The Retired Husband Plays

Yes, indeed! The Retired Husband (TRH) plays. This is not an entirely new phenomenon. He has been known to play on the odd occasion over the years. However, now that he has successfully extricated himself from the rat race of earning a crust, he has figuratively let down his hair. I say that advisedly as in reality he has very little of it. Hair that is.

markku ute



There has been a further decluttering in the lead up to the Festive Season. This, I believe, was in part responsible for the letting down of his hair. You see, he decided to divest himself of the tray top on his work car. This was a major step in the process of divesting himself of the ‘ties that bind’. In the process, he had to empty it. And my what an emptying that was. It really is amazing how much stuff can be fitted into little spaces.  Unfortunately I was blissfully unaware of what he was doing. Perhaps that is not quite right. Unawareness in this instance was not exactly blissful. He was keeping himself occupied. Which is good. Banging and clattering in the man cave is not unusual. Had I known what the banging and clattering was about, I would have taken some shots. No, not at him! Of him. Photographs. He didn’t tell me till after the event. That in itself is not unusual.

It is well known in the extended family that if you tell TRH something it will NEVER be passed on to ANYONE. He will either forget it immediately. Or file it away in the never to be retrieved from behind the “pretending to look interested and listening” trapdoor inside his brain. Or simply his brain is otherwise engaged whilst you are talking to him. That means he looks like he’s listening. He is not. (This is a skill he learnt as a youngling when he was supposed to be paying attention to his mother.)   What it means now is I never get to find out. Until someone mentions the matter casually in passing. Then notices my look of confusion. “Oh. He didn’t tell you?” Over the many decades of living with TRH I have never quite managed to perfect the skill of not getting upset about his trapdoor brain.

What all this means is that I cannot give you a blow by blow visual of the work. Suffice it to say that this is a photograph of one section of the tray with its neat little rows of storage containers. Which were FULL of screws, nuts, bolts and other tools of the trade paraphernalia. A large amount of which was snapped up by another roller shutter installer person who arrived with his gopher (Aussie slang for a helper) in his van to collect a vanful. And left very happy.


Needless to say, a further substantial amount of tools of the trade paraphernalia found its way into the decluttered man cave that is his workshed. Which now needs another wave of decluttering. There are multiple cordless drills and other such things. None of which have their neat storage boxes (take up too much room!) or their instruction manuals (who needs those?!) This last issue is a whole other story. And hundreds of kilograms of extruded aluminium scrap. Leftovers from shutter installation.

The tray top sold within two hours of being posted online, sight unseen at asking price. That put a smile on his face. The aluminium will turn into dollars when delivered to a scrap dealer. Having divested himself of these weighty accoutrements, TRH was decidedly more mellow during the Festive Season. Which is good. I was a tad concerned he may suffer pangs of attachment withdrawal. It was a relief to see that was not the case. Another step in the right direction. The door was left open to play.

Tie fighter

Christmas brought Star Wars into our home. The  latest movie had been avidly watched by all of us the night after its release a week before Christmas. TRH was gifted an Ultimate Collector’s Edition Star Wars Tie Fighter by son number one to add to his X-Wing from last Christmas. This is one instruction manual that was followed religiously, all 152 pages of it. Even requiring assistance from said son, a lego expert from age 2.  TRH was totally immersed and absorbed in construction for two days.

In between bouts of Lego construction his nose was absorbed in one or another of the ten books he also received at Christmas. All this and smoked salmon. His idea of heaven on earth!

Star Wars found its way into all of our stockings. T-shirts, caps, mugs. And two robots.

BB8. How can a robot be so cute?!



Darth Vader- not so cute but integral to the plot.

darth vader


And my favourite – in my stocking, a little Yoda to join my mini minions.

Star Wars 2

Having consumed a large portion of the smoked salmon in stock and two novels, TRH has now sailed away over the horizon for four days to bring in 2016. Thank goodness he is at last giving himself permission to let his Inner Child out to play more often without getting the guilts .

© Raili Tanska

Images personal album

14 thoughts on “The Retired Husband Plays

  1. As I read your post about your retired husband playing with things, I thought about what it says on your blog: Creating magic with words.
    I too am kind of retired, not that it means anything to me as I still write copy for a small ad agency, besides acting as mouthpiece for a bunch of mad objects in Now we’re talking, and – more to the point here – indulge in a bit of philosophy, which prompted the thought that we actually create magic with ideas. (Words are just ideas in, uh, word form, yeah?)

    I’d go a lot further with this notion and say that our consciousness – as the environment of ideas – is the only real thing that exists. To my mind, consciousness is another word for soul, which happens to be in the title of your blog.

    I’ve given a lot of thought to this kind of stuff and I wondered if you’d considered the notion that without consciousness and the ideas that populate it, we’d be unaware of anything? Or that consciousness is the only thing that’s actually real?

    I know this deeper kind of thinking isn’t everyone’s cup of tea and it didn’t used to be mine either. But once I’d started down this path I couldn’t turn around.

    I figured that what we call ‘realness’ exists only in our mind. But of course our mind itself isn’t a physically real thing; it’s just immaterial thoughts, wishes, hopes, dreams and so on: it’s exclusively ideas about so-called real things.

    And that means these non physical ideas are all that we – as conscious beings – actually are. (Take away our memories, dreams, hopes, desires and aspirations – the stuff that all our moment to moment thoughts and ideas are built around – and all that’s left is material stuff: a brain, a nervous system, a body. The stuff that simply decomposes when ‘we’ leave.

    All that those material components do is connect us with what we think of as the real physical world, but they’re not the stuff of consciousness; they’re merely conduits through which we receive information about that world.

    Our perceptions of ourselves and the world around us – everything from the most vivid physical sensation to the subtlest mental notion – exist in our consciousness only as non-physical ideas.

    Our experience of the world and everything in it – our physical selves included – along with our pains, anguish, joys, frustrations and whatever, is – if you like – all part of the magic that our consciousness conjures from ideas about the world around us. And in doing that, we make the physical world real for ourselves.

    What d’you reckon?

    1. Wow HP! That’s deep. I mean really seriously deep stuff. And yes, I do think about those things. A lot. There is a saying I really like – we are spiritual beings having a physical experience. I do seriously wonder if the people who are caught up in acts of self/others’ destruction are in fact disconnected from their Soul. And therefore disconnected from their higher purpose of being here, which is to learn and grow. The disconnect creates frustration, yearning, a searching for something to believe in. And often the outlet is destructive whether it be in the form of addictions, abuse, acts of terrorism etc. I believe we have an innate need to connect to and believe in a Supreme Being whatever you choose to call that.
      There is also a school of thought that each person’s ‘reality’ is different because it is a construct of how each individual perceives and experiences their personal world.Therefore your experience of the ‘same’ situation could be diametrically opposed to mine. Yet it’s genesis is similar if not the same. It’s fascinating, isn’t it!
      Thank you for your philosophising HP 🙂 Do your mad objects ever indulge in that ?

  2. I adore that word “youngling!” I’m going to have to use it! I think it’s so cool that you all enjoy Star Wars. The family that plays together, stays together, you know! I’ll bet you’re thankful that he has his own cave out from under your feet! Drollery is in the process of deciding WHEN is the ideal time to drop out of the work world. I’m DREADING it. That man has NO hobbies or interests. Scares me to death! Cute post!

    1. Thank you ! It took TRH several years to take the plunge. He was terrified. Took a lot of gentle persuasion, shoving, and a final push off the edge of the cliff to get him there, lol. The man cave has been around for a long time – he tinkers, creates, makes, renovates, and conducted a lot of his business maintenance in there. Would you believe it is air-conditioned? I kid you not! It’s under the main roof of the house with vents to the evap air con. Drollery definitely needs hobbies. TRH has no shortage of them. In fact, he says he has to now create a schedule for himself to fit it all in – garden, continued house renovation, motorbike riding, sailing, reading. He’s certainly not underfoot. I need to make date nights just to catch up with him sometimes 🙂

      1. Ok… Now I am DEFINITELY envious!!! We don’t even have date nights now! And our 37-year-old son is going through a separation-soon-to-be a divorce and lives with us.

      2. Lol 🙂 Our kids are yet to leave home. One is 28 and has his girlfriend living with him here. The other is 21 and has his girlfriend come and go. Our friends did warn us years ago that when your kids move out (not that ours have), they will move back in with more!

  3. Very great post. I simply stumbled upon your weblog and wished to mention that I have really enjoyed
    browsing your blog posts. After all I will be subscribing
    to your rss feed and I’m hoping you write again soon!

  4. Heloo I am so delighted I found our web site, I really found you by error, while
    I was searchibg on Bing for something else, Anyhow I am here
    now and would just like to say thank you for a remarkable post and
    all round entertaining blog (I also love the theme/design),
    I don’t have time to read through it all at the minute but I have
    saved it and also added in your RSS feeds, so when I have time I will be
    back to read much more, Please do keep up the
    great work.

Your thoughts ...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s