The book, "Smiling at the World," is by a woman nearly my age, also from the Pacific Northwest, who spent a year volunteering around the world. At first I was distracted by the writing style, but the time I'd allowed myself to lie an the couch and read also gave me time to think about volunteering - which is one of my goals in retirement. One of the book's segments is on a kangaroo refuge in western Australia. I'm thinking about looking it up online.
I also went for two walks - one to our neighborhood cafe for a late breakfast, and one after dark around the neighborhood with Art and the yellow lab who lives next door. I got in my 10,000 steps, had a nice chat with the dog's owner, and came home with that feeling you get when you've done something good for yourself.
Today I do laundry, work a bit on a collaborative piece my writing group is developing, and read some more. But it's without that sense of "oh, my god, what am I going to do?"
I realize I need to maintain my personal networks if I'm not going to be engrossed in checking items off a list. I knew that already, of course, but it's a more immediate priority as I shift from super-busy career woman to post-work life explorer.
I've incidentally discovered that, in my morning online time, I feel more connectedness with the blogging community than I do with Facebook - which seems odd at first, since I actually know all my Facebook friends, but have never met any of the authors whose blogs I read. Then it occurred to me that blogging requires thought and introspection, whereas Facebook needs only a keyboard.