Tour Guide

by Linda

My pre-retirement job was an elementary school science teacher. My retirement job as a tour guide on a large cattle ranch lets me use my teaching skills without the stress of a classroom.

My schedule is flexible and part time. As with many tourist destinations, there is a high and a low season. The high season lasts about five months and is very intense. I get to work plenty of hours during those months. When the slow time arrives, it is good to ease off and still enjoy the work.

What is great about this job? I never have had to wear high heels or panty hose. I get to see world class wildlife and birds that people travel from foreign countries to see. Then there are the cowboys! Newborn calves and foals are a never ending source of wonder. Each day has a change of scenery, even though it is subtle, but at times quite dramatic. Sometimes I am the driver/narrator; other times I am a step-on-guide for a motor coach tour. Sharing the history and information with visitors has been a give and take as there is always something new to be learned from the people I meet.

Another duty in my job is to work in the gift shop which is pretty much a one person operation. This gives me the opportunity to chat with hundreds of visitors each year. In both positions I have found that the most valuable assets are patience, clear diction, patience, unbridled curiosity, patience and a sense of humor.

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