OK, so we know jealousy is not a good thing, but it’s hard not to be a little bit envious of the life that Brad and Kadi have forged for themselves. In just the last eighteen months, the couple of 31 years — 26 of those in marriage — have travelled across the world.
“Kenya, Tanzania, Zanzibar, Zambia, Egypt, Botswana, Zimbabwe, Namibia, South Africa,” says Kadi. “In Europe, we’ve been everywhere except central Europe and we’re working on that this September. We’re landing in Amsterdam then travelling through Germany and Czechoslovakia. South America we’ve only been to Ecuador and the Galapagos so we’re fixing that in January. We’re taking a 53-day cruise from Miami all the way around South America to Lima.”
Just listening to that list is exhausting. It’s also invigorating to think of how exciting it must be to set foot in that many different countries. But they’ve earned it. Brad worked in accounting for 38 years before abruptly retiring nearly two years ago. Kadi worked in public relations and still does a touch of consulting work, but will be fully retired come this December.
We had the chance to sit with Kadi and Brad after a Boomerang lawn bowling workshop. They let us all the way into a life where they intentionally seek activity and adventure.
Do you remember what you thought before you retired?
Brad — I made a decision last minute so I wasn’t prepared. I didn’t have any activities lined up so it’s taken me eighteen months or so to find all kinds of fun activities.
How would you say that you’re adjusting to retirement?
Kadi — This year I told my business partner that I’m really going to step back and she would do the bulk of the work. So I really wound it back because we’ve been travelling a lot. We started travelling last year a fair bit and we’re really bringing it up a notch. Last year at this time we did the Camino de Santiago. It’s a walk from France across Spain. 799 km. It took us 37 days. January and February of this year we went to Malaysia and Borneo to get away from the winter.
What are your interests outside of travelling?
Kadi — I’m an avid reader and filmgoer. TIFF (Toronto International Film Festival) is coming so I’m all hyped for TIFF. I’m a member of TIFF, I have a Mirvish subscription, I’m a member of Hot Docs and go to the Hot Docs Cinema regularly. I’m a member of the AGO. I was just there last week. All of those cultural things are my passion. That keeps me busy. The other thing I love is social media. I keep all of my travel logs and albums on Facebook and then I do Instagram stories every day.
Brad — I do archery and wood carving. I also volunteer for my archery club. We eat out a lot. You compare us to the average person, we eat out a lot. We’re not eating fast food. It’s a two and a half hour event. We sit down and dine and have conversation. It’s not always five-star but it’s always good food.
Have you been to many Boomerang workshops?
Brad — This is my third, her fourth. We did lawn bowling three times. This is it. We’re having fun with this so we just keep coming back.
Kadi — We live down at King and Bathurst. One of the reasons we love this particular [workshop] is because it gives us a chance to try something with no commitment. We like the idea that we can dip our toe in something and not have to make a big commitment.
You two are very active. How do you keep it up?
Kadi — If something’s in town, we’ll just go to it. For example, the Ex is on. We’d never miss going to the Ex. We’re just active and we walk a ton. Where we live, we have a very active lifestyle. I’m a Fitbit Queen. I’ll get up at 7:30 in the morning and say I don’t have my 10,000 steps today and leave and walk around in the park.
Brad — It’s still work. No one shows up at your door and says here’s the next activity. Kadi spends lots of time on Blog TO or Boomerang.
What advice would you give yourself before you entered this phase of your life?
Brad — Plan early. Kadi slowly retired, I fell off the cliff. Her way’s better. I had to find stuff where if I planned retirement I would’ve had these things in place.
What attracts you to the boomerang sessions?
Brad — It tells us more things out there we can go try. Like who would think you can go try to make an apple pie. We’d probably try that.
Kadi — We’re just very open to doing new things. We like adventure in general.
Boomerang is a new creative workshops platform that makes it easy for retired & semi-retired individuals to learn new skills, explore their passions & connect with the community. Become a Boomerang Member for free to explore and sign-up for upcoming workshops.