Retired? but you're so young

Anniversary today!

Well, today I have been at home in retirement ( the state not the home ) for a decade, that's ten years, or 10 for the numerologists and X for the Roman's out there. Yup, a tenth of a Century, my God ( mea culpa ) has that just flown past, ou quoi? Why am I typing this? well can't sleep…that's retirement for you. There is a moral here, and that is for those of you who are on your way over to enjoy the spoils of your ever depleting pensions, enjoy every minute that you can..'cause it goes quicker than a TVG on … well, you know what.

'Well, ya smug git how'd you manage that? whilst we're still here working to paying for your pension, international arms smuggling?' Heard it a lot, alas rarely with a tone of 'oo aren't you lucky', or 'enjoy, you deserve it,' nah it's always got that phrase that starts with 'spawny'….which is pretty rich when it come from the frogs, so to speak! Everytime we go do something official, and they want belt and braces, and you mention that you don't actually work and have no mortgage, Madame' s off round the office pointing us out and telling every open mouthed person in there!…they don't even have a tick box for that eventualty. We even find ourselves lying to friends 'Yes, we are heavily engaged in Charity' work just to bung in the odd red herring, so's they don't smell something fishy.

So how does one do it, retire @ 50? Lottery? Inheritance? teensey bit of crime? NO, luck! Luck and working 60 hours a week every day for a 30 years.... oooh….and getting out of the UK property market at the right time….. the later being key, So does down-sizing from a ( insert large number here ) bed house nestling in ( insert large number here ) acres, to a ( insert small number ) bedroomed appartment, with a terrace!..well I say terrace….some decking….well I say decking …a few planks.

Yes, take advantage of the lower property values.. 'Course having a big flip off personal penion helps, I had a very hansome pot worth ( insert large number here ) which thanks to Gordon Brown and some over zealous agents selling mortgages to crack addled trailer-trash State-side, has now become a pot ( cup ) of ( insert piddley number here ). The slippidy slidey exchange rate has sh*gged another 30% or so off, so, it ain't as rosey as it were 8 year ago.

But we get by, still have a little left over for luxuries like food and clothing, the rest we share, with URSAFF and all those other Acronymed institutions who keep sticking in their bills where they're not welcome. We shop cannily ( for dented cans, then haggle )…we started out first eating Artisan, then market, then Hyper U, then LIdl, then Netto, then Ed, just waiting for Dougal Mc Frugal's to open, and we'll be laughing!

At least we're not eating out of poubels are we darling? …Darling..DARLING? ..oh 'sokay she's asleep. Shh. No, we don't drink, go to restos, theatre, on holiday etc. don't collect stuff either, I mean, it's only stuff after all. Anyway the first couple of year were great, spent a lot of time gardening, well terracing, you'd call it, ( bit like cottaging, but more open? ) ( note vocal inflection ) motorbiking, drinking… well I did at least until the foie started gra-ing out of all proportion. We now live a very simple life, which comprises running the kids around, and ironing you bast*rd, so I'm told.

I keep myself occupied, the odd walk, (cheap shoes ) just to see how the decking's holding up far end, then I rest….. and eventually walk back. But how do you keep your brain active I hear you say…well Chess, for example, I can honestly say I have never lost a game of Chess in my life…..never played!….Soduko, don't even like Japanese food……no it's the charitable work. Charitable in that I don't charge, I manage about 20 web sites, and 30 FaceBook pages, I don't charge 'cos ( after thinking about it ) I can't be flipped with all that AE nonsense.

That's what I do in the Winter time then ….when Summer's here and the sap is ris, I goes giggin. I have a regular spot ( say hello Lance ) at the local Nudie Place, arr, Just Google Cap D'Agde you'll find it! ( see pics ) started off with the Double Bass, it's now just banjo. No, silly, the Band's clothed, OK? what sort of sicko do you think I am? Hey, gig city, keepin it live!

Where was I? ah yes, if you are relocating, a Modecate of dosh is important, but we find that the 150 squid a week we used to lash out on carry outs, "cos ' I'm too tired to cook" is saved. We are lucky, we have a sea view, and to sllng some Sardines on the Barbie, crackin open the Diet Coke, looking at the Mediterranen, is cheap ol' way to have fun and pass the time away….we do live on a fraction ( do your own maths ) of what we were used to back in the awl counrty. It can can done…. don't spend, don't waste, don't gamble, be charitable and you will be rich beyond our wildest dreams….ain't that right love..LOVE….LOVE...LOVE.. hey ho away to bed.

Post script, someone mentioned my Yoda-like use of Syntax the other day, had to look it up! I always thought that's what you used to lay a carpet in a Brothel! ….lucky carpet!

Nite nite

Hello Shirley, thank you for your comments, very kind..... I'll be back!

Mrs. Birks Please keep these channels OPEN for on topic traffic!

If you need to advise me, please use traditional methods...Email, FaceBook, Skype etc.

You have been warned!

sorry Shirley, goes with the territory i'm afraid,

' you wanna read, you gotta bleed ' as they say...don't drink myself, drunk on life tho' x

hi Bri, Been out of los lupos, sorry doing a couple a web site-icles..laters

oi, it's sunday. had that tea yet?

Ron! your tea's ready!

some 45 years ago a good friend gave me a book on Krishnamurti I always found his ability to explain philosophies in bite-sized chunks very helpful.

3 years back I was making preparations to travel to India for half a year, but a spell in la poubelle de lune put pay to that, one day maybe

Retired Buddhist sounds like an oxymoron

I watched the Dalai Lama's speech in Delhi today. He retired last year but is he quitting, is he heck. I am not a Buddhist but share his views on humanity and for me it is such people who give me a raison d'être to continue what I do and will as long as I either stand or a neuron works in my head, but there I problem make myself vulnerable to many who may doubt their viability already.

really shy and retiring myself, sometimes I have to force myself out of my shell, but strangely it's often the invisible which is noticed, unlike the 'invisible' children described in your response to the Joseph Kony post.

Aha, one point that hides behind the facade is that I am deadly shy and would prefer to hide behind something but life has kept me in the open and I have learned to stand proud and confront all I must.

Interesting that you say the French might be appreciative of a 'critique' such as would more often than not 'offend' and therefore backfire 'back home'. In my years in Direct Marketing multiple mailings were required as the Post Office's own 'response' analysis showed little more than 2% dependent on the product or service on offer. So getting that unit cost down was key, massive increases of Postal costs, didn't help either. That's the beauty of electronic, no such costs.

You probably know more about the cultural 'differences' than I do, and how such presentations would be received. But the French that I have got to know certainly do like to get things 'right'.

If you do embark on this and If it is a goer, I would be interested to see how it develops.I do think you're right tho' the more 'personaised' the approach here the better. Good luck if you do run with it Emily.

@ Brian the Brain ...singing it now!

Fools Gold, hopefully

Dear All, I have got to know Brian over a short period of time on this network, and yes, we do exchange a little schoolboy humour, as much for our own pleasure as that of others. I avidly read, of course, his posts and comments, which, when it comes to issues of human and in particular children's rights, are poignant, hard hitting and thanks to his en-cyclopedic knowledge, accurate.

I have not met Brian in the flesh, but have built a picture in my mind that this power house of a man, is not driven by the pursuit of wealth, but like many in the areas of reportage, justice and charity work, is someone whom with his wife and partner, put the welfare of others before themselves. Exercising protocols, righting rights, fighting the fight wherever they can, against all odds, and wherever it is needed.

I suppose that if the engine of Capitalism, oils the wheels of the NGOs and charities, then the effects of a greed instigated recession will filter down to effect those least capable of helping themselves.

I'm sure we all watch our TVs and gasp appropriately at the atrocities and injustices that are screened, with little thought given to the many who work together, sometimes poorly funded, in order to try and ease those pains, allowing us all to rest easy in our beds.

I had given no thought to the fact that, whatever such institutions do, in whatever backwater of the Globe, cash is king as they's a daunting thought.

I'm sure Brain is right, the lapses into 'silliness' are a must to balance the harrowing effects of being in the front line, I'd forgive him that, any day. So, I'd want him to keep on chuckin' in the chuckle bombs, and that he keeps that very level head on to fight the good fight.

I don't think Bri is the retiring type, perhaps a good thing, that army needs all the soldiers it can muster, you've opened my eyes, yet again Brian.

Thank you.

...and in the words of that immortal song:

Some things in life are bad
They can really make you mad
Other things just make you swear and curse.
When you're chewing on life's gristle
Don't grumble, give a whistle
And this'll help things turn out for the best...

And...always look on the bright side of life...
Always look on the light side of life...

If life seems jolly rotten
There's something you've forgotten
And that's to laugh and smile and dance and sing.
When you're feeling in the dumps
Don't be silly chumps
Just purse your lips and whistle - that's the thing.

And...always look on the bright side of life...
Always look on the light side of life...

For life is quite absurd
And death's the final word
You must always face the curtain with a bow.
Forget about your sin - give the audience a grin
Enjoy it - it's your last chance anyhow.

So always look on the bright side of death
Just before you draw your terminal breath

Life's a piece of shit
When you look at it
Life's a laugh and death's a joke, it's true.
You'll see it's all a show
Keep 'em laughing as you go
Just remember that the last laugh is on you.

And always look on the bright side of life...
Always look on the right side of life...
(Come on guys, cheer up!)
Always look on the bright side of life...
Always look on the bright side of life...
(Worse things happen at sea, you know.)
Always look on the bright side of life...
(I mean - what have you got to lose?)
(You know, you come from nothing - you're going back to nothing.
What have you lost? Nothing!)
Always look on the right side of life...

watch it on:

And long may you continue to fool about on SFN!

Unlike Ron, I am not retired nor am I likely to be for many years despite beginning to receive the crumbs of a so-called pension from the UK late next year. That is also not to say I am bitter or anything like that. Perhaps it is more the case that what I do in some respects never really lets us go. So 12 hour days, seven days a week for the greater part of 52 weeks each year is more or less possible. My wife and children get me out of the house and I’ll take time off. Don’t get me wrong, I am not a ‘workaholic’, indeed I find time to cook, clean, work on our house, walk dogs, look after my bees, gardening and even sit down to have a read most days. I simply sleep little, get up early and go to be quite late. Why? Well, whoever works in children’s rights just about anywhere in the world is in touch with people around the globe, often needing to make rapid responses.

Sadly, the recession has hit us hard in this sector. When there is little money both public/international and charitable sectors suffer economically. UN projects are underfunded and need to cut costs, big and small NGOs have less money and have to make cuts. There is less paying work and then our fees are less than they were. I get less in fees per day now than roughly eight years ago, which goes counter the expectation of people with regular jobs receiving any kind of rise every couple of years. Ironically, there is just as much work to do. So that is what I do, I work for the people whose lives I wish to see improved. The fact that I am not paid does not give me any justification for sitting back and twiddling my thumbs. If I retired then my thumbs would twiddle in desperation. So I shall not retire and equally I shall not give up because my conscience would never let me.

Now, to be sure, there will be those among you who will say: but he’s always fooling about with nonsense things on SFN. True, but that is done whilst working. It is my black and white, my hot and cold and I say that because much of my work can be harrowing if not downright miserable and humour counteracts that sad situation of millions of the world’s children. So good people, I am perhaps both the opposite and the same as Ron synonymously. He is retired and I am not, but neither of us is competing to say who works longest – we just get on and do it.

@ Emily Montès Hi string ended soreponsehere.

Yes I thought about the 'web translation' idea last year when I applied for a job at a French Design Agency...their site was brilliant, I mean top notch, but their button to translate, took you to a 'mirror' with the most diabolical translations,I mean risible!

Do be careful about blanket mailings tho' ( spamming etc, ) I'd do small tailored tranches, perhaps with an example of text from their site. There are also, I believe, suppliers who will do blanket mailings electronically, and also supply a 'list' and claim to circumvent the issues regarding Data Protection, flaming etc. Truth is 'home issued' mailings will cost you zilch...and if it seems that the site has been translated 'internally' you can guarantee that whist the 'English' may be understandable, it will not colloquial...journalese, brochure or web style etc.....and probably riddled with howlers. Perhaps it is something that you could set up, and just trickle out the mailings as and when, and spent the real time fee earning if a job comes in. Everything could be done from the comfort of your own a little link-back translated by... to your Blog/webpage, et voilà

Don't forget my commission! ( lol )