ERE Year 2 - Someone Call The Internet Retirement Police...

Where are you and where are you going?
bluecollarmusician
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Joined: Fri Jan 03, 2020 4:02 pm

Re: ERE Year 2 - Choose Your Own Adventure - Geoarbitrage and Nomadic Lifestyle Edition

Post by bluecollarmusician »

I can really relate to the notion; reminded of the analogy between being a farmer and a hunter. If you are a farmer, the stillness and waiting (patience) required of a successful hunter can be daunting.

2Birds1Stone
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Re: ERE Year 2 - Choose Your Own Adventure - Geoarbitrage and Nomadic Lifestyle Edition

Post by 2Birds1Stone »

August Financial Update

Combined Assets
$753,000 (+$21,200)

Combined Spending
August - $1,196
Trailing Twelve Months - $21,960 (-$1,332!)

Combined Income
$0 earned income
~$550 in interest/dividends

Combined Withdrawal Rate
2.92% (Portfolio = 34.3X annual expenses)

Musings
Individual August spending = $559, broken down for anyone curious;

$160 Grocery
$192 Entertainment (mainly beer gardens & eating out)
$10 Bus ticket to mountains
$37 Health/Travel Insurance
$49 Gym/toiletries
$62 Misc (mainly Sony WH-CH510 headphones/Cell phone bill)
$49 Gifts

Individually @ $11,768 - TTM Spending, 51.1X annual expenses, and a 1.95% WR :shock:

The power of continued expense reduction has been tremendous this year. August was a relatively low spending month, mainly due to lack of side trips in Poland. The biggest expenses were related to DW's residency application and the associated document translations and filing fees.

September has the potential to be nearly 3X as high in expenditures for a number of reasons. We are taking two kick-ass side trips. Tomorrow we leave for 10-12 days in the Tatra mountains and will be paying for transport/accommodation/park fee's, and we are planning a week long trip to northern Poland (Gdansk, Gdynia, Sopot), which will be quite expensive as it's 700km away and accommodation prices are relatively high. Despite spending 3-4 months a year in Poland from age 3-17, I've never been to the Baltic region! Super excited. We are also hunting for return tickets to NY for the last week of October/first week of November, and those will be ~$750-1000 in total.

Oddly enough, YoY spending will remain constant for September, because in 2019, Sept was very expensive! In anticipation of leaving my job, I purchased a new laptop, replaced my smartwatch, and paid $100+ in MTB race entry fees. We also had two baby showers and a wedding. Maybe we can do a little better in 2020 =)

From an asset allocation standpoint, we are at 44% Equities, 37% Bonds/CD's, 14% Cash, 5% Ag/Au.....I feel comfortable here for now.

Activity/Health

In August we walked 219 miles, cycled 73 miles, and completed 21 weightlifting sessions.

My weight is up to the 204-205 range, and over the past few days I've eased off the calories just a tad. Currently holding the most lean body mass I've had since my last natural boydbuilding contest prep in 2014. It's likely due to the complete lack of running/MTB and limited cycling. After I got into triathlon in 2015, the weightlifting frequency and intensity dropped off a bit in favor of being a more balanced athlete.

classical_Liberal
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Re: ERE Year 2 - Choose Your Own Adventure - Geoarbitrage and Nomadic Lifestyle Edition

Post by classical_Liberal »

Those are some pretty impressive financial stats. Hopefully they'll help you chill about the whole needing to get another high paying job when you get back to the states thing.

I'm curious, what's a normal day look like for you guys now? Or if one day isn't enough whats a week look like?

Western Red Cedar
Posts: 99
Joined: Tue Sep 01, 2020 2:15 pm

Re: ERE Year 2 - Choose Your Own Adventure - Geoarbitrage and Nomadic Lifestyle Edition

Post by Western Red Cedar »

I've been following your journal for awhile now. Even though your itinerary got thrown off a bit this year, it still sounds like an amazing trip. I was in Portugal and Spain for about a month last year and was a bit jealous that you didn't have to share the streets of Lisbon with heaps of cruise line tourists. I spent a few years living overseas and slow traveling through Asia and Central America in my twenties. I've been living vicariously through your trip and itching to do another proper, vagabonding style adventure overseas as soon as things settle down.

Enjoy the rest of the summer in Poland and keep on rockin' in the free world!

2Birds1Stone
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Location: Earth

Re: ERE Year 2 - Choose Your Own Adventure - Geoarbitrage and Nomadic Lifestyle Edition

Post by 2Birds1Stone »

@c_L, I was going to wait till we got back from the mountains to reply on my computer (I hate typing on a cellphone), but we just extended our stay for another 6 nights....so I'll do my best now.

@WRC, thank you for your comments. I too am grateful to have experienced a quaint Lisbon, may be a once in a lifetime opportunity. Would love to revisit offseason under more normal circumstances though. I've really enjoyed your journal so far. Been in the mountains hiking/mountaineering since Wednesday so I've read here but as mentioned above, hate typing when I don't have my computer handy. Will be popping in with some thoughts when we get back on the 14th.

A day in the life....

So this has really evolved over the past year since I left work, but the general format has been consistent.

I typically wake up between 5 and 6 AM, no alarm clock. Sometimes it's as early as 4, but very rarely past 6. This is important, as I enjoy solitude and time to have my morning coffee ritual and get some reading (usually online) done without being disturbed. This works out great because DW gets up between 7-8 AM. I typically need/get 2-2.5 hours less sleep per night than she does.

4 to 5 days a week we hit the gym to do weightlifting for about 1:00-1:15, followed by a late breakfast and shower.

By the time we are done, it's almost noon. This is where it varies greatly. We try to see/spend time with family and friends at least once or twice a week, go for a long bike ride at least once a week, take a day trip to the orchard, explore the city by foot, spend the afternoon at a park, etc. DW started and is maintaining a blog, and I enjoy reading and listening to podcasts.

In the evenings we will either cook dinner or go out to eat (maybe 20% of the time). Between cooking, eating, clean up that's usually two hours.

I tend to read for an hour before bed, sometimes fuck around with FIRE spreadsheets, or watch some YouTube videos on topics I follow (Exploring Alternatives, Living Big In A Tiny House, Darwin On The Trail, Foresty Forest, Sailing Uma, Tulas Endless Summer, Berm Peak, Seths Bike Hacks, Petrolicious, etc).

Back in NY you could add in serious MTB trail riding 2-3 x per week, which was 3-4 hours per session if you included getting ready and to/from trailhead, running 1-2 x per week, and grabbing coffee, lunch, beers with friends at least 2-3 times per week.

How the hell does anyone have time to work? Or really think that they will have nothing to do without a job.

I didn't even factor in one off trips, activities with friends, chores, grocery shopping, etc.....
Last edited by 2Birds1Stone on Tue Sep 08, 2020 12:06 am, edited 1 time in total.

classical_Liberal
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Re: ERE Year 2 - Choose Your Own Adventure - Geoarbitrage and Nomadic Lifestyle Edition

Post by classical_Liberal »

@2B1S
Interesting... Thanks for the recap!

Frugalchicos
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Re: ERE Year 2 - Choose Your Own Adventure - Geoarbitrage and Nomadic Lifestyle Edition

Post by Frugalchicos »

We actually have very similar likes in regards to Youtube videos. Exploring alternatives, Living Big and Petrolicious are some of my favourites. You might like Bertram - Craft and Wilderness, My Self Relience, Happen Films and Kirsten Dirksen.

2Birds1Stone
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Re: ERE Year 2 - Choose Your Own Adventure - Geoarbitrage and Nomadic Lifestyle Edition

Post by 2Birds1Stone »

@Frugalchicos, I am actually subbed to and have seen most of My Self Reliance and Kirsten Dirksens vids, will check out the others. My list wasn't all inclusive. A few more I really enjoy;

Beau Miles
Singletrack Sampler
Skills with Phil
Gee Milner (theraputic dream bike building)
Engineering Explained
Dan Mace
MJ Sailing
Levi Allen
Matt D'Avella

@c_L, what do you find interesting?

classical_Liberal
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Re: ERE Year 2 - Choose Your Own Adventure - Geoarbitrage and Nomadic Lifestyle Edition

Post by classical_Liberal »

@2B1S
Despite different sleeping patterns (I sleep a lot and stay up late/sleep in), our days aren't that different. Alone time to read, drink coffee, relax, think--->Exercise out of house---> Social or couple time---> Individual time for projects, Watching TV, video games.

anesde
Posts: 173
Joined: Wed Jan 09, 2019 8:32 am

Re: ERE Year 2 - Choose Your Own Adventure - Geoarbitrage and Nomadic Lifestyle Edition

Post by anesde »

I think it’s impressive that you get up so early each day. My weekends tend to be focused on catching up on sleep as I generally need 8-9 to feel right but only get 6-7 during the work week. Not sure I would have the motivation to get up early each day, but maybe after a detox from the salaryman lifestyle I’d feel different.

Great to see you’re living it up. Do you still feel an urge to look at jobs?

Western Red Cedar
Posts: 99
Joined: Tue Sep 01, 2020 2:15 pm

Re: ERE Year 2 - Choose Your Own Adventure - Geoarbitrage and Nomadic Lifestyle Edition

Post by Western Red Cedar »

@2b1S

You might enjoy Mossy Bottom on YouTube if you haven't checked it out yet - Cottage restoration/gardening/permaculture/self-reliance. His simple cottage and garden in Ireland reminds me a bit of your family's land in Poland.

2Birds1Stone
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Re: ERE Year 2 - Choose Your Own Adventure - Geoarbitrage and Nomadic Lifestyle Edition

Post by 2Birds1Stone »

@anesde, I'm not actively looking, but keeping an open mind regarding inbound opportunities. I just naturally wake up that early, there is zero effort on my part =D

@WRC, I have watched a dozen or so episodes on his channel, and while I enjoyed it a bit, just couldn't get into it enough to watch regularly, this was a while ago, so maybe I can revisit. Right now I'm just not spending that much time on YouTube at all, maybe 1-2 hours a week. I haven't seen a regular television since we left Portugal, we don't have one in the apartment here in Poland, nor on the Orchard. Haven't watched anything on streaming services since May either.

The two weeks we spent in the Tatra mountains were outstanding. I posted some pics on the other forum. We hiked ~150 miles over 8 days. 6 summits over 6,500 feet, and some cave exploring. I love the mountains, if we ever settle down with a home base, it will have to be somewhere with good access to mountains. Hiking, MTB, camping are some of my favorite things to do.

The Big News....

This morning we booked our flights back to NY. Bittersweet indeed, but we have 6 weeks left here. It will be nice to see family and close friends after nearly 8 months in Europe. Plus, DW needs to get the shoulder evaluated for disability. Once she has her Dr. appointments booked, we can figure out some side trips to visit friends in the New England area, as well as friends/family in Florida.

Preliminary plan is to spend Nov/Dec in NE, and January in FL, then figure out what to do next. It's either going to be a roadtrip around the USA, return to EU (Spain/Portugal) or wait it out till mid spring and thru-hike the AT.

classical_Liberal
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Re: ERE Year 2 - Choose Your Own Adventure - Geoarbitrage and Nomadic Lifestyle Edition

Post by classical_Liberal »

The pics over there were awesome!

Western Red Cedar
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Re: ERE Year 2 - Choose Your Own Adventure - Geoarbitrage and Nomadic Lifestyle Edition

Post by Western Red Cedar »

Glad to hear you are limiting your media content and enjoying daily life. I always feel great after a digital detox, particularly when immersed in nature. It's easy to get sucked into a lot of media content these days, but enjoying the moment and staying present is a much healthier approach to life.

150 miles in 8 days is extremely impressive! I'm assuming that is with lightweight packs and regular resupplies in mountain villages. That experience should prepare you well for the AT if you decide to go that route in the spring. I did a 200+ mile section of the PCT in 2007 and wished I would have completed a few more short trips to test my gear and hiking preferences before embarking on the trip. Any of the options you're envisioning sound amazing. Enjoy!

2Birds1Stone
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Re: ERE Year 2 - Choose Your Own Adventure - Geoarbitrage and Nomadic Lifestyle Edition

Post by 2Birds1Stone »

@c_L, just gets me excited to see some of the beautiful hiking around the USA. I've never actually done a summit it the states, only some light hiking upstate NY. I will wait till the fire madness stops, hopefully there are some nice places left to hike in the aftermath.

@WRC, I was guilty of it too, especially whilst working. Netflix was a way to numb my brain after a particularly stressful day, YouTube as well. I try to be much more intentional with what I watch these days. YouTube is used as inspiration for some of the lifestyle stuff I would like to try, but at some point you gotta stop watching, and start doing!

We had a home base for the trip, spent 11 nights in a guesthouse, and hiked 8 of those days. Packs were packed with the days food/water, and an extra layer or umbrella when the weather forecast was looking dodgy. I've yet to do any overnight hiking trips, but it's high on the priority list when we get back. Going to need to invest in a tent/sleep system first though, our setup is for car camping right now.

Western Red Cedar
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Re: ERE Year 2 - Choose Your Own Adventure - Geoarbitrage and Nomadic Lifestyle Edition

Post by Western Red Cedar »

@2B1S - The Tatra Mountains look amazing. I'd never heard of them, but know that there is some great hiking and backpacking opportunities in Eastern Europe. Feel free to pick my brain if you are looking to acquire gear or consider strategies for a distance backpacking trip. I learned a lot about what not to do based on my PCT trip years ago. It's made for much more enjoyable (though shorter) trips over the last decade.

2Birds1Stone
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Re: ERE Year 2 - Choose Your Own Adventure - Geoarbitrage and Nomadic Lifestyle Edition

Post by 2Birds1Stone »

@WRC, the Carpathian mountain range stretches from western Czechia all the way down to southeast Romania, the Tatras (Poland/Slovakia) are the highest part, with some of the most breathtaking views and more alpine hiking/climbing available. I've watched several documentaries re: the Romanian parts, and really want to get down there for some long distance hiking, looks wild and beautiful! (very ERE friendly prices too).

I may definitely take you up on that offer if we decide to go the long term hiking route, though I think that we are leaning toward a home base somewhere, or some kind of vehicle to live out of. Either way, a lot of overnight hiking/camping is in our future! We will definitely be looking for a LW tent, pads, quilts/bags, etc. Going to start off with the packs we already have, and replace with something better/lighter when they need replacing or we truly decide they are not suitable for a thru-hike when the time comes.

Life Update

We have 4.5 weeks left in Poland. The weather has been spectacular since we've returned from the mountains, with last night being the first rain we've seen, and temps being in the 72-78 daytime, 45-60 nights range. Socially, we've attended a few BBQ's and spent time with cousins and family. Wife and I spent 3 nights on the orchard....where there are copious amounts of walnuts, hazelnuts, and concord grapes. Sitting by the campfire and watching the stars has been great in the evenings. The dry air and low light pollution out there makes for some great stargazing, and we've been lucky enough to see a lot of shooting stars. The next weeks weather will be cold and wet, but that won't deter us from trying to make the most of it here. Will be spending more time in the gym, visiting with grandparents, and enjoying the odd stroll when the rain breaks. Next weekend we are heading to a different part of the Carpathian mountains, Rymanow, known for their therapeutic and pungent water springs, nice day hike options. We are renting a cabin with my cousins. After that, our plans are going to largely be driven by weather over the last three weeks.

I redid DW's resume/CV last week, and she should start applying to jobs next week. She's hoping to find an entry level job in a tech/SaaS company doing top of the sales funnel business development work. 99% of these jobs are going to be remote for the foreseeable future, and she has experience that would make her more than qualified. If she's successful in finding something before the end of the year, our insurance problem would go away, she would be able to build up here portion of the portfolio, AND we would be able to be location independent, either traveling the USA slowly, or coming back to the Iberian peninsula for the winter (the later being our preference).

I'm not looking for work right now, though it would be cool to find something to do for a little beer money and socializing while we're in NY for a few months. Serendipity, right? I'll take it if it comes.

Right now I'm most looking forward to getting back out on my favorite MTB trails on Long Island, and seeing some of my very close friends and wife's family.

Speaking of family, might have wrote about it here, but maybe not. My mother came to Poland in late August, and since the apartment we have been staying at is my parents, we've had the (dis)pleasure of living with her, when we're not traveling or at the orchard. I was never close with her growing up, and feel very little filial connection to her. She's got several personality disorders, and has destroyed most family/friend relationships here, so she's home a lot, and when she is, DW and I try not to be. We are looking forward to not ever having to share a living accommodation with her again, meaning that if we return to Poland in the future, it will definitely be necessary to find a short term rental or elsewhere to stay.

The situation with my grandparents is also difficult. A lot of the burden of helping them has fallen on me whilst I'm here. My mother has not done much to help with her father. It's very sad, and he doesn't even expect much from her, yet she still manages to disappoint. My paternal grandmother doesn't even know my mother is in Poland, because then she would expect some help from her, and my dad knows that she won't do anything to help. Grandma is losing her marbles, and it's getting increasingly difficult to manage the situation (dementia, so she's regularly calling the police/ambulance for thought up reasons), on top of trying to help my grandparents directly, I'm fielding phone calls from my dad, who is back in NY, and is trying to use me as his eyes and ears as to what is happening on the ground here.

Needless to say, NY is sounding pretty good right now, and while this has been a great experience, it's also been extremely draining, both emotionally and mentally. I also feel bad that my wife has to deal with the side effects of the living situation and the family situation.

classical_Liberal
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Re: ERE Year 2 - Choose Your Own Adventure - Geoarbitrage and Nomadic Lifestyle Edition

Post by classical_Liberal »

@2B1S
You're not the first early retiree here that's reported issues with being expected to take on the burden of doing more than your share of family care. Having all that time is a double edged sword. I mean, I'm sure you want to help, but you probably don't want to spend the next five years of your life doing it as a primary activity. It's tough, hang in there. I'd always wished I had a much closer extended family. In some ways I'm happy it's not that way.

The hiking and outdoors time sounds fantastic. It's amazing how much more in tune you become with the world and yourself when the majority of your time is spent outdoors.

The job thing is tough. I've had my feelers out since I quit my half-time nursing gig. Everything that pops up for part time and relatively flexible, not related to hospital nursing, sounds "meh" to me. Even if I found something now, and really liked it, that would probably act as a deterrent to traveling this winter, as I wouldn't wanna just quit something right away that I liked. So, outside of a location independent gig (which would take away the social aspects I want a job for), I think I'm on hold until next spring when we're settled back into the homebase for at least six months.

Do you want a job for money or for some other reason?

2Birds1Stone
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Re: ERE Year 2 - Choose Your Own Adventure - Geoarbitrage and Nomadic Lifestyle Edition

Post by 2Birds1Stone »

classical_Liberal wrote:
Sat Sep 26, 2020 3:12 pm
The job thing is tough. I've had my feelers out since I quit my half-time nursing gig. Everything that pops up for part time and relatively flexible, not related to hospital nursing, sounds "meh" to me. Even if I found something now, and really liked it, that would probably act as a deterrent to traveling this winter, as I wouldn't wanna just quit something right away that I liked. So, outside of a location independent gig (which would take away the social aspects I want a job for), I think I'm on hold until next spring when we're settled back into the homebase for at least six months.

Do you want a job for money or for some other reason?
@c_L, yea the family situation is partially my fault too. I was really close with my grandparents growing up, so I feel a sense of responsibility to help them while I'm here, and the boundaries get tough to define sometimes. All good, in a month I'll be out of here!


re: a job, it looks like I may be "stuck" in NY for at least a few months, the days are short, and if the weather isn't cooperative, then there won't be too much to do outside of spending time with family/friends. Weekdays can get boring when everyone else is working, so I figured that finding something fun to do in exchange for some money might not be the worst thing to try out.

I certainly don't need the money, and if the job paid little, it would have to be off the books, as UEI is going to pony up ~$400/week for another 26 weeks while I'm in NY. I don't want to do anything for the sake of doing something, so it's just something to keep an eye out for. Someone on my former triathlon team is renovating an old Victorian house, posted on FB looking for some skilled/unskilled help in return for modest pay and learning how to do many aspects of home renovation. Something like that might be perfect a few days a week. He expects the project to last till next summer. I could also look into apprenticing at my local bike shop, they are finally getting shipments of bikes in, and are behind on assembly/initial tuneups.

classical_Liberal
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Re: ERE Year 2 - Choose Your Own Adventure - Geoarbitrage and Nomadic Lifestyle Edition

Post by classical_Liberal »

2Birds1Stone wrote:
Sun Sep 27, 2020 2:24 am
looking for some skilled/unskilled help in return for modest pay and learning how to do many aspects of home renovation.
That sounds cool! I'd be up for something like that. A little money, a lot of learning, and probably super flexible about when he needs the help.

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