While for others 58 may just be a number, for me it’s an important landmark as I complete 58 years of my existence in this World today. My grandfather retired when he completed 58 years and I, who was a very young boy at that time, wondered when I would complete my 58 years and retire like my grandpa, with nothing to do except rest and read! A few year laters, my father retired on attaining 58 years and I, who had just started his life as a professional, thought why had he retired so soon when he was still so fit.
Then somewhere down the line, the age of superannuation got increased to 60 years, but unlike the days of my grandfather and father, when physical stress was high ( my father used to cycle down to his office over a distance of 15 Km and used to earn meagre overtime by working well into wee hours of the morning)but mental stress was low, the game gradually started changing. While the calculators, computers, tablets, mobile phones reduced physical stress, the mental stress levels started rising and people started developing lifestyle ailments such as BP, Diabetes, Spondylitis and heart diseases. In fact, I sometimes consider myself lucky to have turned 58 and still working full time because many youngsters are having an accelerated rise to the top positions, becoming CEOs/CFOs in mid 40s and then burning themselves up to retire from full time work and pursuing hobbies.
And to top it up, we have a new phenomenon called Corona virus. I always thought that my generation was rather lucky – India hasn’t really faced a full fledged war since 1971, we have seen green revolution followed by technological revolution. After India opened up economy in 1991, we have seen unprecedented boom in consumerism. All in all, my generation seemed to have lived through golden period for mankind, till COVID changed the very way we lived all along! We are not sure whether we will be able to live our “normal” lives ever again?
I consider myself blessed and with so much love and affection showered upon me that started when the clock struck 12 and is still going on as clock readies itself to strike 12 again, what else can I ask for? If God almighty has held my hand for 58 years, I am sure it will handhold all of us out of this Corona crisis to where a great happiness and prosperity await all of us! I thank each one of my contacts, acquaintances, friends, readers, well wishers from the bottom of my heart for giving some meaning to my life.