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May 12, 2016


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I new you'd be back. Yet I have been so close to hitting that delete bill! So glad I never did it.
Sorry you have the flu.
Please feel better.
Glad you are back writing.
So happy you sold your vacation home.
Doesn't it feel good?
One less thing......
Not to multi-task over.
Stay well!


Our daughter and her husband live in Singapore, and we are visiting them now, although at this moment we are taking a side trip in Cambodia. Like you, I've been sick. Couple that with temps well over 100, let's just say I can't wait to get back to the states. I hope you're visiting the region in the winter, because it's absolutely oppressive other times of the year.

I can still multi task. Well, actually I can get a mani and pedi at the same time. Does that count?


Good to hear from you again.

I have come to the same conclusion about multi-tasking. But I think if I had to, I probably could. But I don't have to! And neither to you :-)

I am enjoying the piano again too, since starting back up about a year ago. I'm almost as good as when I last took lessons in high school, but not quite there yet. Just love how it makes me feel; one with the music!

Hope you recover quickly. Your trips sound great!


Congrats on house sale and planning of trip. Are you still house swapping?

I was just thinking of you earlier this week and I was hoping you would post something soon :) I am counting down the days until my pre-tirement date - as I like to refer to it. 165 work days to go until no more need to say TGIF. I am excited and nervous at the same time as I plan for it. Mostly I am worried about heath care and what options will be available on the exchanges next year. Would love to hear a post from you sometime this year on your thoughts and challenges with health insurance and access to health care providers in early retirement. It is encouraging to hear from folks like yourself that have crossed over to the other side :)

Don't sweat the multi-tasking- it is overrated in our society.

Rick Lange

Hi Syd.

Haha on the piano payment .... I can relate ..... my first or second year of "early retirement" (still of counsel with the law firm so with that and investments had income to pay tax on) I completely forgot to send in estimated payments for two quarters! ... .oops .... sent them in later .....mind you I had been a partner before so there was no withholding on draws and I'd been sending in estimates for 25 years ..... then a couple years later the inverse happens .... I got a pretty nice refund from the IRS and I thought that's weird .... until I realized I made five estimated tax payments that year! ... just not paying attention ... and, for me, I think I've just substantially reduced my working life "control" the details mindset and the four "IRS quarters" per year just don't register ..... and yes, I did remember to file tax returns by the April deadline (never figured out why the deadline was April 18 when the 15th fell on a Friday, and didn't care enough to google it ) .......

Regards to Doug too, and have fun on your trip.

Retired Syd

Thank you all for the warm welcome back to blogging. Nothing I like better than waking up to such nice comments!

Cindi: It sure does feel good to simplify (and have only one yard to take care of!) You were smart to make your second home a low-maintenance condo! And don't ever hit the delete button, I'd never go away for good without saying goodbye.

Doreen: Unfortunately it won't be winter--we leave on Sunday. I remember the oppressive heat well--it was about this time two years ago we were in Cambodia, Laos, Vietnam, and Thailand. I look back on that trip so fondly but I was miserable every second of it. (Well except when I was floating in that pool). Hope you are on the mend!

Carole: I'm so happy to hear you are at the piano again. It has brought me so much fun, joy, and fulfillment, I know how you feel. And you'll be better than your high school self in no time. I'm three years in now and way better than I was back then. (Of course, I never really took lessons back then and I've now been taking lessons for 3 years.) Congratulations on returning to that old friend.

Sally: Congratulations on your countdown! Thanks for the post idea, I think health insurance is a great one for a "then and now" post. I'll get right on that. (After a couple others that I have in the hopper right now. I wanted to have a few in the pipeline so I wouldn't go six months between postings again!)

Rick: Thank you for the laugh -- and I'm so glad to know I'm not the only one. Doug and I talk a lot about how we never know what day it is (yesterday and today have both felt like Saturday, but that's not until tomorrow). And you point out that it's not just day of the week we lose context for but actually month of the year! There was a time when those tax deadlines were engraved in my brain but somehow I've lost that too--and I was a tax professional! (By the way, the 15th was emancipation day in D.C. so we all got the extra weekend for that. I was one notch more curious than you were.)


So happy to see a post from you! I know what you mean about not being able to multitask... although I wonder how well we really did even when we worked. It sounds like you have a satisfying, fun, adventuresome retired life... that's pretty good multitasking if you ask me! Have a great trip and please think about writing a blog or two about health insurance when you return. It's a topic that concerns us all.

Retired Syd

Janis: Thank you and I have 23 hours to kill flying to Singapore on Sunday, so that seems a great time to write a few more blog posts!



After reading your post I was relieved to discover I am not alone in losing my ability to multitask in retirement. I am not sure why this has happened to me, but maybe it happened because I don't HAVE to multitask anymore, so I lost the skill. Maybe multitasking is a "perishable" skill(?). Who knows.

In any event, it was great to hear from you.


Retired Syd

Steel: Maybe it's not multitasking at all. Maybe I'm just losing my mind. Today I went to meet my friend for lunch and when I arrived at PF Changs a few minutes late I decided to check my email to make sure I was at the right restaurant because she wasn't there and she's never late. Nope, her email from that morning clearly stated California Pizza Kitchen. Not sure why I went to PF Changs. Luckily they are in the same mall.


Syd: We have a PF Changs and a California Pizza Kitchen in the same mall area in my town as well...and I live on the east coast of the US. Sorta makes one wonder what the point is in traveling...

I too have lately wondered if I am losing my mind. I too recently had a lunch mixup event similar to yours. I take some solace (and hope) in that I recently heard from a reliable source that if you think you are losing your mind, that in itself is a sign that you are not losing your mind.

I'll go with that for the time being...


Retired Syd

Steel: Ok, I'll try and take comfort in that too.

Accidental Retiree

Congrats on the house sale. I know that's a load off your shoulders. My husband, as executor of his late father's estate, just closed on Pop's house--after more than a year of working on it. It was worth it, though, and now he gets to make distributions to himself and siblings. That will be nice.

Have a great trip!


Good to hear from you Syd!! Don't worry about not being able to multitask anymore. There is lots of evidence that multitasking is counterproductive anyway.

mary ann

It is always an uplifting moment when I see your post in my inbox! Lovely to see you back and thank you for your posts which always make me smile inside. I would love to downsize - simplify everything. However, teen children, years away from retiring and animals galore mean that it is wishful thinking!

Retired Syd

Accidental Retiree: Sounds like you've had too much going on this year too!
Bridget: I don't know, I used to be pretty good at it!
Mary Ann: Thank you for your nice note. I was getting pretty good at downsizing the stuff in my life, but then I sold that house and now I have tons of stuff again. Back to the battle. Animals galore? That warms my heart.

Still the Lucky Few

I think they call it "retirement brain". I've been retired for almost 10 years, and dabbled in a number of things, not accomplishing anything, before I finally started a blog. That saved me, I think. I wake up early now, work every spare minute, and feel a tremendous sense of satisfaction with every post. You write well, so please don't give up on this. Piano is over-rated, I've always thought!

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