Ubud Bali, Indonesia
Geoffrey and Michael
Geoffrey and Michael knew they were screwed (in trouble/facing a serious crisis/in crisis). They were finishing their working lives and were facing retirement in Australia with far too little money.
‘I think we calculated that, on a pension, the only alternative for us would have been a caravan park in a central Victorian town or on the central coast of New South Wales . . . So really, we had to find somewhere that we could live a reasonable life…and Bali looked like a possibility,’ said Geoffrey.
At the time they were renting a smart apartment in Flinders Lane in Melbourne. They were never real estate buyers. Great art adorned the walls and they enjoyed a ritzy lifestyle. Both had worked in the Australian arts scene, as actors, producers and administrators. But with just a few hundred thousand dollars in super, they faced a somber and rather ordinary life. And they didn’t want this.
They are, of course, not alone. Plenty of us are underfunded as we end our working lives. What were they to do? They decided to Sell Up, Pack Up and Take Off to a cheaper country. And their choice was Bali or Indonesia. They moved to Ubud in the mountains outside of Denpassar and away from the beach resorts. For $A60,000 they bought a 20 year lease with an option to extend this to 30 years on a block of land and built a tropical open plan house surrounded by lush tropical gardens and a beautiful pool. An attractive guest bungalow snuggles into the garden corner as well.
The $60,000 covered the lot – the land, the house, the pool and the landscaping. It is a romantic Somerset Maugham-like tropical paradise. Life suddenly became grand. Their move to Bali changed their future from a struggle to a new, exciting and comfortable life.