We don't have to accept our dreams as impossibilities. Write them down. We won't always remember every little thing we want to do, sometimes we'll forget and sometimes we won't remember until an opportunity has slipped through our fingers, which is why I'm making a list. I'm not the first and I'm certainly not going to be the last to put this online, but I hope some of these ideas will either inspire you or entertain you. If you've done any of them, wander down to the comments section and tell me about it!
Fernweh's starting to make a little more sense now, isn't it? I'm one of those people who is absolutely fascinated by the diversity and range of experiences our world offers. I was fortunate enough to be able to have two days in Amsterdam this past February and it was one of the best weekends of my life. It's most certainly a place I want to return to - two days was nowhere near enough time! - but I want to do so much more. I want to travel through France; Paris, to Nice, to Bordeaux, Lille and Dijon. From there I want to cross the border into Italy, see as much as I can and learn a different way of life. Europe is so wide and I would love to see as much of it as I can. From skiing in Austria to frolicking on a beach in Malta, I don't want to miss the simple pleasures in life. Fiji is also a place I would love to explore - my house-mate and I plan to spend quite a while there when we become New York Times best selling authors. Which leads us on to number two:
2. Finish a book
I love to write. I'm a very creative person, have adored writing fiction ever since I was a child, but I've never really finished something. I have a story planned until the very last scene, see it all in my head, but only manage to get the first half down on paper before I grow restless and need something new. Half of the space on my laptop is taken up with folders upon folders of unfinished projects, and that's something I really would like to change. I love each and every one of the characters I've created and I think they deserve a proper ending, as opposed to the stilted halt I've given them. If I could finish a book to a standard I'm happy with, that'd be a goal very well completed. And if I managed to pluck up the guts to send it off to a publishers? Well, that'd be a dream in itself!
3. Learn a different language - at least conversationally!
Us Brits are completely lazy when it comes to language, and I know a large majority of us hate it. I wasn't given the opportunity to learn another language at school until I was a teenager, and by then it was arguably too late to ever really become fluent. Other countries are far more advanced in this department, with the majorities of their populations having at least one second language (usually English). Because of this, a lot of people who have English as their mother tongue don't see the need to learn something else. I don't want to be one of those people. I know French very poorly; I could probably get by if I needed to, but I want to be able to smile at someone and ask how their day went without having to strain to translate what they're telling me. I want to communicate and, most importantly, I want to understand.
4. Go deep sea diving at least once
I once told someone that I believe in Alternate Universe Theory, and that in one universe I am a mermaid. It's slightly ridiculous, or possibly completely correct, but I want to know what's beneath sea level in this life, too. Our world is composed of over 70% water and we have barely touched the surface of it. As a keen swimmer, I would love to be able to go underwater and take the opportunity to see things that not everyone is going to be able to see. It's an opportunity I'm eager to take; not only do I want to see tropical fish in warmer climates, and the beautiful variety of colours and plant-life available, but I'd also love to dive into some of the colder areas closer to home and check out old shipwrecks and things you generally only see on T.V. It may not be through the magic of a tail and seashell bra but, hey, you have to start somewhere, right?
5. Sleep under the Northern Lights
In Village Kakslauttanhen, Finland, you have the opportunity to rent a glass igloo and sleep under the Northern Lights. Here in the U.K. I don't think it's possible to see the aurora borealis, though I'm not brilliant at georgraphy. At nearly £200 per night, it may have to be something I wait quite a while for, but it's something that's definitely going to be done before I'm 50.
6. See snowfall on a beach
It may sound a little random, but this is something I've wanted to witness ever since I was a child. I don't live anywhere near a seaside town, nor do I go to any often (though I do hope to change that, at some point), but I think it would be absolutely beautiful. I used to think it may not be possible, that the salty consistency of the sea might effect the way snow settled on the sand - because I never said I was brilliant at science, either! - but recently I've been enlightened to the fact that it is, indeed, possible. Especially in colder beach climates such as England... bring on Winter!
7. Get a tattoo
I know this certainly isn't going to be everybody's cup of tea - throughout history art has been a controversial topic, why should it stop now? - but I think a small tattoo would be a lovely personal statement. Your body is your own canvas, and it's completely okay to prefer minimalist designs (or lack therefore of), but it's similarly just as okay to love colour and patterns and whatever else you want to put on your body. It's your body; make it your home, too.
8. Dress extravagantly for a casual event
For quite a while I've thought it would be extremely fun to get all dressed up to do something entirely mundane, like go to McDonald's or the cinema. And by dressed up, I mean going to whole nine yards. Heels, a fancy dress, hair and make-up done beautifully... it's not just the youngsters who want to feel like a Princess for a day! Though, I may have to rake some friends in to do this with me. I don't think it'd be half as fun alone as it would if there were a group of us. Anyone fancy it?
9. Swim in Flathead Lake, Montana
Flathead Lake is one of the largest freshwater lakes in America and is known for it's beautifully clear surface. So much so that it's apparently near-impossible to judge its depth with the naked eye. Unfortunately this has been the cause of quite a few drownings as people have jumped in assuming their target area to be shallow, when in reality it was far from it. I'm not the world's most fantastic swimmer, but I like to believe I'm pretty decent. I think as long as you know what you're doing, swimming in a lake like this could be an incredible experience.
10. Take an archery class
Though not a weapon entirely practical for a zombie apocalypse, archery is something that has always intrigued me. I used to want to be Legolas when I was growing up with The Lord of the Rings trilogy - now that we have some lady representation, I'm taking a lot of inspiration from Tauriel. It may not be an entirely useful sport, but it'll certainly make sure I can a) defend myself if need by from a singular far away zombie, and b) provide an ice-breaker for new conversations. "Hey, ever tried archery? Because you're my target tonight! No? Okay."
(...I never said it'd work as a pick-up line.)
11. Learn one song on the piano to an acceptable standard
When someone asks me what my favourite instrument is, I don't have to pause before I shoot back "Either the violin or piano". Now, I have no intention of keeping my neighbours up at night, suffering with the sounds of me attempting to control screeching strings, but I can certainly attempt to transfer any knowledge of playing the keyboard at school onto a spinet. It'll take time, practise, and dedication, but they're things I'm more than willing to put in to achieve the results I want.
12. Attend a murder mystery dinner
Who doesn't love a bit of Poirot in their lives? Or, would it be Sherlock? Either way, a murder mystery dinner would be an unforgettable night of entertainment. And, no, that's not an invitation to get on the wrong side of the law. Each dinner guest will pick a role out of a hat to ensure anonymity, and during the courses we ask each other questions to learn more about who is playing who. Later, the person assigned the role of the victim will be found 'dead', and the rest of us put on our metaphorical monocles as we attempt to discover who the murderer is. Probably not the best event if you have nosey neighbours, but good fun nonetheless!
13. Have (another) flying lesson
For my nineteenth birthday I was fortunate enough to have a 20 minute taster flying lesson at Leicestershire Aero Club. I was granted a certificate at the end and partially overcame my fear of heights. It was an exhilarating experience, and one that I would be delighted to do again. I doubt I'll ever be able to afford to become fully qualified, but another short session is something I would really love to do. You'll never know what you're capable of until you glance over and realise your co-pilot isn't touching the controls...
14. Put a message in a balloon - then let it go!
A fun alternative to the traditional 'message in a bottle' act. The notion that somebody completely random could find your message and take something from it is entirely fascinating to me (hence, I suppose, why I'm doing this blog). The idea of never knowing is something I have to come to peace with at some point; I think it's one of my greater fears in life, and this seems like one of the nicer ways to get around that. So if you ever find a balloon on the streets, or caught in a tree, with a little note scrolled up inside, read it. In a few years it could be from me - it's a small world, after all.
15. Help plan a weddingEnding on a bit of a fun note, I've always been a huge romantic. I often joke about getting into debt with University, only to pack it all in and start my own wedding planning business. I don't know if I'll ever do it professionally, who knows? Maybe I'll become the next Sarah Haywood. I'll most certainly be prepared for my own (my pinterest will attest to that!) and maybe one day I'll be lucky enough to be able to help a friend out with their big day, too.
So there we have it, fifteen things for future me - a very small selection of what I have scrawled in my notebook. I know they're not entirely original, but they're things I look forward to doing nonetheless. So tell me, do we have any ambitions in common? What's on your bucket list? I'm interested to know!