Living downtown as a renter without a mortgage was so liberating! This was the first time in our adult lives where we were completely free from debt. COVID was still a major concern and although I was just 2 blocks from work, I continued working from home. Karen had already retired about 6 months prior.

As the world began opening up, we took advantage of the many things to do downtown. The energy of the city was something we had not fully experienced in the 40 years we lived in Cincinnati. We walked more, took the streetcar and seldom drove. In fact, Karen turned in her leased car early and made money doing so due to the car shortage.

I decided to retire late December of 2021. With both of us now retired we became even more active, walking longer distances, working out in the fitness room while everyone else was at work, and eating sensibly. With the change in our lifestyle, I dropped 50 pounds.

We really loved our new lifestyle and thought about extending our lease for another year. However, we knew that good health was not guaranteed to last. If we wanted new experiences and travels, delaying our plans to relocate to Panama would be at risk. We did not extend the lease.