1. Drive to Alaska - spend a month there, motorcycle around, hike, see the wildlife and sights of one of the last pristine wildernesses.
2. Build an open Prairie-style home somewhere out West – sans the FLW dark cave-like bedrooms. Open spaces inside and out. Oregon or Montana, high up, looking out over the ocean or spanning long layered mountain vista. Work with a little-known visionary architect who understands my dream.
3. Buy a home with my partner in Minnesota – big enough for us to both have large writing and creative spaces within our home. Floor to ceiling libraries. Open windows and community space. Bathrooms are important – I take long showers and baths. Lots of light. Darkroom space.
4. Make an excellent, abundant living from my creative writing & consulting – Relative, I know. Two million is enough. I’m not greedy. I want to love my work and get paid well to do it. I want to make a lot of money – not so I can buy more things – but so I can have the time and space to do what I love.
5. Be financially well off enough to help my Mother retire and live the rest of her life without worrying about money – Travel with her to all the places she’s always wanted to see. Spend quality time.
6. Write my memoir – Structure time and space for writing in 2007 and beyond. Accept the 3-5 year process of writing a book. Accept that writing takes:
e. Money To Live
g. Follow Through
h. Space Inside.
i. Space Outside.
7. Give something back to everyone who has helped me along the way – Particularly with the art and writing. Emotionally, spiritually, mentally, financially – from grade school to middle age. This includes blood family, teachers, mentors, friends, community who push me to my personal best. And adversaries – who push me to be a better person.
8. Write a letter to my blood father whom I haven’t seen since I was 6 – Maybe see him. Seeing is not always believing. This needs more thought.
9. Make amends to anyone I have hurt along the way – as long as it doesn’t harm them.
10. Geocache with Liz in nooks and crannies all over this country – Take her to my favorite places. Have her meet my favorite people. Land is spiritual. Good friends are priceless. Share the wealth.
11. Drive the entire length of Route 66 on a Harley – (or any other bike I have a passion for) It’s got to fit me comfortably. I want to do this with other motorcycle friends and enthusiasts. It’s a family thing.
12. Build a writing space or retreat on a big chunk of land - where other writers and I can meet and write together. This might be combined with my retirement plans or the homes I create or a shared dream with my partner.
13. Have a show of my photographs in a great and well-known museum or gallery – Maybe a group show with other emerging photographers.
14. Have my name be instantly recognized (and big enough to be well compensated) – for my writing, photography, teaching, visioning, sense of wonder, and generous spirit. And also for my love of the arts and the wild creatures that make it.
15. Teach other writers and artists about the great writers and artists that came before us – share the lineage - Feed the passion.
16. Travel to a few select places of sacred geography in Europe – See the wild places, cathedrals and art. Need to get more specific and map it out. Geocache along the way.
17. Own 3 modern, dynamic modes of transportation – with the means to store, upkeep, and replace them when they age – Red or yellow Mini Cooper convertible for Summer. Hybrid medium-sized SUV for Winter – this one needs more thought. Chrome plated, shiny motorcycle – Honda, BMW, or Harley for Spring – this one needs more research. For Fall, I will alternate between all three!
18. Be consistently published in well-respected magazines for the compelling essays, stories, poetry I write – (oh, and I’d like to add, well-paid) The Sun. Poets and Writers. Shambala Sun. The New Yorker.
19. Love The South again – Visit where I grew up, spend quality time with family members still living there. Photograph family history, cemeteries, old haunts, schools, teachers, write about my experiences. Publish what I write.
20. Plan and attend a huge outdoor reunion in western Montana – spanning a whole weekend. Invite the people I grew up with there in my 20′s and some of the people in my life now. Remember the good stuff. Do a river raft trip. Hike in the mountains. Photograph. Document. Honor the process of living. Love.
21. Have a huge 64th Birthday Bash in Minneapolis – Rent a rooftop condo for a weekend. Invite everyone who has ever been anyone in my life. If they can’t afford to come, have enough money to pay their way. Provide huge amounts of food, space, music, dancing, love. Celebrate life. And the fact that I’ve made it that long!
22. Let go of any resentments or ill feelings I have – no matter the shape or form. Stop clinging to the past. Open to what is.
23. Let go of any and all material things I don’t absolutely love living with – I don’t need inanimate objects to fill me up. Cultivate a sparse, clean, but warm living space with little clutter.
24. Before I die, I want to live every day within my means – I buy nothing on credit, I owe no one (not one red cent), and I am debt-free – for at least 30 years – or the whole second half of my life, whichever comes first.
25. Recognize and know in my heart that I am enough. Just as I am. – Live every day like it is my last. Keep jumping – the net will appear. I am enough. I have enough. There is enough for everyone.
BONEWRITER DISCLAIMER: This is a list of 25 things I want to do before I die as of Thursday, December 14th, 2006. I reserve the right to change or expand this list, as I change and expand my life. Merry meet. Merry part. Merry meet again. So mote it be.
-posted on red Ravine Thursday, December 14th, 2006
-related to Topic post, WRITING TOPIC – DO OR DIE TRIANGLE