Romney’s first career move after the election was to rejoin the board of Marriott International, which did not go over well in some quarters. Beyond that, his son Tagg told The Boston Globe that Romney is studying why his campaign failed and plans to report back to the GOP with recommendations.

That’s squarely in the comfort zone for Romney, whose Bain achievements were rooted in unsparing analysis of when and whether companies should be rescued, grown or folded. It’s also not hard to imagine Romney tapped by governors or a president – even President Obama — for high-profile, temporary assignments akin to his tenure as CEO of the 2002 Salt Lake City Olympics, during which he cleaned up a mess and presided over successful games.

Most important in Romney’s life, judging by his words, deeds and philanthropy, are his faith and his large and expanding family. He will doubtless continue to be a major donor to the Mormon church and related groups, and to build financial security for his children and grandchildren.

The real surprise will be if Romney dives into politics, maybe by forming a super PAC or making huge contributions to other political action committees, or moves into a new area of civic activism.