He did many things, Erik! Until I was almost 8, he owned a hardware store and lumber yard and built custom homes. That was in Maryland.

We moved to Virginia and he started an excavation business that did poorly — not enough work in that rural area. Then he started crabbing but the money wasn’t that great or very steady.

So, he started a marine railway and repaired, built, and sold boats. That’s what he did during most of my adolescence.

When he had no children at home to support, he sold the house and business, bought an acre of land and a mobile home and returned to crabbing.

That lasted only 2 years. He sold everything, bought a sailboat, and headed for Central America. A bad storm waylaid him at a marina in Florida for several days. He liked it and stayed. Sold his sailboat and bought a houseboat and continued to live at the marina for three years during which he turned to trucking — first he hauled mobile homes, then went to work for Mayflower, a moving company.

Since he was on long hauls with Mayflower, he sold his houseboat and rented a place near Orlando. He was a trucker until he retired around 68 years old.

I was always a writer but lived in a bookkeeper’s body before I found Medium and broke free — well, almost. Working to work less and write more.

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