Been to Canada. Ireland, Australia, and Belize are on our bucket list.
One of the strangest sensations when traveling abroad as an American is the heightened sense of your American-ness. That I’m-from-anywhere accent you picked up from ’90s sitcoms becomes an invitation for people to guess where you’re from. Texas? California? When all else fails, and you don’t want to explain where Oklahoma City is, just claim to be from Miami, then watch your new friends’ eyes get wide. You, my friend, may just be from the Most Interesting Country in the World.
Point of fact, you don’t even need to be all that charming to be intriguing. We’re #blessed with a solid currency, a language that our colonial forebears took global, and a luminous pop culture that put Michael Jordan jerseys on kids in Buenos Aires and etched Michael Jackson jams into karaoke playlists in Seoul. Your American-ness precedes you, often for the better. So look past what you think the world thinks about the United States writ large. When you’re an American abroad, you’ll find warm welcomes many places — these countries perhaps most of all.
Read it all here.
Add to things we should already know.
Iowa may be better known for its corn, caucuses and creative writing programs, but the
Hawkeye Cyclone state also leads the nation in efforts to bring ultra-fast internet access to every city block and every rural acre.
Iowa’s No. 1 rankings in the infrastructure category and the broadband access metric within that came as a “pleasant surprise” to David Daack, a broadband consultant for Connected Nation, which does business in the state as Connect Iowa. Previous data reports have shown Iowa more in the middle of the pack.
“When people think of Iowa, they usually think of agricultural places that won’t necessarily need to be connected,” Daack says. “But given the big data needs of agriculture today and in the future, those areas are going to need to be every bit as connected as the urban areas. … You could almost argue that maybe we should go (to the farms) first and work our way back into the cities.
The full article is here.
Iowa direct link
You should always have some side gigs lined up.
Craig and Kathy are a good example of retirees who are using the gig economy to supplement their retirement income. This is indeed a great employment strategy for millions of aging baby boomers approaching their retirement years.
If you’re in your 60s with modest retirement savings, it’s smart to delay starting your Social Security benefits and drawing down your retirement savings for as long as possible (but no later than age 70). Earning just enough money to cover your living expenses while letting your financial resources grow can significantly increase your retirement income when you eventually leave the workforce for good.
Read the rest here.
I have a list of things to do.
The jarWife also has a list of things for me to do. 😎
You’re excited about retirement, right? You’ve worked hard for, what, four or five decades now? You’re due. No more early alarm. No more meetings. No more deadlines. No more office politics. Can you believe it? It’s just you — out on the links; puttering in the garden; taking care of your grand kids. It’s going to be great.
Except, what if it’s not as you pictured? What if those things you’ve looked forward to all these years — more time for your hobbies, more time to travel and more time to relax — aren’t enough to sustain you? What then?
Read the rest here.
Ecuador and Costa Rica are on our short list.
Read more here.
To casual visitors, this colonial town in southern Ecuador looks like it was torn from the pages of history. With its cobbled streets, soaring cathedrals and bustling markets, it exudes a lazy, old world charm.
But Cuenca is also on the cutting edge of a very modern trend: providing a safe haven for U.S. retirees who have found themselves unwilling — or unable — to live out their golden years at home.
The growing wave of ex-pat seniors is not only upending notions about retirement in the hemisphere but reshaping the face of communities throughout the Americas. And the trend is expected to grow as waves of baby boomers exit the workforce ill-prepared for retirement.
There’s no accurate way to measure the phenomenon, but the Social Security Administration was sending payments to 380,000 retired U.S. workers living abroad in 2014 — up 50 percent from a decade ago.
When I retired last fall at 52, I thought I knew exactly what retirement would be like. Many of the expectations I had did come true, but there were several surprises as well.
Today I’ll share my revelations in hopes those of you considering early retirement might be better prepared for it.
Mondays became the best day of the week
My colleagues can’t accept I’m retired
I’m busier than ever
I’m in the best physical shape of my life
I’ve gotten very comfortable wearing casual clothes
My family relationships are much better
I’m learning and growing more than ever
I can’t go back to work anymore
The stress is gone
I’ve turned into a morning person
The reddit discussion.