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The Sunday Best (11/19/2017)

The Sunday Best

The Sunday Best
The Sunday Best is a collection of articles I’ve curated for your reading pleasure.

Expect most of the writing to be from recent weeks and consistent with the themes presented on this website: investing & taxes, financial independence, early retirement, and physician issues.


Presenting, this week’s Sunday Best:


Load this one up while you peruse the rest of the Best. The Mad Fientist and The 1500s interrogated interviewed me in a 20-minute podcast recorded at FinCon. The title says it all: Physician on FIRE – Geographic Arbitrage, Sunk Costs, and Gangsta Rap.


Not every FIRE blogger is an engineer. But most of them are. How the cleverly named Grounded Engineer engineered a low-cost, high-quality education. Affordable Engineering  Schools: How I Became a Golden Gopher [despite growing up in Badger country].


You know how I invest and manage my money. Want a peek at some other wealthy folks do it? From J.P. @ The Money Habit, Four One Percenters Share How They Manage Their Money.


Another One Percenter shares how he and his family spend their money. The White Coat Investor and family have more than twice our annual budget, but we’re not as different as it seems (see my comment). A Budget Without Payments.


She could have been a one percenter, but she values freedom and a crazy little thing called love. Why Gwen of Fiery Millennials is quitting her job and heading Up North in I’m Turning Down $2.7 Million Dollars.


A bit further Up North, a physician is plotting his own escape. The Loonie Doctor (he’s not crazy, just Canadian) tells us why in The Pillars of FIRE.


He won’t be alone up there. From Canadian Dream Free at 45 comes a post-RE recap. Life After FIRE — Two Months In.


Like me, Accidental FIRE is FI, but not yet RE. Like me, he’s enjoying a part-time schedule. How’s that going? He’ll gladly tell you in Dead Man Walkin’!


He’s also FI, also not RE, and willing to share his story. Passive Income MD sits down with Future Proof MD in the latest Future Proof Docs — Passive Income MD. Brings me back to when I was once a Future Proof Doc.


ESI Money continues to interview fellow millionaires. I took part in Interview #5, which I’ve told him is easily his favorite, but I’ve got stiff competition from another batch of rich folk:


Three Things For Which I am Grateful


Week one of our Spanish immersion experience is in the books, or as I should say, en los libros. We’re not immersing ourselves too deeply, taking an hour or two of class per day while sightseeing and “roadschooling” the boys with reading, writing, ‘rithmetic, and more.

One of those other things we’re all doing daily is writing down three things for which we are grateful and one thing that brought us joy in the last 24 hours.

Yesterday was my birthday and we were out and about all day long and got home just in time to get the boys to bed, so we didn’t have a chance to do our journaling and talk it over as a family like we normally do. As I write this, it’s Saturday evening, and I will share my journaling with you all, instead.


1. I am grateful for the part-time schedule that allows us to have this experience. If this were a typical one-week vacation, we’d be packing now and heading home tomorrow. I can’t imagine.

2. I am grateful for the support of our friends and family who are aware of my early retirement plans. We’ve been dropping hints for some time now, and the people who know our intentions have been surprisingly understanding. I’ve seen surprise and a bit of confusion, but no real opposition to our plans.

3. I am grateful for this online community that I’ve discovered and helped to grow. Between the blogging friends I got to meet in person at FinCon and all of you who read this site, leave great comments, send me e-mails, or find me on social media, I have made so many new friends. For you, I am grateful.


And One Thing That Brought Me Joy


dinner with a view
view from our dinner perch

What brought me joy in the last day? I’ll go with my birthday dinner. The four of us enjoyed an upstairs patio with a view, had a tasty meal, and shared a piece of delicious chocoflan cake. My wife and I each had a cerveza and the whole thing set us back about $14.

Unfortunately, the place did not take credit cards, and we had used up most of our local currency just beforehand dinner buying gifts for family back home. The restaurant had no interest in our American dollars and I was the equivalent of a few dollars short.

I briefly considered leaving our boys behind to wash dishes for the rest of the night, but then I remembered my new friends Dave and Debibe, the early retirees and world travelers we had just met upstairs. I offered to swap currency with them, but they insisted on giving me what I needed as a little birthday present. We settled up with our waitress and were on our way home.

After walking a block or so, I felt bad that I took our friends’ money and offered nothing in return but the dollars they had refused. Remembering that I had some local craft brews in my backpack, I did a quick 180, ran back up to the restaurant, offered Dave his choice of an IPA or a cacao chile stout, and left sans IPA with a smile on my face.

And now I’m enjoying a cacao chile imperial stout. Thanks again, Dave!


Hazmela Rusa Cerveza Oscura
bringing the joy


I've got my 2 acres of non-leveraged, crop-producing, cashflowing farmland via AcreTrader. Get yours.


Tienes una semana fantastico!

-Physician on FIRE

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26 thoughts on “The Sunday Best (11/19/2017)”

  1. Happy Birthday PoF! It sounds like your spanish immersion experience is going well! How are the kids handling it?

    I was really surprised by how well our kids did in Japan. Within a month they had picked up *a ton* of Japanese.

    • Good for you, and good for them! Our boys are doing great, I must say.

      Too many people assume they can’t travel extensively because they have children. It may not be the easiest thing to do, but it can be done, and can be an enriching experience for them and the whole family.


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  3. Nice roundup! I like your comment that almost every PF blogger is an engineer. Add one more to the list, Georgia Tech grad here. And my husband too!

  4. Good travels and happy birthday. I bought some bit coin because it is becoming more and more widely accepted in EU including Spain. Back during the Greek crisis I read the story of a guy who was stuck in the Greek Islands with no working ATM, CC or check cashing ability but he was able to get some ouzo, gyros, taxi to the airport and plane ticket home with BTC, so I bought some because the flexibility of the block chain sounded fascinating. As you travel maybe checkout how pervasive BTC is in your area, might come in handy for future travels, or at least a blog article.


    • Very interesting. I remember listening to a story about Bitcoin at least five years ago when it was in the low hundreds. Wish I would have bought some then.

      I’m in a place where the restaurant wouldn’t take credit card or American currency. I’d be shocked if they had any concept of what Bitcoin is.


      • Anybody with a cell phone can trade goods for bit coin without markup. All you do is scan a QR code with your phone’s camera, and the coin goes from your wallet to the other’s wallet. The reason your vendors don’t want your “yankee” money or your CC is because of the markup and hassle. The shop owners understand to let you take the hit. Lemme see: If I sell a $14 meal, I get nicked for $1 currency markup so I’ll just let… etc etc. Just because a McDonalds in USA is willing to take the 3% swipe fee loss on a CC purchased Big Mac does mean the rest of the world is that generous, or interested in the fraud possibilities. BTC transfer is guaranteed transparent and locked into the block chain at the PoP. Once the cash is transferred it’s encrypted into the wind, unavailable for any funny business

        I can assure you if vendors can make money off it they will know how to use it, especially since the govt can’t readily track transactions (aka some places transactions are free of VAT). All over EU you can buy a coke or red bull from a vending machine using bit coin. I’m sure the penetration is variable but it has considerable penetration. I would be interested in your experience.

  5. Hey Feliz Cumpleanos che loco!

    Espero que tuviste una dia excellente y que disfrute tu viaje!

    Remember to speak Spanish!


  6. Great roundup as usual POF! Thanks for including me. Looking forward to collaborating again.

    Happy birthday and have a great trip!!!

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  8. Feliz Cumpleaños PoF!! Sounds like the beginning of your immersion experience is off to a great start. I love the daily journaling idea, definitely something that I have been considering starting. Tell the Mrs I say hi!! Can’t wait to hear about the rest of your time there. Hasta luego!

  9. Happy birthday from Barcelona. Hope your trip goes as well as mine. Cerveza and pinxtos are our meal of choice here. What regions are you visiting?

  10. I didn’t know about Gwen’s plan! I’m heading to her blog right now to share the great news with her!

    I really like that you keep the list so simple, succinct yet informative. And it flows really well too. Gotta have a talent for that! ^.^

    • Thank you, Ms. FAF. It’s fun to take the posts I’ve chosen and string them together in an order that makes sense. It doesn’t always work well, but I can often find similar themes that make for easy segues.

      I didn’t know about Gwen’s plans, either, until I read them in the post this week


  11. Thanks, POF, for the shout out! Your blog was one of the ones that inspired me to start my own blog and share my thoughts/journey up here in the frozen tundra. The environment up here may be a bit colder, but otherwise we share many of the same issues north and south of the border. Happy Birthday!

    • Glad to hear it, LD.

      I live in a place that’s colder and/or further north compared to some of the more populated places in Canada, so we probably have more in common than you realize.


    • Thank you, TGE. I look forward to sharing more details!

      As far as our Golden Gophers, TGIBS. [Thank God It’s Basketball Season]



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