I hope everyone had (or is having) a very nice Christmas holiday, assuming you celebrate such stuffs. Ours was pretty low-key, which was nice. ScurvyWife and I agreed not to go nutso with the gifts this year, as there's a million things we want to do with the new house, and, unfortunately, houses have pretty damn expensive tastes.
All this time off from work this month has left me in the third or fourth level thinking of: "I need a vacation from my vacation from my vacation". Don't get me wrong, not having my soul sucked from my ears and nostrils at the place I work is the best thing in the world, but I am starting to miss the social interaction, even with the mouth-breathing, gold-chain wearing, calliope-ringtone-playing types. My wife is very cool and my rat is very cool but I'm starting to miss, oh so very slightly, that slant ego boost one gets when working on a daily basis with some of the pettiest, insecure, and/or vindictive people that corporate America can churn out. Kind of like how watching Cops can always make you feel a bit better about yourself, no matter how much your life is currently sucking. Unless it doesn't. At which point you know you're in real trouble.
Some interesting posts and experiences here (Early Retirement) and here (Retiring young, happiness), in regards to the whole-make-lots-of-money-retire-early line of thinking that many of us (myself included) are obsessed with. I flip-flop pretty regularly on the subject, as far as imagining what my life would be like if I'd socked away enough money to simply do whatever I wanted at any given time.
In many ways, it'd probably be largely similar to what it is now, except with lots of travel thrown in. We'd probably live in the same area we currently do, in a similar house (except maybe more in the country with acreage for horses and donkeys and what-not), drive the same cars, etc. I'd probably still do all the affiliate marketing stuff, buy and sell real estate, finally get around to seriously trying to write a book, and continue to fail miserably in trying to trade the precious metals markets.
Travel is the one thing that'd be drastically different, though. That's the one thing that I feel like I'd have really dropped the ball on, if a safe crammed full of rubies fell on my head tomorrow. And not for any socially-aware, mind-expanding reason, but simply because there's so much shit out there in the world to see, for the sheer sake of seeing it. Everywhere. Pick a continent.
In the end, I suppose that's pretty hopeful, as I'm reasonably close to living how I'd like to live, if money were no issue. I'm blessed/cursed with the busy gene, with a healthy dose of the greedy monkey acquisitive gene, so I doubt I'd wrestle too much with struggling to find something to keep myself occupied with. But it is interesting to ponder, especially at the end of the year when it's reviewing and/or resolution time.