Bayalis. 42 in Hindi.

noun. The Answer to the Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe and Everything (for those of you who aren’t die hard Douglas Adams fans, that is a nod to the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy).


I am a 38 year old dreamer and a software engineer. I am married to a 32 year old programming language enthusiast who writes non programming language code for a living. One daughter and one dog complete our family. If you want to know more about who I am and where I come from, I’ve written a whole backstory series for you to peruse at your leisure.


I have lived a good life thus far. I have been luckier than most and happier than many. However, if I were to continue to live this life until I was old, wrinkly and saggy, and if I were then to turn around and survey my life, one foot in the grave, I suspect the following internal dialogue would ensue.

I: You’re going to die soon.
Me: I am aware of this and you are Captain Obvious.
I: Do you have regrets?
Me: Everyone has some regrets. If someone says they have no regrets they are a Great Enormous Liar Box. Or an Idiot.
I: Let us try that again. Could you have created more, dreamed bigger, seen more, lived harder?
Me: Yes! Yes! I wish I had. I don’t want to die. I’m not ready. I need more Life. One isn’t enough. This sucks. I want my money back (……trailing off into incomprehensible whining as I’m dragged kicking and screaming to my grave).


I want a life that is is worthy of a memoir – not necessarily a New York Times bestseller memoir, but at least a ‘great grandma was seriously fucking cool’ kind.

I wanted a different kind of life, but wanting that seemed about as realistic as taking wing and soaring off into the sunset.


Until, like my caveman ancestors, I discovered FIRE (Financial Independence/Retire Early).

I devoured everything I could get my hands on that was remotely FIRE related. I gave it some Deep Thought.  I ran some numbers. I got tremendously excited and ran around in little circles squawking like a chicken who is high on various illegal substances. I converted Mr. BITA to the cause. We made a FIRE plan.


And then I noticed something about our FIRE Plan.

According to the Plan, I can retire at 42. I know a good old fashioned sign when I see one.
According to the Plan, Mr. BITA can retire at 42 (Ok, I admit I cheated. In the original plan he would be able to retire at 43, but 43 has no poetry to it. 43 is the step-sister with the crooked nose. 42 is Cinder-fucking-rella. I tweaked the Plan).

42. Yes, 42 is the Answer.


This blog will document our journey to financial independence and beyond as we try to figure out what the Question really is.

As we journey we will share with you, Faithful Reader, our plans, our ‘numbers’, interesting discoveries that we make along the way, all the embarrassing ways in which we fail and all the spectacular ways in which we pick ourselves right back up and keep on going.


22 thoughts on “About”

    1. Thank you for taking the time to read and to comment. It is readers like you that keep me on the straight and narrow, and inspire me to write.

  1. I finally looked up what Bayalis meant and laughed soup out of my nose. Then I had to come read your “about” so I could put a comment here rather than Rockstar Review which is where I was hanging out eating lunch.

    Thank you! Just…thank you.

  2. Can we be friends? ha ha no kidding I’m 32, 7mo old baby boy, 37 year old husband, both working, hoping to retire 2019, also indian, also in the bay area! Now that I type this – I’m thinking there might be a lot of us, plus indians and stealth wealth hardly go together, lol.

    1. 2019! That is so exciting. It is practically around the corner! I’d love to hear more about your story – whatever you are willing to share publicly. What is your FIRE ‘number’, or what is the annual amount you are planning to withdraw? Are you first generation immigrants? Where do you plan to stay after you retire – here in the bay area or somewhere else?

      1. First generation – been here since our early twenties. FIRE plan is to pay off primary home – and then cash flow 150K/yr from real estate alone. We are heavy on real estate, started to diversify some of it last year. We plan to stay in the bay area but not for any compelling reason beyond familiarity and having some friends. We want to have the option to stay though so that means dealing with the housing market. How do you like the bay area? Would you consider moving post FIRE?

  3. I cannot thank Mr.1500 enough for pointing me to your site! I am Indian who ended up in bay area through the usual route of finishing masters and then attracted to this honey pot called “bay area” to work in one of the many tech companies! Had our first baby in 2015 which made me think “why am I not spending more time with my baby instead of working 10-12 hrs per day?”! Stumbled upon “Your money or your life” book which then lead me to Mr. Money Moustache then Mr.1500 and the rest of the FIRE gang! Me and my wife are thrilled about our journey and also planning to retire at bayalis! We should have a meet up in bay area for the FIRE community! Hate that I cannot share my excitement with my friends and through your blog I wish to find more folks in bay area who are on their journey towards FI!

    1. I’m glad we ran into each other.

      I’d love to hear more about your FIRE journey (and yay for choosing bayalis, it is a magical number : ). How far out is 42 for you? What path are you taking to FIRE? Real estate, good old index funds? Something else?

      You should come join us on the rockstar finance forums and we can discuss a meetup there.

      1. Great to hear back from you! I am 33 yrs old so hoping to be FI by 42, will decide on the RE aspect once we figure out what we (me and wife) really want to pursue! Like the prodigal son, we have committed many cardinal sins and trying to make amends after the fact, one such example is buying a house in bay area! We bought a 4 bedroom – 2 bath house last year (before we discovered FIRE) and realize our mistake but then house hacking came to our rescue, currently we are renting couple of rooms out and generating some passive income! And of course index investing is going to be cornerstone of our stock investment! We are currently pondering on the idea of retiring in India to get more value for our dollars and trying to weigh the pros and the cons! I saw your comment that you did think about returning to India but otherwise! Would love to know what data points you looked at and what made you come up with a decision? Btw, this may be a stupid question, but any particular thread in the rockstar finance forums that I should join?

        1. Ah, worry not about the sins of your youth. We have all committed them to a greater or lesser degree. You should be thrilled that you discovered the path you are on as early as you have. My own realization came when I was nearly 38 years old! Nice work on the rental income.

          We are not currently considering a permanent move back to India. India is one of our back up countries, and we may return there for some years if my parents need us there as they age (My parents are not based in India right now). My husband is not Indian (or of Indian origin), and all his family is here, so that is one of the factors. Even my sibling is not based in India. I can’t say for sure what our future needs and desires will be, but right now India is not on the cards.

          About the forums: no there is no particular thread. Join, and then maybe introduce yourself on the ‘Introduce Yourself’ category, and then just take it from there.

  4. I think we may be sisters….you know, metaphorically speaking! I just subscribed. Know why? Cause you swear, you have a sense of humor, and you “get” that this whole financial journey thing is a rough ride for a lot of people. I look forward to reading more from you and watching your progress. “42, is the answer.” GENIUS! If you are curious about my journey, check me out at theladyintheblack.com.

    1. I have been told time and again now that tribes are the new cool thing. So in the spirit of being with it, welcome to my tribe! I’m glad you’re enjoying the content, and I hope you take your job of keeping me honest and on track seriously.

  5. Thanks for sharing!! I stumbled onto your site and just got through the backstory. I am bayalis and our family is probably FI – I figured out the concept about a year ago as we were becoming financially independent. The big questions remain the costs of healthcare for the early retiree, and the costs of our three kids all still in grade school. Not to mention, I still enjoy my work in the Midwest, and get plenty of time off – we managed a two week trip to India last winter. I will likely cut back to part time over the next 3-5 years. Maybe saytalis will be it for me 🙂

    1. Congratulations on your FI-ness! How awesome to have achieved it before you even discovered that it had a name. Healthcare in this country is undoubtedly a shit show, and there is no good way to budget for it. Thanks for taking the time to comment, and do drop in again and keep us updated on how things unfold for you.

  6. Hello Mrs. BITA, I’ve been enjoying your comments on Financial Samurai and finally came on over to check out your blog. I’ve perused through your articles and am looking forward to spending some real time going through them.

    1. Welcome to the Bayalis site! I am glad you decided to stop by, and I hope we get to know each other better as time goes on.


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