Ex-lawyer

Say hello!!
Shicky
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Re: Ex-lawyer

Post by Shicky » Wed Sep 28, 2016 3:55 pm

Hi Did,

Just created an account to say hello, loved reading your journal, had me chuckling away at various points. Although I'm currently travelling in Portugal with my fiancé im from Belfast and should you ever venture up again, please give me a shout. You sound like a thoroughly interesting bloke and it'd be great to buy you a pint sometime!

Your account of house sitting has me reeling as I stumbled upon it just as I recently took a three month sabbatical,my missus was keen on Portugal as we were planning to wed here next year but I fancied a change of plan after seeing some stunning homes. Alas I'm paying 50euro a night to live in various shitholes....

Keep up the journaling mate, it's a great read

Did
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Re: Ex-lawyer

Post by Did » Thu Sep 29, 2016 1:35 am

Thanks mate. Do give it a try.

Did
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Re: Ex-lawyer

Post by Did » Mon Oct 10, 2016 11:58 pm

A quick update.

Summer is almost over. I guess technically it is. The leaves are changing colour or dying. There is a crispness to the air that wasn't five weeks ago. Winter, as they say, is coming.

Nonetheless the weather remains pleasant. No complaints there. We were extremely pleased to see the last of our visitors: we entertained various guests for over 100 days over summer. It was way too much. At times I wondered how it had come to this. I guess it speaks to the lovely circumstance we find ourselves in that so many want to come so far for so long.

Next year they will not.

We celebrated our freedom with a stroll in our town: it's famous for its medieval streets. We were blissful really, until I slipped like a buffoon and broke my arm. What a bitch that was, and is. Our freedom was short lived.

Mentally I have naturally struggled with the discomfort and day to day life of being one armed. For the first couple of nights I could not sleep for the pain. A week in and things had improved until I jerked my arm when a large rat trap I was setting went off. It really is a two armed exercise. Yes, we have rats in the attic. I'm grateful they waited until we started sleeping downstairs to reveal themselves. Little fuckers.

I had a brainwave and asked my one client for unpaid work experience as a programmer. Radical change for a one time legal bigwig but I'm keen to improve my berry picking skills doing something that is transportable and useful. Anyway he has agreed and I'm quite excited about it, even though the technology isn't exactly trendy. I see it is a bridge to obtaining a skill set that facilitates vagabonding and remote working. I'm happy to take a long term approach with it.

My brewing has been on hold with the arm business. I have sixty something litres of beer and wine under my kitchen table that needs bottling.

With any luck the client will follow through with the work experience opportunity.

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FBeyer
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Re: Ex-lawyer

Post by FBeyer » Tue Oct 11, 2016 9:31 am

Learning to program, any language, is a good idea. The more languages you know, the easier it becomes to learn a new language.
Of course you can develop some malpractice like, say, writing FØRTRAN programs no matter what language you are working with, but that is somewhat besides the point.

If you have the inclination to do so, learning ANY language is good, even if it's not highly marketable right now. The ABILITY to learn programming languages, however, seems to be.

Have fun. It's all just legos in a serious context.

Did
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Re: Ex-lawyer

Post by Did » Wed Oct 12, 2016 2:58 am

@fb Thanks! Enjoyed it as a young fella and it's just going to be a bit of fun now almost twenty yeArs later. If not I'll try something else.

Cornerman
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Re: Ex-lawyer

Post by Cornerman » Sun Nov 06, 2016 5:48 am

Programming is fun, and can help a lot as it is an in demand skill. Getting your feet wet again is a good start.

Did
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Re: Ex-lawyer

Post by Did » Sun Nov 06, 2016 2:07 pm

Thanks Cornerman. My work experience should start this week. Sleeping with a broken arm put my back in spasm, which was worse than the broken arm. I was in pretty terrible pain one way or the other for about a month. My back was so locked I couldn't move more than an inch after waking (eg to turn or try and get up). It was agony, as people with back experience can attest. Anyway thanks to drugs and time I think I'm on the mend now.

Cornerman
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Re: Ex-lawyer

Post by Cornerman » Mon Nov 21, 2016 4:50 am

Broken arm is nasty while sleeping, hope you will feel better soon. How is the work experience going ?

Did
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Re: Ex-lawyer

Post by Did » Tue Nov 22, 2016 5:59 am

Thanks Cornerman. I am. Work experience was slow to start, but have had 2 sessions with main man on skype and spent Sunday doing some coding for the first time in lifetime getting used to syntax and concepts again. Implemented a beer stack to play with pointers and virtual functions.

ShriekingFeralHatred
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Re: Ex-lawyer

Post by ShriekingFeralHatred » Fri Nov 25, 2016 1:05 pm

blah
Last edited by ShriekingFeralHatred on Thu Dec 22, 2016 6:37 pm, edited 2 times in total.

Did
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Re: Ex-lawyer

Post by Did » Sat Nov 26, 2016 3:37 am

Thanks SFH. Life's too short.

Just this morning I read this post from a fellow wanderer : http://www.hecktictravels.com/behind-th ... hen-cancer.

Did
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Re: Ex-lawyer

Post by Did » Thu Jan 26, 2017 4:12 am

We decided to get back into the housesitting. People email us now, and we take our pick. We are currently in a large home in Doolin, just near the castle like building you see if you google the village. Great trad music in the pubs. Thatched cottages. Old farmers you can't understand. Walks. Proximity to the Burren. It's a wonderful spot.

Off to Dublin for a week long sit in a few weeks, then another break then off to Poland to visit a mate. He's got a flash pad in the middle of Warsaw. I've never been, so I'm really looking forward to it. We are going for 2.5 weeks (our tickets cost A$180). They say things are cheaper here so I will report back on that.

The work experience has not really progressed. The boss is on board but his main programmer is a bit of a bumbling dickhead, and, I suspect, would struggle to arrange a piss up in a brewery. I have not given up hope altogether, but things need to move soon or I will look to something else.

Not sure if I mentioned but I've started all grain brewing finally. My first batch tasted like real beer! Far, far better than the extract crap. And far more rewarding. So I'm keeping my little brewery ticking over with beer and wine.

It could well become a bit of an obsession.

We have been thinking about chickens. My concern of course is travel/being tied down, but I'm not doing a whole lot in the next year as I wait out the citizenship criteria. It might be fun for a while, as we do enjoy fresh eggs.

The young dog we fostered over XMas was in the end a bit of a nightmare. He had some sort of shitting condition and we had to take him out all day and night and he had many accidents. He was a full time obligation, and we got a little taste of the sort of sleep deprivation new parents must endure. I was pleased to see the back of him, although at his best moments he was adorable.

Thecoalminerswife
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Re: Ex-lawyer

Post by Thecoalminerswife » Tue Mar 14, 2017 11:59 pm

Hi Did,
Just a quick message to let you know that my husband intends to resign from his "last" full-time job at the end of this month. Yay:)) Since that winter's day in the beautiful Central West of NSW, when I read him your blog while he was cooking lunch, we've spoken seriously about how the future might look. I did the numbers, the superannuation bloke confirmed we were "ready to go" and DH drove it from there. No sure when he will finish up but we think it will be mid-year. I'm hoping that he will have a good break - he's burned out, to say the least. But I also hope that he dips his toes in and out of work in the industry that he loves (I know, my green credentials went down the toilet when I married him). I feel like even if he still works some of the time during the next five or so years he'll be happier than he's been for a while. I've talked to him at length about some of the challenges he might face - issues of identity and what to do with his time (never having had enough time to concentrate of hobbies and interests). All he knows is that he is never going to take a permanent, full-time job ever again - and he's happy about it !!
Again, thank you for the (not insignificant) part to you played. I hope all goes well with you.

Did
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Re: Ex-lawyer

Post by Did » Wed Mar 15, 2017 3:12 am

Hello CMW that's exciting and wonderful news. Congratulations to you both. Recovering from burnout can take a while. Be kind to yourselves.

I'm pleased you found something in my ramblings. Everyone's path is different but it's natural to seek some comfort from the path of others. Jacob and Tim Ferris helped me.

I'm still well. We are in Poland at the moment for a few weeks.

dropoutretire
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Re: Ex-lawyer

Post by dropoutretire » Wed Mar 15, 2017 11:18 am

Did wrote:Hey there

Long time skeptic and lurker. I found myself drawn back and back to Jacob's work here and in his book.

I am 39 and worked in the law pretty much to this point. I also have a programming degree, which could be brushed off if need be, although it was a long time ago.

Law was putrid, as many ex-lawyers will tell you. I was on a lot of money, in the end, but it was a terrible cost to my health and soul. I lost fitness and gained a lot of weight. I think I got depressed from the tedium and stress of it all, as well as the truly horrific characters I worked with.

Finally, under enormous pressure, I threw in the towel 6 months ago. It was extremely stressful. Including my investment in the business, I had 1.8 million dollars in debt. I sold everything except for my dream house, and discovered that I owned that (valued at 500k - Australia is expensive!) and had 40k or so left over.

I was pretty messed up by the last 12 months or so at work. It was truly awful. Rather than get another job, which I could do easily, I'm taking time out, and have been living off savings. Recently I've been encouraged to think of myself as retired, just so long as I live off less than I can rent my house out for (15-20k say after expenses). I am in the process now of putting my house out to rent.

I've convinced my girl to quit her job. We are going to travel around Australia in a small van living off some final savings (selling our cars), and then relocate to a low cost country (Thailand perhaps) to live off the rent. Even though I am thinking of myself as 'retired', I plan on doing more fun internet based work to build up the passive income to increase my ability to be retired in more expensive places, and indeed return to my paradise house, and even have children.

So far, no regrets chucking in my massive job. Not going to work is awesome.

Just wanted to say g'day and share my experiences.

ps - currently living in gf's dad's granny flat prior to going on my trip. many at work would have thought this impossible from a status/ego perspective, but it's not bad, and much better than working!!!
Wow great read ! I once knew an attorney and I called him and they way that he answers the phone he sounds so paranoid and I'm guessing because of the amount of people that he would piss off in his profession. I am so glad looking back that I dropped out of school when I was soooooooo young and just simply went to work at mindless jobs for a meager wage and invested in rental houses on the side and retired at 39. Looking back I had a pretty stress free life. :)

Did
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Re: Ex-lawyer

Post by Did » Wed Mar 15, 2017 12:09 pm

Sounds like a better way to do it if you can. Couldn't do that in Aus now in RE - too overvalued.

Did
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Re: Ex-lawyer

Post by Did » Fri Mar 24, 2017 4:31 am

We spent 2.5 weeks in Poland. A couple of observations. One, even though you can double your consumption for the same cash if you like the inner city lifestyle (not a bad multiplier), I think you can live cheaper and healthier if you just cook smart at home (relative to Irish costs).

Second, a comment our guide at Auschwitz made: the social ranking of the prisoners in general terms was the opposite of that from the outside world. By this he meant the top rung of society tended to be at the bottom of the pile, and die the fastest.

His reasoning was that such people (academics, lawyers etc) tended to have had a soft life, without having to fight to survive, and also, in concentration camp terms, had no useful skills.

People who fought to survive day to day in pre-war Poland were slightly better prepared.

Did
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Re: Ex-lawyer

Post by Did » Sat Mar 25, 2017 1:53 am

My programming mentor/contact in my client's organisation turned out to be hopeless, and although he gave me about 10 1-1 sessions on how he sees the world, he never gave me any tasks and the whole thing fizzled out. Shame !!! If anyone out there is genuine and wants a free work experience guy in a relevant language let me know.

Jake9870
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Re: Ex-lawyer

Post by Jake9870 » Mon Apr 10, 2017 4:40 am

Did,

Great story, currently figuring out mine.. I love that you guys are able to travel so much without breaking the bank. That's always been my plan, but my SO was very worried about not having a place to call home. I think a home base like you all have (paid for in cash and can be rented out as an asset) would be an excellent middle ground.

Did
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Re: Ex-lawyer

Post by Did » Mon Apr 10, 2017 6:20 am

@Jake9870 Thanks! We do travel quite a bit and hope to do so more once I get my Irish passport next year (touch wood). We have just spent another week in Doolin (housesitting), and have another sit in Dublin for a few days over easter (same). We have cut down the housesitting you could seriously do loads and loads of it. Locally though we just want to pick the best as we have our cottage so there needs to be a reason.

Also going to look at houseswapping down the track.

Still would like to increase the cash. Sound like a broken record on this front. Latest plan is to try and learn Java for android apps. Want to maintain location independence with employment even though the easiest thing would be to run off and get a job somewhere in an office.

Did
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Re: Ex-lawyer

Post by Did » Mon Apr 10, 2017 6:29 am

I should mention in Doolin we met a French fellow who rents a home there and makes a living playing poker online ! He's in his 30s.

Jake9870
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Re: Ex-lawyer

Post by Jake9870 » Tue Apr 11, 2017 4:01 am

Did,

I really enjoy the idea of the kind of freedom that is possible with something like programming.. I'd rather be freelancing on my own time than be tied to an office somewhere.. I lived abroad for the first time last year (South of Spain) and I'm eager to be Traveling once again. Or really just to have the ability to. I'll be showing the girlfriend this journal in hopes to introduce her to ERE. Thoughts on having no home base vs having the cottage in Ireland?

Did
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Re: Ex-lawyer

Post by Did » Tue Apr 11, 2017 6:18 am

re home base - for me I think personally having the property is more about taking care of business before I throw caution to the wind so that can I can be responsibly irresponsible if that makes sense.

In the 4HWW Ferris says he doesn't believe in retirement as the numbers don't work, and if you can make the numbers work (due to massive earnings) then you are so driven then you won't stop generating income anyway.

But I have known enough old people to know that you will not always be an income producing superstar. It's frankly hard enough in your 40s with your marbles and decent experience.

So, for me, having a home, somewhere, and the visa sorted, just gives me peace of mind that I won't be full of regret and out of time and options at 55. I will always have somewhere to go to in my old age.

As for the travel base - love the idea if you can afford it (ie the rental opportunity cost). We are Ireland centric at the moment and so it makes great sense to have this place here for us. But if say we were hanging out in South East Asia for a few years it would be better for our bank balance and the cottage if we rented it out. Good news it would pay for somewhere else (in a cheap part of the world) even after tax.

I'm not sure if we will rent it out once I sort my passport: we might try houseswapping as I said or just having longer sits on the continent. Time will tell.

It could well be we find it hard to leave. I'm working towards my goal of having excellent and cheap beers on tap, and the misses is trying to work out what grows here. We have a mould problem to take care of - not always visible, except in symptoms, but other than that we do love our little home.

But then I loved my friends and family in Oz and life's good here. Same with the cat.

Did
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Re: Ex-lawyer

Post by Did » Tue May 16, 2017 4:43 pm

I got the dreaded call a few weeks ago while at a cafe in our local Irish town. Mum had had a stroke, it seemed. She was in ICU, with affected speech, movement and brain. I spoke to both my sister and dad and things appeared grim.

I was pretty upset, to be honest. I guess that's natural with one's mum. I spoke to my SO about it, and said, well, if we are ever going to go back in an emergency then this is it. What would be next, a funeral? I would prefer her to be alive.

Cashflow is an issue for us. We could live a simple life in the one spot I think, on our wage, but we don't have thousands sitting around for emergency flights. No emergency fund as such, I guess you could say. Thankfully I retain a fat credit card from my days as a high flyer.

Luckily, it was not a stroke. It was a vascular restriction that caused stroke like symptoms and, touch wood, no permanent damage. Mum said she felt like a fraud, but as I said to her, the best possible outcome for me, and her, was that she was walking and talking and home again, rather than the picture painted 48 hours earlier.

Coming back to Australia again after 2 and a half years in Ireland was a marvelous shock. I was able to see my home town again through the eyes of a tourist, for at least a couple of days. Everything was different. The light especially, but also the trees and the animals and the buildings. It was like stumbling onto paradise, to tell you the truth. It is the most beautiful time of year in Brisbane now, with a lovely temperature as winter approaches. It is like the most glorious summer Ireland has ever seen. For much of the year the Irish weather is dull and miserable. You may not realise how dull and miserable it is, but it really is. Little wonder they huddle in their homes and watch Neighbours while dreaming of emigration. Getting a permanent visa here must be like winning 500 million bucks, because an outdoor lifestyle in good weather really is priceless.

I'm happy in the summer time beneath the bricht blue sky
No thinkin' in the mornin' whaur at nicht I'll hae tae lie
In barn or byre or anywhere, dossin' oot among the hay
An' if the weather treats me right I'm happy every day

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mvPOTucka4w

Don't get me wrong. I love Ireland. It gets into your soul. And now, three weeks later, I'm looking forward to returning to my stone cottage in the countryside. It's confusing though, being part of two places on opposite parts of the globe. It can be hard.

No sympathy though, I can imagine.

The truth of it though, which is inescapable, is that we need more sun in our lives. We had 5 days of sun in the 7 months before we left. It's not enough for those of us reared in the outdoors. It's depressing, when you have that perspective. Some do not.

So, once I am free from a visa perspective, we will do just that. Until then, we will enjoy the land of saints and scholars to its fullest, getting into brewing, hiking and preparing the cottage for rental.

Who knows what we will be thinking in a couple of years.

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jennypenny
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Re: Ex-lawyer

Post by jennypenny » Tue May 16, 2017 7:26 pm

I'm so happy your mom is ok.

I understand your feelings about the sun. We added a glass ceiling to our family room and part of our bedroom. It really helps me deal with the dreary winter weather. I crave sunlight.

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