(Written 12 August 2006)
As I’m fast approaching an age that is the outcome of 20+10 (no, don’t say it out loud – I’m not quite ready to hear it just yet!), I’ve been taking stock and although I’ve done some travelling and a fair old bit of living, there are things I haven’t done – lots of them! So, I thought it might be an idea to compile a list of 50 things to do before I’m 50 – giving me a good 20 years to do them all (which will mean I can save up money for some of the bigger ones, because I’m really going to need it!). It might seem like a long time, but I like to think I’ll beat the clock and some of the projects will be more long term, so the time will definitely be required.
I’m determined that there’ll be fears overcome (or at least faced), expanded horizons and a lot of fun to be had with these challenges and learning experiences. And no, you won’t find swimming with dolphins on my list – too many people have listed that as it is, so I aim to leave all aquatic mammals in peace.
Anyway, without further ado, here’s my own personal list of 50 things to do before I turn 50:
- Take a flight in a hot air balloon (this is a biggie, as I’m terrified of heights!)
- Take a cruise down the Nile
- Write a book and send it to publishers (obviously, the aim is to actually get it published, but I’m being realistic here!)
- Exotic foods: Try the following –
- Bake a cake from scratch (although I’m a very decent cook, I can’t bake to save my life and have never made a cake myself!) – COMPLETED!
- Read a book by an author from each of the countries represented in the Olympic Games (currently underway)
- Get a short story or poem published in a magazine or book
- Buy a house (we’re currently in a flat)
- Go to the top of the Eiffel Tower
- Go to the top of the Empire State Building
- Meet a real Geisha
- Grow my own fruit/vegetables – COMPLETED!
- Make an item of clothing (knitting a scarf doesn’t count!)
- Learn to speak a foreign language (French is exempt from this as I studied that at school)
- Ride a camel
- Be present at a birth (human, animal – doesn’t matter which) – COMPLETED!
- Meet Terry Pratchett
- Get another tattoo – COMPLETED!
- Learn to play a musical instrument (violin is exempt from this as I played when I was a kid)
- Donate a pint of blood (I’m terrified of needles and very squeamish about blood)
- Learn a martial art
- Take part in a sponsored run and actually run it, rather than walking
- Join a cult (not a scary one – I promise I won’t do anything stupid or dangerous that way!) – COMPLETED!
- Milk a cow or goat
- Get a title (I rather fancy being a Lady) – COMPLETED!
- Be in the front row at a Dream Theater concert
- Sing “Do You Know the Way to San Jose” in San Jose
- Draw a star with my name in it on the pavement outside Grauman’s Chinese Theatre (it’s in Hollywood, where all the big stars have their names)
- Watch a Bollywood movie
- Entice Dale to leave the country for a foreign holiday (he’s never been abroad)
- Take a trip on the Orient Express
- Sing “Just one Cornetto” in a gondola
- Take part in an archaeological dig
- Adopt an animal
- Grow a plant from seed – COMPLETED!
- Interview a published author – COMPLETED! (see below)
- Learn to hang wallpaper – COMPLETED!
- Eat chilli in Mexico
- Buy shares in a company
- Go to a Chelsea FC home game
- Re-enact a scene from Gladiator in the Roman Colosseum
- See Eddie Izzard live – COMPLETED!
- Sleep in a haunted castle
- See a Shakespearean play performed at The Globe Theatre in London
- Kiss the Blarney Stone
- Go to Shetland for Up Helly Aa
- Go white water rafting
- Ride a horse along a beach
- See a movie in an IMAX cinema – COMPLETED!
- Watch all three films in The Godfather trilogy
- The Godfather – COMPLETED!
- The Godfather Part II – COMPLETED!
- The Godfather Part III – COMPLETED!
So, there we go; 50 things to do before I’m 50 – I’ll chart my progress and tick them off as I accomplish them. Some of them will take a fair while to do, but others will be quicker and/or easier to get through. I look forward to the day when I can say I’ve done them all!
And if this prompts you to make your own list of things to accomplish, let me know – I’d be very interested in seeing it and hearing how you do!