Friday, November 13, 2015

Doomed to be the 5th wheel in early retirement?

On Life and Love After 50 Newsletter
Tom P. Blake  November 13, 2015
When I have time, I enjoy reading other blogs and websites that are related to or somewhat related to the topics that we discuss in our newsletter. I enjoy reading other peoples’ perspectives on life at 50+.

One website and blog I’ve followed for years is the RetireEarlyLifestyle site, where this week I read an article that piqued my interest. A woman named Pamela (not the Pamela from last week’s newsletter) wrote to the publishers, Billy and Akaisha Kaderli, who are experts at retiring early and living in foreign countries. They started pursuing this lifestyle at age 38.
But, I want to say, the advice they provide is appropriate for anyone considering retiring overseas, regardless of age. I retired at 75, guess I don't fall into the "retire early" category, but I still enjoy reading their articles because they are about travel and so interesting.

In the article, Pamela said, “I’ve reached financial independence and want to retire early. There are so many more things I want to do with my life. I was hoping to find a fella who wants to retire early also. Someone on the same wavelength as me…”I know plenty of fellows who could retire early…but they refuse to…

“My question is: are there single fellas out there in the early retirement world? I have visions of it being populated entirely by couples and I’ll forever be doomed to being the fifth wheel, which is not a very appealing future.”

Pamela’s question to Billy and Akaisha is similar to one I often hear: “Where are the available men?” I felt the answers they provided to Pamela were very insightful.

They said, “There are single men out in the Early Retirement, Financially Independent world! They are traveling and living fulfilling lives and some of them are looking for a like-minded travel companion.”

Billy and Akaisha mentioned that some of those men complain that the single women they know either do not want to travel or leave their kids for long periods of time, or, aren’t adventurous enough, or, find travel is too expensive for them.

Billy and Akaisha added, “…to find a traveler, one needs to get out there and travel! You won’t find them at the country clubs or working in banks…These travelers have already come to the conclusion that they want something else for their lives and are ‘out there’ on the road, doing volunteer work, and having adventures in foreign countries.”

Billy and Akaisha also stated in the article that getting out there can be scary, particularly for a woman, but it’s important for single people to pursue activities that interest them, and to visit places that appeal to them, and perhaps to do volunteer work where they will meet others who volunteer.

“If you are doing activities that you love, chances are, this is the place you will find a like-minded person to accompany you through life,” they said.

In many articles I’ve read on the RetireEarlyLifestyle website, Billy and Akaisha often point out that living in other countries can be much more affordable than living in the United States.

I realize that not everyone is financially independent enough to go off traveling on their own or, to relocate to a foreign country. I realize there are lots of older singles who are struggling financially.

But, for others, if they could make their way to a country south of the border--Mexico or Central America, for example--the cost of living could be dramatically less.

That being said, in the last four paragraphs of Billy and Akaisha’s response to Pamela, they delicately point out to her that when two people can share finances, their ability to travel is enhanced. And they point out to her that because she is financially independent, she might more easily meet a man while traveling or relocating who is like-minded.

I recommend that Champs read the entire article; the points that Billy and Akaisha make are similar to the points I’ve stressed for 23 years about getting off the couch and out of the house and involved in activities one enjoys.  

True, Billy and Akaisha are talking about retirement in foreign countries, which is different than retiring and living in the USA, but many of the points they make can be applied to singles’ situations, regardless of where they live. And I particularly like the last paragraph of the article about not being stuck in a relationship due to the fear of financial freedom.

This is an excellent website to have on your reading list. You can sign up for their newsletter for free. If you’ve ever had questions about retiring early overseas, they are the experts. And, as I found out, they respond to email very quickly.

Here is the link to their website.


Friday, November 6, 2015

Ocean Adventures with Jax the bottlenose dolphin

On Life and Love after 50 newsletter
Tom P. Blake     -     November 6-13, 2015

You wouldn’t expect that two people who grew up in Chicago and now live in San Clemente, California, would have such a deep passion for the ocean and its marine life that they would start a company to protect it. But that is what David and Pamela Jackson, in their mid-50s, have done.

Even though they are both from Chicago, they didn’t meet there. They met and married 17 years ago in southern California. Their new San Clemente-based company is called EverythingOceans. David is the CEO; Pamela is the Education Director. The company’s purpose is to help save and preserve the oceans.

Their first product, to be published November 20, is an illustrated children’s book titled, “Ocean Adventures with Jax,” which will be the first of a series. Pamela is the book’s author and Bonnie Bright is the illustrator. The book is written for children pre-Kindergarten through second grade; parents and teachers will appreciate the depth of Jax’s story.

Jax, by the way, is a smiling, powder blue, bottlenose dolphin that readers are going to fall in love with. As I previewed the book, I sure did.

Why the interest in oceans? Pamela grew up frequenting the John G. Shed Aquarium in Chicago where she became fascinated with marine life. She later moved to California to pursue her love for the oceans.

She graduated from Saddleback College in the Aquarium and Aquaculture Science Degree Program. She volunteers at public and private aquariums where she speaks and teaches people about the ocean and its inhabitants.

Pamela said, “I want to use my knowledge of the ocean’s animals to help children learn more about marine life through fun-engaging ocean adventures. If I can help children fall in love with the oceans and the animals that live there, they may grow up wanting to save them. I would like to help cultivate the next generation of ocean stewards through my stories.”

Pamela’s husband David shares her enthusiasm. He said, “It is difficult for people to understand the oceans because they cannot see what is going on underneath the waves. Pamela’s book is unique because it is written from Jax the dolphin’s point-of-view. Jax describes in the first person what he sees and feels in the ocean. There is a warm, touching story to Jax’s adventure when he gets lost, but eventually finds his way back to the pod. He befriends a humpback whale named Fluke who helps him.”
David and Pamela Jackson in Dana Point, CA Harbor
As I read the book, I was impressed by the clever way author Pamela weaves in life’s lessons for children to learn: listen to your parents, pay attention to your surroundings, learn tolerance and recognize the special qualities of others, value teamwork and learn to trust yourself, plus many more.

She also weaves in scientific information. For example, she explains so children can understand such things as “echolocation,” the distinct sounds like clicks, whistles, and squeaks that dolphins and whales use to communicate and identify the size and location of objects, find food, and explore their ocean worlds.

If you have a love for animals and the ocean, you are going to love this book. I predict it will become one of those children’s books that youngsters will not forget while growing up.

Pamela said, “I want children to swim through my books.”

 The “Ocean Adventures with Jax,” book will be released on on November 20.

Contact information for Pamela or David Jackson:

Visit their Got Oceans Facebook page, which already has over 27,000 visitors.

Their website:

Hats off to this San Clemente couple for dedicating themselves to saving the ocean.