Friday, May 20, 2011

What are you doing after retirement-- Reflections of a retired librarian

What are you doing after retirement-- Reflections of a retired librarian

Unlike the case of many of my friends, my retirement was not sharp on
any specific day. It was gradual. In fact I retired thrice. First, I
took voluntary retirement (VRS) from IDL in 1992. Then joined a
private firm in Bangalore; thereafter served Satyam Computers for
close to nine years. As a second time retirement, I 'Formally" retired
from Satyam in 2000, continued as Advisor for a couple of years with
tapering responsibilities and equally tapering remunerations;
Thereafter I took up several post retirement assignments
(consultancies) and projects for periods varying from three months to
four years; Finally, for the third time, I said bye to active
employment on 30th September 2006. Ever since then I am not 'working'!

Therefore during the past two decades whenever I bump into old friends
I face the question: "What are you doing after retirement?" Answers
have been varying according to when that Q was posed. When this
question is asked, there are lots of people who squirm mentally and
wrestle within themselves for a respectable reply. For, they are not
doing 'anything'! Is it possible for a person to be not doing

Suddenly a couple of weeks ago I posed this question to myself to get
an honest answer. Many bits of replies came up: Serving senior
citizens; attending meetings; getting associated with half a dozen
organizations; During such meetings meet, eat, chat and give your two
cents worth of ideas; blog; write articles; help others with
information; run a web group; give lectures etc. Quite a bit of
introspection, I went through.

One fact that dazzled right on my face is this: I have been a
librarian from 1964 and continue to be a librarian all through, right
now including, never forsaking this role ever.

As Shiyali Ramamirtha Ranganathan says a library is a trinity of
books, reader and the librarian. The Librarian brings the book
(information) and the reader together. During my active life readers
who benefitted by library service varied from academic students,
staff, industrial workers, research staff, managerial work force, IT
professionals, and others. Post retirement, the focus of beneficiary
changed to senior citizens (aka older persons, elders, retirees,
oldsters, geezers, boomers etc). I started specializing in bringing
information containers (books, articles, stories, news etc) of special
interest to the age group 55+ to the desktop of senior citizens.
Thereby, even now, I am a librarian at heart and information
dissemination is the closest activity that I enjoy.

Next time you ask me: "what are you doing after retirement?" I shall
simply say: I am still a practicing librarian.


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