Dreams of retirement

As time goes by, I am realizing that the need to consider retirement is really not that far off.  Ideally I am hoping to retire at 55 years old, which is not that far off.

The obvious things worry me… will I have enough to retire, where can I afford to retire, will I have to take a part time job when I retire, just to make ends meet?  There are many concerns and in reality, unless you were already financially well off to begin with, nothing is certain until that fateful day when you take the step and leave the workforce and become a retiree.

I try not to worry about the financial side if it too much.  I am doing what I can and setting aside as much as I can.  We will see when the time comes if it was enough and with the way the economy is going right now, it is anyone’s guess.

I try to think more of the PLACES that I would like to retire to.  One thing that has become certain in my life is that the older I get, the less I like places that have large populations.  Sure, when I was a teen I loved the idea of living in someplace like Los Angeles, San Diego or San Francisco.  Those are party towns and they always have a lot going on in them.  My wife and I even briefly looked at the idea of living in San Diego back in the early 90s.  We even looked at lofts near Horton Plaza in the Gas Lamp district.  At the time it was a bustling older style area.  I think that entire area was renovated and the apartment is no longer there.

Today, my idea of the perfect place to live would be anyplace that has a small population and low crime rate.  Someplace that only has four or five gas stations, total and a population small enough where you will actually learn who your neighbors are.  This is something that I miss from my childhood.  I spent part of my youth in Taft, Ca.  While I like to make fun of it as a “Hick Town”, I do recall the fact that we knew everyone on our block and there was never really a question about who you did or did not trust.  You borrowed tools, helped each other, talked, visited and there was few, if any, problems with one another.  I miss that.

The places that I am looking at, with my wife, for retirement options are places like Olancha, Ca.  The place that my mother lived as a child.  Elko, Nv.  A small, out there, kind of town.  Fairbanks, Ak.  Where my mother, brother and his kids live now.  Sedona, Az would be nice, but probably a little pricy because of the tourist trade in that area.  There are a few other places, but I have not looked into them as much.

The way things are going, though, with gas and all… who knows.  We might have to retire to a cardboard box next to Highway 58.  You never can tell where you might end up, until you get there.

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2 thoughts on “Dreams of retirement”

  1. My mom did part of her growing up in Taft. I visited there a couple of times when I was a kid, but don’t remember much about it. I agree with you about moving to a smaller town. I used to love Bakersfield and my first couple of years in the Navy I had ideas of going back to live there permanently whenever my enlistment was up, but as time progressed I saw too many rapid changes and it has just exploded in size, and it’s just not the same anymore. I used to recognize half the people in the mall on any given day, but last time I was there I vaguely recognized one person who I saw in the food court, and couldn’t remember where I knew her from or what her name was. Now I just want to move up to the Pacific Northwest. Have you thought about Oregon? Eugene is a very nice town, and currently not too expensive.

  2. Yeah… I fell in love with Salem when I was up there on business a few years ago. I would not mind living on the seaward side of Oregon… I have been told that the desert side is nice too, though I have never been there.

    Another thing to consider about that area is that there is a new “sister” forming. There is a spot near Salem that is rising very rapidly… at one point almost 2 inches a year. More than likely a new volcano getting ready to happen.


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