Lazy Days and School Days

After I retired last spring it seems the “work mode” was still switched on.  A lot of stuff between then and going off to Ecuador got done.  Including getting this blog up and running.

But Ecuador shifted my gears to “susuguar.”  This wonderful word I picked up years ago.  That’s likely not the correct spelling but it is how you’d pronounce it.  Might be Swahili, or maybe Konkoni.   Maybe one of my worldly readers will know.

It means something like:  Kick back, relax, chill, take it easy….

And so I have been.  Seems this not working business agrees with me.

But I have been making time to read the interesting posts of more diligent bloggers, like Jacob over at ERE.  This one struck a cord:

http://earlyretirementextreme.com/living-like-a-student.html

Since hanging up my working spurs, we’ve been on a campaign of de-cluttering and downsizing around here.  Our daughter is off to college and the house is for sale.  In this market it might be for sale forever.

Reading Jacob’s post it occurred to me that in a fundamental, psychological way I’m really trying to return to the simple, carefree days of university life.

I l-o-v-e-d my undergraduate years. It was the perfect blend of:

  1. a little and interesting work
  2. bright people
  3. free time

It was a simple life and all the richer for it.  I could make enough during the summers to pay for the rest of the year, even if some of the meals were sparse; white rice and ketchup was a staple. (I said sparse, not healthy)

I lived in a single room with a fridge, sink and stove against one wall. It came with a desk and chair and a mattress on the floor. The bathrooms were down the hall and shared.

I owned two pair of jeans, three shirts, sneakers and a winter jacket. Plus my own towel, sheets and a thin US Air Force blanket the enlisted girl I was dating at the time “liberated” for me.

None of these were my actual Air Force girlfriend

Fortunately I was aware enough to appreciate what a magical time it was.

Recently, my daughter and I were discussing some of the cool options she is considering for her Junior year next year.  “It’s hard to choose, dad.  College is such a unique and short time.”  It is indeed my girl.  Choose wisely.

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11 Comments

  1. Trish Rempen
    Posted October 29, 2011 at 11:16 am | Permalink

    Simpler is simply, more fun. Odd, but true.
    (Susegar….Goa, India. Must be Konkani.)
    When I was tossed out of Iran, leaving all my “stuff” behind, after the initial shock, it was a wonderful, freeing feeling. I owned so little. Everything I had, I wanted. I’ve been trying to get back to that feeling all my life.

    • Posted November 1, 2011 at 5:05 pm | Permalink

      I think you are right. Must be Konkani and I remember we used it a lot traveling together in India.

      By the way, not sure if you noticed by my use of ‘business’ as in “Seems this not working business agrees with me.” is lifted from you. As in:

      This traveling business.
      This riding elephants business.
      Roaming around flea market business.

  2. Josh
    Posted October 30, 2011 at 11:08 am | Permalink

    Nice post Jim.

    This is certainly a good topic to think about.

    • Posted November 1, 2011 at 4:59 pm | Permalink

      thanks, Josh and you are right. but Jacob deserves the credit for getting me thinking about it. How’s by you? Susugar?

  3. Posted November 1, 2011 at 9:27 pm | Permalink

    always enjoy your stuff Jim. Good luck buddy!

  4. PatD
    Posted November 13, 2011 at 9:01 pm | Permalink

    I am very glad to recieve you’re blogs…I have been remiss about expressing gratitude..and I stand corrected on that ..I have been dealing with a death in the family and have been all consummed …but life now trudges along…and I will be attending a speaking conference our mutual friend (James Altucher) is speaking at this week in Vegas…I am looking forward to connecting energy face-to-face after all these years..and blogs.
    downsizing and ‘lightening the load’ …is something I ,as well, aspire to…some markets are doing well…don’t you live in the Boulder area???…that must have a fluid cash flow…especially this time of year…Good Luck !!!

    BTW….A friend of mine recommended I read the Good To Great series…she said it is all the rage in Colorado….she lives in Windsor…

    • Posted November 14, 2011 at 7:06 pm | Permalink

      Thanks Pat…

      always nice to hear from you. very sorry to heat of your loss.

      Have fun in Vegas and give my regards to James if you see him.

      Nope, not in Boulder. I’m in New Hampshire…

      Cheers,

      JC

  5. PatD
    Posted November 14, 2011 at 8:42 pm | Permalink

    Oops….
    I guess I equate all snowy places as equal…no dissrespect….
    I get my thrills watching all the Xmas commercials depicting beautiful families frolicing,playing and shopping in the pristine snow…
    We dont get much of that here in so-cal….
    although it did rain yesterday…we were housebound…I’m sure you would find that humerous…
    till later…
    PatD

    • Posted November 14, 2011 at 11:06 pm | Permalink

      no problem, didn’t take it as disrespect at all.

      Back in October we had a freak storm that dropped 2 feet of heavy wet snow. With the leaves still in the trees it took down any number of limbs along with the power lines. no power for three days.

      ah yes, pristine snow. :)

  6. Guest
    Posted January 5, 2012 at 2:12 pm | Permalink

    No disrespect but for being a minialmilst this blog template is busy and overwhelming.

    • Posted January 5, 2012 at 2:28 pm | Permalink

      none taken. I prefer to see it as elegant and sophisticated. :)

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