rj49 wrote:You might read "What Color is Your Parachute? For Retirement", one of the best book on retirement I've read. The part I took to heart most is that in retirement you have to find a way to recreate the positive aspects of a working life you're leaving behind: structure, being part of a group, daily social interactions, a sense of status and a certain amount of power and control, and a feeling of being a part of something larger. Travel and golf and gardening don't really deal with the loss of those values and aspects of your life, so unless you find a way to replace them, it's difficult to be happy and fulfilled. I have hobbies I love (reading, biking, films), but replacing the things from work is something I haven't managed to do yet, but will probably involve volunteering, hiking/biking clubs, and other forms of productive engagement.
I agree that it's important to replace the positive aspects of working life and that it's far from being trivial. Self-imposing a structure on one's life is very difficult. In a way, travel is good in providing it, I never procrastinate while I travel.
Finding groups and social interactions is not difficult, but not all of them are satisfying and intellectually stimulating. Status in retirement is based not on the position or the degrees but on one's knowledge and personality.
rj49 wrote:I like the idea of Road Scholar as well, since it gives travel around a purpose or learning, and you get group interaction and more off-the-beaten-path travel if you want it, along with a variety of domestic and international travel.
I'll check them out. But I also belong to a group that holds regular educational/social meetings around the world. So far, I've been attending those in the U.S. and Europe. I want to go to several others.
rj49 wrote:If you fantasize about the idea of perpetual travel, I recently read a book by an early retiree couple who listed a page of various couples and individuals who live such a lifestyle or otherwise inspire their retirement dreams. The happy travel people tend to be couples, though, and after 8 years of post-retirement travel on my own, I find it lonely and often uninspiring on my own (which is why I'm doing a 3-week Rick Steves European tour in a few days, instead of going on my own):
Enjoy your trip.
When I travel alone, I meet many people, and socializing with them provides variety without the challenges of coordinating with a travel companion. Of course, the desirability of traveling with a companion depends on the companion.
rj49 wrote:Finally, I found this page by an early retiree single guy very enlightening about the challenges of retirement for a single person:
http://philip.greenspun.com/materialism ... etirement/
Thank you for the reference.
Philip Greenspun wrote: He [a newly-retired wage slave] is waking up at 9:30 am, surfing the Web, sorting out the cable TV bill, watching DVDs, talking about going to the gym, eating Doritos, and maybe accomplishing one of his stated goals.
This is funny but probably true for many. I'll do my best not to let it happen to me. As I am reading Greenspun, I am getting some answers to my questions including those related to choosing a place to live and non-profit work. Your recommendation is very timely.