Fifty five-year-old Bhaskaran KM from Kerala is winning at the game of life. How, you ask? For starters, Bhaskaran, who hails from Cheruvathoor village in Kasargode district, is living exactly by his new life motto and making headlines in the process.
"The purpose of life is happiness. When you're my age and have but a few years left, you should experience everything you have always wanted to, in life, that is, if you possess the means to do so," says the retired electrician to TNM.
This brand new life motto is what recently nudged Bhaskaran to build a swimming pool behind his one-bedroom house in Cheruvathoor. The pool, which is deep enough to take a dive in, has become somewhat of a sensation in the village, which has not quite seen the likes of it before. Bhaskaran, whose swimming pool story was first telecast on Asianet says he is ‘happily’ single and living in Cheruvathoor, often invites his friends for a swim or a game of ball in the pool.
Until the age of 53, Bhaskaran worked as a local electrician and saved a modest amount from his income every month, until one day he had an epiphany, which steered him on to a whole new way of living, he says.
"I don't believe luxury is meant just for the wealthy. I was once taken on a free electricians' tour by V Guard (one of the largest electrical appliances manufacturer in India) to Hyderabad and Goa, where we were put up in five-star hotels. I thoroughly enjoyed the swimming pools there and wanted one in my house as well. So I built it," recalls Bhaskaran, who announced his retirement soon after the trip and even organised a retirement get-together.
Having a pool at home also means swimming every day, which would keep Bhaskaran fit and help him undertake new adventures regularly, he adds.
Bhaskaran's pool took him several months to build. He spent a grand total of Rs 8 lakh, which he had initially set aside to renovate his one-room house.
"I just decided to paint the house and leave it. What is the point of building extra rooms when only I live here? Instead, I put all the money into building the pool. I cleared some portion of his backyard, imported tiles from Gujarat and got workers to fix them. Now, my friends and I use the pool as a hangout spot in my house," he says with a chuckle.
Image credit: Asianet News
The 55-year-old is also conscious to not waste water and uses the drained water from the pool to water the coconut trees in his backyard.
The road to life after retirement
Bhaskaran’s definition of life after retirement not only included the huge swimming pool but extensive travelling as well.
In 2018, Bhaskaran along with two friends - Vikraman and Mohanan - embarked on a pan-India road trip in his Alto. From March to September, the trio covered over 10 states in 70 days and returned to Kerala. Bhaskaran's only regret is that they could not cover the northeastern states. But he promises that it would not remain a regret for too long.
"When I have health, I want to see as many places as possible and experience all good things. God knows when the Rangabodham illatha Komaali (the clown which has no sense of place) will come for me," he says, referring to death in the famous words of Malayalam writer MT Vasudevan Nair.
Now that he has retired, Bhaskaran is prepared to embrace the phase of his life where he would fulfil all his dreams and live life king size, in the company of his friends. And as far as the money is considered, the 55-year-old says he gets a certain amount of money from his Fixed Deposit account. “Besides, I don’t have many expenses,” he adds.