So today marks our 200th day of NINKERING! YAY! As I sit here writing this blog I started to think about how I feel and what we have done and have we used our time wisely, and also contemplate some of the questions I have fielded from friends, acquaintances and obviously ex work buddies given this small milestone in our journey. What would we do differently if we knew what we know now?
So in answering a few questions that have been posed to me which may help other NINKERS.
Are you bored yet?
Sure there are boring days, but there always was and no doubt always will be. Days when it pours with rain day in and day out get boring but again they do for everyone. Other than those types of days where its just hard to do anything, go anywhere generally there haven't been too many boring days.
What do you miss most about working?
The salary of course! The real issue for me on this for me is not money itself, but it's about not being able to be so generous and obviously needing to be more frugal. I have always loved being able to be generous to friends and family in many different ways and spoil those I love and cherish. Without a salary this takes a little more thought and you tend to loose the spontaneity. In saying that there are ways you can be generous and time is one of those things - like helping Mum clean out her cupboards - once upon a time I probably would have paid someone to do this for her, but I have time on my hands now so off I went and did this job myself for her so the generosity just comes in a different format now and I got to spend a few hours having a chat to Mum which was nice. So giving time to help others out is now the form of generosity we provide.
Are you sick of each other yet?
No not at all. We always have some project on our plate, we are always organising something, planning things and of course doing - so there is always much to talk about and so far so good.
What do you hate most?
Large bills and especially those unexpected ones - we have had a couple of these and they can certainly destroy plans and make you nervous, however expect the unexpected I suppose and move on - they are what they are and they are there to remind us that being foot loose and fancy free has its moments.
What would you have done differently in planning for NINKERING?
Rid myself of money sucking assets and investments. Negatively geared properties are great as a tax deduction when you are earning money, but they are money suckers when there is no income coming in - take your money and run would be my advice.
This leads me to the boat - an asset we get so much enjoyment out of, something we have had so many great weeks away in ...... but I would think about this asset more if I had my time over. Don't get me wrong we love to go out for days at a time, waking up to beautiful mornings, fishing, swimming and long beach walks but it is in this style expensive. Before NINKERING we didn't think too much about filling it up - but $1000 to fill up is expensive and when anything goes wrong it is always expensive ie: when the fridge died it was $2000 to replace it (yes a small bar type fridge) boats are a bit like weddings everything costs more when its for a boat. The jury is still out on the boat - when you are using it it is fabulous to be able to just get away but when its wet, raining and windy and you can't get out it seems like a big investment.
What do you love most?
Freedom, waking up everyday and feeling invigorated, never feeling sick and tired, never feeling like what battle will I be facing today and being truly happy every day - smiling and finding the funny side of everything. I do feel the best I have in years like a burden has been lifted, but more importantly I am able to be the person I wanted to be - the fun loving person, the carefree person, the happy person and not the bitch, not the toe cutter, not the cranky bum.
So reflecting on 200 days - what have we done and have we used the time wisely?
Boating: about 30 nights out, plus several day trips, fishing, swimming, walking the sand dunes so lets say 40 days have been spent boating.
Brisbane to Cairns 8 days of great fun and adventure and probably the best value for money week we have had.
Vanautu - 6 action packed days, pure fun and exhilaration - kayaking, snorkeling, jet skying and trying lots of new things.
Cruise Bangkok to Sydney: 20 days experiencing new cultures, new places, making new friends. Bangkok touring, Veitnam, Singapore, Burnei, Darwin, Port Douglas and Sydney and of course that Harbour Bridge Climb - all things that evoke the senses.
Tassie 10 days of driving around Tassie and experiencing some of Australia's best landscapes followed by 3 days in Melbourne at it absolute most sunniest and spending time with good friends.
Day Trips: 20 days of general day trips around SE Queensland, going to the beach, metal detecting, going to the mountains - all things that are good fun, cost little especially if you pack a picnic but often you find the best little places for lunch that don't cost the earth which is nice, fun and adds to the days adventure.
Family Events 14 days - with Easter and Christmas shoveled in here we can say we have over 2 weeks served up at least 100 meals in just these 2 events - something we have really enjoyed so much, the ability to do this at your leisure and not hey I have to get this done in between working and then get it all cleaned up before going back to work.
Lunches, Dinners and Parties 20 days - we have really enjoyed going out to nice places for lunch on beautiful days and entertaining friends or going out to dinner and or parties like Cup at the Cove, High Teas at Tea42 and other great days and nights out.
On wet days we have really enjoyed "Cheap Tuesdays" at the movies and cooking schools. 10 days
One area we have spent some time on is our health - after all this was what NINKERING was all about, doing and experiencing while we were young and healthy enough to do it, but also understanding our own health. So about 10 days has been spent in getting blood tests, Mammograms going to the dentist etc.
So that rounds out about 160 days out of 200 and at some point you do have to be at home to clean etc, but have we used our time wisely - yes I think so! I think we have done some great things but at the same time being comfortable with being at home and enjoying at home days as well catching up on things we had wanted to do for a long time - and while sometimes these seem mundane they are also good for the sole and you feel like you achieved something that had been annoying you forever.
Has it cost more than expected, well yes and no, our day to day living is good, our holiday are in budget, we have enough thing that keep us busy without costing the earth, but bills are the things that are grey, but we always said this wouldn't last forever, but we would let it last as long as we could without leaving us broke - we will definitely see a year out and possibly more
We are now planning our UK trip (well maybe, but that's another story).
Are we having fun yet? You bet and looking at this small collection of photos I think the smiles speak for themselves!