Self-employment

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I spent some time today with an elderly couple in their mid seventies: hill farmers. They both have various quite serious health issues, they draw a state pension, but both are still working, in his case 70 hours a week looking after the cattle and sheep on the snowy Trossachs whilst she keeps house, and looks after the accounts.
They enjoy almost none of the amenities we take for granted, and their lives could fairly be described as very tough. They have been snowed in for the last two months!
I'd love to know why it is that some people keep working long after the rest of us have given up. Self employment seems to be one very important factor.
Hi Rob, spent most of my life self employed, found it gave me greater freedom with the family, but the other side the coin is, you cannot aford to stop working, no paid holidays, sick pay etc, once got run over by a forktruck in West Thurrock, broke my wrist in 6 places and the hand in 5. Drove myself to hospital, in an articulated lorry, got my hand and wrist put back in place, plaster cast etc, instructions to rest and not work. Went outside got in the truck and set of for Dover and the ferry, 5 drops in Germany reload in Italy. Could just not afford to stop. 7 day weeks was the norm.
[quote]I spent some time today with an elderly couple in their mid seventies]

Did you ask them Rob ?

In my Dad's case he worked right up till he died aged 81 because he just wanted to ! He used to say "if you want to put me in my box, then stop me working" - work was how he defined himself, he enjoyed what he did (latterly furniture restoration) and it was important to him to know that he could 'pay his way'.