Three Years Into Early Retirement

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.


Hobby projects

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.


Finances

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”.


My corpus compared with 8% returns – 8% inflation, 10% returns – 6% inflation and 12% returns – 4% inflation projections

Conclusion

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…



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