It is now exactly three years into early retirement! I can't believe how time flies. I can now officially say that I have lived through retired life, although three years is still a short time. These years have been quite eventful to say the least. Stock market crash, a new virus that affects the whole world, lockdown for several months, raging bull market while in pandemic. I've seen things in a few years than I have never seen my whole life :).
In spite of all the up and downs over the years, I still very much enjoy my early retirement. So officially it is not a fad. I don't want to bore you too much with all the things that happened. Anyway everything is already on the blog down to the minutest detail. Here is a quick update on the things I set out to do after retirement.
Friends and family time
This has been going great thanks to COVID :). We are all locked up in the house spending time together. Still, it would be nice if we can travel a bit. Have been to a few places around Bangalore, but otherwise nothing to write home about. Watched several cricket matches ball by ball including test matches. Covered a few movies too.
I am enjoying every moment of my kid growing up. Watching the many phases of life front and center. Right now she is in the phase of losing her teeth which is a weird phase as I understand. I have no recollection of how it went in my childhood.
Organized and attended 12 virtual meetups with friends and blog readers. Every month I have a virtual meetup alternating between school friends, engineering friends and my blog readers. I have called at least 2 friends or colleagues every weekend. All of this is fun and relaxing.
Health and fitness
Going according to plan. Since I have a home gym, it does not matter whether the gyms are open outside or not :). Only problem is that I was doing some of my karate sessions online. The dojo was opened and closed several times in the last one year as the restrictions came into effect and lifted. I can tell you one thing -- doing karate with a mask on adds a new dimension to the term breathlessness.
Published more than 100 articles in this blog over the last one year. Helped a few friends and readers with their questions on financial planning. I have started and completed a few fun hobby projects. Currently working on solar panel setup. This is what I call happy work :). No stress, no politics, no deadlines, no traffic, no pollution.
All good here thanks to the irrational exuberance in the markets. My expenses are inline with my projection. The corpus is steadily going up reaching 10% XIRR since I retired. Then again, three years is such a short duration that I will call it stupidity to draw any conclusions from the expenses or returns. I keep telling myself "come back after 10 years and after you wise up my friend and then lets see if you can still hold your head up".
Exactly 3 years ago on this day June 29, I hung up my boots. I took a cab ride back home from work, imagining how life would be in the coming days. One part of me was excited. The other part was apprehensive about the future. As I sat through the long journey home, weaving through the horrible Bangalore traffic, I am reminded how lucky I was to be getting out of the vicious cycle. Just living life as it's meant to be...