Hello and welcome to my blog, largely inspired and written because I have nothing else to do after being made redundant from paid full time employment at the age of fifty one in December 2014. Merry Christmas.
Being made redundant was a shock. I was a white collar worker, working in UK manufacturing at a high management level for about twenty years. So I better admit it up front: I was well paid in the role and had saved hard over the previous decades allowing me to build a bit of a nest egg to live on (possibly driven by the fear of this moment). Resultantly, when the axe fell, financial concerns weren’t at the top of my worries list, although they did figure as one of the Four Horsemen of the Middle Aged Apocalypse: Sex, Health, Money and Death.
My blog is going to be about those Four Horsemen. Kind of. I can’t really write much about sex as the wife will go ballistic. Health? Is there anything more boring than listening to someone else going on about their diet and exercise regime? Meanwhile my attitude toward Death is best summed up by Woody Allen – I do not intend to be there when it happens.
That leaves Money. I could, and probably will, write a bit about money but hopefully only in the context of what spending it or, more importantly, not spending it may mean. There are thousands of blogs out there on personal finance much better on investing than anything I could attempt. I’d even recommend some. If I do write about money and investing, I will be keeping it very simple – because that’s what worked for me.
What I’d like this blog to be about, really, is Early Retirement and Financial Independence, or ERFI. (Maybe I should conform to FIRE?) My Early Retirement has been forced upon me, but I’m not alone in that. Once upon a time and not so long ago, I just tended to think about Early Retirement quite a lot. What would I do if and when it happened? Would I be able to handle the dislocation from work? Would I be bored out my mind? (Would my wife be bored out of hers by me?) Would I become a golf club cliche or be pottering around in the garden fifteen years too early? What would life be like without a big pay cheque coming in? How would it feel to go from the security of that income to a monthly stipend of zero? What would I do with all that free time when I no longer had the office to go to?
To be honest, six months in and I don’t yet even know the definitive answer to many of these questions. Trying to answer them, however, is what I want this blog to be about.