We all know about a “bucket list.” It’s the stuff you wanna do before you kick the bucket, reach the end of the line, call it a life, buy the farm, or go to join the choir invisible along with Monty Python’s deceased parrot. It’s an interesting concept, one that was handled with thoughtfulness and humor in the movie of that name.
That’s long term thinking, though, something for which I have no skill or inclination. My idea of thinking ahead is considering what to have for dessert after the dinner I’m currently consuming.
This post is shorter term. We’re all going to die; that’s a given. Some of us, however, are more likely to become increasingly incapacitated before our name is called on high. I’m speaking of those of us with MS. We’ll die too, of course, but before that happens, we face an uncertain future in the ambulatory world.
Thus my “chair list”: things I want to do before the Grim Leg Reaper takes away my ability to get around on two legs. My list is short and not particularly ambitious. There are only four items and I’ve already accomplished two of them.
Bike to Boston – I did this last summer with Rich, my biking buddy. I cheated a bit, because I started in Carlisle center instead of my home. The hills between here and there were too intimidating. Anyway, we went from the incomparable Fern’s down 225 to the Minuteman bike path, to Fresh Pond, and finally onto the path that runs along the Charles, ending at the Hatch Shell. Something to look back on with a sense of accomplishment.
Hit a baseball in a professional stadium – This just got crossed off today. (Truth be told, it was the inspiration for this entry and even the whole “chair list” concept.) It was the annual Lowell Spinners season ticket holders’ batting practice event. Standing at home plate at the Big Ed (LeLacheur Park) was an otherworldly experience in itself. Even better, I was able to connect on all five pitches that the machine threw at me. And they all went into fair territory! Given the woeful record of the Spinners this year, was it my imagination that GM Tim Bawmann was taking close notice? (I can fantasize, can’t I?)
Climb Gorham Mountain – At 525 feet, Gorham is more of a hill than a mountain. Sitting right on the coast, however, means the entire 525 feet have to be climbed. Nor is the climb at all arduous; there is a mostly leisurely path to summit. The view from the top cannot be beat, though. I walked this path a few times with my kids and their cousins when they were young. Doing it again (likely for the last time) would be highly gratifying. This list item is scheduled for Labor Day weekend of 2012.
Visit Italy again – In one of the highlights of my life, I visited Tuscany for a week several years ago. Going back was always a desire, but now it seems like the sooner I go, the more enjoyable it will be. Italy is not very accessible, so I’ll need to be creative with that as well as with the financing. I can’t afford it, but can I afford to forget it?
Anyone out there have any ideas of your own?