I'm that engineer, now retired from over thirty years of working in nuclear power plants, on anti-aircraft missiles, and third, fourth and fifth generation wireless communications systems, and various esoteric sensor networks. Obviously, after all that, one should retire to Texas to farm and ranch. It was the biggest fail of my life. I still have the fifty acres but now I'm a certified Texas Master Naturalist busy restoring the native Tall-Grass prairie.
Before and since my retirement, I've helped build houses for Habitat for Humanity, worked directly with veterans at the VA, served as a Big Brother, mentored elementary students, ensuring that every day's homework was a success, mentored adult literacy/GED students, filled shopping carts for the clients of the local food bank, and ran meals to clients for Meals on Wheels. The richness of interacting with diverse people, especially the most important diversity, that of thought, lead me to put ideas down on paper and ultimately to my four-novel Matryoschka Heritage novel arc: Matryoschka, Matryoschka's Daughters, Matryoschka's Effect, and Matryoschka's Time. I hope you enjoy Sarah, Alex, Sarah Beth, Katie, and Quentin as much as I have.