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Old 03-01-2009, 07:40 PM
 
Location: Third Coast
37 posts, read 86,271 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by forest beekeeper View Post
I moved to Maine.
Anyone else?

I guess most of the military retirees live closer to Portsmouth but I may have a lead on a job closer to Augusta. I know it's not the stereotypical locations like TX, FL, and AZ. Besides, my parents are aging and it would be good to be closer to them, in NJ.

I've done some reading about the weather, the economics, &c...

I grew up in NJ and lived in Chicago but have been in the South for several years. We don't fit in socially, intellectually, or spiritually down South and was thinking that we might enjoy Maine quite a bit.
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Old 03-01-2009, 08:16 PM
 
48,519 posts, read 81,113,623 times
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San Antoio is a very popualr military retiremtn area. Low cost of living ;houses and alot of military bases and support.
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Old 03-01-2009, 08:26 PM
 
Location: Forests of Maine
29,742 posts, read 47,547,485 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DesertEagle62 View Post
... I guess most of the military retirees live closer to Portsmouth but I may have a lead on a job closer to Augusta.
Maine has a very high porportion of vets and retirees, as compared to the other states.

I have no idea if there is a higher density of us near Portsmouth. I do not know why there would be, Why?

I see nothing there that would draw a retiree, any more than anywhere else in Maine. [Not meaning any insult to Portsmouth natives]

It is great that you have found a job in Augusta.

I moved to Maine, to retire.

One of the great things of Maine, is that I was able to buy a farm and can support my family on my E6 pension. Without the need for a further career.

My Dw did get a part-time job in a local Commisary, to keep her busy.

We have great hunting, fishing, skiing, boating, lots of wildlife and dense forests, rivers, lakes, and lots of coast line. A wonderful area!

Property can be found here that is fairly inexpensive, and taxes are really low [our property taxes have been under $50 / year].



Quote:
... I know it's not the stereotypical locations like TX, FL, and AZ. Besides, my parents are aging and it would be good to be closer to them, in NJ.

I've done some reading about the weather, the economics, &c...

I grew up in NJ and lived in Chicago but have been in the South for several years. We don't fit in socially, intellectually, or spiritually down South and was thinking that we might enjoy Maine quite a bit.
Do what floats your boat.



So many areas that we looked at had much higher cost-of-living, and taxes; that my pension would not have been enough to support our family.

And then the environment. I like dense forests, rivers and lakes. We have no threat of drought.

All summer long I can see eagles flying over my farm. I have seen moose on my land, deer, bear, beaver. We have had flocks of wild turkey right up on my porch [looking to steal feed from our chickens].

We keep 2 kayaks tied-up in the river, a few paces from our back door.

I have bee hives and collect honey.

I have been planting ginseng under the forest canopy, and apple trees in a clearing. We have a few sheep, and chickens, hogs.

I sell a few organic veggies at a local Farmer's Market.

This is what we wanted, and we found it in Maine.

Other folks will find what they want in other places.
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Old 03-08-2009, 08:37 AM
 
Location: :~)
1,483 posts, read 2,827,063 times
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Default New England

The guy who retired to Maine has valid points. Vets live everywhere in NE, its a great quiet place to live in peace. Job market is strong, taxes vary state to state and home prices are falling. In addition, there are military bases throughout so the base ammenities are close. I retired last year and love every minute of it. Give it some thought.
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Old 03-08-2009, 12:44 PM
 
Location: Forests of Maine
29,742 posts, read 47,547,485 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jbub22 View Post
The guy who retired to Maine has valid points. Vets live everywhere in NE, its a great quiet place to live in peace. Job market is strong, taxes vary state to state and home prices are falling. In addition, there are military bases throughout so the base ammenities are close. I retired last year and love every minute of it. Give it some thought.
Military base amenities:
Space A travel is a great amenity. I have never used it though.

We live near a NG base.

Shopping on base is so-so. My Dw works at the NG commissary. Some of our food comes from there, and some does not. The Commissary prices are not consistently lower, sometimes those prices are higher. Commissary quality is not any better, often the quality is lower than civilian grocery stores.

Our NG base has no MilMed. The last time that I traveled the 2 hour drive to an AD base, MilMed there was full and not accepting retirees.

So because we are not close to a MilMed facility we use the civilian coverage. This is much better. We no longer are treated by corpsmen, we now are treated by doctors who have college degrees and med school training. No 20 year old kids with a 6 week course on first aid trying to take blood, or diagnose problems.

We much prefer to be away from AD bases.

I do not know what is on a AD base that I would want to live near.

AFEES is not cheaper, than civilian stores are.

DECA is not cheaper, than civilian grocery stores are.

MilMed is not better, than civilian doctors are.

I am farming now, so I have chores here. I am not free to travel around the world, anymore. So I am not using Space-A.

So outside of: AFEES, DECA, MilMed and Space-A what other base ammenity is there that makes you wish to live near an AD base?



We also own a home in Ct, very near the subase and the USCG academy. We have resided there, and we had full access to all ammenities available to us at both of those bases.

Granted at the USCG academy the MilMed is much better, they treat sons and daughters of congressmen, so they have a lot of high-level oversight.

I do not know what is on a AD base that I would want to live near.

AFEES is not cheaper, than civilian stores are.

DECA is not cheaper, than civilian grocery stores are.

MilMed is only better, when being treated at one of the academies.

We prefer to be away from AD bases.
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Old 03-08-2009, 01:12 PM
 
Location: Third Coast
37 posts, read 86,271 times
Reputation: 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by forest beekeeper View Post

So outside of: AFEES, DECA, MilMed and Space-A what other base ammenity is there that makes you wish to live near an AD base?
You get your pharmaceuticals in the mail, right? Is TRICARE Prime okay when you're not close to a base.

Thanks for your other comments!
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Old 03-08-2009, 05:02 PM
 
Location: Forests of Maine
29,742 posts, read 47,547,485 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DesertEagle62 View Post
You get your pharmaceuticals in the mail, right? Is TRICARE Prime okay when you're not close to a base.

Thanks for your other comments!
In New England Tricare underwrites a local HMO company called: "Martins Point'.

Martins Point is a health insurance company that offers coverage to:
1. employers for their employees;
2. medicare part something folks; and
3. military retirees.

I pay an annual enrollment fee, we pay an office visit co-pay of $6, and we have a mail-order pharmacy. We pay $3 and $9 for each 3-month script refill. $3 for generics, $9 for name brand drugs.



Tricare is available too.

I have spoken with other local military retirees. Tricare Standard is popular, and it works fine for them, plus they have the option of traveling. Others use Martins Point like we do.

I do not know any retirees here that use Tricare Prime. It costs more.

By using Martins Point it does lock us into a PCP. But there is a four page list of local PCPs, so the selection is good and they are all accepting new patients. We started where my Dw and I shared the same PCP. She later decided that she wanted to change, no big deal a phone call and she had a different PCP.

We never had PCPs during my career, so I am not really sold on whether having one is good or not. So long as we are not being treated by corpsmen, everything is fine.



You asked about the mall. I guess you mean Wallmart. Their scripts are $4 per monthly refill. And they only do generics.

$4 per month times 12 months and a generic script is $48 per year.

I pay $3 per quarter times 4 quarter and a generic script is $12 per year.

I know, I pay an annual enrollment fee and the co-pays. Whatever. We are fine with it.



My Dw has had some heart Attacks.

Her first was while we lived near the USCG academy. She was at work onbase in the commissary. They called the ambulance. She spent a week in the cardiac ward of a local civilian hospital there. they ran every test known to man. and they found nothing to treat.

When Tricare was done, we were billed for her meals, the hospital billed us separately $50,000 for her treatment, plus $12,000 for the ambulance. We fought it and eventually Tricare ate the hospital stay. We sued the Commissary and after a year they finally ate the ambulance bill [the commissary called the ambulance for one of their employees onbase and tried to stiff us with the bill?]. We paid for her meals.

Since moving to Maine; she had 2 more HAs. Both times she [... edited to delete TMI ... ] gets a room at a comfort hospital and is treated at the local teaching hospital.

So a room at a hospital for a week, daily transports between two hospitals, plus every known high-tech examination, ... very expensive. We did this twice in Maine. The bills we have gotten here have been for her meals while in the hospital.



Everyone has a different story.

From our experiences, we prefer to be away from Active Duty military bases. And Martins Point has been treating us very nicely.



In fact, for many years we have always have lots of tax write-offs. Included in them has always been so much medical expenses. We first year, filing 2008 taxes has been a goof for us. We owed income taxes this year, because our medical expenses were too low. During a year where one of us spent a week in a hospital with all of those procedures, but we did not have enough expenses to write-off. So really I guess that says it all.

For the past 30 years we have usually had enough medical expenses to sue them as a write-off. Now with Martins Point, we no longer any enough. And we have been having medical problems. So it is not an issue of us being healthier.
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Old 03-08-2009, 09:18 PM
 
Location: Western Bexar County
3,823 posts, read 13,143,984 times
Reputation: 1895
Quote:
Originally Posted by forest beekeeper View Post
Military base amenities:
Space A travel is a great amenity. I have never used it though.

We live near a NG base.

Shopping on base is so-so. My Dw works at the NG commissary. Some of our food comes from there, and some does not. The Commissary prices are not consistently lower, sometimes those prices are higher. Commissary quality is not any better, often the quality is lower than civilian grocery stores.

Our NG base has no MilMed. The last time that I traveled the 2 hour drive to an AD base, MilMed there was full and not accepting retirees.

So because we are not close to a MilMed facility we use the civilian coverage. This is much better. We no longer are treated by corpsmen, we now are treated by doctors who have college degrees and med school training. No 20 year old kids with a 6 week course on first aid trying to take blood, or diagnose problems.

We much prefer to be away from AD bases.

I do not know what is on a AD base that I would want to live near.

AFEES is not cheaper, than civilian stores are.

DECA is not cheaper, than civilian grocery stores are.

MilMed is not better, than civilian doctors are.

I am farming now, so I have chores here. I am not free to travel around the world, anymore. So I am not using Space-A.

So outside of: AFEES, DECA, MilMed and Space-A what other base ammenity is there that makes you wish to live near an AD base?



We also own a home in Ct, very near the subase and the USCG academy. We have resided there, and we had full access to all ammenities available to us at both of those bases.

Granted at the USCG academy the MilMed is much better, they treat sons and daughters of congressmen, so they have a lot of high-level oversight.

I do not know what is on a AD base that I would want to live near.

AFEES is not cheaper, than civilian stores are.

DECA is not cheaper, than civilian grocery stores are.

MilMed is only better, when being treated at one of the academies.

We prefer to be away from AD bases.
Maybe Maine just doesn't cut it when it comes to military retirees. I find some of your statements above to wrong here in San Antonio.

During my wifes recent major surgery, she was treated well by professionals at BAMC. I have never seen a doctor draw blood, but that may be true in Maine.

You're generally correct about AAFES not being cheaper, but they will match any civilian store prices...and you don't pay any sales tax (nice when you buy big ticket items).

DECA prices are comparable or cheaper to local grocery stores here in SA.

Here in San Antonio military retirees are wanted and treated nicely. Of course, Texas has always been good to the military.
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Old 03-08-2009, 10:06 PM
 
Location: Forests of Maine
29,742 posts, read 47,547,485 times
Reputation: 17600
Quote:
Originally Posted by Steel Man View Post
Maybe Maine just doesn't cut it when it comes to military retirees. I find some of your statements above to wrong here in San Antonio.

During my wifes recent major surgery, she was treated well by professionals at BAMC. I have never seen a doctor draw blood, but that may be true in Maine.

You're generally correct about AAFES not being cheaper, but they will match any civilian store prices...and you don't pay any sales tax (nice when you buy big ticket items).

DECA prices are comparable or cheaper to local grocery stores here in SA.

Here in San Antonio military retirees are wanted and treated nicely. Of course, Texas has always been good to the military.


Sorry I may have given a misperception.

I will clarify.

Here we are treated by civilians, everytime we go in for a blood draw, our blood is drawn by a civilian. Either a nurse or a trained lab coat wearing tech. In the military it was always done by the most junior E2 or E3 HM.

I have had many physical exams, broken bones, cuts that received stitches, blah blah blah. My Dw has delivered children, as well as been treated for numerous things, and each of our children has had all of the various things that children normally go through while growing up. All of this was done by MilMed. By HMs. Enlisted men learning OJT, who were being taught by other HMs. All working for a Div O, often an O2 doctor who is in a meeting.

Fourteen years of my career were spent on subs, where we had no college educated doctor. Our Medical Department Head is / was always an enlisted man, E4 to E8. And onbase, our dependents were treated by those same HMs.

I had to comfort one little girl HM once, as her legs were shaking when she tried to pull my scalp together to get it sutured. She had to turn to puke once, before she could get through it all. But she was the junior HM in the ER, so there she was. And I was left to talk her down, to comfort her and to keep her going, through the process. The poor girl was likely not over 19, and I guess this was as much blood as she had ever seen. The scalp on the back of my head was cut open. She was standing over me with her legs on either side of my head, her legs were shaking, and she had a hard time getting through putting those sutures in me. Some how I think that if she had just a hair more training, or support from some kind of medical team, maybe she could have faced that with more calm and dignity.

I do not expect to be treated by a doctor for every little booboo. Obviously. But the idea that someone with training is nearby would be comforting to me.

When I retired, I had a retirement physical. Performed by HMs, and signed by an officer whom I never met. I assume that he was a doctor. But I would not know.

Which is fine. It is how the military works.

But now as a retiree, we are seen and treated by nurses and doctors. An entirely different level of care. These people have much more training.

My Dw explains it best by the drawing of blood thing. At MilMed a 20 year old HM with 6 weeks of training will jab you with a needle. They will rarely hit an artery on the first jab, so they begin twisting the needle left and right fishing around trying to hit a vein. After they finally get enough blood, you walk away with a huge blue streak on your arm. With civilian medical care, they very rarely miss. Neither of us has ever had an arm turn blue from internal bleeding during a blood draw, at a civilian medical facility.



My Dw works at DECA. She sees their prices every day. She does buy there sometimes, but mostly stops by local stores for stuff on her way home.

AD bases are fine. I just do not see the draw for a retiree to desire to live near one.

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Old 03-09-2009, 02:58 PM
 
Location: Island in the Pacific
27 posts, read 70,329 times
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Which type of climate do you prefer for retirement? Florida could be nice if you enjoy the warmer weather. Washington state...if you enjoy the cooler, damp climate. We have several friends who retired to Arizona, they were looking for dry, warm environment...Alaska is nice, but in the smaller, tourist towns you'll need some significant cash flow, Anchorage has several military bases...cold winters though.
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