“No one in my day-to-day life understands this FI path. At Chautauqua, everybody gets it. I have found my tribe.”
Way back in 2012 I headed to Ecuador to create the very first Chautauqua held in the fall of 2013. The basic concept then, as now, was…
- Travel to a cool place
- Hang out in a cool venue
- Gather a small group of cool people
- Talk about cool stuff
It exceed my wildest expectations. People that week, and every week since, have told me this was one of the best weeks of their lives. Many call it the single best week.
We did it again in Ecuador in 2014.
Then we did two weeks back-to-back in Ecuador in 2015. And 2016. And 2017.
In 2017 we also took it for a week to the United Kingdom. And, now, for 2018, we are just back from two back-to-back weeks at the foot of Mt. Olympus in Greece. Home of the gods.
I’ve been writing about how incredible these events are for seven years now. Want my take? Here you go.
For this post, let me share what some those who joined us in Greece have to say. These are the posts out so far. If others come to my attention, I’ll keep adding them. So check back!
It is common in the FI community that one partner is more on board with the program than the other. Every year we get a couple of these reluctant attendees who we have come to think of as “dragged along” spouses. They expect to bear up and endure. They wind up having a blast.
This “dragged along” spouse gives her take.
Brandon joined us last year, unable to persuade Kimmy to come along. He was back for the second time, this time with his own “dragged along” partner in tow. The other side of FIRE is a short video of her experience. BTW, that’s Brandon’s drone video that opens this post.
A Findependant Woman needed no one to drag her anywhere. Here she…
She was the dragger, dragging along her very reluctant fiancé, Caspar. His turn around was so complete, we gave him a special award at the Friday Night Gala.
Here’s Caspar and Craig having summited Mt. Olympus…
Craig also gives a fine overview in…
I Paid $4,000 for a Week-Long FI Retreat in Greece—And It Was Worth Every Penny. Here’s Why.
One small point of clarification: When he says “40 people from around the world” he is including the Chautauqau speakers and team. We limit the number of attendees to 29. This small, intimate group is part of the magic.
FireCracker always captures the magic and does so again here focusing on the attendees:
Something special about Chautauquans
Mr. 1500 Days came first to Ecuador as an attendee and we were so impressed we invited him back as a speaker. Brilliant decision, if I do say so myself. He was inspired to write a series of posts on his experience:
Grecian delights, dildos and dinosaurs
Brad and Jonathan have long been fans and supporters of Chautauqua. Brad told me attending has been on his bucket list for years. By mid-week both separately came up to me and said basically, “I knew this would be great. My expectations were very high. But, I had no idea…” You can hear them capture the essence of the Chautauqua experience perfectly and in their own words at the beginning of this episode
We are still finalizing plans for next year, but I can give you a few insights.
In the spring we’ll be returning to the United Kingdom and to the same venue as in 2017. Why?
This is why:
Then in the fall we head to Portugal for the first time ever.
If all goes to plan, the speakers above will be returning as will the incredible JD Roth. JD was a speaker at the very first Chautauqua. He is a great friend and we are thrilled to have him back.
Details, as they come together, will appear first on the official website:
Sometime in the next couple of months we’ll make a formal announcement and open up for ticket sales. As always, we limit the number of attendees to less than 30, a total of only 58 spots. Keeping the group small and intimate is part of the magic. But it also means tickets go very fast.
First word will go out to those on our mailing list. Add yourself here:
So far there have been 11 Chautauquas and only ~300 people have been able to attend. By design, the group size is small and our band-width for doing them is limited. It is not designed for everyone and only a small fraction of even those who have the desire will ever have the opportunity. (also see this comment)
We have had attendees from all over the world and every continent except Antarctica. They have been of every race and multiple nationalities. They have ranged in age from 17 to their seventies (minimum age is now 18). They have been of all religions and sexual orientations. They have ranged from those early on their FI journey to those fully there to an entrepreneur/CEO who just stepped away from the tech company he started and took public.
Those who do attend are forever Chautauquans. The bond they share with those from their own week is incredible, but so is the instant bond when they meet fellow Chautauquans from other weeks. It is amazing, and for me a privilege, to see.
If it is on your bucket list, perhaps we’ll see you in 2019. We are excited to have you join us!
As promised, some additional posts that published after I first put mine up:
Amanda captures the magic of one of the week’s excursions:
The God of Wine and the Majesty of Mount Olympus
This guest post from Brandon is really not about Chautauqua, but the story came out of Chautauqua and it is a great lesson worth hearing:
How to get a Raise: The Path Less Traveled to FI
Shaun was inspired at Chautauqua to start his own blog, complete with his own Chautauqua post:
Discovering Inspiration in Greece
FI Chautauqua Revisited: Why I Love These People
“There’s something about being with a group of open-minded, positive people that spurs creativity…encouraged to see the possibilities beyond our own limiting beliefs.”
Greece, 2018 was Kathy and Brett’s second Chautauqua. They are joining us in Portugal 2019 for their third!
For some reason, this old post has been getting some traffic of late. It is always nice to see these getting some attention and it is fun, for me anyway, to re-read them. In this one I tell the sad tale of the time I bought my mother a condo…
Case Study #10: Should Josiah buy his parents a house?
The Korean edition of The Simple Path to Wealth is out!