Monday, July 27, 2009

A Glimpse into 'how the other half lives'

We are staying at a B&B and there is another couple here as well. Last night we coincidentally decided to spend the evening eating cheese and crackers on the porch instead of going out for another meal. They are probably 15 years older than us and from the south. They are scouting retirement locations for their future in another five years. She still works. He is on disability because he injured his shoulder and had to have tendons reattached, etc. It doesn't sound like he is going back to work (but I think he's also over 65) and is permanently out of the work forced.

He was saying how he is so glad that he had health insurance to cover his surgery because without it he might lose his house to pay the medical bills. I think this was his first big medical event. Ever. I had forgotten what it would be like to not have your medical issues run your life, to not think about your next doctor appointment, to get to your sixties and first experience a major medical issue for either you or your spouse. To me that is pretty amazing.

I find their long term plan of retiring a nice optimistic way. We have talked a little bit about retirement and what we would do but, maybe because of our age as well, we haven't done much thinking about it. It was nice to see people planning another 20 years together. I think to me that is 'how the other half lives' - the worry free life with a long term plan.

In the meantime, our weekend has been nice. We wanted to go spend the day on the beach yesterday and woke up to pouring rain and a gloomy forecast (with a giant blob of green on the radar map headed our way). Instead of the beach, we headed for Newport and carried around the 'rain prevention' umbrella all day. We did a tour of Fort Adams State Park (definitely worth a visit if you are in the area) and the Museum of Yachting before heading off for lunch in town. We also stopped in the little village of Wickford (1 blinking light, two blocks long) and did a little window shopping before heading back here to be generally lazy and eat cheese and crackers on the porch.

My back will last for about two hours of standing and doing stuff before I need to sit down for a bit and possibly ice it as well. Today it is reminding me about how much standing I did yesterday. After breakfast we are heading home to deal with the car, my work deadline and the millions of emails I have piled up from various consulting jobs. I need to fit in a walk as well.

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