I will retire when they pry my orthopaedic hammer from my cold, lifeless hands
. My mentor (who was also the doc who delivered me) was a violin player (and had a Strad) and a deeply civilised man who I admired (and loved) so very much - I felt envious of the evenings he would spend playing with his quartet - it was so beautiful and of course, way more portable than a piano. I think my desire to play a fiddle is a way of getting closer to him now that he is gone these many years. I do miss him. Alas, I doubt it will happen - my finger tips never could harden enough to play guitar, and now they are slowly developing arthritis, so I doubt something as fine as fiddle playing is on the cards. Maybe ukulele.... or if I ever really did retire, I could move to some nice island and surf.... I could totally see myself as an old beach bum. My wife could not, but I can.
For a few years in my younger days I played jazz piano ( I do a mean imitation of Oscar Peterson) in a bar in my spare time, and flute in a jazz quintet (also did the vocals), but I have pretty much lost my chops - too much to do: it is funny how life just takes you over and you never notice it. And the older I am, the more time I am willing to give to the hospital, just to keep sharp, and to help more. It is less about a job any more, and more about this being what I do and who I am, and also a desperation to pass it on to the next generations - they really need it, coming from the technocratic medicine they learn today. But I still love to cook. I come from a long line of restaurateurs, and learned gourmet cooking when I was little, so even now, when I am home for the evening, it is me, not She Who Must Be Obeyed who does the dinner, and me who will hit the open air farmer's market around the corner from our home to get the good stuff early in the morning. She is good with the Italian stuff, being half Italian, and also the Thurgauer(north Swiss) stuff, since that is her other half, me, I do the French and Eastern European stuff, and the good British stuff. Life... it just runs away with you....