Some Guys Have All the Luck to Live in Paradise

Some Guys Have All the Luck

Meet Pete and Virginia.  At about 8am on a lovely spring day, they would set up the beach umbrellas and chairs.  Pete would carry the mattresses and lay them over on the beach chairs, while Virginia brings the umbrellas to every pair of beach chairs. Then, Pete stands the umbrella in between the beach chairs.

In about 30 minutes, they are done with the set-up for the 30 units of their beach umbrella and chair rental.

While the spring breakers are not on the beach yet, Pete and Virginia carry the paddleboards to the shore, and they sail out to the sea.

 I was observing the couple from the porch of my condominium while taking my breakfast.  I can imagine the fresh ocean breeze smacks their face. 

What a feeling?  It’s so serene in paradise.  No waves. No scorching sun.  Yet, exhilarating. And for the simplicity of nature --- everything was just right, and I picked a good week to escape from a hectic work life... A jailbreak from my work cell…  Just a week though… Yes, just a week for me, and while Pete and Virginia are living in paradise like the lovebirds in Blue Lagoon as long as they want.

This makes me feel a little jealous about their way of life. 

Pete and Virginia are doing something smart or something great because as they sail back to shore, the spring breakers were occupying the breach chairs already.

And for my daughter and I it’s time to go down to the beach, and relax in our usual beach chairs and umbrella for the day. 

Here comes Pete. He greeted me, “Hello, Tonie. How are you this morning?” I replied, “Peachy!”, and I handed him my $15 rental fee.  He said, “Cool. Thanks!” Then proceeded to the other spring breakers to collect the rental.

At around noon, Pete would be in his cabana serving drinks, horderves, and ice cream.  Virgin Pina Colada is $5. Frozen Reese Peanut butter chocolate cake is 2 for $1. 

Knowing the CustomersWhen the cabana is not busy, he would go around to his tenants and chat with them.  And for some snowbirds from Wisconsin who rented his beach chair and umbrella for 2 months, he would sit with them and talk for a while.  

On my first day, I asked him, if they were his parents, he replied with a grin, “No, just friends.”  I was curious because it was like he knows the Wisconsinites very well.  Maybe he knows his customers and treats them well.

Around 3pm, Pete and Virginia would relax and sun bath like a vacationer.

Around 4:30pm, Pete would start folding the umbrellas and removing the mattresses. 

Pete is really a smart guy.  Here are the reasons why.

Pete manages a profitable yet simple business 

Spring break starts the first week of March and ends before Easter, which is about 37 days.   Just to low-ball the revenue calculation, 21 days is an assumption for a good business workdays.

Spring revenue would come to:

21 days x 30 units x $15 = $9,450.00

There are 97 days between Memorial Day (Last Monday in May) and Labor Day (first Monday in September).  Americans are on vacation in between these holidays. 

Assuming there are 20 bad business days, Pete can account for 77 days of good weather and good business.  

Summer revenue would come to:

77 days x 50 units x $15 = $57,750.00

Total Chair and Umbrella Revenue = $67,200.00

By the way, Pete is also renting the paddleboard, and Jet Ski.  Jet ski is $60 for half an hour, $80 for 1 hour.  I don’t know how much he charges for the paddleboard.


I can play with numbers on Paddleboard, Jet Ski, and Cabana revenues, but I hope you are getting my point that the business is a revenue generating machine.   

This is a seasonal business, and during low season, Pete can take on other business or work on a job; or he can entirely become a coach potato because he has the money to relax. 

Pete has the best location

Pete works and lives at the one of the best Florida beaches in the United States where water is clear, and sand is powdery white.  Plus the convenience of American restaurants, groceries, drugstores, and shopping are within reach. He does not have to go Mexico or Caribbean to work in the best location.  And why would you go to those places when it is much better at home.

Customer ServicePete provides great customer service 

Pete knows his customer by name.  His approach is personalized, and he would take a broom and sweep the sand on the chair, adjust the umbrella as needed.  And, he would talk to his customers like they know them for life. He takes good care of his customers.

Pete's simple living

Pete admitted that he managed the business.  But at the end of the day, he is earning a simple living. Simple living is humbling, and yet contented with life.

Peter and Virginia are young professionals living the life

In one afternoon, I asked Pete, “Where is Virginia?”

He replied, “She’s working.”  I’m baffled, so I followed up, “Aah, working where.. what’s her job?” Pete answered with a smile, “She is a Pharmacist.”

BAM! Dollars $$$ ring my head, and I exclaimed, “You are one smart ass my friend!”

I can't control my jealousy because why Pete is so lucky to live in paradise, and he got the beautiful Virginia, a Pharmacist. Then, here I am in few days will be heading back to misery.  Oops! Sorry, I mean heading back to Missouri. Life is unfair.

My Ideal Paradise

I have so many commitments: the mortgage, the kids, and the other boring stuff that you don’t want to know.  I’m not a risk taker to uproot, and restart again. So I’ll keep plugging alone until retirement, but I will make sure to have a glimpse of my ideal paradise for few days in a year.  And I’m OK with that... at least for now.

For the rest of the year, I can keep on dreaming the majestic blue sea with waves crashing against the white sand where dazzling sunlight makes the sand sparkle like tiny jewels as seagulls hop and play.  I can imagine the wind blowing gently to my face, and smell the aroma of the seaweed and the saltwater.  As I quietly close my eyes, I can feel the relaxation and calmness of my spirit in paradise. After several minutes I can open my eyes as I lick the salt in the rim of my Margarita glass, and finally sip it to the last to my hearts content. Life is so sweet.

What is your paradise? 

You can be like Pete and Virginia who enjoy their paradise while they are still young.  

Don’t be like a fart --- Jump in and live in your paradise. 
(Yes, I just called you a fart.. And that's for good intention to get you moving!!!)

Love ya!

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rtamunday's picture

Don't wait too long! We're so glad to get here earlier. We took the pay cuts but it's all worth it. As Joe always say, I'd rather be broke under the palm tree than shoveling the snow. Our regret is we should have moved here sooner. We're happy to live in Paradise especially Sarasota.