I’ve read quite a few blog posts in recent months about people’s “bucket lists” – a collection of things they want to do before they die. I hadn’t thought of writing a list of my own, but then last week I discovered I already did – ten years ago.
I was going through old files from two computers ago, looking for something completely unrelated, when I stumbled upon a file called “Wish List.” It peaked my curiosity and as soon as I opened it, the list started to look vaguely familiar. Slowly, I realized it was a list I partially took from a book of the same name – similar to One Thousand Places To See Before You Die, this was a book that listed a gazillion different things to do in one’s lifetime. I recall that I plucked what I liked from that book and then added some of my own. I couldn’t recall for the life of me when I started this list, so I checked out the properties and saw the last edit date was January 1, 2001 – almost exactly a decade ago!
So what was on my list? And more importantly, what can I check off?
- Pay off my credit cards. (checked off several years ago)
- Create a computer database for my family tree. (I am a genealogy nut and have been working on this since around 2004 – I have everything organized thanks to Family Tree Maker software)
- Rediscover old friends. (thank you Facebook!)
- Attend all of the Grand Slam tennis tournaments.
- Run into my high school crush and find out he really liked me too. (ok, not quite, but I think making out with my 6th grade crush at my high school reunion kinda counts)
- Learn to be at ease speaking in public.
- Be a good friend to my friends. (I try!)
- Stay in touch with my two closest friends from college – Krina and Erica.
- Visit Scandinavia. (ok, I’m just a third of the way there – still have Finland and Sweden to go)
- Accept that it’s okay to be me.
- Watch a Centre Court match at Wimbledon. (finally checked that off this summer!)
- Attend the women’s finals at the US Open.
- Run a marathon. (I’ve run four since 2008!)
What have I kicked off the list altogether? And what was I thinking with some of these??
- Try out for MTV’s Real World. (um, yeah, a little old for that now…)
- Read War & Peace in Russian. (haven’t managed to finish it in English)
- See all the Oscar-nominated movies back to 1927. (this was a law school pastime that has long since been abandoned)
- Run for Congress and win.
- Be mentioned in People magazine.
- Negotiate a treaty.
- Live on the 30th floor or higher of a high-rise.
- Ski in South America. (this was something I decided I wanted to do in high school but frankly, I really just don’t enjoy skiing that much anymore)
What am I still working on?
- Fall in love with the right guy at the right time for both of us.
- Finish paying off my student loans.
- See my alma mater win an NCAA basketball championship.
- Love my job.
- Live without regrets.
- Visit Russia.
- Travel to all of the “’stans” – Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. (I was surprised to see I had thought of this 10 years ago!)
And finally, what would I add now?
- Travel long-term or live overseas.
- Be a good aunt to my niece and nephew.
- Go on an African safari.
- Travel on the Trans-Siberian Railway.
- Hike the Annapurna Circuit.
- Visit Tibet.
- Run a marathon overseas.
- Learn to speak Russian near fluently.
- Write a book.
- Write my family history.
- Start my own business.
I have to say, stumbling across this list was a trip down memory lane and really sent me back to 2001, when I was in my last year of law school and on the verge of moving to Chicago to be a tax attorney at a large law firm. It was nice to see that I managed to check quite a few things off the list even though I forgot about it altogether – especially the travel-related items since at the time I had never even left the country! And it was interesting (even disturbing!) to see some of the things I thought I wanted to accomplish at the time. Running for Congress? Trying out for the Real World? Really??