Retirement, what must you have experienced by the time you get there?

by Paul Hands


 All of my working life, I've heard the men and women that I've met along the way, talk about how much they're looking forward to retiring from work.  Most people plan on enjoying retirement and hope that they can save enough money to keep them for their remaining years.  For some it becomes a worry and for others they just take it in their stride.

 It's led me to think about it in a deeper way and to explore what it must feel like.  I invited some pensioners  in to my rural portrait studio to chat with them and make a touching photograph of them, one that captured the very essence of thought.  

Some of the stories were heart breaking and some were filled with a zest for life.

 One couple were due to celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary in The Maldives. They'd traveled there for the last 7 years but this trip was going to be so special until they learned that their daughter had cancer.  It must tear them up inside and you could see the pain in their eyes.  Another couple had experienced real physical trauma.  The husband had a stroke during love making and hasn't been the same since.  One lady lost her husband just a few years prior to retirement, scuppering all of their long made plans.

 So in essence, most people look forward to retirement but it doesn't come with out flaws. Getting there is exciting but when you finally make it, you will have experienced so much during your time here and perhaps become apprehensive once it arrives as you enter the latter stages of your life.  

Click on each image to enlarge.