Yesterday the weather was perfect for working outside, not hot but sunny and breezy. I did some mowing, a lot of weed-whacking and dug out sod from an overgrown bed I’m preparing for some tomato plants. I thought it was about 4:00 when I ran out of steam….. it was 2:40.
This week I’ve been questioning whether or not to retire after all. First, the Ontario government announced they were raising the minimum wage from $11.40 to $14.00 on Jan. 1. Never in my working days have I seen a jump in minimum wage like this! When I started working, minimum wage was $1.15. For forty years I have seen it raised 10¢ to 25¢ at a time. Just my luck! I’ve been saying I’m retiring Dec. 31 and now this. Sonofabitch!!
Then I discovered I wasn’t getting as much Old Age Pension as I thought because I’m not a widow. I have to go after my ex-husband because he’s supposed to share his CPP with me. I spoke to him recently and he hasn’t even applied. Now I’m thinking that’s probably because he found out he has to share it with me. Whether or not I’ll get something from him is 50/50.
So whether or not to retire. I’m dreading summer because all I can do is work there and nothing else. 35 minute long hot rides in the car (no air conditioning) because I have to go around town there’s so much traffic then go into freezing cold and work in a frenzy……. the only thing making me feel better is that it’s my last summer there. The thought of missing another summer, working to exhaustion for the money, makes me want to cry. This last couple of days I’ve had that chest-crushing feeling of defeat.
The weather is even better today but not for gardening. I’m going to Canadian Tire to pick up my new toy….. a manual lawn mower. They are making a come back. I have a large lot and a rider mower but there are a few spots that are too small to get in. I’ve been using the weed-whacker but its hard on the neck and I can only do so much at once. Today I’ll put it together (I hope) and try it out in front of my house and flower gardens.
Its been so nice having 5 days off but the party’s over tomorrow. I have five days of work next week, well, one day and four nights. I’m training a new guy for this shift…… I sure hope he wants to work nights. Next Saturday I’m on 10:00 to 3:00, my favourite hours. That’s what I was working when I was hired…… 10-3 making cakes……. aahh, those were the days. I may get that back depending on whether or not this guy will take on the dreaded closing shift.
Well, I’m off to get my new toy, a Husqvarna reel mower. Then I’ll drop in at The Herb Farm to look for some Thai basil. It’s important for the front of my home to look nice when I come home from work and have fresh herbs for my meals: it’s those little things that make me feel better; like I’m not missing out on life.
I love not having a job……. whether or not I can live on my pension and not be seduced by $14 an hour remains to be seen.