You Can Retire….

This weekend’s post comes to us from Jacque.

Recently I received the content below as an email from a friend who lives in Florida:

You can retire to Phoenix, Arizona where …

      • You are willing to park three blocks away from your house because you found shade.
      • You’ve experienced condensation on your rear-end from the hot water in the toilet bowl.
      • You can drive for four hours in one direction and never leave town.
      • You have over 100 recipes for Mexican food.
      • You know that “dry heat” is comparable to what hits you in the face when you open your oven door at 500 degrees.
      • The four seasons are: tolerable, hot, really hot, and ARE YOU KIDDING ME??


You can retire to California where …

      • You make over $450,000 a year and you still can’t afford to buy a house.
      • The fastest part of your commute is going down your driveway.
      • You know how to eat an artichoke.
      • When someone asks you how far something is, you tell them how long it will take to get there rather than how many miles away it is.
      • The four seasons are: Fire, Flood, Mud and Drought.


You can retire to New York City where …

      • You say “the city” and expect everyone to know you mean Manhattan.
      • You can get into a four-hour argument about how to get from Columbus Circle to Battery Park, but can’t find Wisconsin on a map.
      • You think Central Park is “nature.”
      • You believe that being able to swear at people in their own language makes you multilingual.
      • You’ve worn out a car horn. (IF you have a car.)
      • You think eye contact is an act of aggression.


You can retire to Minnesota where …

      • You only have three spices: salt, pepper and ketchup.
      • Halloween costumes have to fit over parkas.
      • You have seventeen recipes for casserole.
      • Sexy lingerie is anything flannel with less than eight buttons.
      • The four seasons are: almost winter, winter, still winter, and road repair.
      • The highest level of criticism is “He is different,” “She is different,” or “It was different!”


You can retire to The Deep South where …

      • You can rent a movie and buy bait in the same store.
      • “Y’all” is singular and “all y’all” is plural.
      • “He needed killin” is a valid defense.
      • Everyone has two first names: Billy Bob, Jimmy Bob, Joe Bob, Betty Jean, Mary Beth, etc.
      • Everything is either: “in yonder,” “over yonder” or “out yonder.”
      • You can say anything about anyone, as long as you say “Bless his heart” at the end!


You can retire to Nebraska or Iowa where…

      • You’ve never met any celebrities, but the mayor knows your name.
      • Your idea of a traffic jam is three cars waiting to pass a tractor
      • You have had to switch from “heat” to “A/C” on the same day.
      • You end sentences with a preposition; “Where’s my coat at?”


FINALLY you can retire to Florida where …

      • You eat dinner at 3:15 in the afternoon.
      • All purchases include a coupon of some kind – even houses and cars
      • Everyone can recommend an excellent cardiologist, dermatologist, proctologist, podiatrist, or orthopedist.
      • Road construction never ends anywhere in the state.
      • Cars in front of you often appear to be driven by headless people.

What area would add to this list?

54 thoughts on “You Can Retire….”

  1. I guess I knew that’s what the Minnesota stereotypes are, but…And Iowa… ouch!

    You can retire to WInona, where:
    – you are trapped between the river and the bluffs on, technically, an island
    – summer is sometimes hot and humid but you’re busy with the festivals so you sort of don’t notice
    – garages are sometimes bigger than their houses (East End, anyway)

    Thinking of more…

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Passing this on, Jacque. Thanks.
    Not much to add, but I’ll contemplate and see if anything pops up later.


  3. At this stage in my life retirement seems a bit of a pipe dream – it’s still a decade plus away (at least) and almost certainly will not take the same shape it did for my parents or grandparents. I’m just hoping it doesn’t include taking a PT job as a greeter anywhere…

    Btw – sad that I have been out of the loop enough that I missed the conversation the other day about Simply Jane and art. The Jane of SJ is sister to the owner of the circus school Daughter attends. There is apparently a third sister who, as I recall, is a sculptor and jewelry maker. Makes you wonder what life was like in their house growing up…clearly very creative.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. Rise and Shine Baboons!

    It is too nice out and I have been in the garden this morning. I thought the email was funny, but I am not into it this morning.

    Happy day.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. The stereotypes about the various retirement destinations were amusing, though as we can recognize from the characterization of Minnesota, vapid.

    What I have trouble understanding is the notion of retirement where you leave everybody and everything you have come to know and enjoy in order to huddle together with a bunch of other old people in some distant retirement mecca. I understand there are sometimes mitigating factors, as when family has moved away and retirement means being able to get closer. But if the reason is climate, there are always trade-offs. The same goes for lower taxes. But that’s just my opinion.

    Location aside, what would comprise your ideal retirement?


    1. Minnesota trivia: We’re tied with Hawaii for the highest quality of living; #1 for rearing children; #1 for parks and recreation; #40 for the worst state for seniors to retire in (due to taxes); and 4th. highest taxed state


        1. There must be people whose values are such that they only care about how little they pay in taxes. The polls in financial magazines have relevance for them, I guess. I can report from experience that it is distressing to live in a state where government is clownishly inept. I got to know two nurses in Portland. They knew they’d have to find the money (and it was a LOT of money) to send their kids to private schools. These were relatively low-ranking nurses, not wealthy people.


        2. Yes, there are many things we get for our taxes, including the public library which offers incredible resources (it’s not just for books and magazines) for FREE.


    2. Tacking on a thought to Bill’s comment, I find it odd that so many people don’t just separate themselves from where they have lived by moving elsewhere, but that they also seem to separate “old age” from the rest of their lives. As if, in retirement, they will want to change activities and the basic structure of their lives in retirement.

      I suppose it evolved into this when Social Security came along and people could then retire without so much fear about what their old age would bring. Is it really functional to turn 65 and simply leave the life you have built? While I live in 2 different places now, I don’t want to give up everything in my life at age 65.

      Liked by 2 people

  6. My favorited retirement is living right here on Crystal Bay. Because of global warming, our winters are much milder (I actually miss snow), our falls come later, and our springs begin earlier. In other words, to me, our pleasant weather is hanging around for almost half of the year.

    If the weather was just as it is today; sunny, lush, pristine, I’d go crazy. When visiting CA many years ago, I’d peek my head out of the covers when I awoke and say, “NOOOO – not ANOTHER perfect day!!” Really. Californians visiting here during winter have the very same reaction; “NOOO – not another cold day!!”

    Over the years, I’ve made up a story about the seasons that breaking the year into four distinct nature patterns is a Godsend because it forces me to change out my routines.

    Winter gives me the “cover” I need to be relieved of summer property work. It also provides an excuse to stay inside and read books.

    Spring affords me a head start on preparing for summer. Weeding, mulching, planting annuals.

    Summer, if I’ve gotten all the spring chores done, brings grand kids, barbecues, and sitting on the lake swing with a glass of wine. Or two. If I’ve done a good job in the spring, all I have to do throughout summer is mow, edge, and water plants.

    Fall brings its own kind of beauty and allows just enough time to clip down the scrubs that the lush summer’s grown, and blow leaves.

    Then the renewal of seasons begins again. I’ll never understand how people can bask in good weather year around, and they’ll never understand why anyone would welcome the cold.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Any discussions I’ve read rating the quality of life for retired people were insultingly simplistic. My reactions to a geographic location are driven by many diverse factors.Articles that vilify Minnesota for high taxes fail to account for the distress generated by ineffective government and blatant social inequality. Before I moved to Oregon it didn’t occur to me that my comfort as a retired person could be shattered by the sight of so many homeless folks. Now I know.

    Systems that pretend to rate the quality of life of different regions usually ignore the critical factor of close family support. I suppose there are people who really care about avoiding taxes, but for me no single factor outweighs the joys of living close to those I love.

    For what it is worth, the Twin Cities matched the whole range of livability issues that mattered most to me. Yes, I noticed that winters in Saint Paul could be uncomfortable. And yet they didn’t make me as uncomfortable as the public school system of Portland (which ranks with school systems in impoverished and dysfunctional states).

    Having lived in four states, I doubt I ever feel as totally at home as I did in Minnesota.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Once, about 10 years ago, I took an art class from a woman who retired in Texas. Her husband, a retired Army Officer, chose Texas solely due to low taxes there. They purchased a mobile home in some remote area far from the ocean and beaches and cities because it was cheap. So there they lived in a hot place with nothing and no-one nearby.

      Further conversations revealed that their children were estranged, family all lived elsewhere. I thought their lives might be terribly limited by this focus on money and living cheap.

      Liked by 3 people

    2. I would add that in recent years that the summers have been more uncomfortable than the winters here in Mpls. Of course maybe summers are more comfortable across the river in St. Paul…


  8. I consider Minnesota an acceptable choice for a retirement location, if indeed I am ever able to retire, which is looking pretty questionable. I won’t ever have enough money to be worried about how much I pay in state taxes, so if that’s the biggest negative it’s pretty meaningless to me. I do think that Minnesota offers a lot of low cost (and sometimes free) entertainment, and the state is generally better than most in health care and social services.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. I don’t want to retire anywhere else but I do have occasional fantasies about living someplace other than here. I’ve always thought Maine or Alaska might be fun as there seem to be a larger number of people there who aren’t worried about what other people think. I’ve also thought it would be fabulous to live in Brussels ..
    a quaint brick house with window boxes full of brightly colored flowers. And then there’s the fantasy of having so much money that I could have my own tropical island with a little airport and I could fly all of my friends and family in whenever I wanted to.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I think it is important to try living where you are interested in the life there, where ever it is. With things like VRBO and Air B and B it makes it possible to temporarily live different places and try out the fantasy of it all.


    1. Other than being cut off from family, which for me would be a deal-breaker, traveling the world on cruise ships indefinitely would be a dream come true. I’ve taken four cruises in the last five years; one by myself and three with my daughter and her two teenagers. For the most part, they were good experiences, although it’s high drama to have four people sharing the same small state room. Teenaged girls have flash mood swings and take two hours of trying on clothes and make-up before they emerge for ship activities.

      It is the cheapest mode of living possible. The four of us had five days on the ocean for $1400 total. Foods of every country around the clock. Buffets, formal dining, Mexican, Italian, and buffet options. Every night there’s the choice of a theater production, a Latin band, a piano bar, the casino, and a rock band. The ship’s activity director also puts on whole-ship deck parties, line dances, and hilarious contests. Getting off on exotic islands is fun, too.

      All of this food, entertainment, and island hopping came to only $70 per day for each person. That’s less than a cheap motel which doesn’t include meals. It’s less than one meal in a good restaurant. Beds are freshly made each day, there are laundry facilities, and ship doctors. People on cruises tend to be refreshingly friendly because we’re all sharing the same experience of pure relaxation and suspension of our back-home lives.

      Frankly, I can’t imagine a better retirement community as each new cruise opens up the opportunity to get to know a new batch of people from different cultures as well as visit new countries.

      All of this being said, I’d dearly miss my family and, at this age, worry about medical crises onboard.


  10. Rise and Shine Baboons!

    Last night we attended the Minneapolis Pops Concert at Lake Harriet Bandshell. There were hundreds of people there, probably thousands. It was delightful. They sang and played Gilbert and Sullivan’s Pirates of Penzance. It was a delightful evening full of top notch music performed outdoors. A light breeze kept the bugs away.

    This would not occur in Phoenix, ever. Free concerts there are garage bands playing out of tune and shaky rhythms. I sat there thinking, I just don’t want to live or retire elsewhere. Living 3 months in Phoenix allows us to develop a relationship with our grandchildren there, and connect with our kids there. But AZ’s warm winters do not compensate for the kind of life we have here.


    1. That would have been a fun concert. I’ve had a soft spot for Pirates ever since Robin and I costumed it for a Hopkins High School production.

      Liked by 2 people

    2. I have biked down to a couple of the Gilbert and Sullivan concerts at the bandshell (a friend sometimes sings with the G&S Very Light Opera) and they are always delightful. You’re right – it’s one thing I love about the city, and often take for granted, that summer means free GOOD concerts at Lake Harriet and other locales.


      1. I assumed such things happened everywhere. AZ has proved that high quality does not happen everywhere when the concert is free to those who attend. Every bad musician in the USA must live in AZ and be proud to be bad.

        So cynical and so smug about Minnesota. Shame on me. Well maybe not. Maybe I am just proud to be bad and smug.

        Liked by 2 people

    3. Have any of you been to the Gilbert and Sullivan Very Light Opera Company ( full performances? Same group as at the bandshell but fully staged, costumed, and orchestrated. They have been doing a G&S operetta (with the occasional non-G&S title of a similar type) every year for over 30 years at The Howard Conn Fine Arts Center in Plymouth Congregational Church. It is always extremely well done, with some of the actors and musicians returning year after year. They do about 15 performances each spring, in March through early April, as well as occasional special events and the annual concert with the Pops every summer at the bandshell. I’ll try to remember to mention it here when I get the notice next winter that tickets are available. The 2018 show is Princess Ida and 2019 is The Mikado. I have probably gone at least 20 times over the years and seen some of the titles more than once. It’s always a great show and still reasonably priced ($22 for the 2017 show).


    1. Yes, welcome back to the trail. I love Hawaii. I don’t think I could live there year-round because the weather doesn’t change enough but I do love it for short bursts.


      1. you know i could agree if it were siberian winters or alaskan 20 hour darkness but hawaiian perfection. maybe 30 or 40 years would be ok for a home base


  11. how about honduras?
    i think the alaska in the summer and hawaii in the winter would have been the move in the 70’s for me but today the million required is goona get put somewhere else when it comes in.
    i love the arizona california communities where the town is 4 000 in the summer and 400,000 in the winter. old folks in the trailer communities really do have community. the bingo, coupon clipping, pie night at the community room is a thing.
    i laughed when vs had her shindig i thought and asked my mom if she wanted to come meet nonny and i had to pick one person who would likely be booked it would be my mom. she retired in a middle priced co op and other than the republican luthern pastor base the committees and event and to do stuff keeps her busy and happy. she was off to a retreat at st johns that weekend and i had to laugh again. busy lady.
    i will retire someday maybe and i like minnesota but the weather is a non issue for me.
    i have been around areas for winter that were warm and its just not right!!
    christmas tree replaced with cactus for light stringing is wrong ,snow sprayed on the windows of the strip mall storres on a 90 degree day with ho ho ho prionted below is weird. going outside on new years day in shorts and a t shirt and being too hot is proof i am not the guy for that part of the world.
    i am lucky to realize minneapolis is the place for me. within range of the north country for my wilderness fix and near the stuff i care about for cultural touchstones
    theater and music i guess sums it up, maybe a year or two in honduras would teach me to chill but i dont know. sitting on a mountainside contemplating my naval for a day or tow is ok but a lifetime would make me nuts
    there is a guy who decided to sell his business and travel the world at age 50 or so and he seems to be enjoying it. london is a bit expensive but viet nam is not. amsterdam is cool but backwoods netherlands is a whole different deal that is wonderful to experience and pretty cheap. switzerland is so expensive its crazy but wow what beauty.. i need to get to new zealand and austrailia, iceland and scandanavia, but thats about travel not retiring, can i do that instead.? ive always said if i could travel 1 week a month (maybe two) life would be perfect. i’m sticking with that


    1. Traveling a week a month would be hard for me. I always have a hard time getting through the jet lag, despite loving to travel. By the time I recovered from the trip and was coherent again, it would be time to go off somewhere else.


      1. My one and only international flight to Kenya last February was 18 hours in the air, with a two-hour layover between the first and the last legs. I’d heard from so many people, including my friend who’d host me, to


        1. (OOPS – I hit post accidentally!) … expect to be disoriented and tired for a couple of days. I dreaded this part because I only had 10 days to experience this culture. It never came. Not for even one hour.


      2. i dont participate in jet lag. never have. just be on the current time zone and never never never refer to the home time.
        there are tricks like stay awake too long on the first day so you sleep with a wake up on the first day at the correct or closteto correct brain reference point


  12. Discussions of good and bad retirement locations often fail to put appropriate emphasis on the quality of health care. That’s understandable. People in their 50s and 60s fail to anticipate the critical role of health care for older people. Until your body begins to break down you can fool yourself about this.

    As lovely as my cabin in Cornucopia was, it was almost an hour’s drive from a hospital . . . and not such a great hospital if you survived an emergency trip there. Retiring in Cornucopia could shorten the life of anyone with cardiac issues.

    My three years in Portland left me thinking the health care was the single best reason to retire there. It is too early to judge health care in my new home, but my first impressions have raised concerns.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. ive never had to think about health care at all. it used to piss me off that the stuff i wanted to do was not covered. homeopathics and massage but the insurance made my wife happy. now obama care has me ticking since 60 + health issues have popped up. id be dead without it.


      1. Well, let’s hope that you don’t have to find out what life without the ACA (or something better, and I don’t mean the mis-named “Better Care Reconciliation Act) is like, tim.


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