With the new year comes a time to reflect on where you have been . . .
I watch a lot of concert footage on YouTube. I watch concerts from classic rock bands like the Allman Brothers and Led Zeppelin. I watch video of musicians that inspired the classic rock bands like Chuck Berry and Carl Perkins. And I watch stuff from bands that were inspired by classic rock bands like The Black Crowes and Gary Clark, Jr.. Sometimes I watch bands that most people haven’t heard of like Wishbone Ash and Molly Hatchet.
I thought that quitting my full-time job was going to allow me to spend more time with my wife and so far that has proved to be true. R and I spend just about all day every day together - going to the gym, getting juice, picking up our puppy's poo - and she claims to still like me more than 50% of the time which is her criteria for not filing divorce papers. I like her too. We have a lot of fun talking about what we should eat for lunch, ways we can make money without it actually seeming like work, and who we should invite over that will bring wine so we can watch the sunset.
When I resigned my government job after 18 years I was making an annual salary of more than $150,000. Comprehensive health insurance for me and the family was costing me less than $400 a month while the government picked up the substantial difference. I had a defined benefit retirement plan and was maxing out my 401(k) annually with an employer match. I got 12 paid holidays a year and over 4-weeks of paid vacation. I also got paid sick leave. My commute was a 30-minute bike ride along the Potomac River.
One of the reasons we chose to move to San Miguel de Allende instead of some other place in Mexico is because we thought it would be easy for the kids to make friends. Among the nearly 15,000 foreigners wandering the streets buying bottled water, straw donkeys, and bad pizza, are a fair amount of gringo families relocated from the United States, Canada, and Europe. We figured at least one of those families would have kids that liked our kids; and maybe even have a parent who would become my drinking buddy.