He also seemed to die quickly.
I lived in an area where men didn't retire. They normally died in office. They were farmers mostly. No males in my family lived past 60. The normal thing was to die in your 50’s.
In my life I never overburdened myself with hard work and stayed fairly healthy. But I had the concept conditioned in me. I imagined that when I turned 70 I would retire and die soon after.
This hasn’t happened.
When I did retire I had not planned it. I did not expect to retire. What happened was that my wife retired. She was offered a retirement window and she had to take up the offer straight away. Even she didn't want to retire at that particular time. Because she retired she thought it would be a good idea to move immediately to Benalla. I had to make several decisions. One of which was that I had to completely retire.
We moved to Benalla. I made several attempts to gain employment in Benalla. I don’t know if I was serious. But I did make enquiries. I didn't want to work in an Accountants office. I only wanted to work in Benalla. I did not manage to gain employment.
I planned to keep myself busy and purchased Pepys Diary with the intention of carefully reading it in full. It turned out I only read it when having breakfast. It did provoke an interest in Pepys however. He wrote it in code. He knew that if the authorities were informed as to what he wrote he would be in deep trouble. He did live through some interesting times. The fire. The death of Charles 1st. He once saw Shakespeare's Hamlet and was impressed with the to be or not to be soliloquy. He did an enormous amount of refurbishing inside his house. He did not keep a diary all his life. He discontinued it several times and twice took it up again after a vacant space.
Even his editors censored his writing. He lusted after most women and was not afraid to make sexual advances. He always thought of sex when he saw women. He would start each month with the news that his wife was menstruating and the editors deleted this from the published diary.
After 2 months my previous work phoned and asked if I could come back to work. I didn't even think about it. I said "Yes" before they could explain why.
This led to another career. I was able to commute to Melbourne every week and boarded with friends for 3 nights a week. Later on our house became vacant and I was able to move back in and work full time. Some things had changed. There was a niche for me. I took on a higher management role in production. I continued with sales also. After some time The company was taken over by a larger firm and I was asked to stay on. As as salesman.
I enjoyed the feeling of having this extra time added on to my working life. It meant I could retire when I wanted to.
The downside was I had to drive to Melbourne each week. And drive home. I had to watch for Kangaroos on the road. It was a worrisome thing. I saw a delivery Van in Bonnie Doon deliberately drive over a young Kangaroo. This type of image stays with us. I cannot fathom the mentality of some people. The two people in the van had smiles on their faces as they drove deliberately at the animal.
Eventually it did not suit me to work in a large corporation whose head office was in Brisbane. I was offered a job in Brisbane and it was hinted that I might go to Malaysia. The company was expanding into Asia. They had a large printing plant in Vietnam. Employees came and went to gain experience. But they also had simple rules. You had to attend sales meetings every Monday morning. If people didn't conform they were quickly disposed of. An out of date computer system had to be coped with. The firm who took us over had people with preconceived ideas as to who was important.
I retired a second time. This time I enjoyed it. I discovered an organisation called U3A and immersed myself in it.