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Retiring in Paradise

I have to admit that I'm starting to slow down a bit. I am definitely in my final career - and quite comfortable working a 40 hour schedule. I even take a day off here and there to golf/ bike/ ski, although I'm thinking of selling my windsurfing equipment .

For the past two years I have been looking for a spot in paradise to retire to in five years or so - and I think I found it!

I have been traveling all over the Western US looking for the perfect spot to retire. But my idea of retiring is not the same as my Dad's - and then again, maybe it is. Let me explain.

My Dad had a pre-WWII high school education. He worked in government service for 30 years. He grumbled about his job the whole time - that is until the last few years. In his last assignment, he finally found a role that made him happy.

He was mentoring a group of programmers as they built a new system for the state of Pennsylvania. They were clueless about Health and Human Services. They really needed somebody that new how the system should work - he loved it. Then he hit mandatory retirement age and they kicked him out.

My Dad wasn't a dummy. He knew that he had a good deal, but he really missed his job.He never moved from Harrisburg, PA. For years, he made a monthly visit to his old department, to visit the folks he trained.

Now - I never did anything the same way as my Dad. I went to Carnegie Mellon. I spent some time as an over educated ski bum and I traveled a lot before I settled down. As a management consultant, I worked all over the world. I moved from company to company and even started a few, but I made a mountain top on the coast of California my home base.

But, guess what? My dad and I ended up in just about the same place after all.

I now own my own business and I work with a solid network of business professional. I spend most of my time mentoring and consulting with entrepreneurs and business owners. My role is remarkably similar to my Dads - but there is nobody that can kick me out.

I just returned from two weeks in Kauai. My bride and I had a great time in one of the loveliest places in the world. But toward the end, I was really ready to get back to my office. Unlike my Dad - I am looking forward to my working retirement in paradise - doing more of the same that is.

John Thomas is an author, mentor, and business consultant who works exclusively with entrepreneurs and owners of small and mid-size businesses. He also provides advice on web site promotion at

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