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Hi Everyone!
Old 09-09-2006, 10:49 AM   #1
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Hi Everyone!

Hello Brothers and Sisters!* I ER'd in January of 2005 and have settled on the Gulf Coast of Florida.* It's really great here and I enjoy the snakes, lizards, armadillos and crocks.* They have become my friends.* Most of the other critters are snow birds that I only get to see a few months out of the year.

Just out of curiosity, has anyone ever done either a lengthy stay in Australia, say, three months, or, a cruise on a merchant ship of a month or so duration?* These are a few things that interest me.* My DW and I spent 15 days in Australia this past March and LOVED the country.

Let me just say that this is a great forum.* I have browsed here for several months and have found many of the posts interesting and enlightening.* I hope to add my two cents as time goes on.* AS they say in my neck of the woods, "What time is your early bird special".
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Re: Hi Everyone!
Old 09-09-2006, 10:57 AM   #2
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Re: Hi Everyone!

Welcome to the board, Paradiseken.

Haven't been to Australia... yet.

I've cruised on military ships for several months' duration and I wouldn't recommend that. Have you looked at NCL's M/V SUN or M/V WIND 11-day trips to Fanning Island and Hawaii?
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Re: Hi Everyone!
Old 09-09-2006, 11:08 AM   #3
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Re: Hi Everyone!

Yeah, I've been on military ships, LST's to be exact and don't recommend them either. I'll check out your recommendations. Thanks.
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Re: Hi Everyone!
Old 09-09-2006, 02:35 PM   #4
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Re: Hi Everyone!

Quote:
Originally Posted by paradiseken
Yeah, I've been on military ships, LST's to be exact and don't recommend them either.* I'll check out your recommendations.* Thanks.
My 1981 midshipman four-week "cruise" aboard USS RALEIGH (LPD-1) did more to send me to the submarine force than my submarine cruise.

Every time we got underway from Norfolk we ended up further inland, culminating in drydock... grits & hominy were daily fare in the wardroom, accompanied by both kinds of music-- country and western.

Now it's gonna take me the rest of the weekend to flush those memories again!
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Re: Hi Everyone!
Old 09-09-2006, 02:46 PM   #5
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Re: Hi Everyone!

Quote:
Originally Posted by paradiseken
... or, a cruise on a merchant ship of a month or so duration?
This looks like an interesting source of information on freighter cruising...

http://members.aol.com/CruiseAZ/freighters.htm
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Re: Hi Everyone!
Old 09-09-2006, 03:04 PM   #6
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Re: Hi Everyone!

Thanks for the link ReWahoo!

Nords, I was on the USS Wyndom County for a Firex. Flat bottom barge. Most of us jarheads got seasick when we stayed below. It was 1970 and we were heading for cold weather training at Mt. Fuji in Japan. Take care.
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Re: Hi Everyone!
Old 09-10-2006, 01:12 PM   #7
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Re: Hi Everyone!

I have had 2 stays of a month in Australia and DW and I plan to have an extended stay of several months when we RE. In fact DW has browsing the sites that advertise house swaps which sound like a great way to do this sort of thing. For those wishing to swap for a stay in the USA, Florida is a common destination that is listed.

I have a number of friends and relatives that emmigrated to Australia from England over the last 20 years (the latest was my brother and his family in 1995). They all have loved it and our 2 month-long visits in 1989 and 1997 had us completely sold on the place. (Even though we never went further than the states of Queensland and NSW).
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Re: Hi Everyone!
Old 09-11-2006, 10:30 AM   #8
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Re: Hi Everyone!

Thanks Alan. If you know the links to those house-swapping sites, let me know. Sounds like it might be worth a look.

Really liked Ayer's Rock, but the flies were awful!

Take care. BTW, how long to your ER?
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Re: Hi Everyone!
Old 09-11-2006, 04:04 PM   #9
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Re: Hi Everyone!

Here is house swap website DW found. It's good fun browsing through it

http://www.houseswap.com/

As for when I RE, it will be 3.5 years at the most - that is when I get a defined benefit pension plus continuing health insurance. However, the company is selling off a lot of sites this year and buying more - mostly overseas.

Today I told my boss that my preferences were :
a) a retirement package so I can leave now
b) secondment to UK (we are english by birth)
c) secondment to Europe (it would be to Basel)
d) will not take a secondment to APAC

Who knows what might happen, including staying put or finally just walking away from it all.

It's good to hear about folks like yourself who have made it 8)

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Re: Hi Everyone!
Old 09-12-2006, 09:53 AM   #10
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Re: Hi Everyone!

Alan,
Thanks for the house swap web site.* I've already been out there looking at properties in Austraila.* Might just be the way to go.* Here on the Gulf Coast of Florida, we have a very desireable location.* Just minutes from some of the best beaches on the west coast of Florida.

I am very lucky to have been able to retire when I did.* I had the right number of years and age.* I was "grandfathered" into some pretty good benefits, including healthcare.* Our company also switched from a defined pension plan to a cash balance plan.* Just prior to the switch, my pension was reset.* It actually more than doubled.* So I took it as a lump and rolled it into an IRA.* I am very lucky indeed.

I hope things work out for you.* Best of luck.
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Re: Hi Everyone!
Old 09-12-2006, 10:08 AM   #11
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Re: Hi Everyone!

Welcome, Paradiseken. Neighbors, possibly.

Where on the Gulf are you? I agree that this is a great region to retire in.
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Re: Hi Everyone!
Old 09-12-2006, 10:14 AM   #12
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Re: Hi Everyone!

Hi Rich_in_Tampa,

In Bradenton, not far from Longboat Key. How about you?
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Re: Hi Everyone!
Old 09-12-2006, 10:50 AM   #13
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Re: Hi Everyone!

Quote:
Originally Posted by paradiseken
In Bradenton, not far from Longboat Key. How about you?
Bradenton is great.

We are in South Tampa, in a great semi-urban neighborhood just over the Frankland Bridge. We get to Fort Desoto regularly.
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Re: Hi Everyone!
Old 10-02-2006, 01:38 PM   #14
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Re: Hi Everyone!

Quote:
Originally Posted by paradiseken
Hi Rich_in_Tampa,

In Bradenton, not far from Longboat Key. How about you?
Longboat Key is nice.............I also like Lido (spelling) Key, but as I recall, it was going a lot commercial...............

In 1987, I lived in Port Charlotte. We used to go to Punta Gorda because that was the only place that had something to do for young people. We used to hang out at Siesta Key Beach one weekend, then Ft. Myers the next.............life was rough.....................
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Re: Hi Everyone!
Old 10-02-2006, 02:57 PM   #15
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Re: Hi Everyone!

Thanks for the post FinanceDude. DW and I were in Sarasota not long ago and saw Jerry Springer with an attractive blonde by his side. He lives on Bird Key. This was before he appeared on "Dancing with the Stars".
I love it here, except for one caveate. I have to have a skin cancer removed in a couple of weeks. The sun here in Florida is intense and I have not been careful enough when riding my bike.
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Re: Hi Everyone!
Old 10-02-2006, 03:02 PM   #16
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Re: Hi Everyone!

Quote:
Originally Posted by paradiseken
Thanks for the post FinanceDude. DW and I were in Sarasota not long ago and saw Jerry Springer with an attractive blonde by his side. He lives on Bird Key. This was before he appeared on "Dancing with the Stars".
I love it here, except for one caveate. I have to have a skin cancer removed in a couple of weeks. The sun here in Florida is intense and I have not been careful enough when riding my bike.
I feel your pain man! I've absorbed a lot of sun in my life. Boating,
fishing, motorcycles, etc. I have had a lot of "stuff" removed,
and am having more surgery on Friday (simple - no big deal).
I knew two (2) guys personally who were killed by melanoma
so I am pretty cautious now.

JG
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Re: Hi Everyone!
Old 10-02-2006, 03:05 PM   #17
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Re: Hi Everyone!

Thanks JG. I'm having a MOHS procedure done. Since a lot of scarring is expected, I have to go see a plastic surgeon for a consult this week.
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Re: Hi Everyone!
Old 10-02-2006, 03:18 PM   #18
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Re: Hi Everyone!

Quote:
Originally Posted by paradiseken
Thanks JG. I'm having a MOHS procedure done. Since a lot of scarring is expected, I have to go see a plastic surgeon for a consult this week.
Okay, but from someone who has had a LOT of skin surgery.............
the difference from physician to physician is huge! I suppose this
is true in all professions, but this is my body (life?) we are talking about.
That's why I am traveling all the way to Texas to have my "routine" surgery.
My guy there said I could have it done here. I said "No way!".

JG
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Old 10-11-2006, 06:09 PM   #19
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Re: Hi Everyone!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr._johngalt
I feel your pain man! I've absorbed a lot of sun in my life. Boating,
fishing, motorcycles, etc. I have had a lot of "stuff" removed,
and am having more surgery on Friday (simple - no big deal).
I knew two (2) guys personally who were killed by melanoma
so I am pretty cautious now.

JG
Got the lab results today. All clean. Now if only the bill doesn't send me into cardiac arrest. Oh well, I always did love irony.

JG
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Old 10-12-2006, 05:45 AM   #20
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Re: Hi Everyone!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr._johngalt
Got the lab results today. All clean. Now if only the bill doesn't send me into cardiac arrest. Oh well, I always did love irony.

JG
Great news JG. I go in this Tuesday for the MOHS. I'm hoping the doctor doesn't dig too deep in either my skin or my pockets.
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