Oh, The Places You’ll Go!: My Bucket List

Oh, The Places You'll Go!

by Joshua on November 13, 2012

When I was in my teens I had plenty of goals, but I didn’t spend much time thinking about how I would actually achieve those goals. Life was long. And though things weren’t perfect, they would eventually get better. Or so I thought. And then I learned some very painful lessons.

I was twenty-one years old when I nearly lost my life in a car wreck. Not long after that I was diagnosed with a chronic illness so painful and debilitating that I wasn’t sure I had the will to live. And my late-teen, early-twenties years were peppered with run-ins on the streets that could have ended much worse than they did.

Through it all my life goals persisted. I wanted to travel the world and meet everyone in it. I wanted to live my life while I still had the chance.

This blog post is my way of taking some of my goals and turning them into a “bucket list.” A list of activities, adventures and accomplishments I hope to achieve before I inevitably kick the bucket.

As I accomplish each item on the list I plan to edit this post with a photo to commemorate its realization. I’m also completely open to amending my list. I’ve got a lot of life left to live, so why not?

I would love to hear some of your ideas for your own bucket lists. Oh, the places we will go!

1. Take a helicopter ride across the Grand Canyon.
2. Walk the Grand Canyon Skywalk (and act like a man while doing it!).
3. Go for a wild boat ride on the Amazon River.
4. Spend at least a week in Vietnam and try to remember why war is not the answer.
5. Walk the Great Wall of China.
6. Graduate from college.
(It was a long time coming but I finally did it).

7. See Niagara Falls up close.
(Niagara falls actually does live up to the hype. Pretty cool experience).
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8. Climb to the top of the Statue of Liberty.
9. Ride a camel through the desert to the pyramids in Egypt.
10. Ride an elephant in India.
11. Walk along the Malecon in Cuba.
12. Attend a Mets World Series game.
(We didn’t win but we had a lot of fun. Hat tip to the Royals. We’ll get ’em next year. Let’s go Mets!)
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13. Go to the Super Bowl (preferably when the Giants are playing!).
14. Climb to the top of the Washington Monument.
(View of the Lincoln Memorial from top of the Monument).
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15. See the Cristo Redentor statue in Brazil up close.
16. Climb the Eiffel Tower at night.
17. Take a Gondola ride in Venice.
18. Watch a game in every major league baseball stadium.
19. Tour the White House.
(Not only did I tour the White House, I also went bowling at the White House lanes).

20. Tour the U.S. Capitol building.
(An unbelievably beautiful building).

21. Drive cross country.
22. Drive a Mercedes-Benz S-Class.
23. Visit the towns where my Mom/Dad were born.
(Half-way there!)
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24. Work at a job I love for more than five years.
25. Attend a Supreme Court session.
26. Go scuba diving in Australia.
27. Go whitewater rafting.
28. Attend a bull fight in Spain.
29. Have a family of my own.
30. Earn a degree from an Ivy League school.
(Harvard baby! I did it!!).

31. Pay off all of my student loans.
32. Eat a Chicago style hot dog at Wrigley Field.
(Love Wrigley! Cubs fans rock!).

33. Fly in a hot air balloon at the Albuquerque International Balloon Festival.
34. Lay on the ground way out in the country and star gaze.
35. Have an intelligent conversation in Spanish, while in Latin America.
36. Live in a different country for at least 3 months.
37. Swim with dolphins.
38. Swim in every ocean (not counting the Southern ocean which isn’t a real ocean anyway!).
39. Splash my feet in Lake Michigan.
(Biggest lake I’ve ever seen. And the water felt great).

40. Float in the Dead Sea (with my shirt off, and look good while doing it).
41. Drive the Pacific Coast Highway.
(Even on a dreary day, it was worth the ride).

42. Go horseback riding along the beach in Puerto Rico.
(My first time riding a horse and I LOVED every minute of it!).
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43. Visit Universal Studios Hollywood.
(Best part was the King Kong ride).

44. Visit NASA in Houston.
(A nice place to visit).

45. Learn to play golf.
46. Plant my own tree and watch it grow.
47. Get married to the woman of my dreams.
(I did it! And I love her so much!!)
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48. Teach a kid to fly a kite.
49. Give a speech in front of 10,000 people.
50. Ride the Ferris Wheel at Navy Pier in Chicago.
(Ferris Wheels bring out the kid in me).

51. Walk through a snow fall in Moscow.
52. Explore the Galapagos Islands.
53. Catch a fish without hurting it.
(On second thought, this is close enough for me).

54. Pet a Llama.
(My buddy!).

55. Drive a Husky sled in Alaska.
56. Help a president get elected.
(Yes We Can! And then we couldn’t… :\ ).

57. Ride a cable car in San Francisco.
(Waaay more fun than it seems).
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58. Drive down Lombard St. like I live there.
(I got a kick out of Lombard St.).
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59. Attend the Olympics.
60. Attend the World Cup.
61. Attend a Nascar or Formula One event and try to understand what all the fuss is about.
62. Find the most interesting place in the world to people watch.
63. Take public transportation in Tokyo.
64. Walk out on “The Ledge” of the Willis Tower.
(I’m a big chicken, but I walked out there).

65. Reach 100,000 page views per month on my blog.
66. Explore Bogota, Columbia without getting kidnapped by Gringo haters.
(Bogota is one of my all-time favorite cities. Read about my biking trip here).

67. Hit the bulls eye at a shooting range.
(I’m actually a pretty good shot…I think).

68. Watch Kevin Garnett play in person.
(KG is the man! Read my post on him here).
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69. Get slightly tipsy at Oktoberfest in Germany.
70. Smoke a fresh rolled cigar in Cuba.
71. Learn to cook a great steak dinner.
72. See Mt. Rushmore up close.
(One of the most beautiful places I’ve ever seen).
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73. Visit all seven continents.
74. Experience an incredible African safari.
75. Visit a slave castle in western Africa and connect with my spiritual pain.
76. Visit Auschwitz and connect with my spiritual pain.
77. Witness the Northern Lights and connect with God.
78. Start a scholarship fund – no matter how small.
79. Get a motorcycle license.
80. Walk along the Venice Beach Boardwalk while taking it all in.
( I’m definitely going back).

81. Experience Machu Picchu.
82. Find the tallest Redwood in California (even if it’s really not THE tallest).
(Not the tallest but one of the coolest!).
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83. Go vegetarian for a week.
84. Raise my own puppy dog.
85. Meet a president of the United States.
86. Bowl a 200 (or a 180 if I’ve had a couple of drinks!).
87. Walk across the Golden Gate bridge.
(It is as beautiful as they say).
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88. Visit the new World Trade Center and take some time to reflect.
(No words).
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89. Witness the Hong Kong Symphony of Lights from a great vantage point.
90. Learn a magic trick and perform it really, really well.
91. Get to know myself better in Bethlehem and Jerusalem.
92. See the Pope in person.
(I was sixteen years old when I saw Pope John Paul II in Denver).

93. Walk the path to Petra.
94. See the Hoover Dam up close.
95. Visit all 50 states.
96. Swim with sharks.
97. Go to the Kentucky Derby (and try to enjoy myself!).
98. Visit the Berlin Wall, or what’s left of it.
99. Sail through the Panama Canal.
(Hot, hot, and hot! Worth doing once for the views and the engineering marvel).

100. Ride an ATV really fast, in the middle of nowhere.
(Verde Valley, Arizona. The meeting of man, machine and nature creates feelings of power, humility, and fulfillment).
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