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I have decided to take a gap year starting next April when my lease is up. I’m going to go camping all over the US and Canada as well. Since Mary Ann encouraged me so much when I took a solo trip to Budapest, here I am to encourage you to do whatever you feel is right, and necessary, for you! Good luck to us both! Life should be an adventure, not a day to day dullness. Learn something new every day.


How different life might be if you could do that. I had to get a job while still in high school, and after, to put food on the table, so no college for me. No idea what I might have studied/become. Ended up with a decent education by reading everything in sight and paying attn to people smarter than me. Ended up doing ok, but oh what might have been.

Linda Watson

I hadn't thought of it before, but I think that's what the lockdown was for me. I've been retired awhile now, am 71 years old, and that time of isolation really brought home what sustains me and what calls to me in this final part of my life. It really isn't anything I didn't already know, but it clarified how to do it and made my commitment stronger, as things I thought I needed to have or be a part of simply fell away. I find myself now with an easier approach to life, because of that clarity. As you mentioned in an earlier post, an unexpected effect of the pandemic.


I've always thought that, as retirees, rather than send us to assisted living or retirement homes, they should give us rooms in college dorms and let us attend classes. Imagine the possibilities!


I often finding myself nodding in agreement when I read your posts but this one really hit home. I too hurried through life, married at 19, just one week out of college. I’m 70 now and love being retired, being able to live my life on my own terms. Maybe Ill be living my gap year for the rest of my years. Thanks for that thought, it makes me want to make better use of the time I’m given.


How I enjoyed reading these responses from all of you. Thank you for adding your insights and making this a richer conversation. I feel there will be a follow up to this post. the Senior Gap year part 2... after lots more thinking.


What an amazing concept. You may be on to something here. A patient I knew told me about Elder Hostel (I think that's what it was called???). It was travel designed for seniors to take in-depth classes combined with travel. She and her husband had participated. I don't remember much about it or even it's it's still available. You've encouraged me to do a bit of research to see if it's still being offered. Thanks so very much!


I teach at a community college and we offer people who are retirement age to audit classes for free or pretty close to it (I think maybe they have to pay some fees but not tuition). One of the great things about community college classrooms can be the blend of diversity, including age and experience. This term I had a retired CPA in my class. So for Joan I would say, make the call to your local college or university and see if they have a similar program!

I love your idea Carol. I suspect it could be a real money maker for a college and lots of fun for retirees. You should make it happen!

jacki long

Yes, sounds great! Perfct in fact!

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