Thursday, August 8, 2013


According to my little countdown clock on one of my web pages, I have 24 days until I officially retire.  During the month of August, I'm taking care of those things I need to get done to prepare for being a civilian again, like health care and life insurance.  My beard is full, my hair is long, but I'm still getting paid until the end of the month.  After that, the pension starts.

Earlier this week, Lisa and I headed to St Vincent's College outside of Latrobe, PA to see our beloved Steelers practice.  It was a very cool experience.  Lisa commented as we sat and watched the first team go through some plays, that this is a very stress free way to watch the Steelers.  The only downside to the visit was the crazy, slack jawed, fish eyed autograph hounds.  It is just a scratch on some paper people.

Chuck Noll Field bleachers
We camped out in a somewhat nearby State Park for the night then headed home.  It was nice being that close to the players and seeing them acting natural and having fun.  And we had a nice campfire that night.

When I was getting close to being done at work, I would tell people that when Lisa and I were hiking the Appalachian Trail, I would be looking for my next job.  Well, you may have noticed that I have been spending some time up at the AT Museum up in Pine Grove Furnace, PA.  It is about 20 miles north of Gettysburg and the old grist mill that houses the Museum is chock full of AT history.

I have hinted around about it before in this blog, but the hint has finally become reality.  After a few days volunteering at the Museum and some back and forth with the AT Museum Society President, I was offered the job as AT Museum Manager.  I have accepted the offer and I will be totally entrenching myself in Appalachian Trail history, planning and interaction with hikers and the public.  I have pretty much found my dream job.

The following excerpt is from an email sent by the president of the AT Museum Society, Larry Luxenburg, to his board members and other interested parties.  It made me a little excited.

Museum Board,

It is with great pleasure that I announce that Joseph Harold has accepted the position of Museum Manager. He will succeed Howard on Nov. 1. Joe is an avid hiker and will soon retire from the Coast Guard after an outstanding 30 year career, reaching the highest enlisted rank. He has spent the last month visiting the Museum, volunteering, spending time with Howard, Gwen, Noel and myself and has gotten to know the Museum well. We have been fortunate to have two great managers so far and we anticipate that Joe will also be outstanding. Please give Joe your support and a warm welcome to the position.

In the next few days I will be sending an update to the board covering recent developments.


That pretty much sums it up.  I will be spending more time up at the museum in the coming months learning the job and I'm sure I will be hiking the nearby trails too.  The main part of my job will be to keep the volunteer force fresh and growing, so with that said, I guess I will start my search for new blood to refresh the pool.  If anyone is interested in being a Greeter (called Docent in a museum) or if you have an interest in the trail or a skill that we could use to keep the old grist mill in its best shape, let me know and we will get you set up to help out.

I can't wait to become an integral part of the trail that I have grown to love and obsess about.  I always tell people the trail is a magical place and the people who travel it are a magical bunch.  I can't wait for the magic to continue.

My new workplace.  A grist mill built in the 1700s.
How cool is that?

Post a Comment