Today is Tuesday 30th. September, 2014.

My name is Dane Sherrard.

One year ago today I retired after forty three years of employment and moved down to live in the Scottish Borders, in a farm steading situated three miles south of Duns.

After almost fifteen years living in an extremely busy village on the banks of Loch Lomond, our quiet farm steading feels like heaven. Hardly any rain (or that’s how it seems), never a midge in sight, and quiet country roads. Don’t get me wrong, I loved my working life but retirement has so many attractions.

During the last year Rachel (my wife) and I have rekindled our love of theatre, regularly visiting The Maltings in Berwick. I have had time to watch cricket, being a member of Durham County Cricket Club (and how well we have done this season). With my friend Tom I have taken to sailing a forty year-old Wayfarer on the local Whiteadder reservoir and with his guidance and help we have started to repair many of the formerly broken-down barns which make up the farm steading.

We have joined a local congregation at Gavinton, a small village  just three miles from here, and enjoy attending services Sunday by Sunday, as well as sharing in special events.

We regularly attend country shows and auctions and events and already feel totally at home, as do our dogs: Mix (a ten year-old rescue dog to whom I belong), Rowan (a one year-old Border Collie puppy who looks after Rachel) and Heidi (who is getting on a bit but who goes everywhere with Digger and loves to travel in the car).

Mount Pleasant consists of a farmhouse in which my sister Olive, her husband Digger and my mother Mary all live; a refurbished Granary — Rachel and my home — and the barns which complete the other two sides of the square. These latter require a lot of work and I am enjoying becoming an apprentice joiner, builder, painter etc. after a very different career as a parish minister.

Today, as it seems has been the case for almost all of the last year, the sun is shining brightly and, having discovered that it had just become possible to get a web-site with a .scot suffix, I have set off into the world of a retirement web-site in which I shall seek to set down our adventures primarily for my own benefit but using the fact that it will be shared with others to provide the discipline which I will require to actually get around to doing it.

What a wonderful world we live in!