Author Wallace Peters is a widely renowned medical scientist now in his 80s. His career focussed on the study of tropical diseases and ways to combat them in the field, the laboratory and in academia. In Four Passions he reviews his peripatetic life and that of his Swiss wife, a linguist and art embroiderer. In this frank account he describes the psychological trauma that he and Ruth experienced after “retirement” and how they survived it. In 2007, they moved to a peaceful village in the English countryside where, nine months later, she succumbed to cancer. Subsequently he observed that many of his 200 fellow residents struggled to find a direction in their lives. Hoping to provide some guidance, Wallace set out to describe his and Ruth's positive experience of their own post-retirement existence. In today's world, an ever-increasing number of us will face an unprecedentedly long period of seniority.This story offers an optimistic perspective on the challenge of “old age “.