Live for the now! June 23rd 2015

Dialogue with Ace Insurance continues and I have found some small print below the listed definitions of a Trip in the policy saying that a journey must start and finish in your home country. It appears that the clause I have been relying on is overridden by this one. Ace have to their credit sent me a very friendly email and have included a claim form. As I have now recovered I do not need to make a claim. I have put some questions to the staff member who contacted me letting her know that many retired business people like ourselves will be travelling as we baby boomers leave paid work and will need answers to my questions. I will report the reply.

Another easy day as still feeling a tad frail. Went to see the Brian Wilson True story movie called “Love and Mercy”. Was pretty heavy but very interesting and just shows what being overmedicated can do to you. Met a friend of Glenn’s who came with us. She is Thai and lost her partner about 3 months ago from Oesophageal cancer. It turns out he died in the same hospital I was treated in. She told me that he was only 50 and seemed quite healthy but died in a few months from being diagnosed turning her life upside down. She said it has really made her live for “the now”. A good example of why we should not put things off!

Having been in Southeast Asia for nearly four months we have been exposed to news about the economies, employment and how the people really feel about what is happening in the world right now. An inescapable conclusion is that at least for Malaysia, Thailand and South Korea exactly the same fears and problems beset them as Australians face.  Their economies are slowing and running behind Government forecasts, they are feeling insecure about the future and so have increased their savings and cut back their discretionary spending. The problem of slowing birth rates and ageing populations threatens to derail budgets as Government costs rise and income slows. The Korean News here last night was full of the above. To us it sounds just like Australia!

No wonder the world economies cannot rebound as would have happened in the past. As the Chinese economy slows further the pain for the rest of the world it trades with will only increase. I can only think about where Australia’s moribund economy would be without our exports to China and the cheap imported products we get in return.

An interesting aside is our observations that in Malaysia there were recruiting notices in the windows of almost every shop and the country relied on guest workers to complete most construction projects. A shortage of people to fill the jobs. In Thailand our Thai friend yesterday who speaks good English and is very employable has trouble finding a good paying job.