What do you DO all day??

I’ve been asked this question so many times I figured I’d wrote a blog post. Many people facing retirement wonder what they are going to do to fill their time when they are no longer working. Add living in another country where options may be different and it becomes even more of a question.

I can tell you what I do all day, but it may not be helpful when you are trying to figure out what you will do all day. What do you want to do? What are all those things you wished you had time for? Or (maybe more challenging), do you only work? Will you have to rebuild an entire new life from scratch?

I think these questions will need answers no matter where you live. You can retire in Florida, or North Dakota, or Tahiti and you will still need to figure out what to do and how to have a good life in retirement. When you figure out what you want, that will help determine where it is possible to do the things you want. You won’t be happy in Panama if your dream is to go skiing a lot or spend evenings at the opera. But, if you want to photograph bugs or hike in the mountains or go fishing, it could be wonderful.

As for me, I seem to keep very busy. I have friends I like to spend time with. I ride my bike, take photographs, write in my blog, and keep up with email correspondence. There is shopping and cleaning and cooking, like anywhere. I like to listen to books and work in the yard, and study Spanish. I have sewing projects I don’t seem to get to, and a website that needs updating. We have also been doing more traveling both in and out of the country. What a difference though to spend my days doing what I want to do, rather than what I must do. It’s been two years and work is finally fading from my daily thoughts, and hopefully it will also fade from my dreams too.

Retirement is such an individual thing, something we all have to figure out if we are lucky enough to reach those years beyond working. I’m fortunate that I have a lot of interests that mesh wonderfully with a life in Panama.

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About Kris Cunningham

We live in David, Chiriqui Provence, Republic of Panama! This blog is about some of our experiences in our new country.
This entry was posted in Miscellaneous, Panama and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

16 Responses to What do you DO all day??

  1. 4sarge says:

    TIME seems to Fly By. I still complete Projects Everyday but I’ll admit it is taking Longer. Enjoy YOUR Life while You can

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    • I know what you mean. I used to pack more into my life and things couldn’t take longer. But now it doesn’t matter and we don’t have to watch the clock, and it’s a really nice thing.

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  2. I can’t wait until the day when being salaried is a distant memory :).

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  3. Angeline M says:

    I am loving my retirement, and time seems to fly by every day. And, yes, I think the best part is the freedom to do what I want, when I want, for how long I want, and not be on a time clock (someone else’s).

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  4. Beautiful post, Kris! I agree wholeheartedly. I woke up at 3 am this morning to try to take pictures of the blood moon. I walked to the beach and it was overcast…not a star in the sky and no moon to be seen. Yet, it was a wonderful feeling knowing that I didn’t have to go go to work in the morning. Retirement provides me with an opportunity to try everything I never had time to do before. Have a great day following your passions.

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  5. Mike says:

    We had a beautiful view of the blood moon this AM. The sky was crystal clear which is highly unusual for the Chicago area due to humidity and city smog. It was really cool to see it so clearly.

    I am retired but my wife who is a nurse has a couple of more years she wants to work. She is an avid gardener and I dabble with her. I think we both would like to garden wherever we end up and I am curious what type of homeowner vegetables are common there, as well as fruits?

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    • How nice that you got to see the eclipse!
      As for growing things, it depends on where you live. We’re lower where it is hotter so here there is a lot of fruit – papayas, pineapple, bananas, plantains, etc. People grow a lot of guandu (pigeon peas), yucca and other root veggies, watermelon, squash. There are also fruit trees like citrus, and many fruits that are new to me. Up in the highlands they grow about everything you can imagine – carrots, onions, tomatoes, celery, lettuce, etc. Chiriqui Provence where we live supplies the whole country with produce, one of the many reasons we like it here.

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  6. Mike says:

    As far as what I do all day, its pretty much the same as any homeowner. I do some cleaning, take care of our two bulldogs, yard work and take care of our home. I also like to dabble with old cars which has me in the garage everyday. Add a one hour workout and that ends the activities. I try and prepare a meal for my wife every couple of days but she is a very light eater so its really not that important although I do think she appreciates it because she generally cleans her plate. We have mandatory ( really semi-required) Sunday meals for our family of 5 plus my wife and I make 7. Its usually pretty simple but it does require some work which I enjoy doing…. it keeps us in touch with each other and I think the kids look forward to it. They are free to bring along their friends and spouses which usually makes a nice get together to end the week and get ready to start a new one.

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    • Family get togethers are such a good idea! It’s so easy to get busy and lose touch with what is most important. I can’t do that here but I call / video chat with my kids every weekend.

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  7. Carole says:

    We are semi retired, work in our shop from 12-6pm. Snorkle in the mornings for a few hrs. When I get up I try to paint a little, one of my hobbies I hope to do when I finally retire next year from our business. Can’t wait to totally retire so I can do some gardening and paint.

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  8. John & Susan says:

    The best part is you are doing what you want to do.
    That’s freedom!

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