June 1, 2012.
That's the red letter day on which I officially retire.
Oh, my goodness. I never thought I'd make it and yet, today, as I sat in my almost next to last meeting to arrange all my retirement business, I suddenly heard the KPERS (that's the bankrupt Kansas retirement system for public employees) director for the district say, "I've set your first day of retirement for 6/1/12. Is that alright?"
Alright? Lady, I'm dancing the can-can of joy here. It's not a jig or a little twirly tw0-step -- this is full out, kick 'em high can-can. And all by myself I'm a chorus line of 12.
Even better, every single time I sit down with someone to discuss my retirement income, it just gets a little bit (not a lot, but every little bit helps) better than we budgeted for. It's still not "around the world" money, but it is looking like we might be able to make ends meet without my having to immediately find part-time (or even full time) employment.
My next door neighbor, the feisty little Italian born Spanish teacher, came in to tell me that I only had 41 teaching days left in the year.
But even better, I'm actually going to retire in 41 days -- not look for another job, but actually stop working -- and still have income to live on.
I'm beginning to believe there might actually be a Yellow Brick Road out there on which I'm going to get to travel.