Over the past several months, we have been decluttering our home. We have found many interesting items. One was a proposal I had written to secure contract work at a large insurance company in 1989. This contract ultimately led me away from teaching into a lengthy corporate career.

The proposal talked to the technology environment:

The computing environment includes an IBM mainframe running under VM. The production terminals run under CMS. The programming language for the implementation is ORACLE PRO*C. The database manager is ORACLE with SQL access. Support staff maintain the VMS/CMS accounts, source code libraries and distribute output.

17 years later and I am still dealing with IBM mainframes and Oracle databases. As I looked at the proposal, and the after-tax result, I realized that I made a lot of money back then. Sometimes I miss the simplicity and the adventure of those years. Teaching and doing selective contract work was a pretty good life.

I attended a retirement party last night and the guest of honour focused on humanity and relationships within his workplace. He made quite a difference to the lives of the people he touched and I will certainly miss him. As I talked to him he mentioned how busy his retirement had become. “I’m just as busy as I was at work except that every day feels like a Saturday now.”

Looks like he has found a pretty good life.

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