Archive for September, 2018

Retirement: a new experience.

September 30, 2018

After 34 years and 1 month at Stirling University, I am finally retiring. Officially, from 3 October (my 66th birthday) I will be retired, but my Department held a party for me (and my wife) on Friday, and I’ve decided that I will not work this week, if only to ensure that i actually feel as though I have retired.

Last week was eventful: on Monday we bought a new car (a Jaguar – the first properly good car I’ve had in my life), on Tuesday our beloved, but very old dog, Lara was put down, on Thursday I gave my last lecture, and on Friday, there was the party for my retirement. Perhaps it’s not surprising that I feel just a little unsettled this Sunday evening, looking forward to next week, (and beyond) not quite knowing what to expect.

I had hoped to transition from being a Professor (paid) to being an Emeritus Professor (unpaid) smoothly, and therefore applied to be an Emeritus in April. But it was not to be: an email got lost somewhere, and the application will go forward to the University Court in December (where, hopefully, it will be approved). I’ve got the University to agree not to take me off their email list, and to let me keep my office for now, but my official status is unclear. I do have projects I’m working on (and indeed, I’m writing this on a laptop that belongs to the University), and these will keep me in contact with current University staff.

For now, though, I need to think a bit about ways forward. Or do I? Shall I simply go for a drive in the nice shiny new Jaguar, or for a ride on my e-bicycle?

I feel the need for something ┬álonger-term than these evanescent though enjoyable activities. The projects I have continue the research I’ve been doing (on early auditory processing, and working with the context project at Stirling). And then there’s music: something I’ve been doing even longer than Computing (from which I’ve been earning a living since 1974). Jazz piano, and (very) basic clarinet. But how to take these disparate element forward, and make something of them, I can’t really see just now. I do, however, have the time to think about ways forward, which itself is something rather new.