The Reluctant Commuter.

For most of my working life, commuting has been an unfortunate necessity. Although I started with the luxury of a couple of years in the Royal Air Force, where everything was in easy walking distance, the problems confronted me as soon as I left. My first commute was by bicycle, the only form of transport I had at the time, but it was rather too long for comfort. I was able to solve part of the problem at least by taking the bicycle with me on the train for part of the journey – complicated, but convenient.

Moving closer to work reduced the scale of the problem, and the train journey was no longer necessary, but to be out in all weathers, as one is on a bicycle, was not much fun at times – especially when there was snow or ice on the ground.

Although I admit to sometimes enjoying driving down leafy country lanes in Springtime, with the window down, and the fresh morning air in my face, I have never regarded commuting as a pleasurable pastime – more a painful necessity that has to be endured.

Whenever I contemplated taking a new job, the commute was always taken into consideration. So when I see a headline “London’s soaring house prices make a long commute a little more attractive“, I know exactly what people are up against.

The problem is that it is not only London that is affected. In any town or city with a reasonable chance of local employment, the price of housing will be higher than some can afford, and they will of necessity have to look further away if they wish to purchase a property.

It would be many years before I again achieved that optimum – to be able to walk to work. And I even went one better – go downstairs to work. This really is the ultimate, working from home, but there are usually other considerations that take some of the edge off the advantage. You will probably have to run your own company, for example, which means extra workload unless you pay someone to do it for you.

No, there really is only one answer to the problem – stop working!

Seriously! Find something that you enjoy doing, work at it as hard as you can while keeping your expenses down to a minimum. The idea is to save money to support yourself without working for a while. If you are not working, you don’t have to outlay the cost and the time invested in commuting – an extra bonus.

Then, find a way of earning money on the Internet, or simply

Retire early!

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