Jun 19, 2024

"Retirement to me is the reward for working all those years...Traveling, volunteering, and just smelling the roses and enjoying life are the things I'm doing now and loving it," he adds.

A typical day consists of walking around the neighborhood, a vist to the library to read the papers, do   appointments, meet with friends for coffee, check emails, watch favourite TV shows with his wife, whom he calls ‘da boss’, then turn in at 11 p.m. A life without pressure, living at one's own pace – what Quibuyen  expected and is getting in retirement.

A photography buff, who never leaves home without a camera, Quibuyen combines his photography hobby with his other activities like travelling and hiking. He is active in the University of the Philippines Alumni Association, where he recently organized the group's PHOTOLAKAD, a 15-kilometre walk on the Vancouver seawall with a photo contest added Bert Quibuyenin.

Quibuyen likes to stay connected via email and Facebook. The computer savvy senior shares interesting and useful information with a network of friends and family. "I also send out jokes just to make people laugh. We can't be serious all the time...Facebook got me connected with long-lost relatives and friends."

Thinking of the 'later years' is “Scary. Not financially, but scary because you're then at a point in your life when you're just waiting to die. It's inevitable...I hope to still be useful even in my old little way. Perhaps helping other seniors cope with life, sort of mentoring in a way."

Quibuyen was a long-time mentor with the Bamboo Network, a mentoring program for skilled immigrants, and spent four terms as member of the Multicultural Advisory Committee of the City of Coquitlam. Married to Helen, he has two sons.

Advice to other seniors: Keep yourselves busy. Join clubs or groups and socialize. You can't spend all your time babysitting. A few hours is okay but full time is not. Give that responsibility to your children. Now is the time to think about ME. Enjoy your senior years, travel if you can, volunteer and help others, be active in your community, and learn to relax and appreciate life. Be physically active as well, like walking which is very good exercise.

Advice for youngsters: Prepare for retirement by looking at your finances. Government pension is not enough. Buy RRSPs and save for retirement. MONEY is one of the biggest problems facing retirees. Many retirees are in the poverty level, unfortunately. If you can, retire early. There is more to life than working. Retirement doesn't mean boredom. Time is your friend and you can do anything you want without pressure from anybody.