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Topics - LK in WA

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Journals / Retirement in the rearview mirror
« on: June 04, 2020, 01:19:31 PM »
Hi there,
I just retired last week and thought it might be a good time to start a journal.  I expect this will be an interesting time, what with the recent retirement and being in the middle of a pandemic.

Somewhat random things about me: 
Early 50s, married.  Wife does not work.
Love traveling both international and domestic
Live by the ocean and can’t imagine living land locked. 
I love dogs.  I have two of them and they rule the house. 
I like gardening.  I enjoy both eating the produce from my garden and giving it away. 
I like learning new things.  I think I will learn many new things with the recent change in free time.  There are things on my house I would like to fix or replace.  I think it is time for me to learn how to replace a light fixture and build a deck, among other things.
Retired after a couple decades working at Megacorp.

About the decision to retire:  I had been planning to retire this spring as I had passed the necessary milestones both for medical coverage and size of retirement accounts.  Also, I have this concern about the amount of time my wife and I have left to enjoy things.  Over the last few years I have been feeling a bit itchy about it.  Feeling like I was at risk of spending my best years working and then only taking the time to do things when I was older and no longer able or interested in doing those things.  Already I am looking back at the things I should have done when I was younger and had the endurance for, such as backpacking trips when my back was healthy and I didn’t mind sleeping not he ground.

I would have retired on April 1, because, well the timing is good and there is something funny about retiring on April Fools day.  But the pandemic happened and both my employer and I had concerns about current events so we agreed on me staying a bit longer.  All in all it wasn’t a very long delay, I got out this week…still plenty of time to enjoy summer! 

I heard a lot of people telling me not to retire, citing the market crash, people dying, people losing jobs, etc as reasons.   There were also the non pandemic reasons I shouldn’t retire, biggest salary years ahead of you, you are too young, you don’t know what health care will cost, you don’t want to be a burden on society.  I think people can come up with unlimited reasons not to do something that seems scary.  I feel pretty good about the decision.

What’s my plan?  That was the big question as I made the rounds saying my goodbyes at Megacorp.  I have many ideas of what the wife and/or I will do in the future.  Travel, volunteer, learn wood working, improve my gardening skills, etc.  But I think the number one thing is adapt.  Adapt to the changing landscape and take opportunities to do fun things and learn.  Oddly, I think “new normal” under COVID-19 may have helped me realize that we adapt all the time.  We certainly have adapted in a short period of time to the social distancing that is needed. 

Well, this ended up a little longer than I had intended.  So much for a simple introduction.
More later…I am off to try and visit some fellow retirees at a distance!  Wish me luck.

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