In September of 2012, Hewlett Packard offered me money to go away. When folks offer you money to go away I would suggest you do it because the next action is layoff. I suppose this counted as my first retirement. My co-workers asked what I would like as a retirement gift and I replied “anything but a clock”. I envisioned myself watching the remaining hours of my life pass away on the face of that device.
I suggested a gift certificate for plants that I could call my “retirement garden” which would grow in beauty and size, happily that is what they did. Hewlett Packard had another idea.
I knew that my 2012 retirement was just a dry run, since I knew that it made sense to wait till I was 70 to get the maximum in Social Security. I wanted to retire, but have enough for food. So I took another job at a startup software company for an additional 4 years till I reached my target retirment age of 70. I worked with a talented group of engineers on a great product but the time had come to make the retirement permanent. Once again they asked what I wanted as a gift and once again I explained that watching a clock click off the remaining minutes of my life was a cruel gift.
They came up with a solution