Every day is a Saturday. Retirement is like that. Which means that the structure and routine of daily life changes from how I used to spend my days at work.
Or does it?
It is hard for me to describe a typical day but I will give it a try. There are so many variables. Without a calendar-driven day job, there is certainly a lot of flexibility and a lot of room for last-minute outings or dinners or social times with friends.
Generally the day looks like this for me. Keep in mind that Lorraine and I do spend a great deal of time together but there are some things that she is fine with me doing on my own. After you read this post, you will likely understand why.
My alarm goes off at 5:30am. Time to hit the gym. I do this six days a week. The workouts usually last an hour. When I get back, I typically give the car a wash. Then shower and breakfast.
At 8:00am, I head to the computer. I will spend at least two to three hours on the iMac.
Email — I still receive hundreds of emails a day. And I still hit inbox zero by end of day. I might spend 30 to 60 minutes on email.
Website/Social Media — this wee website of ours does take time. I can usually expect to spend an hour or two to write up a post. Depends on the amount of research and detail. Some posts are a bit easier than others. I also have to remind myself that the site is getting a lot of hits and I am not just writing for friends and family. Must watch my tone and content! There is also Facebook and Instagram. I check the former and I post photos to the latter.
News/Research — aka surfing the web. I read through multiple blogs, forums, news, finance and investment sites. And I have to watch my time on YouTube. Although I gain lots of insight from YouTube videos, YouTube can also draw you into the pit of distraction. I seem to have a peculiar fascination with Russian dash cam videos. Those Russians are terrible drivers.
We are now somewhere around 11:00am. Time for guitar practice. I spend about three hours a day in practice. I am currently working on 100 or so songs as part of my service in worship bands in Canada and the U.S.
I usually break the guitar work up into a practice slot in the morning and then another one later in the day.
Closing in on lunch. Lorraine and I usually have a light lunch in the coach. However, with all of the wonderful sunshine and warmth down south, we often combine some errands with a meal out. If we head out, we are gone for an hour or two. Then, the most important time of the afternoon.
I have been learning how to fly an Airbus 320. Great aircraft. And, yes, I am flying on X-Plane, an advanced flight simulator, as we weren’t able to flat tow the Airbus behind our coach. The Flight Factor a320 is called a study aircraft by flight simmers. It is a complex aircraft to learn and fly. I do the whole routine: flight plans, charts, radios.
If I’m not careful, I might fly for way too long. Even a short hop between KSAN and KSFO can take a few hours.
I then force myself to read for at least an hour or two. Even though I have been an avid reader for most of my adult life, the Internet has made it very challenging for me to read books. So much harder to maintain focus when reading. But there is such a tremendous reward in books. I have 30 books on my 2019 reading list and I will get through them all in 2019. Six down so far.
If I have enough time before Lorraine and I eat dinner, the guitar comes out again.
Evenings vary. If we are not heading out with friends for an evening, I will often spend the time working on our investments and financial plans, post processing photography or other tasks like cleaning the coach.
Before bed, I might call up Netflix or Prime for an episode of a favourite series. I can only watch TV for an hour or so max. If it is a movie, it will be watched over a couple of nights.
To bed by 10pm as 5:30am comes quickly.
Now that is how most days go by. There are lots of other things that happen during the course of a day. Walking the dog with Lorraine. Connecting with family and friends.
Lorraine and I plan special days. Might be a hike at a national park. Might be a visit to an attraction. Even a conference. But those happen once every week or two. Not every day.
I work on audio projects, mixing music. That can take a lot of hours but it is not a daily thing for me.
I have a foot injury which has kept me off my bike for the past several months otherwise I would be out riding a lot more.
With more social connections, it is not unusual for casual get togethers to occur at the last moment. Unless we have something else booked, Lorraine and I always make time for friends.
The important point is that there is a pattern to our lives, a pattern that we are truly enjoying. And, for the most part, we get to decide exactly how we will spend our day.
Just like Saturday.