Redefining Retirement: Gathering No Moss

Redefining Retirement

Nineteen years ago this week, Glenn Anderson left his teaching job at Taft High School, unsure of what came next. Several friends and colleagues who had retired moved south and just sort of faded away, and at a spry 56 years old, with his mind and body still relatively intact, Glenn decided that wasn’t the life for him, and regarded the end of his teaching career not as retirement, but “leaving with a pension.”

Since then, life has been anything but quiet for Glenn. Having always been handy and enjoying working with his hands, he had a small welding and blacksmith shop that leaving teaching allowed him to expand. Married to an avid gardener and living in a house over 100 years old, there are consistently tractors, rototillers, and other appliances needing attention and maintenance, so his mechanical skills are put to good use both in and outside of his welding shop.

Not satisfied to be constrained to just one set of skills, Glenn decided to help out a friend who took over the operation of a local café by cooking breakfast for its patrons five days a week for a while. Also a lifelong musician, he has found creative release in playing banjo with multiple Dixieland bands in the area of Wilmot, WI.

When the local county fair was looking for someone to manage its grounds crew during the summer months, Glenn was more than happy (and qualified) to take on that role, which led to his participation in the Master Gardener program, clocking in many volunteer hours to beautify public areas. After seven years with the fairgrounds, the local cemetery was in need of a groundskeeper, so managing the turf upkeep, snow removal, and tree care is how he joyfully spends his hours now.

With so much going on, Glenn can only laugh when asked how he plans to spend his retirement. “Too busy now to plan retirement!”


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