"A man's never out of work. If he's worth a damn. It's just sometimes he doesn't get paid. I've gone unpaid my share and I've pulled my share of pay. But that's got nothing to do with working. A man's work is doing what he's supposed to do, and that's why he needs a catastrophe now and again to show him a bad turn isn't the end, because a bad stroke never stops a good man's work." William Least Heat-Moon in "blue highways".
It occurred to me that the above is a pretty good description of retirement as I have experienced it. A person's "work" during this chapter of life is to truly do "what he's supposed to do." Retirement gives one the freedom to make choices based on one's character, principles, and values without the constraint of placating an employer or customer.
The fellow traveler sharing his philosophy with the author concludes his musing with, "Any man's true work is to get his boots on each morning. Curiosity gets it done about as well as anything else."
I love being able to respond to curiosity during this season of life. If I read about a class, a lecture, an exhibit, a performance, etc. that interests me I now have the time to check it out.