Well, I’m back in the US. Eight years of doing this job has left me well off financially, but it’s taken it’s toll. I’m ready for a break!
I’m taking a ton of PTO – March through mid May – to unwind, visit family, and attend a wedding. After that it would be back to the same old grind, only this time with a crap-tastic commute. Or not.
It’s March of 2016 and I’m turning 30 years old in a very good position: I’ve got a million invested, I’m at an ideal weight and in relatively good physical fitness, and I have choices. I don’t really want to have that insane commute, so let’s explore some options.
Option #1 – Initiate the SuperPlan
Quit the job and consider myself FIRE’d. This option is the most ballsy, yet has a statistically high success rate. In accordance with the SuperPlan, I’d work through the fall and resign in December. This sounds good, but I’m having a hard time not investing the $50k cash buffer for years 1-5. That same $50k, if invested, could pay me $1k per year, every year in dividends alone if the yield remains around 2%. Plus growth.
I could do a lot with $1,000. Plane tickets to see family. A season pass to go snowboarding. All kinds of things.
Also, I’m a little uncertain about kicking off early retirement in Salt Lake City. I dunno. Something about being so close to Former Employer.
Option #2 – The Gap Year
I could take a leave of absence for up to a year and test out early retirement. Basically have $15k in cash set aside, and turn on the dividend faucet to pay for the rest. This would do a few things:
- Further test my $2,500/month spend rate
- Get used to planning around the quarterly dividend & interest payments
- Allow me to jump back into work if SHTF, or I feel I miss the structured nature of a day job (yeah right).
Option #3 – Continue working the same job because I’m a big scaredy-cat.
Since the commute is outrageous, the only logical move forward in this career is to say f**k it and deploy once again. I’ve already calculated that another year gives me an additional $350 per month, forever, but it really isn’t the best option when I think back to how unhappy as I was most of the time during the last deployment. Besides, I think I have enough money, so going after more would be greedy.
There’s also a non-deployable position open here instructing the new hires. Maybe I’ll just do One More Year stateside and deal with the aforementioned commute.
Fear and greed. Such nasty things.
Option #4 – Coolworks.com
Coolworks.com is an awesome website that shows jobs postings for non-cubicle types. I often dream of being able to go snowboarding on a regular basis like I used to ten years ago, so I select “Ski Resort Jobs” and see what’s open at the moment.
For example, I could be a Gondola Operator at Telluride in Colorado. Operate a gondola for $14/hr for at least 20hrs per week and get a free season pass? That doesn’t sound too bad! I could even go full-time, four days a week and continue to pad that 401(k), get employer health insurance, and receive other benefits.
So what’s it gonna be? Time will tell. But for now, vacation!