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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Expire (08/01/13)

TITLE: Bucket List
By Carolyn Ancell
08/05/13


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I know when I first inspired, took my first breath. It was at 6:03 a.m. on June 27, 1944. But I do not yet know my earthly expiration date and time. Morgan Freeman's and Jack Nicholson's characters in the movie "The Bucket List" were each given an expiration expectation of about six months, and together created a list of things they wanted to see or experience while they could, a list that included skydiving, flying over the North Pole, visiting the Great Wall of China and the Taj Mahal in India, and taking part in a lion safari in Africa. I wondered. If I knew my earthly expiration date, what would I put on my bucket list?

Where would I go? After considering all the exotic places yet unseen that I might go, I think maybe I would go to my own backyard patio. I haven't spent enough time there. It is spacious and quiet. At sunset, doves come to rest in a line along the telephone wire, folding their wings and themselves into peacefulness. A huge old eucalyptus spreads it's branches over one end of the patio, providing shade on hot afternoons. My small patio garden offers opportunity for both labor and loving gaze. There is shelter to sit under on rainy nights.

What would I do? I would live inside each moment, not rush by moments heedless of their beauty. I would spend time with friends. Doing what? It would not matter. Being with them would be all that was important.

What would I read? First, I would read the Scriptures. But not in big gulps or marathon runs. Perhaps I would read one sentence, one phrase, and savor it for a long time before going on to the next. I don't know why I don't do that more now. Now I seem to operate on the "more is better" principle in too many areas of my life, including the spiritual. But the Lord is not many words. He is the Word.

What would I wish to hear? My husband's laugh. Long, languid, deep and sonorous tones, maybe on a cello. Rain on the roof. The whistle of the wind. The silence of a snowy evening.

What would I like to smell? Creosote after the rain. Pine trees. The ocean.

What would I like to taste? Bread, freshly baked. Warm blueberry pie. Rich coffee. Most of all, the sacred bread and wine of Communion with the Lord and the community of faith.

What would I want to say? Thank you. Thank you to God for the gifts of life, love and faith. Thank you for the many living, and the many now gone from my sight, who have given me the gift of themselves. Thank you for their gifts of life and love, friendship, teaching, inspiring, and challenging me.Thank you for the opportunities to touch and taste and hear and see and move and learn and grow. For trees and bears and the sea, for books and bugs and the color blue. I hope I would have enough time before my expiration date to say thank you for all the things I am thankful for.

I do not yet have a clue as to my earthly expiration date or time. But I will, right now, begin on that bucket list. Why wait?


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This article has been read 172 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Camille (C D) Swanson 08/10/13
A good read with things to ponder. I really enjoyed it. Thank you.

When I saw the movie "Bucket List" I thought to myself, in actuality, we're all "expiring daily" - so in essence, we should all do those things on "our bucket list of life."

Great job. Thanks.

God bless~
Noel Mitaxa 08/11/13
Great movie, and a great entry. I enjoyed how your sense of pespective is infused so naturally with your faith, which adds warmth to life's uncertainty.
Linda Goergen08/12/13
Lots of food for thought in this inspiring entry. Makes you wonder why so many wait until they know they are dying, before they give thought to really living! Beautiful imagery and thoughts in this!
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 08/13/13
Oh I loved this. I thought about Bucket List when I heard the topic and you were able to take a fresh and intense take on it. This is inspirational.
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 08/16/13
Congratulations for ranking 12 overall!