Monday, 1 August 2022

FI - 62.91 Drama-in-pyjama

I marvel at the amount of emergency styled drama in my life and how much of it I have been attending to while wearing pyjama. I was fighting the summerhouse neighbors fire in pyjama a few months ago. Twice (different neighbors).
This month, I was in silk slip nightgown and morning coat (self-sewn bien sur) while the man and I broke down the neighbours toilet door. Intentionally, I might add. First dismantling and ripping out the lock and then cracking the hinges to take the whole door off. Their youngest daughter was on the inside when the lock ceased and stuck. All neighbors attended. The man and I cracked lots of jokes to make her less scared and in the end, we made her ‘break’ herself out to avoid any remaining feeling of helplessness.
She’s 8-9-10 years or so, but the tiniest little girl you’ve ever seen. That she speaks four languages and plays tennis with the oldest kids, you’d never imagine. That she is smart and kind, you see easily. Now she also knows how to take the handle and the lock of a door (that it didn’t get her out wasn’t her fault). Anyway, all neighbours of our floor have now seen my pyjama and the full extent of my toolbox.
There is nothing but full fun feast in Amsterdam's night life.

Heat is not my feast. My DNA clearly crawled out of a cold sea. Any weather much over 25 degrees C, immobilize me. All sun turns my skin pink (cerise) without tanning. All heat turns my head to mush. We’ve touched 30 a few times this month and I am not happy. What really makes me happy is that we have several large trees with our summer house. Of course, the shade stops a lot of other plants from growing or at least flowering, but I flourish under the large walnut, in a hat with a fan, a book and a large bottle of cold water (sometimes tucked into my bra).

When it really gets bad, we return to the winter house in town made of stone. There, at least the northern side of the house is cool through out the day. I say cool, but I mean cooler as in cooler than on the sunny side. Air-conditioning is not a thing outside offices and I am not NOT going back to work just for airco!

The home office now has the sewing machine is in permanent position, ready for any sewing or mending projects. Gardening is a hard labour and I try to mend all little rips early and quickly, and patching every else. Both the man and me are odd sized and anything garment fitting must be held on to as long as possible. The trash-gods do provide clothes and those almost always need alterations. 

During the worst heat wave, I ventured into something called Modern Fabric Piercing or something similar which turned out to be a cross between scap-quilting and advanced architectural sewing. Insanely difficult, even the most simple level, and intensely fun. I made four squares, all wrong in some way, and thoroughly enjoyed it. It did make a dent in the scrap mountain (I save all fabric leftovers for these types of adventures). It is really unfortunate that I do not like the look of patch-works, but that is beside the point of how fun it is to make.

Continuing the tradition from many years back, at least twelve, I count my money on the first day of a new month. I log onto all financial institutes, banks and pension institutes to see the current value of assets and debts. Since 2010 I have only had debts to the tax authorities so it is usually a matter of noting the current value and adding them up. If I have any cash around, I add that too. The total amount is then divided with an annual budget. That is the amount of money I need to carry myself through a year. Monthly costs vary too much to be useful. As it is an annual budget it includes more than I need and not as much as I can spend. It does include expected costs which may not occur, but does not include unexpected dramatic costs (or if the urge to go to Hawaii takes me, that is also not budgeted and would have to have its own budget). Anyway, the full assets minus debts divided with the annual budget gives my Financial Independence number, and tells me how many years the assets will carry me.

This month the FI-number is 62,91. Not as high as it was a year ago, but a good deal higher than it has been recently. The financial markets are not really recovering but they are making money again and I am grateful. 

The costs of living are shooting up so I am very grateful for the rent-controlled apartment, cost-controlled energy provider, the connection to a food-waste eliminator and a garden providing diversion, attention, physical exercise, mental relaxation and occasionally even something to eat.

No, I am not going to Hawaii this year either.


  1. Super-PJ-Viking to the rescue! "in the end, we made her ‘break’ herself out to avoid any remaining feeling of helplessness" -- such a wise and insightful thing to do! Yes, we all need to feel we can always rescue ourselves from difficulties! Have a great August!

    1. PJ-Viking to the rescue. HA, I love it! (But if there a super-hero-film-franschise out there looking for a new money-maker, I could be enticed to release my copyright.)
      Always empower other people; that is important.


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