My Post-Adventure Bucket List

Towards the end of high school, I began composing a bucket-list of sorts. It had the usual things on it: skydiving, eating snails in Paris, seeing an aurora, getting a degree and writing a book. Most of them I’ve achieved, but as I look back, I’m not sure they’re actually the most radical things I’ve done.

Bucket-lists can be beneficial but they’re all about forward-planning and imagining. Sometimes they’re not realistic. Life may bring restrictions like health, finances, time or circumstances, and suddenly our dreams are out of reach.

As I reflect on my life, I realize that my BEST bucket-list is my POST adventure one; the things that I’ve already experienced that I’d never have imagined up myself.

Here are some of the things that I’ve done that weren’t on my bucket-list:

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I took this photo while paragliding near the Annapurna Ranges in Nepal.

Flying over Mt Everest

Walking across a Burning Ghat on the Ganges River

Paragliding with eagles in the Himalayas

Cliff jumping into the ocean

Being elbow deep inside a sheep, trying to deliver a lamb

Road-tripping through torrential rain in outback Australia

Living life to the full isn’t always about planning, but about making the most of every opportunity; appreciating what we have been given, rather than focusing on what we’d like.

I may never see an aurora, get a PhD or travel into space, but I have no doubt that I will have experiences that I never would have dreamed of. I’d hate to miss them because I was so focused on my own plans.

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The Art of Enjoying Normality

Photo Credit: stock.xchng green grass

My year 12 students and I saw a play last week. It was called Random, by Debbie Tucker Green.

Afterwards as we debriefed, (they have to do an assignment on it of course – I know, we’re such killjoys) we discussed the way in which it deals with the supreme value of normality. This, as with many precious things, is not fully realised until it’s taken from us. Joni Mitchell got it right when she sang ‘Don’t it always seem to go, that you don’t know what you’ve got til it’s gone.’

In the last few years I have purposed to try to live in such a way that I appreciate NOW those things that I am likely to appreciate later: being young, being single, freedom, travel, peace…
I am also learning to appreciate the little things. We live in a culture and a generation that seems to have subscribed to the idea that we could, quite possibly, die from boredom. I have learnt that, not only will it not kill me, but that I should find deep contentment in it.

On my overseas travels, I have been faced with countless scary times, way out of my comfort zone, when I longed to be sitting at home on my bed, bored. So when I find myself surrounded by silence and the monotony of normality, I try to remind myself that this is the grass that seems greener from the other side.