Week 02 – Create a Bucket List

This week’s random number, as chosen by the random.org generator:

2013-01-08

And resolution 39 is … create a “bucket list”! (And shush to all of you who realise that the date above is for Tuesday not Monday, I forgot to take the fscking screenshot!). Oh, and for those of you who don’t know what one of those is, it’s basically a list of all the things you want to do before you die – i.e. kick the bucket – hence the name.

The emphasis of this task is to think about all the things you want to do in your life – places to go, sights to see, experiences to have, people to meet, things to achieve, and so forth – with the aim of then working on actually doing them. This intersects slightly with the resolutions on this site, but for the most part will be on a much grander scale, in both terms of the size of the goal and the length of time it’ll take to happen.

So why did I put this resolution on the list? Well, I must confess that this came from the original 26(ish) I lifted/borrowed/etc from the becauseisaidiwould site, so it wasn’t something I thought of completely on my own. However, that doesn’t make it any less of a task!

The real reason I decided on this one is that I’ve never been that good at deciding what I want out of life. My only real goal was to graduate with a degree in computer science, which I accomplished when I was 21. Since then, I’ve not really had any major drivers in my life to get me motivated, and so I’ve been coasting on and off ever since. OK, so I’m not a total waste-of-space drifter – I’ve got a career, family, etc, so my life isn’t bad by any means – but I lack any real sense of direction or purpose.

Therefore, what I hope to achieve with this bucket list is to work out what’s important to me, and how I could improve things to get to a point where I’m happy with what I’ve done with myself. I know this one won’t be easy, so expect my followup post to be posted right on the deadline – yes, I can procrastinate like no-one’s business 😉

However, since this is purely a speculative task, I need to set some success criteria in order to know whether I’ve met it or not. Given that I don’t have anything particular in mind for list items yet, I’m going to set a target of at least 3 of each of the following:

  • Places to go/see
  • People to meet
  • Things to learn
  • Experiences to have
  • Foods to try

This is of course just the minimum – I hope to be able to come up with more than just 3 of each! I’ll also do a bit of research in reading the bucket lists created by other people, to both inspire me and to give an idea as to the scale/scope of each item.

Time to start thinking!

Week 01 – Success!

The new year is off to a good start, because I’ve managed to meet my first resolution’s goal! I successfully climbed up into a tree, and took a few photos from the branch-level vantage point, as promised! Not only that, I made it both up and back down without injuring myself in any way, which seems silly at first, but I consider it important nowadays :)

I spent most of the week scoping the local areas, trying to find a suitable climbing candidate, but to no avail. However, my fortune changed on the weekend, and I ended up at a park in the older part of the city, which had plenty of large non-palm trees, many of which were close to climbable. I walked past a few that looked promising, but since they were in very open view and the park was crowded, I elected for a simple-looking intertwining pair of trees in a more secluded spot. I decided that I’d start on the right side of the tree (see below), and work my way up and leftwards.

The Tree

Once I started my initial ascent, I was glad of the “simple” choice I made – it’d been a very long time since I last did this, and I wasn’t too sure of my hand & footholds, nor how well the tree would cope with my now-adult weight. Thus, I gingerly crept up and along the tilted trunk/branch, cautiously testing the handhold branches to see if they were sturdy enough or not, and keeping an eye out for any unexpected wildlife. Oh, did I mention that this tree was on the edge of a swamp-like brackish lake? I really didn’t want to fall!

After a minute of two of clambering, I decided that I’d reached a good stopping point, and whipped out the ol’ camera phone to take the evidence-worthy snaps. I was probably only about 8 feet off the ground, but it felt much higher from in the tree, so I was content that I’d made a decent go of it.

View 1 View 2

Getting down was a little bit interesting, as the sloped angle of the main trunk/branch parts meant that I couldn’t just turn around and do back down. Instead, I had to clamber backwards to exactly reverse my upwards path, at least to get over some of the bigger cross-branches and down the main bit a way. Once I was clear of that, I elected to exit in the traditional childhood manner – a jump! I was only about 6 feet up at this point, so I knew it wasn’t going to be an issue, and made a clean drop onto the (fairly soft) ground below. Mission accomplished!

I must admit, it was a fun challenge, and definitely something I wouldn’t normally have thought of doing while out and about, so I’m glad that I added this one to my list. I think I’ll have to keep an eye open for other potentially climbable trees in future, not worry about what people watching might think, and have fun doing something that most adults have forgotten the joys of.

So, one down, fifty-one more to go!