Decisions, Decisions…


Old age crisis…

I can’t remember that I ever had a mid life crisis. Come to that, I can’t even remember that I ever had a mid life. I suppose that technically that should make it around my 40th birthday as I am currently, 81 years young. From what I can remember of my life back then, everything was as good as I could have expected it to be.

Seeing as how I missed out that time around, I am working towards an end of life crisis instead. I suppose “end of life” is a little strong as I don’t know when that will be, hopefully in the very distant future. As the exact date is unknown to any of us earthly beings, I can only push on with a full life expectancy of one hundred and twenty five. Anyway, it does tie into my current thought processes for to put it bluntly, I am restless and am choosing my right to have that crisis that I missed out on before.

To some, it is a no brainer. I own my home, am comfortably off and do not have a wife to nag and berate me into doing things that I don’t want to do or spending money on things I don’t want to buy. On the other hand, I do not have a readymade caregiver and so need to plan for the future. Instead, I live alone with two dogs, Ginny, a mini Dachshund and Pete, a fat little Chihuahua and Ellie, the one remaining very old cat. I do have about 250 or so fish friends out in the five ponds but “friends” is probably not the right word. I feed them and clean the water and generally get a lot of pleasure from just watching them swim around.

But, I am restless. I am having recurring thoughts of selling this place and either buying 5 acres out in the country and building a mini home on it so that I can disappear off the face of the earth, buying a travel trailer and spending the rest of my days driving around these United States and eventually parking it when I can no longer drive at wherever I end up. Or finally, even returning to my native England to live out what remains of my life and to become a burden on whatever family remains over there.

My Realtor friends tell me that a house with 5 ponds would probably be hard to sell unless I was extremely lucky and the right pond enthusiast happened to come along or if I was willing to take a price cut. So now, if I choose any of the three options that are nagging at me, I would need to close down at least 3 of the ponds which by itself, is not a small project.

So, as you can see, my mind is in a quandary. The easy thing to do is to work on this over a period of time like the next 6 months, closing down those three ponds and leave the two remaining 5000 gallon and 6000 gallon ponds and just landscape around them. I would probably need to do that anyway if I want to get top dollar for the property whenever I choose to sell although all that “Top Dollar” will do is leave more inheritance for any remaining kids.

Looking at the three options that are nagging at me and in no particular order, the following thoughts cross my mind. Why go back to England? It is always raining over there and much colder which was the prime reason for coming here in the first place. People have already got their winter coats on. So, put the England idea on a back burner but don’t discard it just in case this country goes down the toilet with Trump in the White House.

How about the travel trailer idea. I suppose the big question is, “I wonder how much longer I can drive without being a hazard to myself and anyone else out there on the roads”. I would need to buy a bigger vehicle to comfortably tow a trailer of any size and both of them would depreciate over the years. I suppose that as long as the trailer was in decent enough shape at its and mine final resting place, wherever that may be, that is all that is important so that I could park it and live in it for whatever years remain.

Finally, 5 acres in the woods with a mini home on it would require work at the beginning in putting it all together but I am not averse to hard work and as long as I am physically capable, it would help to keep me in shape. Not that I am planning on running a marathon or returning to the soccer fields anywhere in the near or distant future. It would probably cost me $100,000.00 to buy land, buy a mini home, put in a septic system, run water or drill a well and get electricity to the property which is a lot of money but unlike the trailer idea, would appreciate and be worth more when eventually it gets sold. It would also take time, at least 3-6 months to build.

Thinking about it, there is one more way to go and that is to do the travel trailer routine and then when I can no longer safely drive or get tired of it, to buy that 5 acres in the woods and park the trailer on it to live out my remaining days. That way, I could save the cost of the mini house. Damn, all of these ideas and no still no solution.

So, I have laid out my thoughts and am no closer to solving the dilemma that I am in. About the only positive out of it all is the obvious need to close down a couple of ponds regardless of what other choices that I make even if I don’t make a choice at all and stay here until I get shipped out, feet first.

Mid life crisis, what mid life crisis, how about the workings of an old man’s mind instead, making a crisis where there is no crisis. I have either got to live with it the way things are or make a decision about my future.

Written 9/22/2017

24 thoughts on “Decisions, Decisions…

  1. If you want my opinion for what it’s worth, probably not much and I am biased, come back to England and let’s look after each other and take pleasure from doing so whilst we still can. It’s never too late.
    Bring your furry family with you.


  2. Take your time to make the right decision. They do mank nice “Tiny Houses,” many of which are transportable. They can cost quite a bit though…. but many are really classy. You could just sell everything and just rent temporarily (at various rural places).
    I have rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis, and though only 66, will likely have a tough time physically in the not so distant future. My wife has Wilson’s Disease and eats through a stomach tube. We decided not to have kids… so will not have anyone to take care of us (offspring-wise). We just laugh about it!
    You are very lucky to be in such good health, Francis! Take your time and be prudent! 🙂

    • Sorry to hear of you and your wife’s health issues. I put my good health down to the fact that I have always been an athlete and have trained most of my life. I played soccer until I was 72 and then had to have a knee replaced which ended my playing career. Didn’t stop me from hiking though which has replaced my other physical activities. Maybe I will write a follow up blog to this one in a couple of months time to see where we are…

      • I’ve kept very active too, even flying dual-line stunt kites a lot in later years… which is great and fun exercise. (You should give stunt kites a try!)
        Sometimes genetics is genetics… and there is not much one can do about it (except treat it). I think i’ll have to have knee surgery on one knee in a couple of years or so. I’ll have to hold back with cleaning my aquariums during that time; crap!
        Go to YouTube and do a search on “Stunt kites to Homemade Rock and Roll”; that is me flying. 🙂

  3. I love your honesty. But at the end of the day the final decision is yours. But I have an advice for you. I know you said that England is your home and you left many years ago. but my advice to you is that it is no longer a good country to live. Half of their population below the age of 55 have left and are leaving. And to say so, the youth have left in bunches. My daughter has already packed up and so happy that we are leaving too soon after New Year is done. Like the saying goes, “Home is the best place.” But you can try coming back to old England, but I will be sad if I see you later on writing that you are unhappy. Most of your British nation have conquered France and they are as happy as never been before and they are all applying for French nationality. They don’t want to even know about BREXIT! Well I wish you happiness and hope you will come out with a very good decision. Hoping to reading from you soon. Take care of yourself!

    • Interesting comment. I will ask my two sons about this aspect of life over there. I left because it is always raining and bloody cold and hate to go back to that. Currently, it is 70 degrees here in Texas and is going to be another beautiful and sunny day. Of course, we may have the same problem with Trump in the Whitehouse.

  4. I think in every person’s life there will come a time we will make a tough decision or having a so called “mid life crisis or end life crisis” as what you just said. I say you go to a place where you think you will be happy and contented for the rest of your life. Goodluck!

    • I left it a bit late to have a mid life crisis waiting until I am 81 to have mine. Luckily, I don’t really have to make any decision (except about filling in a couple of ponds) and can live out the rest of my life here. On the other hand, what am I missing out on….

  5. As a kid I often snuck myself and my bicycle onto two properties in the neighborhood that each had a pond. One was a sunken claw-foot bathtub that housed goldfish. The other was a circular raised pond about two feet off the ground and maybe six feet in diameter. No doubt these are puddles in comparison to your ponds. Both, in fact, are visible from the streets and a recent drive-by in my car shows they are both still there.

    I’ve kept indoor aquariums for thirty years and I know the effort involved in maintaining and dismantling the smallest aquariums from 5g up to 55g. Lining up new homes for the inhabitants is the bulk of the effort.

    I wish you luck. Maybe a local boy scout troop can volunteer to net your fish?

    • Matt. A part of what we do in th our Local Pond society are what we call “Fish Rescues” so netting the fish and finding them homes is not a problem. What will be the problem is dismantling the ponds which includes moving several tons of rock and replacing it with fill dirt. Thanks for the comment.

  6. You mention in a comment that you are restless ! I’m restless now at 59, wanting to make changes that will bring some excitement . I hope you made the right decision for you !

    • I hope I did but it took a trip to the Hospital for minor surgery to realize that I have it pretty good and without my neighbors, life would indeed be very difficult. It settled most of my restlessness although there are still a couple of things that I really want to do…

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