All-Time Top 10: Bucket List Items.
‘Number one – End poverty, Number Two – Get knighthood, Number three – Marry a TV Presenter, Number Four’…I’m quoting Bob Geldof’s bucket list here not mine. He has been having trouble ending third world poverty but you’ll be relieved to know his personal wealth is well over a billion dollars so he’ll be ok. I think he may have moved further down the list to try and check some of the easier ones off. ‘UK Number One – check, Irish Number One – check, Australian Number One –check’ and he probably owns the greatest black book of Rock’n’Roll contacts in history…just imagine the names that are in there. He’s probably crossed a few off as each one kicks the bucket…George Harrison, Freddie Mercury and dare I say it…Michael Hutchence. But it would still be Rock’n’Roll’s greatest reference. You could say he’s done it all, so as he moves down the list he has obviously reached the one that says ‘Take a rocket into space’. And that’s cool. That is one I actually agree with. It might be the only one in my top ten that is in his top ten.
Now Bob is 61 and I am thirty-something so that would suggest I have plenty of time to achieve that goal as well but that’s where I’m dreaming. At present the price of a near earth orbital flight on Virgin Galactic is still in the hundreds of thousands which suggests I will need to wait until people are building rockets in their back yard and using the red diesel (or is it the green? Whichever’s cheaper). There is also a waiting list and my physical condition to consider. I may be in a position to do it when I’m Bob’s age but hopefully sooner if some technological breakthrough is made.
What I do know is that I won’t be the first Kiwi in space or the first Irishman (thanks Bob) but perhaps I can be the first dual nationality Kiwi/Irishman in space. Now that would be something. I would just need a little more room on the headstone. I have no idea how long I have to complete the bucket list (Few do and those who do are in a spot of bother). My main requirement will be that these items should be completed before I’m retirement age. What is retirement age? Well considering it goes up by five years every five years, by the time I’m sixty the retirement age will be one hundred. Yes, you can retire when the Queen sends you a letter. I am now going to sift through many other bucket lists and instead of creating fifty items of which I may only do twenty of…I am going to pick out ten really cool things I definitely want to do. I have no desire to bungee…I might do it before I kick the bucket but it’s going nowhere near my top ten.
Right Here goes nothing:
10. See the Cubs play at Wrigley Field – I’ve had a lot of sport watching highlights in my life. I’ve been to many rugby stadiums and a couple of massive footy stadiums too. It’s an absolute crime that I’ve never been to Anfield but I can say with certainty that one will be ticked off. The ‘Holy Grail’ for me would be a sunny Chicago afternoon at Wrigley Field watching the Cubs.
9. Climb Kilimanjaro/ Do the Annapurna Trek – I did a bit of climbing/trekking as a teenager in the Southern Alps of New Zealand and miss it terribly. This is a two parter – of the ‘seven summits’, Kilimanjaro is quite doable and rewarding…The Annapurna trek is not a single mountain climb but a loop through the Himalayas showing the best of the Kingdom and its many peaks…better than going to base camp of Everest IMHO. It would be awesome to go back to Nepal.
8. Learn to Surf – I’m a Kiwi!! I should know how to do this already.
7. Antarctica – The last continent left to visit.
6. Get a bike license, buy a Triumph – Japanese street bikes look like rockets and their acceleration obscene. Ducati’s are also insane and American choppers are just over the top. A Triumph however is a Triumph.
5. Learn a second language – French or Spanish please. The only thing on this list I can actually afford right now. I have big respect for anyone who speaks a second language.
4. Catch a Marlin in NZ – New Zealand’s greatest sport fish. Doesn’t matter what type Blue, Black or Striped but I could talk about a catch like that quite literally until the end of my days.
3. Restore a car from my birth year or earlier – I used to own a 1965 Mercedes 220s (with the tailfins!!) which I sold before my OE. I shudder to think it may have been left to rust in a shed somewhere. To balance the universe I am going to resurrect something…maybe a 1976 911. It wasn’t their best year but it’s a Porsche.
2. Trans-Siberian Railway – Big deal, it’s just a train. Yes but here’s my Itinerary: Malahide(my village), Dublin(Connolly), Belfast…boat to Glasgow, London, Paris, Hamburg, Copenhagen, Stockholm…boat to Helsinki, St Petersburg, Moscow (board Trans-sib), Yekaterinburg, Novosibirsk, Irkutsk, Ulan Ude, Ulan Bataar, Beijing, Shanghai, Hong Kong…I could keep going but Hong Kong seems like a good place to stop for a beer.
1. First Kiwi/Irishman in space – OK,OK just go to space.