Showing posts from June, 2022

What I would tell my younger self: If only I knew what I know now about money…

  Go ‘Back to the Future’ to pass down finance knowledge! Kurt Vonnegut:  “Of all the words of mice and men, the saddest are, “It might have been.” My wife and I are really grateful that we were able to retire early and reach financial independence at the age of 51 and 48.  Don’t get me wrong.  It was a difficult thing to do, to have the willingness to forgo wants, to sacrifice the now for a better tomorrow, and to push through our own doubts about whether or not we were doing the right thing. In the end, it was definitely well worth it!  Not needing to go to work I didn’t enjoy, has reduced most of the stress from my life.  I wouldn’t change anything right now.  We’re happily retired and doing the things we always wanted to do, namely, traveling and spending more time with family. It got me thinking though.  What if I had a time machine, like the DeLorean from the movie “ Back to the Future ?”  What would I tell my younger self?  Would that equal even earlier retirement and reaching

Review of Georgetown, South Carolina: A must see beautiful town near Myrtle Beach

  Georgetown, South Carolina  During our 3 months stay in Murrells Inlet, South Carolina, we read about Georgetown from our Google search for attractions near Myrtle Beach and from various tourist brochures that are easily found in and around Myrtle Beach area. Georgetown is the third oldest town in the state of South Carolina, located in the Georgetown County.  It is located on Winyah Bay , at the confluence of the three rivers: Great Pee Dee , Black , and Waccamaw .  Georgetown is the second largest seaport in South Carolina, handling over 960,000 tons of materials per year.   On a beautiful December day with highs in the 70’s in the afternoon, we set about exploring Georgetown.  We knew the drive would be around 45 minutes from Murrells Inlet via Highway 17 South , so we didn’t pack any food.  We only brought with us water for all of us, and treats for Toby. We passed by the Huntington Beach State Park , which we had visited twice that month already, past the idyllic beach towns of

The wisdom to stay put during stock market downturns: A path to FIRE (financial independence retire early) movement

  Markets will go down, but they will always come back… Warren Buffett:  “Look at market fluctuations as your friend rather than your enemy; profit from folly rather than participate in it.” During the heydays of the late 1990’s when everyone and their babysitter was investing in the stock market, I also got my feet wet looking to make a quick buck.  It was a time when everyone made money if they bought anything. I had purchased a mutual fund ($3,000 worth), held it for about 3 months and made $800 in profit when I sold it.  I thought I was a genius, but then, so did everyone else.  I remember reading the cover of “Time” Magazine which showed everyone buying everything to do with the then new technology, the internet.  Back then, if you had a company that did anything related to the internet, then you got rich. You could do no wrong during those years leading up to the ‘dot-com bubble.’  Because I thought I was an investing genius, I invested another $8,000 to buy a technology growth m

Review of Swan Lake Iris Gardens, Sumter, South Carolina: A totally unique experience!

  Swan Lake Iris Gardens, Sumter, SC During our pack’s (my wife, myself, and our Pomeranian Toby) 3 months stay in South Carolina near Myrtle Beach area, I was doing my usual research to figure out where we should visit.  Unlike during the first few months of our early retirement (August 2020 until April 2021), where I would search for a destination within around an hour drive or so of where we were staying at, since last summer, I’ve been broadening my search to go as far as a 3 hour drive time. As my criteria broadened, so did the list of potential destinations we can explore on a day trip.  One such place turned out to be Swan Lake Iris Gardens , in Sumter, South Carolina. Swan Lake Iris Gardens is the only public park in the United States that feature all 8 species of swans, as well as some of the most intensive plantings of Japanese iris in the US.  The gardens encompass over 150 acres, and feature over 120 varieties of Iris and other seasonal blooms including camellias, azaleas,

What were the worst days of a working week when I worked? A recent early retiree’s recollection…

  Rat race is no joke… Lily Tomlin:  “The trouble with the rat race is that even if you win, you’re still a rat.” Since my wife and I retired early in August (2020) and got off the rat race, our friends who are still working, all comment that they wished they can do the same.  As far as we know, most of our friends do not find fulfillment and/or satisfaction with their jobs.  Talking with them, they all comment how their jobs have gotten even tougher compared to just 10 years ago.  Even before the pandemic hit, the quantity of work, and the stress that comes from that, have been building at an incremental pace. It seems most companies are letting 2-3 people do the work of 4-5 people lately.  Far as we can tell, the level of frustration and dissatisfaction with their jobs are at an all time high. In this post, I’d like to share my thoughts on the worst days of a typical working week, when I worked. When I started my last job in 2007, I was pumped.  I was so happy that I had finally gott