Report From the Void: Sam’s Reflections After 12 Months

Gap_Year_thumbnail_720p copyDebbie has instructed me to write a wrap-up as we bring the 12th month to a close. She suggested I riff off my first post of June 1, 2013: Stepping Into the Void After 31 Years.

After several false starts I have come to the conclusion that… I cannot come to a conclusion. I am unable to synthesize my thoughts and unprepared to give advice given that the end of the twelfth month coincides with the mind-bending challenge of organizing our move from D.C.

Looking ahead

I plan to meet with the health care policy and strategy team for Eliot Cutler’s Maine gubernatorial campaign later in June. I am working on a health care reform presentation for my neighbors in Stonington. And the national news is rife with new health care problems.

The Veterans Administration’s scandal makes government (to be honest, in this case it is the military) management of health care look worse than a circular firing squad. NYU’s Langone Medical Center is opening a men-only clinic, clearly a marketing ploy designed to exploit, yet again, the false prophet of “Life-Style” medicine.

And now, the famous neurosurgeon, Ben Carson, M.D., is rallying the conservative base against Obamacare as anti-doctor and anti-patient. You do not have to be a brain surgeon to see that he is offering no fixes, no facts and just criticism.

Packing up to move is like treading water while draining the pond

Add to that the messy problems of downsizing and dividing entailed by moving out of our house in D.C. and it makes one’s head explode. Debbie and I feel as if we are treading water while draining the pond with a bucket.

I will offer a better wrap-up in June after we wave Georgetown goodbye. And I guarantee a useful wrap-up after month 15 when I plan to be well on my way to my new career.

My debut as a public speaker

Below is a video of my recent six-minute Pecha Kucha talk in Stonington. Pecha Kucha presentations are fast-paced talks that tax your powers of coordination. The 20 slides advance automatically every 20 seconds. It’s hard to keep up. I have work to do when it comes to public speaking.

My talk is a visual replay of the past 12 months. Click here if you don’t see the video below.

Can You Reinvent Yourself at age 62? on Vimeo.

2 Responses to Report From the Void: Sam’s Reflections After 12 Months

  1. Riley Temple June 1, 2014 at 7:27 am #

    I can hardly wait to dive in. We are all walking along this path. My advice (I know, more gratuitous advice is the last thing you need) is please try to keep your papers with an eye toward writing your memoirs one day, or even writing fiction based upon… Look, you never know. And even if you opt not to do so, your children or grandchildren may do so, and you will have left them a priceless treasure trove from which to begin. Okay. Here endeth the lesson.

    I have just (2 weeks ago) graduated from Virginia Seminary with a degree in Theology. I will not be ordained, nor will I preach — from a pulpit — occasionally in a comment section. My plan is to write, and I have some projects lined up. But right now, today, and for the past 2 weeks, I’ve been at sea. I’m not quite ready yet to get back to work. Time will come soon, I hope.

    Until then, happy packing, I will follow along here. Say hello to Eliot and Melanie (we were in law school together at G’town 40+ years ago). Riley

  2. Sam Harrington June 2, 2014 at 5:07 pm #

    Riley, Thank you for the excellent advice about the memoir idea. And, what a wonderful transition you are planning. Two more weeks for us in DC. Yours in reinvention, Sam

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