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December 6, 2016 - My Birthday

On this date, 70 years ago, I was born. Today, I had dinner with Patty, Doris and Mike. What a treat it is to be this old.

Over the past year, nothing bad happened. Some kid ran into the side of my pickup and I had a dead battery one day, but that stuff is pretty minor. We had a few days with lots of rain, but no hurricanes came our way. And during the whole last year, I never saw a snowflake. If weather is all I have to complain about, it was a pretty good year.

Patty and I did some really fun stuff. We did a cruise to Hawaii in March, had a roadtrip to State College, PA for Laura's wedding in July, and visited Kristie, Kristoffer and the kids in Copenhagen in September/October. We also attended some shows - Billy Joel concert in January, the Jersey Boys show in June, maybe the final live performance of Pet Sounds by the Brian Wilson Band in September, and the Martina McBride concert in December. I logged at least 88 hours on the boat away from the dock, accumulating about 47 hours on the engine and the rest at anchor relaxing in the sun. And finally, the local hockey team - Tampa Bay Lightning - rewarded the fans with a trip to the playoffs, gaining victories in the first and second rounds before losing in 7 games to the eventual Stanley Cup Champion. And we attended almost all of the home games.

Medically, I'm still doing OK. A bunch of tests came due this year, including an echo-cardiogram, a nuclear stress test, and a colonoscopy. According to the doctors, all results were un-remarkable, which means, I guess, that they won't be billing me for additional medical work. And there was that little procedure that I had done to my eyes, you can read about that here.

In November I had the ninth anniversary of my retirement. I must say that I don't know where all that time has gone. But I feel pretty good having been skillful, or lucky, enough to set up a retirement income that allows me to do all the fun stuff without dipping into my IRA yet. I haven't looked at all of the results from the year yet, but my IRA holdings were up 4.9% for the year. According to the IRS, I will have to take some distrubition next year. I guess that I'll just have to find more fun stuff to do.

I hang out with a bunch of other retired people from Honeywell - we meet monthly for lunch. Most of them are older than I, and some have medical problems that are common to old people. So I have an some idea of what's ahead for all of us. I feel good every day that I wake up and can look down and see the grass, instead of looking up to see the grass. It means that I am still on the good side of the ground. Thank GOD for that. And continued good things for anyone reading this.