My best friend at school retired at the same time as me. We had decided that neither of us wanted to stay at the school without the other.
Whilst I bought a house in Spain, he bought a smaller house in the town where he lived and banked the equity along with his lump sum.
He used to have a fear of flying so his wife would go on holiday on her own with the children and he stayed at home. I think you could say he has conquered his fear of flying now. This is the email he sent me this morning.
We spent the whole of September in Tuscany - staying near Lucca. What a lovely part of the world. I would recommend it to you. Very different to Spain - probably greener and softer. At the end of September we drove up to Provence and spent some time near St Tropez. It was lovely and very quiet. The crowds had departed but the weather was still beautiful. Altogether we were away for about five weeks.
Having returned to England we soon got itchy feet again and in mid October flew to Athens for a week. Athens was pretty amazing - lots of good food, ancient ruins (not just us) and retsina.
After this trip my wife went off to Vienna and I stayed home to sort out my broadband connections.
After a week or so at home we went to the USA for a fortnight. We flew to Boston, New York and Washington DC. What an experience, everything from whale watching, eating clam chowder, going to Ground Zero, Times Square, the Broadway theatre and visiting the White House.
We are going to California in March to see My wife's long lost friend - who now lives in Palm Springs!!! I can't wait and will set up some extra trips between then and now to keep me out of mischief.
I hadn't heard from him for awhile and was concerned thay he was OK. Obviously I needn't have worried. I don't think either of us would have believed that retirement could be this good.