Wednesday 9 May 2012

A Real Bucket List (Part 4) - and Post Number 400

I’ve just realised that I have reached two blog milestones; I have been blogging for 4 years (well in March anyway) and this is my 400th post.

I was going to do something special but instead I will just continue with the Bucket List. Besides, I want to complete it before I go to Spain on Saturday and time is running short.

Without further ado, here are items 61 to 80 on the Bucket List I’ve stolen.

61. Go wild in Rio during Carnival.

Rio is on the list of places that Mrs PM are both desperate to visit so this is a definite trip for us to take. I imagine that Rio during Carnival will be expensive and the hotels will be fully booked up and it may be a struggle to get there without some serious planning. Nevertheless, I think this is a genuine trip I want to make before my maker tells me its time for bed.

62. Spend a whole day reading a great novel.

When I am on holiday, I like to explore the local community and wander off exploring. However, I also enjoy sitting by a swimming pool, or on the beach, reading a good book and when I get the opportunity to do so, I grab it with eager arms. Sitting by a pool, watching the stress evaporating, with a bottle of beer by your side and a good book is a great way to spend a lazy day before exploring some more. So yes, I have done this (usually on holiday).

63. Forgive your parents.

I’ve nothing to forgive them for. Job done!

64. Learn to juggle with three balls.

Believe it or not I’ve tried to teach myself to do this on quite a few occasions and failed miserably and spectacularly. It’s bloody difficult - and pointless, when I think about it. I think I’ll give this one a miss.

65. Drive the Autobahn.

Give a flash German Porsche, a bright sunny German day and an Autobahn strangely devoid of traffic and I’m there!

66. Find a job you love.

I’ve been trying to do this for years. There are aspects of my job that I love; problem solving, seeing the fruits of creativity in action and travelling to witness this first hand. But there are so many things that make me furious about my job. One day I will – and this is not something I want to do to fulfil some weird Bucket List fantasy – I want to do it for my own sanity. I am nothing if not optimistic and this particular item is one thing I definitely hope to achieve.

67. Spend Christmas on the beach drinking pina coladas.

If I lived in Australia I would do this every Christmas. Sadly I don’t. Nevertheless, Mrs PM and I are planning to go to a warmer place for a week between Christmas and New Year this year. I might give that a go then.

68. Overcome your fear of failure.

That is easier said than done, my friend. I have come to terms with my limitations over the years but failing still hurts. I am improving and that maybe due to the fact that as I get older I care less about screwing something up.

69. Raft through the Grand Canyon.

I’ve flown over the Grand Canyon in a helicopter and on a scheduled flight from Las Vegas to Atlanta. Does that count?

70. Donate money and put your name on something: a college scholarship, a bench in the park.

I’m not sure why somebody would want to put their name on something like this other than for an ego trip. Am I weird thinking this? Would people really care about a park bench that said “Donated by The Plastic Mancunian” or “The Plastic Mancunian Scholarship”? I would prefer to remain anonymous I think.

71. Buy your own house and then spend time making it into exactly what you want.

I am living this particular dream as I type. We’re almost there.

72. Grow a garden.

I hate gardening. I hate gardening with a passion. From an early age, my dad loved gardening and turned our back garden into a mini farm, growing every vegetable that would survive the weather in Walsall. It was a big job and he needed help – so he enrolled me as his slave. He had me digging, weeding, planting and every other dreadful chore involved in maintaining a garden. I also suffer from hay fever and for one whole month every year I suffer from an unnatural allergy to pollen. If I could find out which pollen it might help but in the UK in June there is so much to choose from. I still don’t know. I will leave the gardening to Mrs PM. She can cross this one off her own list.

73. Spend three months getting your body into optimum shape.

I did that when I was around 39 to 40. We moved into our current house and Mrs PM dragged me to a gym to get fit. I ended up with my own training regime designed by a young muscular bastard who. I’m sure, gave me nasty disciplines to overcome to get rid of the excess fat on my body. It did work and I kept it up for a few months before boredom kicked in. In fact, I think it was about three months and during that time my upper body did change shape. Sadly it has all gone back to the way it was, like a balloon that has all the air replaced with jelly. My limited gym membership was also quite embarrassing at times – you can read about it here

74. Drive a convertible with the top down and music blaring.

I will do this – and the music will be good, solid driving rock!

75. Accept yourself for who you are.

I did that a long time ago – and now I spend most of my time blogging about it.

76. Learn to use a microphone and give a speech in public.

I am terrified of public speaking. I am also terrified of heights and regular readers will know that I am an idiot who tries to overcome that fear by climbing unfeasibly high buildings and bridges. It may therefore come as no surprise that I have used a microphone and given a public speech. In fact, I have done it on several occasions in Britain, Switzerland, China, South Africa, America and Russia. You see, as part of my job I have to make the odd presentation and give training courses. Sadly, because it is part of my job, I can’t really refuse – so I bite the bullet and do it. I have (kind of) overcome the fear a little – it still scares me but not as much. You can read about one such episode here

77. Scuba dive off Australia's Great Barrier Reef.

Do you know that I had the chance to do this and completely lost my bottle? What is this; a “Tell the world how scared you are” list? I am scared of spiders and insects and jellyfish and Australia has the worst of all of these in the world. Is every creature in Australia poisonous? Suffice it to say that when I heard about box jellyfish and irukandji, my arse went. I refused to put on a stinger suit and dive in the water to become jellyfish lunch. Mrs PM was much braver and I watched Mrs PM snorkelling in perhaps the greatest area of natural beauty in the world, while I stood like an utter coward from the specially sited platform. So, dear reader, here is another post that might interest you which describes the monsters that stopped me from achieving this particular item

78. Go up in a hot-air balloon.

Right – this is beyond a joke now. Should I rebadge this, my 400th post, “I AM A COWARD AND HERE’S WHY?”. No chance – not a chance in HELL. I will never, ever go up in a hot air balloon because I am terrified of heights (sob!).

79. Attend one really huge rock concert.

Now we’re talking. I have attended countless really huge rock concerts. I have seen some of the biggest rock bands and artists on the planet in massive arenas. Here are a few of them: AC/DC, Bruce Springsteen, The Foo Fighters, Metallica, Rush, Whitesnake, Marilyn Manson, Aerosmith, Guns’n’Roses, The Red Hot Chilli Peppers, Alice Cooper, Queen, Rammstein, Def Leppard, Motley Crüe, Nine Inch Nails, Deep Purple, Judas Priest, Iron Maiden, and Meat Loaf. And I haven’t finished yet.

80. Kiss someone you've just met on a blind date.

I’ve never been on a blind date but I’ve kissed women I’ve only just met in my youth. Most of the time I got my face slapped. In fact, ALL of the time I got my face slapped. Still, I was a young foolish teenager at the time and stopped doing such stupid things – eventually.

So dear reader, over to you. Are you as big a coward as I am? Have you achieved any of the above 20 items?


drb said...

Surprisingly, only 61, 64, 65 and 70 remain unticked. Of course living in Oz helps with this list.

I have lost my driver's licence, so ticking off 64 will be tough. Looking forward to 61.

Mr PM, riding in a hot air balloon is not as scary as going up the tallest building for me. I think my fear of going up the tallest building is the long ride in the elevator and the high possibility of the elevator getting stucked or the cable snapping. I enjoyed the balloon ride very much.

drb said...

Congratulations MrPM, on reaching such an impressive milestone!!! Keep the blogging up please! :-)

Have a fabulous trip!

MedicatedMoo said...


But the idea of driving on the autobahn scares me senseless and friends went to Rio a couple of years ago and were disappointed - it's no longer in the streets but a seated and packed out stadium!

And, like you, I have nothing to forgive my parents for. A lot to thank them for instead.

Elephant's Child said...

Ballooning is magical. I have now been up three times and loved it each time. My youngest brother (who is scared of heights) was given a flight for a significan birthday. Less than ten minutes into the flight he was using his elbows to get a better viewing spot.
I don't scuba dive but snorkelling at the GBR was incredibly beautiful and just wonderful.

Plastic Mancunian said...

Hi drb,

Wow - you've rafted in the Grand Canyon?

Sounds impressive.

And I intend to keep up the blogging for a while yet.




Plastic Mancunian said...

Bonjour Kath,

That's why I don't want any other cars on the Autobahn while I'm driving :-)

Mmmm - didn't know that about Rio. Still want to go there though.




Plastic Mancunian said...

Hi EC,

I'm not convinced about ballooning. Each time I've tried to convince myself about heights, I've ended up regretting it.

Mrs PM went snorkelling actually. I enjoyed my small experience of it though - it truly is beautiful.




drb said...

Yes, I have rafted in the Grand Canyon, just a couple of hours. It was awesome - very quiet, peaceful and beautiful. Highly recommend it.

River said...

#66 - find a job you love.

I had a job I loved, then the company moved the production off-shore and I was redundant.
Oh, shoe factory, how I miss you.
Leather, paint, glue, fantastic workmates. All gone.
My current job? I'm only there because I need the money and no-one else would hire me.

Plastic Mancunian said...

Hi River,

That's a real shame. I think its really difficult to find a job you live; I used to love mine but it has just gone sour.