People come out in droves for must see annual events. The running of the Bulls in Paloma. Carnival in Rio. Octoberfest in Munich.
There are lists and lists of things that people want to do before they die. Yes. I said it. This is someone sitting down with pen or keyboard saying that before they die they’d like to accomplish Thing X, Thing Y and Thing Z. That’s what a bucket list is, a marker of mortality.
And, I mean, what happens if you do it all? Do you die right then? Or do you just add more? If you run out of Things, are you unhappy for the rest of your dull days? And if you don’t complete your list, do you die unhappy? Is a bucket list just an organizing tool for planning weekend activities (skydiving-ugh!) or vacations (Machu Picchu-yay!)? Maybe it’s just something for the list-obsessed to do. I couldn’t tell you, since I don’t have a list.
Actually, I do have a list. Things that make it to my list just stall. It’s more like a list of guilt rather than a list of to-dos. But that’s just me.
To get items checked off your bucket list you need to figure out the when–a calendar works here. Then you have to try and figure out the how. How to get there, where to stay, and, I would recommend, a quick primer on local laws and the location of the American Consulate.
Just to be safe.
Anyway, some things on a bucket list are harder to navigate. They are more ephemeral. Like seeing a whale breach. Timing and good luck are everything. Or catching the winter monster waves off Maui’s Pe’hai North Shore. Unless you live there, you could miss them. The vernal equinox at Stonehenge–you can calculate it, but can you get there? Then there’s seeing the cherry trees in D.C.
Wait. How’d the cherry blossoms make this list?
I am clueless for that one. They are both hard to predict (they were 16 days earlier in 2016 than in 2015) and a mess. They are in peak bloom for a few days, then “poof!” Literally. (Okay, not really literally, but work with me.) Literally the trees look like poofs of barely pink cotton candy floating in a robin eggs’ blue sky.
Anyway, I don’t have a bucket list. I can see the cherry trees every year since I live here. Also, I could walk across the overcrowded boulevard filled with people who are wearing shorts and printed t-shirts in the cold all the while brandishing their selfie sticks and end up getting run over by an open-topped tour bus with a student group from Omaha, Nebraska.
But without a disappointingly incomplete list, I’d go happy.