No recent blog entry lately due to energy depletion. Low on personal battery. Three days in Vancouver will do that to me now. I now find the city like an energy sponge and my home is like the charger. Been back a few days now and finally feeling like there is enough charge in the old smartphone to make a call. So, ‘hi, there’…
C and R came home with Sal while I went to the city. They are from Germany. They have been here before but they are amongst the most appreciative of guests. They love everything! Dog. Raven. Dolphins. Trees. Sally, of course. The meals. The seals. Boats going by. Sea planes. Garden. Even me. But especially Ben. C was Ben’s nanny when he was three. They have been close ever since. C & R came for the wedding and then stayed a few days up here. It is wonderful to have them. It seems like everything is new again. It’s a bit like having little kids – you see your own world through their eyes all over again.
But they are gone now, replaced by F & L – also wedding guests (from London, England) and, of course, they are the same. Boggled by the amount of space, the quiet, the work accomplished and the setting. BIG difference from London. Seriously, one of the best parts of having guests is seeing their eyes literally opened wide and watching them just stare at things. It is fun.
It is also interesting to listen to their thoughts. Almost always you can see the little wheels a-turning and them mentally placing themselves here and then thinking ‘no way’ and then thinking ‘maybe there is a way’ and so on.
“There is a way, guys. It’s easy. Just get rid of everything, quickly learn a few skills and close your eyes, grab your wallet and leap!”
“Yeah. Right. That is NOT gonna happen. Hmmm….what kind of skills………? Couldn’t we leap half way…say into a small town…kinda…?”
“Oh, I am only kidding. Honestly. It is hard to make the leap at the best of times and it gets harder every year after 50….give or take a year. By the time you are 55 it is almost too late. I know. I was 55 and we simply could not have done what we did had we waited one more year. There is a tide in the affairs of men, when taken at the flood………..”
“But, you know, we have been thinking recently that the rat race holds no more interest for us. It might be time….. We have been thinking of making a change….”
“I think it is part of life. Around 50 most people feel something is amiss or at least needs a bit of changing. Something needs changing, anyway. Some opt for red sportscars and secretaries. Some for golf and golfing instructors. They long for something they just can’t put their finger on and, even if they could, most often they are too busy running the race to really nail that feeling down. I know that space. I know that feeling. And my friends of a similar age have all described it as well. But the forest may not be the answer for everyone. Personally, I think it is but I am somewhat Dave-centric in my thinking.”
“We wouldn’t even know where to start….”
“Yeah. That’s the fun part.”
Ive been thinking of jumping out of “the grid” at 60 ( 7 more years) but I may rethink that scenario. Im in pretty good shape and have worked physically all my life without too many “war wounds” . No medical issues. Still have all my chompers. No baggage. just want to get a few more sheckles in the bank.
I’d love to jump at 55 but I’m thinking maybe 58-ish. i’m seeing a lot of friends my age who’s bodies are shutting down at 50 due to abuse. Luckily Im not there. But 55 is a wake up for me
Definitely food for thought.
Well, I am no expert and my perspective is not yours but, of course, I am as opinionated as hell so here goes…..you don’t need the money you think you do if you go feral. No place to spend it. Ain’t no Starbucks. Clothes last forever (OK, with some holes and stains but there is no one looking anymore.). If I don’t go to town (which is inevitable for weddings and funerals and such) then my car puts on less than 500 kms a month. Sometimes much less. A 1998 Toyota (4×4) with 150,000 kms may last your lifetime. And that is when you are at 60! One can live like a king at $4000 a month so long as everything is debt free. Many live well at much less – but they have been here longer and have ‘infrastructure’ like large gardens and tons of skills. Seriously, I know of people sweating it out and getting old while living in homes worth over a million dollars in their respective cities. Even a small town has beautiful homes at 1/4 that. NO mortgage, no clothes bills, no Starbucks and no regularly frequented restaurants, less taxes and gasoline. Your cost of living halves the minute you leave the city. In our case, it is 33% of what it was.
Projects don’t count in this synopsis because they are capital costs and vary with the dream.
But you can never get the years back. THAT is the main message. We built our home ourselves. We did the physical work. And, at 55, it was hard. Now that I am 66, it would be impossible. I’d have to pay to have it done so, I’d end up at the same place financially but ten years later.
Hmmm sounds like we are like minded. My last Toyota 4×4 lasted me from 1986 to when I sold it 4 years ago……its still on the road…..I see it when I visit my folks back east. I just bought a new Toyota 4×4 a few months back and I expect that to last me at least 20 years.
I wont be totally “feral” but I’ll be damn close to it and you’re correct about property values and the city.
I’m probably going to purchase land and start clearing next year, then a well, then power. Unless I see a really good deal on an old farm.
Either way Im outta here in phased increments.
Congratulations. Sal and I are happy doing this and so I am happy for you, too. Don’t hesitate to ask for biased, uninformed, unresearched, dopey opinions from me. Don’t know much but I am not in the least reluctant to go on and on anyway.
There is indeed a huge difference (personally observed) between, say, 52 and 62. It’s “order of magnitude” stuff, and doesn’t work in a “linear” fashion, not at all. Makes me a bit worried about that stuff folks talk about “after 70.”
We’re seriously into the “better decide something soon – and jump before it’s too late” down here in the hardwoods. I’ll send along some details by email. Thanks for getting recharged and uploading more of the good stuff, Dave.