I really enjoyed this piece by Mark Donald, An Ode to Okra (Texas Lawyer – 12/1/05, law.com) about Dale Wooten, a Texas bankruptcy solo lawyer, who’s also a “restaurateur, raconteur and gardener.” Wooten, who’s enjoyed a successful 35 years law practice and generally interesting side businesses, is now winding down a 35 year solo career in large part because of changes in his practice area wrought by the Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Protection Act of 2005. But because Wooten’s had such a great run, he’s hardly bitter, but instead, looking forward to spending time on his true joys like the garden and restaurant.
After reading the article, I wondered how I’ll leave the practice of
law. Will I leave content, feeling that I’ve accomplished everything
that I’ve sought out to do? Will I leave bitter because my practice
failed or a client sued me for malpractice, or regretful and
embarrassed over a grievous error that harms a client? I don’t know
how much of a choice I’ll have when the time comes, but if I do, I’d
like to go out the same way that Dale Wooten is.