||[ Monday, 23 May 05 | 08:14 ]
May 18th marked the one-year anniversary of my being layed-off at Sun. A lot has happened in the past year and here are some highlights:
- Determined that I could afford to retire now
- After investigating several cities, settled on retiring in Barcelona
- Arranged my finances so that they are managed by my son-in-law
- Set up power of attorney (POA) for my son to act on my behalf
- Married off my daughter in October
- Disposed of many years of accumulated possessions
- Sold my car in two days using Craig´s List
- Sold my house in Richmond in four months
- Bought my piso in El Masnou in six days
- Shipped fourteen boxes of personal effects.
So one question that probably comes to mind is how do I feel about retiring? I am glad that I did and not wait for three more years as I had originally planned. In the months following last May, I talked to many retirees that I encountered. To a person they said that if I could afford it, retire!
One issue about being retired is being bored, and that has not happened yet. Of course there is still more that I have to do here and my social life is better.
A hard thing for some people who are thinking of moving to a far away place like España is what to do you with all the stuff that you have collected over the years. I know that for some they just can’t part with their prized possessions. In my case I made the decision to ”simplify, simplify, simplify!”
The hard thing was finding a “home” for some of my furniture, rather than just donating it to charity. Fortunately my children took most of it. In reality it took months of sifting through everything to determine what should be donated, gifted, or sent to my new home. I sent photos, scrapbooks, some kitchenware, books, and, of course, tax records. When it all arrived I got rid of a box worth of stuff that I should have filtered out before.
And now I have been enjoying furnishing my place. It helps that it is less than half of the size of the Richmond house. I only have a few more things to select:
- Lighting fixtures for the salón comedor,
- TV, receiver, and loud speakers,
- Plants for the terraza.
This past Wednesday I received a delivery from habitat and as a result I don’t have any boxes sitting on the floor and I still have some storage space left. And I am still waiting for
- CD and DVD storage rack,
- Printer table with drawers,
- Armario for the bedroom.
I think that by the end of June I will be pretty much settled here.
The fiftieth annual Eurovision Song Contest was held on Saturday night in Kiev, the capital of the Ukraine. The show was in English with a voice-over in castellano on TVE. (For those of you have either Direct-TV or Comcast cable you can get TVEI, the international channel from TVE.) I thought that the performances were heavy on production, meaning dancing and costumes, and less on the actual singing. Many of the songs were sung in English, but at times it took me a while to determine that.
Greece won the contest and Spain was way down on the list. Some people have the opinion that Eurovision songs are only for the moment and not enduring. A notable exception was Abba who won the contest many years ago and become an instant international success. Spain hasn’t won since the late 60s.