The past year is about to enter the Colonel's record books, having passed in the inevitably increasing rate years pass in direct correlation to the accumulation of personal orbits of ole Sol. The new year awaits at the end of the week and, if it weren't for the need to keep of track of the opening and closing dates of hunting seasons I would enter it without the plethora of calendars with which my life has heretofore been ordered. Since my re-retirement two months ago, I rarely wear a wrist watch and my cell phone stays off and at my convenience, not my annoyance.
These are the days for which I pined while at the long-distance sprint that was the first 30 years of my adult life. For the first time in my life, and for the rest of my life, my energies will not be spent on preparing for the next move or deployment. Instead of leaning forward in a given direction, I'm squatting and digging in--and loving it.
For the past several weeks, I've been rearranging the mega flora aboard Eegeebeegee. A half dozen tulip poplars that lined a ridge in a forgotten corner have been replanted in a new place of prominence alongside the drive leading up to the Big House. Three sycamores have been rescued from piney obscurity and placed where their saucer-sized leaves will shade the dock down on Lake Brenda. Later this week, two crepe myrtles will find themselves removed from under the back eaves of the house and replanted in Miss Brenda's burgeoning backyard gardens. By the time sap-stirring spring arrives, at least a dozen new fruit trees will have found a home on my range--fulfilling the retirement prophecy I made enough times to my comrades in arms that our reconnections are always attended by their questions about the size and variety of my orchards.
The year of my Lord, two thousand and nine, will undoubtedly have enormous political, economic, and military portent for our world. It will be a rough year for many. A new "decider" will be calling our republic's shots and I wish him luck--he's going to need it. For a change, this rider aboard the big blue marble's e-ticket ride 'round the sun will be watching from the cheap seats. I'll not be responding to any call to arms this year, either with shouldered rifle or rolled suitcase. I'll be responding to nature's cycles with shouldered shovel. Now that's change I can believe in.
Won't keep me from continuing my curmudgeonly commentary, though!