My mom had a pretty long day today and normally that’s not enough to stop her from posting because she is ruff and tuff and hard to guard but I volunteered to guest post and that was that.
Yesterday at work a man asked me if I have a bucket list. My job has nothing to do with such things, so it actually left me speechless for a few seconds, mostly because of some serendipitous timing. Yesterday on the drive to work I was thinking about my bucket list. It has the usual things on it. Visit Paris. Drive out west and back just for the sake of seeing the Pacific Ocean and, as Kerouac put it, running out of land and turning for home. Finish my tattoos. Skydive. But it has some slightly less bombastic things on it too. Find a perfectly fitting white linen buttondown shirt, for instance. Have cats. Pay off my student loans.
I told him yes, I have a bucket list. I was just trying to figure out if it would be better to start checking things off now in my 20s and worry about the money later, or save all the money I can and do all the things later When I Have Time.
He was old, to put it simply. Very old, and having a bad day because he had lost his father’s Navy insignia earlier that day and it had been his father’s dying gift to him. And he looked at me and said, “It’s a matter of balance. Yeah, some things, you need the money for. Save some of those for later. But don’t wait. You’ll wait too long and then it’ll be too late.” He told me about the final unchecked item on his bucket list: a solo sailing trip around the world. And he told me he would never take it, because there was no way his health would permit him to do it anymore.
“I have no regrets,” he told me. “I’ve done almost everything I wanted to do. I raised four great kids and they’re all so smart. I’ve only had bad luck with women.” And he laughed for the first time in our appointment.
“You don’t know where your life is going.” That’s what he left me with.
Just something to think about.