What do you think of bucket lists? Do you have one? Do you hear about them a lot on Facebook because I do. People seem to casually say, "Oh climbing all the mountains in the world, that's on my bucket list." The movie by the same name seems to have spawned all kinds of grandiose plans before dying. But the Bucket List was a movie, not real life.
As if Bucket lists weren't crazy enough, now people are latching onto ready made ones. On Facebook nearly everyone I know seemed to repost The Top 50 Cities to See in Your Lifetime. It's a goofy list with obviously 50 cities spread over 6 continents and 33 countries.
I read many comments from people that they better get going to finish this list. Some were even making copies of it.
Really? This crazy 50 cities lists just proves what I have thought for a while and I am here to promote my 6 reasons to kick the bucket list.
Reason one- the money
For me to visit the 39 cities I've yet to see it would cost me a minimum of $250,000. Yes, a quarter of a million dollars. That's after taxes. Let me write you a check.
Why do Bucket lists always have really expensive experiences on them? Will it make our lives more important or meaningful?
Reason two - the check list mentality
Back to our cities list, what if we fly in, stay a night and move on. Could we chop the cost to more like $100,000?
Because if we have a Bucket List the important thing is to check it off the list, right? But what if these aren't places you really want to go?
As I am dying I can't imagine I will think, but I didn't check Kyoto, Japan off my list!
Reason three - what you want to do
I have always wanted to go to Ireland but it's not on the list. I have a trip planned to Alaska but oh no, Juneau is not on the list.
How about if I create my own list without any Peruvian destinations and I get a cool invitation to visit Lima? (Hey, it could happen!)
Whether I've created the "Bucket List" or I'm adhering to someone else's advice on HuffPost, why not do what you want to do? Wouldn't that be more fun and easier?
Reason four - lists are hard to finish
My sister read an article on the 50 best sandwiches in Chicago and resolved to try them all. We were determined to help her.
It was really hard! Some of the neighborhoods were dangerous and difficult to get to. One place closed. Some of the sandwiches didn't appeal to her.
By the end it was joyless, that last sandwich was like "Oh Thank God that is over." There was no joy in finishing, just relief.
Reason five - Where's your joy?
Do you really want to visit Europe? Maybe you'd rather have a cabin on a lake.
Is Asia your heart's delight or are you just checking it off a list? Perhaps you'd rather spend a summer with your grandmother. Or sew and take walks.
Don't let any list hem you in. If you want to, create a list of "Places I've loved" that would make more sense.
Reason six - What's really important in life?
Are these 50 cities or any other locations really what is important in life? In fact, why did the movie define a Bucket List as places to go and experiences to have instead of people to love and differences to make?
If I knew I was dying tomorrow jumping out of a plane or climbing some mountain wouldn't be my immediate thought.
I would think of the people I love and how my experiences with them has made my life wonderful and meaningful.
And my lists are what I've done, not that which I have to somehow check off.
Adding quilts to my list of quilts I've made makes me happy. Putting pictures of my family into photo books as they grow is joyful. Traveling to places I want to see and meeting new people makes me feel fulfilled.
Life without a check list mentality, now that's a life worth living.
Kicking the Bucket list, that makes me sew happy!
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I mainly write about quilts but sometimes I wander off. Here's another non quilt post.