FIRE or PE? What does freedom look like for you?

In my research about how to become independent from employment slavery, I frequently come across articles about FIRE. I was told that if I have not heard of FIRE I must be living under a rock. I actually live on a rock but that is a whole other story. Apparently FIRE is all the rage now it stands for Financial Independence / Retire Early. At first glance I thought, yes that is what I am looking for. But is it really? Looking at Financial Independence literally it means having all the money you need without doing anything more to get it. For example, retiring with a big pension, being the beneficiary of a trust fund, saving and investing boatloads of money or winning the lottery.
This is the dream of many, retire early and start living the good life. For many people in my age group, living in the fourth quarter, if you don’t already have at least a couple million dollars in the bank it’s probably too late to save for true lasting financial independence and early retirement. To be realistic in my personal plans, I am working towards an independent lifestyle where I can earn enough through entrepreneurial endeavors to live comfortably and be able to enjoy a retirement like lifestyle while I am young and healthy enough to enjoy it. Rather than retiring from working; I am working toward breaking away from confining clock in and clock out employment and going independent, working on my own terms through entrepreneurial pursuits. That is what I call PE or perpetual entrepreneurship ; the idea is to develop the independent income streams through entrepreneurial endeavors to the point where they are generating steady income while personal involvement to work at it lessens with time. Ideally to have a business that can be run by employees while you take a cut of the profit to live off of. Or build it up to the point to where it is marketable to sell the business at a good price and live off the proceeds.
Currently I have an e-commerce business and I am expanding my business to meet a need that I see in my community. The very notion of entrepreneurship is finding a need and building a business that fills that need. Catalina island is a resort island off the coast of Southern California. The only town or city is Avalon; 2.9 square miles with a population of approximately 4000. Avalon is a beautiful hamlet that is well marketed as a weekend escape vacation destination therefore the primary revenue to the island is through tourism. During the busy summer season there will be hundreds of temporary workers that will move in and work for 4 to 6 months. One of the challenges for temporary residents on an isolated island is getting mail and packages. Avalon has no mail delivery, the only way to get mail is through a USPS provided PO Box and only full time year around residents are allowed to have one. Temporary residents can receive mail addressed to their name , General delivery, Avalon, CA. 90704. Then they can pick up mail at the window. That works to a point, but they can not order things online because most online retailers will not send product to a general delivery address. Plus some online retailers ship via UPS or Fed Ex. In Avalon a local company delivers parcels from those major carriers but temporary workers often live in bunkhouse type of workforce housing complexes and that creates challenges for receiving their parcels. Therefore I am working on opening a mailbox rental company similar to mailboxes etc. or the UPS store. Anybody, year around residents and temporary residents will be able to rent a mailbox and receive their mail and parcels securely and reliably at Avalon PASS. I looked into buying a franchise but they are very expensive and I would have to pay for services that the franchise requires that is not necessary  in our small community like big advertising and marketing campaigns. If you live an a large town or city on the mainland a franchise may be a good option for this type of business.
Avalon Packaging and Shipping services aka Avalon PASS is being modeled after a UPS store or mailboxes etc., but I am building it from scratch. Avalon PASS will fill another need in our community; packaging and shipping. Often visitors overpack or over shop and end up with too much stuff to carry home with them, so we can ship it for them. Hotels, restaurants and tour operators find items that guests leave behind. Most will be happy to send the lost item to its rightful owner but that is time consuming so Avalon PASS takes care of packaging and shipping items or merchandise for them. We have all the packaging materials and facilities to pack and ship easily and efficiently as I am already operating an e-commerce business and I ship product daily. There are many other income streams that will be included in the business including various business services for local businesses and travelers alike. I have been operating the business on a small scale with only a few clients for over a year now and I am gearing up to launch it full scale by the beginning of 2019.
I will make regular blog posts to document the progress. I hope my readers will find it informative and encouraging to anyone who has an entrepreneurial drive to start a business. Perhaps following my development of the business will be useful to anyone who dreams of starting any business weather it be pack and ship or something else. Years ago I built a successful vending business from scratch so this isn’t my first rodeo. Look for my blog about starting a vending business coming soon. Please follow my blog and feel free to comment, ask questions and share.

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RV experiment Day 5

Day 5

Friday October 26, 2018: It felt good to sleep in a bit after our great day of hiking and exploring in Zion National park on day 4. We woke up so excited because we decided we were going to hike the narrows. This day however presented some minor challenges. The Red Bull Rampage mountain bike event was right next to the RV park, Thursday is the finals and the traffic was heavy. It took longer to get to Zion National Park. In order to do the narrows hike we rented waterproof pants and shoes and neoprene socks and a walking stick. The best $41 I have ever spent. The outfitters are just outside the main walk-in entrance to the park. It took some time to get suited up, then there was road construction inside the park so the shuttle inside the park took longer.

The Narrows are at the last stop on the shuttle route. You have to hike in one mile on an easy trail to where the canyon becomes wall to wall river, that is where the narrows hike starts. The water is mostly ankle to mid thigh deep and moving at a moderate flow. It was not difficult to walk in the water as long as you can stay where there is a sandy bottom. Half the time however, the river is rocky so that makes it a little more difficult. The outfit we rented kept our legs dry and we were not cold at all. We walked in about two miles from the start of the narrows. It was beautiful and really fun to do that type of hiking.

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Almost right away we encountered a deer coming down river right toward us. There was little room for him to pass us, but we moved over as far as we could so that he did not become agitated. He was a large buck with a big antlers, very healthy looking.

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We determined our turn around point based on time so we could meet the RV resort shuttle at 3:00. We went back to the resort and soaked in the jacuzzi and swam for a while and went back home.

Another great day. Tomorrow is moving day as we make our way to Bryce Canyon National Park.

Tim and Lauries RV Experiment day 3

The Hotel California in Las Vegas; you can check out any time you like but you can never leave! There is so much construction going on in Vegas, it took us hours to get out of town, I thought we would never leave. We checked out of the Oasis RV Resort at around 10:30. We had to make a “quick” stop at Walmart to pick up a few things that we anticipate needing in the days to come, and we needed to get gas. The Walmart is bigger than those 1970’s malls we used to hang out at back in the day. Walking through the store is like a marathon, it took forever. When we finally got out of that nightmare, we went to the gas station where nothing worked. I went from pump to pump trying to get gas, I finally had to go inside and there was a line with a chatty clerk who was not in a hurry and that took forever. Then when I got done with that I hit the freeway and the construction zone traffic. Plus the interchange to the freeway I needed to go on was closed so I had to go through some ridiculous detours and I made a wrong turn and got further off track. We did not get out of Las Vegas until 2:30.

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We pulled into the Zion River Rv Resort at around 6:00 mountain time. We lost an hour because of changing time zones. We set up the motor home in a jiffy and I cooked a steak dinner with sautéed mushrooms with fresh garlic and grilled broccoli. The steaks were bacon wrapped center cut rib eye marinated in lemon juice with a sprinkle of garlic salt, pepper and Lawry,s season salt. Simple but effective.

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Internet is poor here so I don’t know how well I can post these next few days but I’ll try. We reserved a shuttle into the Zion National park for tomorrow morning at 9:00 AM. Zion NP is 16 miles away. So far the RV park seems nice, I will see it better tomorrow on day 4