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Making The Most Of It

Life is a funny old thing. We are all here trying to make the most of our one opportunity at it, even though none of us actually chose to be here in the first place. We do not get to choose our parents, our county of origin, our health or our wealth. but in the lottery of life, the majority of us are pleased with the hand that we have been dealt.

People’s life stories are incredible and sometimes make better reading than a good book. It is interesting to hear how someone gave up a career to move into doing something completely different. Or how someone decided to go travelling and ended up living in a different country.

Perhaps some are risk takers and are willing to take a chance, whilst others prefer a safer life of being comfortable living in the same area or house. We all have our own priorities and interests and what makes each of us happy.

The concept of having a bucket list is a rather strange one. Especially in later life. Imagine getting into your latter years and then suddenly having a bucket list with a load of things on it, where you will only achieve a handful. When we are young, we tend not to have a bucket list, as you are told to focus on your career or family etc

No-one ever says to a teenager that they should spend their time visiting the corners of the world and attend a number of incredible events. You are told to go to school, work hard and get on the career ladder. Perhaps we should be encouraging our children to have a bucket list and then that may be the ticket to get them to work hard so they can afford all those bucket items.

If you are an atheist, the idea of a bucket list is even more confusing. We can enjoy experiences when we are alive, but if there is no afterlife, then when we die, our memories go with us. So the fact that someone enjoyed the Taj Mahal or Australia during their life, will make no difference when they die – because the memories die with them.

It’s a bit like the final meal for someone on death row. Is it really that important that someone who has been so bad in life that they will end up dead in a few hours, gets to choose their favourite spaghetti carbonara and tiramisu for dinner? Do they actually enjoy sitting on their own eating this final meal, with the grim reaper watching over their shoulder.

Life is one big mystery of why we are here, but if we all lived by the same principle that you only get one chance in this saloon, then we the world may be a bit more of a nicer place. There would be no suicide bombers hoping for a better after-life. But perhaps life would be a bit too soulless and safe too if everyone was too scared to do anything risky.

So perhaps that is why the bucket list exists. To push us that little bit further, to do the things that we would not normally do. Which is why, for this year, I will be asking my children not to write a list to Santa, but to begin writing their bucket list so that when they reach adulthood, they can begin their life’s dreams in earnest.

So with that thought, Merry Christmas to you all and enjoy making memories with your nearest and dearest!

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