The Road East: Day 4
We were about 50 miles into our drive across Nebraska when it suddenly dawned on us that we’ve actually never been in Nebraska. We’ve been in the surrounding states, South Dakota, Kansas and Wyoming, but not Nebraska. And guess what? Nebraska actually gave us a really good day. Who knew? Yes, it was a l-o-n-g drive, flat and very straight, but surprisingly our road to retirement is actually green and full of fall colors.
I’m getting pretty good at snapping photos through the window while the world passes by. And one of the perks of riding in a big yellow truck is that we sit up quite high so I have great views, and I’m almost at eye level with the big rig truckers. You’d be surprised by what they’re doing while driving. Texting, talking on the phone, drinking sodas, smoking cigarettes and today, we passed a driver who was reading a book, no kidding, he was. And there are a lot of female drivers on the road. You go girls!
One of best aspects of a road trip is the gift of time to just lose yourself in your thoughts. In my head today I came up with the next step in my 12-step retirement program. And that is, you’ve got to define your vision of what retirement looks like for you, because it belongs to you, no one else. You’ve worked for it, you’ve earned it, so it doesn’t matter a damn how anyone else defines retirement. What matters, is your passion.
Step 6: Define your personal vision of retirement.
Intentional Retirement: Joe Hearn
“Let’s be honest. Our culture confers a great deal of status based on things like homes and cars. It’s easy to get sucked into that game. Especially when banks are more than willing to put you in debt up to your eyeballs so you can make a good showing for the neighbors.
What would happen if we started to buck that trend? What if, instead of the currency of status being “stuff”, we started to make it travel, purpose, time with family, happiness, and freedom.
Is this for everyone? No. Should we do those things simply for the status associated with them? Definitely not. Climb the mountain so you can see the world, not so the world can see you. But if we’re going to admire people for something, we could pick worse criteria than looking up to those who live a full life.
Bottom line – think through what’s important to you during retirement. What do you really want to do? Once you have that list, invest heavily in those things. If your house is on the list, great. If not, don’t allow it to consume most of your resources at the expense of everything else on your list.”
Day 4: 400 miles. 45 gallons of gas.
You can imagine Big Betty is sucking up the gas. Abi downloaded an app on his phone; GasBuddy.com, and he became a member for free. It’s a mobile app to locate gas stations and the price per gallon. Once we fill up, he enters the current price at the station, to the app. The app relies on members entering the gas price found. The cheapest gas we’ve found so far is $3.06/gallon.
Tonight we are staying at a brand new Hampton Inn in Omaha. NE. Hilton Honors is currently running a promotion in which we can earn 3 times the point value for a paid weekend night. So instead of using 30,000 points (what the property required) and no $$, we opted to pay $98 for the room and earn 5,000 points. It’s a better deal.
$3.06 a gallon?! Lordy, I need to drive to wherever you are and fill up. I loved the part you wrote here, “you’ve got to define your vision of what retirement looks like for you, because it belongs to you, no one else. You’ve worked for it, you’ve earned it, so it doesn’t matter a damn how anyone else defines retirement. What matters, is your passion.” With my own eligible retirement just around the corner I’ve been pondering many things. And you really it spot on here for what resonates with me, Patti 🙂
Mike recently posted…Our Soviet Van, Stuck in a Mongolian River!
Even better, we found $2.85/gallon in Missouri! Considering Big Betty is a gas guzzler, we’ve appreciated the lower prices.
I don’t even like the word retirement because in our minds we’re not really retiring, we’re just changing our life style. We’ll never just sit back and stop living, there’s too many things/places we want to do/see.
I really believe, Mike, that everyone has to define their own path. It is not a one size fits all world, we all need to fulfill our passions. I look forward to hearing more about your thoughts/plans for the future.
Yes, I’m with Kim! I will definitely be more aware around trucks from now on! All the best for this next phase, Patti. Love you are creating your own 12 step program. Happy trails 🙂
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Thank you, Sarah, and all the best to you as well. I’m having a great time creating my 12-step program, it’s been fun but it has also made me take time to think about the process and that’s a good thing. Safe travels as you find your way around the U.S. I’m having a good time seeing your reactions to places we’ve been to and love. 😉
I have 2 more good travel apps (free) to recommend for you. Waze and iExit. Waze helps to reroute you in the event you need it. It works great in city driving. and iExit will recommend things you might need at exits as you travel. Both are great. Safe travels.
Thanks for these great suggestions. I’ll pass them along to Abi, he’s in charge of apps. 😉
I remember driving across Nebraska way too many times, mostly flat and kind of boring.
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Yep, flat and long, but I think our timing was good because of the fall colors. We were pleasantly surprised!
Omaha is actually a really cool city. I hope you get to enjoy it.
I’ve seen so many truck drivers do terrifying things!!! Reading a book is insane. Texting (which I see all the time) makes me want to call the cops on them.
Kim recently posted…Welcome to the New Age
I’ve always been leery about driving anywhere near huge semi trucks, they’re terrifying, but now that I’ve been able to see inside the cabs I’m even more frightened! It’s crazy!
The only time I was in Nebraska was when I was 14 in 1968 and our family went on a cross country road trip, using I 80 for the drive west–all 5 of us in a 1963 Chevy. I remember a stop in Omaha to take my little sister to an ER. She was diagnosed with malnutrition!
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Wow! That’s quite a story/memory. Was she in a picky food eating phase?!