Last week on Weekend Travel Inspiration, I started telling you how I’ve chosen to live my life a bit differently than many of my friends and family. Jim and I talked about it quite a bit this past weekend, because we were off to the south of France to the Lemon festival in Menton and we spent some time in Monaco.
One of the things we did was head over to the Monte Carlo Casino so that Jim could gamble in this world famous saloon. He even came right out and said, “This has been on my bucket list for a long time!” Jim has always liked to dabble at gambling when the chance arose and even has a few good stories to tell about it, but I did not know that he had always wanted to go to Monte Carlo and try his luck.
So, we talked about bucket lists, or a wish list, or a “to-do” list. I don’t like the morbidity that “bucket list” implies. Being born into a traveling family and designing a life for myself that has been rich in experiences, I feel I’ve done so many things that people dream they can do one day. I liken it to an ice cream sundae, with scoops of hundreds of varieties of flavors, some a little sweeter than others. And like Susan Sontag, my list is never-ending, so I think I’m going to call mine my “cherry” list.
I can look at the word “cherry” in a couple of different ways that I think work well. “Popping the cherry” simply means your “first time.” Since the things on my list will primarily be things I’ve never done before, they all fall neatly into this category. And, of course with my ice cream sundae life, it will never be complete without the cherry on top. So there you have it. My term for my “to do” list, my “wish” list, my list of things I want to do.
I’ve never before really tried to write down the places I want to go, because quite frankly the answer is everywhere. And likewise, I’ve never really written down those things that I want to accomplish and experience. I’ve looked for them, listened for them, jumped at the chance for them, but never written them down. So this week, I’m going to start my cherry list. Jim is going to chime in next week with his, and even though I don’t want to ever become obsessed with this list, have it drive my decisions, I definitely want to not forget them and try to do them whenever possible.
First here are a few things I’ve done that I consider cherries…super special!
Do a max climb and pull some serious Gs in an F-15
Have one of my photographs displayed in a museum
Go on a safari in Africa
Explore ancient Incan ruins in Peru
See the moiais on Easter Island
Snorkel the Great Barrier Reef
Ride Mongolian ponies over the high steppes
Ride a camel in the Gobi Desert, the Thar Desert, the desert of Egypt
Camp in beautiful places like a Danish fjord, the Costa Brava in Spain, all through Alaska
Doing friendship and cultural exchanges all over the world
My Cherry List
There is no way I could ever put this list in some sort of order, but there is one place I would love to go that is just so difficult to get to (and expensive). So I have to say it might take my number one spot. Antartica!
As you might expect, much of my list is about where I want to go versus what I want to do there, but sometimes just being someplace new is enough of a high, a rush for me. The experience is smelling the air, tasting the food, meeting the people. These are inherent parts of all of our trips, so I won’t keep writing it down.
I started out 2016 with a list of dream destinations for this year, all to do with exploring more of Europe, especially the Eastern parts. Consider them the beginning of this ever-lengthening list.
Chile – We’ve been. We love it. We have people we love there, but I want to visit the spectacular Patagonia.
Argentina – I think I’ve said before, I love meat!
Ushuaia – Gateway to Antarctica and so much more
Brazil – jungles, Iguasu Falls
Amazon River- swimming with pink dolphins and piranhas(?)
Serengeti Migration – a major dream of mine!
Grand Canyon – been a few times and it doesn’t ever disappoint, but I want to do the rafting trip
Nepal – part of the circuit, Chitwan NP, wash an elephant
Silk Road – visiting the “Stans”, the back country of China
Traveling around the Pacific Islands
Cuba – Does Obama need a travel blogger on his trip?
North Korea – more than just one step
USA – Florida – camp on the Dry Tortugas/manatees
Central America – Tikal/Guatemala/ Mayan ruins
Bolivia – Salar de Uyuni
Madagascar – Lemurs and Baobobs!
Australia – a third time with plenty of road tripping – Center /Uluru, Tasmania, and the West
Ethiopia – Lalibela and more
Rhwanda – gorillas
Ferry around the Caribbean
Stay in a cabin/hut on stilts someplace like Fiji or Bora Bora
**Okay, this is just a start. I want to do so many things that I just can’t possibly remember them all. This is a living list that will grow and grow.
How about you? Do you have a list? What do you call your list? What is the top thing on your list?
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