A Journey of Mindfulness--the Remaking of Life in Midstream.

Where are you and where are you going?
IlliniDave
Posts: 1726
Joined: Wed Apr 02, 2014 7:46 pm

Re: A Journey of Mindfulness--the Remaking of Life in Midstr

Post by IlliniDave » Wed May 21, 2014 7:14 pm

EdithKeeler wrote: Having scarcity makes you appreciate things more. Good luck with your long weekend—I’m stretching mine out, too, for some marathon writing and painting and gardening time.
Thanks, EK! I'm lining up a bunch of little things to do, some chores and some fun, but with minimal interaction with the rest of the world. Hope yours works out well too!

Someday I might pull the DSL plug for real and do something similar to what you describe. Although it's not the real reason, I could look at my experiment this weekend as an audition for that step.

IlliniDave
Posts: 1726
Joined: Wed Apr 02, 2014 7:46 pm

Re: A Journey of Mindfulness--the Remaking of Life in Midstr

Post by IlliniDave » Mon May 26, 2014 6:06 pm

Ginormous Meh

My plan to make a stay at home "retreat" out of the weekend was not a smashing success. The big struggle I have is putting aside my compulsion to fixate on what is undone and to incessantly plan/extrapolate into the future. That leaves little or no room to immerse myself in the present. Even conscious effort to tame my thoughts or consign them to the background provides no more than fleeting relief. It's very difficult to relax and enjoy a breath or an activity when my mind is nagging me to hurry and finish, or reminding me of the ubiquitous dozen or so undone tasks that await me.

So about the only thing I can take away from the weekend is a better understanding of how my brain is manipulating me to expend my time catering to its whims while neglecting the greater good. Perhaps it is as they say--that learning to observe one's stream of thoughts is the first step to regaining mastery from them. Time will tell. Perhaps in the days ahead I'll do better gaining mastery over my hand-wringy mind.

The closest I came to the relaxed state of being that I imagined was cooking ribs over a wood fire Saturday evening. There's something soothing about sitting at night and eating smoky seared meat, chewed messily from the bone, at the day's end when the body is tired. For those minutes I was what I was, a creature attending to his need for sustenance.

One of the side benefits of "just sitting" is that the animals around you eventually ignore you. I watched a great blue heron hunt for a while one afternoon in a small lake where I paused while walking. The thing would crouch along the bank, "knees" bent, its neck low, then pop its head up like a periscope and stand motionless for long minutes at a time. Then it would leap awkwardly head first about four feet out from the bank and then with a horrible racket half-fly, half-splash back to the bank. Certainly not the stereotype of a stealthy wading bird pulling morsels out from around its feet.

1taskaday
Posts: 348
Joined: Wed Dec 04, 2013 11:45 am
Location: England

Re: A Journey of Mindfulness--the Remaking of Life in Midstr

Post by 1taskaday » Tue May 27, 2014 12:41 am

The quest to quieten the mind is the biggest challenge that I have ever tried to master and would have the same limited success that you seem to experience.

I have found Eckhart Tolle great for the theory behind this challenge but Byron Katie the best from a practical and implementary stance.

Right now my mind is similar to a roller coaster, from all the extroversion that my job exposes me to, (mostly petty conflicts with staff),BUT IN THE FUTURE... (ha,ha,ha,...living there again...) I plan to devote most of my energy and time trying the conquer "THE BEAST".

saving-10-years
Posts: 472
Joined: Thu Oct 31, 2013 9:37 am
Location: Warwickshire, UK

Re: A Journey of Mindfulness--the Remaking of Life in Midstr

Post by saving-10-years » Tue May 27, 2014 2:39 am

@IlliniDave sounds like you know your weaknesses in this and scored some memories from this weekend that you wouldn't have if you had been tethered to the internet. So I'd consider re-grading that weekend as 'promising start'. As @1task says its a BIG challenge getting there, so not the work of a single (even long) weekend.

IlliniDave
Posts: 1726
Joined: Wed Apr 02, 2014 7:46 pm

Re: A Journey of Mindfulness--the Remaking of Life in Midstr

Post by IlliniDave » Tue May 27, 2014 6:17 pm

@1taskaday: I've tried listening to BK but I don't sense a lot of connection between her take on things and my journey through life. To me she seems focused on repairing dysfunctional personalities and relationships. I'm just looking to discard enough clutter that I can embrace life thoroughly as it unfolds, if that makes sense. Maybe I've missed out on some essential component of her (BK's) work?

@saving-10-years. You are correct: too much concern about progress and accomplishment is counterproductive. It's reflective of the side of me that I would like to be able to switch off when not needed. It would be better for me to learn to make my best effort at each juncture and not seek to measure.

EdithKeeler
Posts: 441
Joined: Sun Sep 01, 2013 7:55 pm

Re: A Journey of Mindfulness--the Remaking of Life in Midstr

Post by EdithKeeler » Tue May 27, 2014 6:43 pm

I'm just looking to discard enough clutter that I can embrace life thoroughly as it unfolds, if that makes sense.
@IlliniDave, have you read the Tao? Stephen Mitchell's is by far the best translation (IMHO) and I read some from it every day. For me, it's really helped me to accept life as it comes. (Not perfectly, by far, but I'm making progress... in a Tao sort of way....).

http://acc6.its.brooklyn.cuny.edu/~phal ... te-v3.html

Being and non-being create each other.
Difficult and easy support each other.
Long and short define each other.
High and low depend on each other.
Before and after follow each other.

Therefore the Master
acts without doing anything
and teaches without saying anything.
Things arise and she lets them come;
things disappear and she lets them go.
She has but doesn't possess,
acts but doesn't expect.
When her work is done, she forgets it.
That is why it lasts forever.

IlliniDave
Posts: 1726
Joined: Wed Apr 02, 2014 7:46 pm

Re: A Journey of Mindfulness--the Remaking of Life in Midstr

Post by IlliniDave » Wed May 28, 2014 4:14 am

Hi EdithK

I'm not familiar with Stephen Mitchell's translation. I have a translation by Jonathan Star which I must admit I haven't found very inspirational. I'll check out this alternate translation. Based on comparing the "verse" you extracted Mitchell seems a little less wordy than Star, which is probably good. Sometimes it seems like Star is trying to put too much of his interpretation into the translation. Some amount is necessary because ancient Chinese is linguistically sparse, but the translations seem to work better when there is some ambiguity left in them, at least for my taste. Thanks for the link!

IlliniDave
Posts: 1726
Joined: Wed Apr 02, 2014 7:46 pm

Re: A Journey of Mindfulness--the Remaking of Life in Midstr

Post by IlliniDave » Wed May 28, 2014 8:06 pm

Dance with Who Brung Me ... or not?

I've realized I've got, I don't know, a contradiction you could say, going on.

For the most part I've been a planner, and always tried to keep the long term and bigger picture in mind. It's served me well. Although I won't set any land speed records for achieving ER, and won't crack any list of wealthy folks published by Forbes, I'm certainly ahead of the bulk of my statistical cohort if the US Census Bureau data is believable. And if I'm honest I'd have to attribute it all to simply thinking about the future, making some modest sacrifices, deriving a plan, and sticking to it more often than not. There's nothing special about me. Even though my job is "white collar", I'm a lunch pail guy.

But here I am in the home stretch with a growing interest in this concept of mindfulness, in simply being open to wallowing in life, which out of necessity always happens in the present moment, and always will. The extension of that is that any time I spend concerned about attainment of things in the future, I am giving up moments of living now.

I'm faced with the dilemma of muting one of my personality traits that is arguably the most responsible for me closing in on this awesome opportunity for ER. There seems to be an irony in that. There's also an irony in hoping to attain in the future the ability to refrain for attempting to attain things in the future.

I think I should have spent last weekend just grilling wienies and drinking beer with all the other Stepford folks. I've managed to give my thoughts too much slack, and now like a dog chained to a pole, I've got things so tangled around themselves there's little room to move. That image makes me chuckle aloud at myself.

Which reminds me, the greatest life lesson I ever learned, I'm pretty sure, came from my grandfather. By way of example he taught me to be free to laugh at myself. It's an outstanding tactic to avoid going insane.

I definitely need to get out of the house :)

saving-10-years
Posts: 472
Joined: Thu Oct 31, 2013 9:37 am
Location: Warwickshire, UK

Re: A Journey of Mindfulness--the Remaking of Life in Midstr

Post by saving-10-years » Thu May 29, 2014 3:12 am

@IlliniDave thanks for this and all your other posts. Love reading your journal and there is something going around in my post-retirement brain that resonates with this. I worry if I don't have a plan. I don't have to stick with it but creating a plan with DH every few years makes me articulate what I am expecting to happen and do a reality check. I don't like the idea of drifting way to the right/left or beyond my target - whatever it is. In truth if I end up deviating from 'the plan' its usually because something good or urgent happens and I have no problem. In fact I usually deviate from the plan, sometimes quite acutely. But I need to know what I am 'working' for, where the target is. The freedom of being retired now means that I can for-once-in-my-life not plan. I need to try this not planning stuff and live in the moment. When I try this I enjoy it but I am still uneasy. I've decided to set some points at which I check the way I am headed and ask whether I am happy. So not a plan in terms of where or what but one which takes stock on a when basis.

There - a very inelegant answer but perhaps it may help that others are thinking about how to sort the same sort of problem?

Hankaroundtheworld
Posts: 465
Joined: Mon Feb 24, 2014 4:50 am

Re: A Journey of Mindfulness--the Remaking of Life in Midstr

Post by Hankaroundtheworld » Thu May 29, 2014 3:55 am

Hi IlliniDave, my view on your thoughts above:
* Mindfulness is great, especially for the many Rational people in this ERE forum, I should practice as well more often
* Looking ahead (future thinking), well, if you have a solid plan for the future, you do not have to adjust so often, so the focus can be more on the "living now", but if it makes you happy to dream abt the future, do not stop it. It helps if you have a Partner that brings you back in reality :-)
* Your Father is a wise guy, we have the same saying in the Netherlands "Do not take yourself too seriously, look in the mirror, and laugh about yourself", it keeps you sane. My wife and I correct each other in this if we get too serious in our thinking/attitude, trying to tackle the unbearable lightness of being

IlliniDave
Posts: 1726
Joined: Wed Apr 02, 2014 7:46 pm

Re: A Journey of Mindfulness--the Remaking of Life in Midstr

Post by IlliniDave » Thu May 29, 2014 6:56 pm

Hi Hankaround! I think what I should do is rearrange my "system" to be more set-and-forget--automate all my transfers to Vanguard and all my share purchases, etc. But in some respects that would result in a suboptimal utilization of money, and my prior attempts to go that route have ended in frustration. It's just a matter of trying to find the right balance, and I'm having to sort of work this by trial-and-error. No partner to rely on either. I have to put on my big boy pants and work this out on my own. Although frustrating, it's also fun in a quirky way.

Hi saving-10-years! I like your approach of a periodic assessment of where you're at without having a specific route chosen for each step. Something like that might work very well for me once I cross over to the other side. It'd be sort of like wandering in the woods with a gps in your pocket, turn it on every now and again to make sure you aren't in imminent danger of wandering off the map, but otherwise just follow your muse. Thanks for the idea!

For now my quest is to recover my "beginner's mind". I just ate a grapefruit and made a deliberate effort to forget every preconception I had regarding grapefruit. I tried to find words for how it felt in my hand, to describe how it smelled, the most efficient way to peel it, the slight numbness it caused on my lips and tongue, etc. Admitting that in writing makes it seems crony as hell in hindsight, like I'm some sort of New Age hippie or Hari Krishna wannabe. But it made a difference. That ten minute process was the most peaceful and pleasant episode today. And for that ten minutes I didn't worry about my investments, or how I could spend less money, or that I don't have the partner Hank mentioned to keep me grounded (the why of that should be obvious to anyone who's read this far ;) ), or how I was going to navigate around the current challenge at work, or when I should make time to get that room painted, or ...

I'm beginning to think the key to success is not to explicitly restrain myself from looking ahead, rather to continue bit by bit in re-exploring all those things I think I already know. This calendar year alone I've eaten probably 5 grapefruit each week and never bothered to pull my head out of the clouds long enough to notice what they actually taste like. My default m.o. is often derived from a negative position (stop doing this or that). I think I need a positive substitute (do give my attention to what is at hand). I feel quite childish to have to guide myself this way, but at this stage if it works I'm not gonna judge.

IlliniDave
Posts: 1726
Joined: Wed Apr 02, 2014 7:46 pm

Re: A Journey of Mindfulness--the Remaking of Life in Midstr

Post by IlliniDave » Sat May 31, 2014 6:52 am

May 2014 Status

Edit: update with correct investment account values

Overall spending was $2,179, (assuming I don't spend any money today, which is my intent) lower than expected because of some delays encountered in my renovation projects. Also that is artificially high because May had three paydays so employer sponsored benefit costs were higher than normal, as well as those of some annual expenses I amortize in advance by pay period (homeowners insurance, property tax, etc.). If I took the time to adjust for those I would have compared favorably to the $1,860 or so of non-extraordinary spending from April. I did fail on my goal to lower grocery/food expenses, which came in at $245, no where close to my $100 goal.

Net worth was up around $17,392 for the month ($21,652 for the quarter to date). More importantly, invested assets were up around $21,335 ($26,483 for the quarter to date).

Using my invested assets plus estimated net proceeds from downsizing at retirement, I should be able to generate a passive income of about $1,600/month as of this writing. Steady progress but still a way to go to the SWAN threshold.

Miscellany

A few minutes ago I completed the last reps of push-ups, sit-ups, and squats for the first month of my resurrected fitness regimen, bringing my total of each to 770. That would maybe be acceptable if it took a week rather than a month to complete them. Nonetheless I suspect that for my relative geriatric cohort I'm not at the back of the class, or even close. I had a bit of a shock last week. I was speaking to a guy I know who I would have sworn was a good 10-15 years older than me, and "old for his age" on top of that. Turns out our age difference is less than 4 years. Doh! The way he carries himself and moves his body appears totally run down. Just reinforces my grip on my adopted mantra, "You don't stop moving because you get old, you get old because you stop moving."

That's about all I got. Still pursuing my task of learning to control the "ego" portion of my mind and cultivating a demeanor that will more optimally suit my pursuit of and vision for ER. I've spoken perhaps too much about that lately, so I'll just say that an amount of silence in the near-term future does not imply my capitulation.

Big chore for the day is gathering enough wood to cook some meat tomorrow. In other words, a relatively lazy day to close out the fine month of May.
Last edited by IlliniDave on Sat May 31, 2014 4:20 pm, edited 2 times in total.

DutchGirl
Posts: 1038
Joined: Tue Sep 06, 2011 1:49 pm
Location: The Netherlands

Re: A Journey of Mindfulness--the Remaking of Life in Midstr

Post by DutchGirl » Sat May 31, 2014 7:01 am

IlliniDave wrote: or that I don't have the partner Hank mentioned to keep me grounded (the why of that should be obvious to anyone who's read this far ;) )
Yup. It's because of bad luck. But maybe one day Fortune will smile at you.

Anyhow, I also wanted to say that I enjoy reading your journal and several others, and part of it is because I see a lot of psychological development in people. That interests me, and it also gives me hope for myself :-) . I think you're on a journey that is interesting and largely unexplored. A bit scary perhaps too, but also with a lot of options and freedom. You used several tools to get here (among which: planning), and perhaps you'll need that particular tool a bit less from now on, but you might have to work on and improve other tools that you've got.

I would say: keep going... And keep writing please :-)

User avatar
spoonman
Posts: 696
Joined: Thu Mar 28, 2013 4:15 am

Re: A Journey of Mindfulness--the Remaking of Life in Midstr

Post by spoonman » Sat May 31, 2014 12:34 pm

I think you've used the right word there, cultivation. So many things in this world worth pursuing actually require cultivation, the ERE mindset/demeanor being one of them.

Congrats on reaching $1600/mo in passive income. There's a lot of awesome things you can do with that income level.

Keep up the awesome progress!

IlliniDave
Posts: 1726
Joined: Wed Apr 02, 2014 7:46 pm

Re: A Journey of Mindfulness--the Remaking of Life in Midstr

Post by IlliniDave » Tue Jun 03, 2014 7:28 am

Empty Words

There's a part of me that's being dragged along kicking and screaming in this journey, but being dragged along it is.

I can sense a deeper acceptance that I will not arrive where I want to be through some dazzling intellectual insight. Nor will chasing adrenaline. They have their places, but they're not the meat. It seems my path to the extraordinary stretches through the commonplace.

Thinking is easier than living, I now realize. And, it takes less courage.

There's probably a poem in that somewhere.

In the ways that count I am lazy. I can sense it's rooted in fear--of what I don't know. Maybe that this is all there is. Maybe that taking a path other than that adored by the mainstream will lower me in the eyes of others. What if the fine citizens of Stepford are right?

The first 90% was manageable. The last 10% appears to have "impossible" stamped on it.

I can't help thinking that it is immensely important to get myself at peace with the idea of simplicity and prove I can thrive with it before taking the ER plunge. But I can't shake a naggy residue of discomfort (not the perfect word, can't think of a good one right now) that I liken to a bit of twig or something that falls inside you boot, gets lodged in your sock, and provides continual low-level irritation.

It seems I have a shortcoming in the area of being accountable to myself. Talking and writing about things is all good, but if not followed up on in practice makes me somewhat of a blowhard if not a fraud.

Sigh

Okay, sorry for the interruption. I found that cathartic. :)

I'm failing at mindfulness.

Hankaroundtheworld
Posts: 465
Joined: Mon Feb 24, 2014 4:50 am

Re: A Journey of Mindfulness--the Remaking of Life in Midstr

Post by Hankaroundtheworld » Tue Jun 03, 2014 10:19 am

Hi IlliniDave,

Nice summary you gave: "Thinking is easier than living, and, it takes less courage", I am going to use this :-)

When I read your last blog entry, the next things come to my mind:
* Do not be so hard on yourself, especially that you "must" achieve something, I have called this "musterbation", basically if you tell yourself that you "must" too many times, it will get you frustrated, actions should follow emotions
* Rational people love thinking, but if you want to change something, you need to keep on trying, "doing is better than thinking sometimes, and you will learn faster than you can imagine"

I know, this is easier said then done, especially if you are on your own, and nobody is putting up the mirror now and then. But, on the other end, you are in a privileged situation to choose the path of your own freedom, many others have "obligations" and might not be so free!

At least you are not alone in this, I know this "thinking too much" trap all too well.

User avatar
Chad
Posts: 3863
Joined: Fri Jul 23, 2010 3:10 pm

Re: A Journey of Mindfulness--the Remaking of Life in Midstr

Post by Chad » Tue Jun 03, 2014 10:38 am

IlliniDave wrote: The first 90% was manageable. The last 10% appears to have "impossible" stamped on it.
Maybe 90% is your sweet spot? Maybe not, but it should at least be a consideration.

saving-10-years
Posts: 472
Joined: Thu Oct 31, 2013 9:37 am
Location: Warwickshire, UK

Re: A Journey of Mindfulness--the Remaking of Life in Midstr

Post by saving-10-years » Tue Jun 03, 2014 12:33 pm

I can't help thinking that it is immensely important to get myself at peace with the idea of simplicity and prove I can thrive with it before taking the ER plunge.
I think that you are being hard on yourself, you are also (or appear to me to be) imagining that the journey is complete before you take that ER plunge. From my own limited experience (2 months and learning all the time) then 90% progress would be excellent, in fact unbelievably good. You have lots of changing to do after ER and more time/less distraction so allow some headroom and don't consider the journey complete until after its done?

BTW I love reading your thoughts. I bet I am not the only one who sees a new post by you and perks up in anticipation even before I read it. Perhaps you should be writing poems?

IlliniDave
Posts: 1726
Joined: Wed Apr 02, 2014 7:46 pm

Re: A Journey of Mindfulness--the Remaking of Life in Midstr

Post by IlliniDave » Thu Jun 05, 2014 6:01 pm

Hey all, just thought I should say that in actuality I am probably being far less hard on myself than I sound. With introspection I try to err on the side of being blunt. I suspect that because at one time I was a master of justification--I could spin a reason to exonerate myself from nearly anything. Maybe I take it too far the other way now, but the worst of it comes with a wry smile.

I seem to have an amount of subconscious avoidance going on, which manifests itself by my going into couch potato mode. So in my efforts to determine what the real issue is, I tend to throw stuff on the wall to see what sticks, even if it's just gratuitous ad hominem stuff.

Hank, yep I tend to be a "musterbator". Trying to break the habit. :)

Chad, you're probably right that at some point I'll hit a point of diminishing returns, and I need to be wary of the perfect being the enemy of the good. But both the mediocre and the perfect are the enemy of the good, and "sweet spot" is an apt descriptor.

Saving-10-Years, I'm not sure what to say. Away from internet forums I'm a rather shy person, so it's with a degree of embarrassment that I read your words and admit I'm both pleased and encouraged that you enjoy what I have to say. I don't know if the "views" statistic from the site is accurate, but the number for this thread is intimidating to me and it's almost convinced me to run away. BTW, I've been accused of being a poet, but the evidence is scarce and underwhelming in my opinion!

I appreciate the kind thoughts from everyone.

IlliniDave
Posts: 1726
Joined: Wed Apr 02, 2014 7:46 pm

Re: A Journey of Mindfulness--the Remaking of Life in Midstr

Post by IlliniDave » Sat Jun 07, 2014 9:36 am

Beans, Laundry, and the Heart of a Child

It is very temporary, but I was sort of excited this morning when my weekly financial chores revealed that I am 80% of the way to my second net worth comma. Still a way to go, but to me that is starting to feel like a big number.

We had a thunderstorm at dusk yesterday and it put me in a pensive frame of mind. So this and a clear sunrise have refreshed me. I realized in the dark of the night that I'm really seeking to get a chunk of the little boy I once was back. It's interesting how artistry often involves developing expertise over time, but at the moment of execution the expertise, the mental side of it anyway, is abandoned and the result flows from a child-like openness to possibility. That, I think, is how I want to learn to approach life. The so-called beginner's mind. So it's nothing new in terms of a concept. Just something I need to learn to express in my own way. We'll see how long that holds up pushing my mower with the temp around 90 and the humidity the same. But I'll be starting from a good place.

Other than that, my only goal for the day is to be alert and spot the little intersections of preparation and opportunity life dishes up. That and an experimental black bean concoction. Someday I'll learn to cook beans well enough I won't feel eating them is a subtle form of punishment. They're not awful, but it makes gaining nutrition more a chore than a joy. Chili peppers to the rescue.

And if I get real sporty, I'll finally hang a true clothesline in the garage. Someone told me running a load of clothes through a dryer costs about $0.40 at our utility rates. I have a "senior" dog who has continence struggles, so with the frequent washing of dog bedding and my own laundry, I've avoided somewhere around $12 worth of drying costs sine I went on this kick. An extra $0.03/month for life! It does beg the question: at what point is the time more important than the pennies. At the peak of my family life I used to value my time at $20/hr and use that for make/buy do/hire decisions. Now as a bachelor my time is worth somewhat less, but hanging laundry seems to "pay" no more than a buck or two an hour. I'll probably continue since it is a way of sort of thumbing my nose at the HOA nazis without violating the "rules", and it's more environment friendly. I'll have to rely on cooking beans to make the big bucks.

IlliniDave
Posts: 1726
Joined: Wed Apr 02, 2014 7:46 pm

Re: A Journey of Mindfulness--the Remaking of Life in Midstr

Post by IlliniDave » Sun Jun 08, 2014 7:37 am

6/7 Addendum: Paul Bunyan and Courage

Periodically I revisit my estimate for my future budget. I've arrived at a bare bones but not meager target of $1,450 per month using this weekend's thinking. Today my invested assets would sustain $1,439 so I'm right about there. I also should be able to produce another $200/mo once I sell my home here and downsize when I move. That I've yet to succeed at capping my spending at those levels for even a single month is an issue I've wrote about before so won't belabor. I suppose I'll be counting on necessity to tighten things up when it gets real.

So basically I can claim to be FI at a level of reasonable comfort. For several months I've been FI in the sense I could keep a roof overhead and not starve. That's an intellectual understanding I've yet to truly internalize, so I'm not doing cartwheels across the lawn just yet. But it's comforting.

My nominal plan is that I'll continue to work for 5 more years, but 2 will suffice. I actually like my job well enough, and my colleagues/coworkers are good and interesting people. It's only the geography of things that's tugging me to check out early.

I spent some time on Zillow over the last couple of weeks searching for a summer hideout. So far that's been a disappointment. I'm looking for a very rustic, as remote as possible, bare-bones cabin/cottage in Northern Wisconsin or Northeast/Northcentral Minnesota. What kills me is that I really want something on a lakefront lot. Seems the entry point is about 3X what I'm intending to pay for my primary home. Apparently the "seasonal" cottages I remember from when I was a kid have largely been replaced by rather luxurious year-round houses, and dropping north of a million bucks to get on the shore of a ho-hum lake would be easy. It's also possible Zillow is not the best resource. Next I suppose I'll check up in Northeast Ontario. I don't know if there are barriers for US citizens, and my understanding much of the property there is not privately owned but rather on long-term lease from the government. When I was last there in 2007 such cottages were quite common, but I don't know it they're available on a regular basis.

This is causing a serious rethink. By working an extra 5 years I'll have a superabundance of money relative to what I expect to need to live, but at least for now it is required for my peace of mind. I'm wondering today if I should consider extending work by 2-3 years to build up a summer hideout fund. It's a really dicey proposition as one of my bigger goals in this is to try to get back home while my parents are still in decent health.

There are still some options to get there from here. Unfortunately the easiest one on paper, to find a professional employment opportunity "back home" has eluded me. So much for just hitting the "Easy Button". Gah! :)

Again it comes down to courage, and I seem to lack it in the department of taking a leap of faith and leaving professional life with only "enough" and trusting that the vagaries of life will even out over time and that I'll get by without becoming a burden on others. A friend from long ago used to teasingly call me Paul Bunyan because of my longstanding visions of myself hidden away "up north". If she saw the hand-wringy me today she would take that back, I think. Paul would just make it so!

IlliniDave
Posts: 1726
Joined: Wed Apr 02, 2014 7:46 pm

Re: A Journey of Mindfulness--the Remaking of Life in Midstr

Post by IlliniDave » Mon Jun 09, 2014 4:58 am

Big Decision

I found a remote cabin in Northwoods that I could probably afford. It would be my summer home once I ER. No electricity, not TV, no internet, no running water, on a lake full of bass, pike, walleye, and trout (lots of "free protein"). It is accessible only by water, heated by wood (located in Superior National Forest so wood is plentiful). The only potential rub is the cabin is on leased federal land, and I'd have to pay an annual lease payment to the gov't every year. I'll be trying to determine the amount of that payment today. I'd be buying the structure only. Property tax to the state would be less than $200/year.

This appears to be a fairly unique place, and although I wouldn't hardly get to use it for the next 5 years, I've got a serious itch.

Somebody talk me outta this!!

henrik
Posts: 719
Joined: Fri Apr 13, 2012 5:58 pm
Location: EE

Re: A Journey of Mindfulness--the Remaking of Life in Midstr

Post by henrik » Mon Jun 09, 2014 5:15 am

If it's only accessible by water, would you need to buy and store a boat as well?

Hankaroundtheworld
Posts: 465
Joined: Mon Feb 24, 2014 4:50 am

Re: A Journey of Mindfulness--the Remaking of Life in Midstr

Post by Hankaroundtheworld » Mon Jun 09, 2014 7:12 am

Hi illiniDave, it sounds a bit remote, more like a start of a scary Hollywood movie around the "Cabin at the Lake", a lot can happen in these remote forests with no communication devices at hand :-)

User avatar
Dragline
Posts: 4450
Joined: Wed Aug 24, 2011 1:50 am

Re: A Journey of Mindfulness--the Remaking of Life in Midstr

Post by Dragline » Mon Jun 09, 2014 8:02 am

I think you are likely to find a comparable offer/scenario in five years time. No need to jump in now. Better to look again when you would actually be ready to use/enjoy it. And it sounds to much like a time-share for me.

Post Reply