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Old 01-05-2016, 04:48 PM   #41
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... or pulling your motorhome into a vast truck stop on the Ohio turnpike and selecting a spot far from the existing semi-trailers to go to sleep, only to wake up at 1AM when two gigantic semis pulled in and sandwiched you in the middle, and ran their refrigeration units the rest of the night. Cost: $0. Memory: priceless.
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Been there, done that...albeit with a 5th wheel rather than a motorhome.......those reefers are some noisy!
Our heroine SarahInSC would have a lot more exciting things to write about on her past Siberian trip with her husband. Now, that is a real adventure.

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Talk about investing in experiences, sometimes an experience requires you to get "stuff", such as an RV, a fishing boat, a motorcycle, etc... Many hobby activities also require tools and material. The only activity that does not require too much stuff is travel...
I forgot to say that when the experience requires purchasing of "stuff", I buy the least expensive things to get the job done.

For a while, I and my son used to ride our dirt bikes into the forest whenever we had a chance to go up to my high-country home. I bought a couple of used motorcycles, and that got the job done. Higher-performance bikes would be wasted on us, and might even tempt us into riding trouble.

When I was interested in RV'ing, I found a good deal on a used class C that had but 15K miles, figuring that if RV'ing was not for me I would sell it cheap and not lose too much money. After, when I was into it and liked this mode of travel, thought about upgrading to something nicer. But then, I figured that the RV'ing experience would not get enhanced with a more expensive RV. So, this RV will be with me for a while.

So, I have a few toys but they are not expensive, because I am really into the experience than the "stuff". There are people who buy expensive boats, but they are not into boating or sailing. These are just their status symbols. I am not rich, so toys that I buy must have a good return in the experience that they provide.
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Old 01-05-2016, 05:16 PM   #42
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I view experience expenses - in moderation and not every 5 minutes - as part of the whole point of saving elsewhere. It's all relative, depending on your age, what the experience is, how much you can really spend vs. invest.

I don't travel often or willy nilly, but when I do I go a bit crazy and throw caution to the wind. Awesome hotels, awesome dinners out, etc. And yet I'll still haggle over trinkets and treasures for mementos.

If I'm thinking "when can we come back here" on the flight home - that tells me it was worth it!
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Old 01-05-2016, 05:26 PM   #43
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Talk about investing in experiences, sometimes an experience requires you to get "stuff", such as an RV, a fishing boat, a motorcycle, etc... Many hobby activities also require tools and material. The only activity that does not require too much stuff is travel.
If one chooses their hobby wisely, the "stuff" may not that expensive. A boat hobby requires a boat, trailer, and a vehicle capable of towing both. Then there's the insurance, life jackets, maintenance, storage, and of course, the fuel used every single time you go out. It's easy to spend a lot to get started, and a lot to keep it going.

On the other hand, I have spent about $5000 on my music hobby to purchase instruments and amps, but after that initial outlay, I have no other ongoing costs other than $50 - $100 a year on strings, cables, maintenance, etc. To pick up my guitar and play for 2 hours costs nothing. To go to band practice or jam at a friend's place costs only the fuel to get there.

Travel may not require much "stuff", but it requires money to get there, money to stay there, and often money to do things while you're there. It can be done inexpensively or expensively, but every trip costs some money.
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Old 01-05-2016, 06:01 PM   #44
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If one chooses their hobby wisely, the "stuff" may not that expensive. A boat hobby requires a boat, trailer, and a vehicle capable of towing both. Then there's the insurance, life jackets, maintenance, storage, and of course, the fuel used every single time you go out. It's easy to spend a lot to get started, and a lot to keep it going.
I was thinking a kayak, a canoe, or perhaps even a small sailboat. One can enjoy getting out on the water with not too much money.

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... On the other hand, I have spent about $5000 on my music hobby to purchase instruments and amps, but after that initial outlay, I have no other ongoing costs other than $50 - $100 a year on strings, cables, maintenance, etc. To pick up my guitar and play for 2 hours costs nothing. To go to band practice or jam at a friend's place costs only the fuel to get there.
I totally agree with you. If one is really into something, an investment of $5K-10K which lasts decades is really cheap.

I recall my life-long electronic hobby. Starting from my teenage years, I did not have a lot of money, so bought used electronics from salvage yards to get parts to play with. I now have expensive bench equipment (left-overs from a failed startup), but have grown a bit tired of this. Modern electronics are not really amenable to do-it-yourselfer hobbyists. But I digress.

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Travel may not require much "stuff", but it requires money to get there, money to stay there, and often money to do things while you're there. It can be done inexpensively or expensively, but every trip costs some money.
Yes, travel costs money. But even here, as I look upon travel as an adventure (but not as much as a trek across Siberia or the Sahara ), I have found that with more modest means of travel, I get to experience the local scenery more. A pedestrian sees more than a rider of a limousine. So, frugal travel has brought me countless fond memories. I spend just enough for creature comfort, and while this means no hostels, it means no luxury hotels either.

And then, there are people who combine travel with living. One of my favorite blogs is "Kevin and Ruth". These people are real travelers, while I am only a tourist. They spend much less than I do, yet see a lot more.
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Old 01-06-2016, 08:37 AM   #45
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The historic stuff is fascinating but seems like one would not need a dose every year. Insights?
It was a buying trip for their business: leather shoes. And they always took side trips, e.g. Frankfurt, Vienna.
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Old 01-06-2016, 08:49 AM   #46
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... or pulling your motorhome into a vast truck stop on the Ohio turnpike and selecting a spot far from the existing semi-trailers to go to sleep, only to wake up at 1AM when two gigantic semis pulled in and sandwiched you in the middle, and ran their refrigeration units the rest of the night. Cost: $0. Memory: priceless.
I'm looking forward to it (cough). Just need to sell the house.
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Old 01-06-2016, 08:59 AM   #47
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My best wishes.

I recall a night at an RV campground in Nova Scotia. We woke up at 2AM due to high wind rocking the motorhome. Holly molly! It was worse because I did not bother to put it on stands. Could it be a tornado? Where would we run for shelter? The power was soon out (we were plugged in). Peering through the windows, we saw that the local residents were staying put in their RV instead of running around like headless chicken, so we did the same.

Next day, the air was as calm as could be. We asked the locals and they said high winds like that happened once in a while. No cause for alarm. The TV news said that the power was lost over much of the province, but it was restored some time in midday.
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Old 01-06-2016, 09:01 AM   #48
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I'm 62, and just retiring now. Along the way I fantasized about retiring much earlier. What got in the way of realizing those fantasies was me not being willing to give up "living" a decent life along the way. Time with my young children, traveling across the country with them. Being home in the evenings with them, etc etc. After they grew up and moved out, we did our international traveling (some, not a ton of it). So, instead of retiring at 50 or 55 with none of those experiences, I retired at 62. Every time I recalculated what I'd need to retire early, and saw what how the value of letting my funds benefit from more years of contributions and compounding, I felt a great weight lift from my shoulders.
I have no regrets about the years I wasn't retired. 62 came fast enough, and I lived a life well balanced, for me.
And I no longer feel I need to travel internationally. The romance is gone, and all I remember is long security lines and uncomfortable airplane rides.
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Old 01-06-2016, 09:12 AM   #49
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And I no longer feel I need to travel internationally. The romance is gone, and all I remember is long security lines and uncomfortable airplane rides.
I have zero desire to travel anywhere any more either, whether nationally or internationally. I traveled internationally nearly constantly with my family when I was a young girl, missing out on a "normal" childhood, and then as an adult I was required to travel quite a bit nationally for work. I think you and I already have had experiences that others may not have had, so travel is not all that new or glamourous or exciting (to me, anyway). The thrill is gone.

I'd so much rather awaken in my own bed, in my house where everything is the way I want for it to be. As for adventures, there is enough to explore right here in New Orleans to keep me happy for decades longer than I could possibly survive.
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Old 01-06-2016, 10:03 AM   #50
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The world is still a very large place. From the air, it does not seem that large, particularly when one crosses a continent on a high-flying jet in a few hours. But when on foot, one sees a lot more. And one must also know where to look. I am still learning this. I often read an article in National Geographic about a place that I have been, and see that the writer is able to view the same place with a different eye than mine.

People get different things from travel. Some don't get much, and that's a very personal thing. I guess it is the same as myself and spectator sports, which I find very boring. Watching a ball game would be torture to me.

Some people are perpetual travelers, and I don't see that I can do that, even though I consider myself a travel lover. I don't know how someone can say that they have seen it all.

The tedium of air travel is real. To compensate for that, I think I will need to stay longer to make it worthwhile. And when one has the time to wander the streets, poke into stores to look around, it's different than when one is on vacation and has to hit the major highlights quickly before heading back home. For example, when in Canada, I found it interesting that even their Campbell soups were different. They had flavors that one never saw in the US. Just to see what the locals eat or drink is interesting to me.

Travel can be tiring, hence I have to pace myself. When coming back from a long trip, I need time to recuperate, to be homebody for a while. Then, the wanderlust slowly creeps back, and I find myself looking for ideas again.

Life is great, when you have the choice to do whatever tickles your fancy, within reasons of course.
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Old 01-06-2016, 10:31 AM   #51
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And when one has the time to wander the streets, poke into stores to look around, it's different than when one is on vacation and has to hit the major highlights quickly...
Most often, for DW and me, the 'major highlights' are secondary or even tertiary......we love wandering the alleyways of, (primarily), European coastal towns/cities where the labyrinths evolved to confuse invaders......it's wonderful to walk up and down the maze, especially if you find yourself either back where you started or where you were hoping to get to..............kinda like life itself, I guess.
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Old 01-06-2016, 10:36 AM   #52
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That was my experience in Venice! We left the hotel to go get dinner and wandered around for a bit before finding the way back.

Ah, I forgot the name of the hotel, only that it was close to Piazza San Marco. I looked on Google map, and thought I found it. I would love to go back to the same hotel some time.
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Old 01-06-2016, 10:37 AM   #53
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Most often, for DW and me, the 'major highlights' are secondary or even tertiary......we love wandering the alleyways of, (primarily), European coastal towns/cities where the labyrinths evolved to confuse invaders......it's wonderful to walk up and down the maze, especially if you find yourself either back where you started or where you were hoping to get to..............kinda like life itself, I guess.
Ha ha!!! Back in the 1950's my brothers and I used to run and zip around that type of alleyways abroad, and our objective was to confuse and "lose" our parents so that they couldn't find us! What great fun and mischief. Eventually we'd return, happy and tired, to the hotel where we'd get a lukewarm scolding for it by our long suffering parents. That was fun.

I should write a book some day, entitled "Unattended Feral Children Abroad".
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Old 01-06-2016, 10:37 AM   #54
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Old 01-06-2016, 10:37 AM   #55
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You should spend your money on what gives you the most utility at the margin. In simple terms "spend on what makes you happiest". For some it will be experiences, for others it might be something else.
I feel a little sorry for those who can't derive enjoyment for any spending/gifting other than hoarding their assets. Certainly not an issue for me.
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Old 01-06-2016, 10:39 AM   #56
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Time for us to slow down

We have been married 8 years, and in that time traveled extensively. We have taken cruises, land trips, and DIY trips.
Unfortunately as we get older, our stamina is not as great, and we cannot tolerate long flights. A few years ago, we took a trip to Russia, which was a 14 hour flight through 11 times zones. Even with being in Business Class (Using miles) it was a strain on us.
We have decided to forego any further European travel, as well as organized tours. The "bags outside at 7 AM" gets old fast.
We wik still travel ,but a much more leisurely pace and on our own.
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Old 01-06-2016, 10:44 AM   #57
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We have never taken any tour. I always plan our own trip, and look up our own public transportation. I guess I'd better hurry up to do some more travel while we are still able to hop on/off trains, metros, and buses with carry-ons in hand.
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Old 01-06-2016, 10:53 AM   #58
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We have never taken any tour. I always plan our own trip, and look up our own public transportation. I guess I'd better hurry up to do some more travel while we are still able to hop on/off trains, metros, and buses with carry-ons in hand.
This is actually a point of contention between DW and myself. I really don't like tours. Every side-trip, every photo carefully pre-planned for maximum tourist enjoyment. I call it the synthetic experience. I'd much rather bash around, make mistakes and let life happen. This does, of course, require more time.
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Old 01-06-2016, 11:09 AM   #59
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I should write a book some day, entitled "Unattended Feral Children Abroad".
Or maybe an up to date autobiography, "Feral Human" or "Gone Feral".
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Old 01-06-2016, 11:12 AM   #60
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Or maybe an up to date autobiography, "Feral Human" or "Gone Feral".
Or Feral Referral?
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