Summer Buckets

It's been exactly 10 years since I graduated from college, but I can still remember my English professor as if he just stepped out of the room. We always questioned his age and wondered isn't it time to retire? Not because his lessons were lacking but because, when everything was factored in, he had to be in his 80s. Yet he still kept up with his daily morning jogging routine, treated his students to gifts from his faraway travels, and invited classes over for salsa dancing and dinner at the end of the semester. With all his energy, some might be tempted to say he was young at heart, but if you sat through a class where he broke down and shared how deeply he still missed his wife who passed years ago, or heard tales from his time served in Vietnam, you'd understand that the cliched phrase doesn't hold true.

It's surprising how often a few snippets from a poem heard years ago still surface in my mind today. "I'd like to climb the Matterhorn, and visit Timbuktu," was how it began. Professor Buckstead had an ambitious list of things he wanted to experience in this life, and he crafted a wonderful poem to hold them all together with perfect cadence and diction, which he shared with us once or twice during the semester. Who knows if he really believed he'd one day climb the Matterhorn and accomplish everything else within the poem, or if his bucket list teetered on the edge of "pipe dream." But perhaps that was his secret to a long life. Whether your goals are attainable or impossible dreams, keep filling up that bucket until, as he closes the poem, "at last I have overfilled my cup."

In the spirit of my old English professor, I've crafted a bucket list for the summer. Sure, I won't be able to do everything on it, but it sure is fun to imagine that I can.

Spend more time outside than in

Enjoy bonfires after Henry goes to bed

Spend a day (or two!) on the Pierson family farm

Wake up slowly with breakfast on a dock

Walk with friends around the city lakes

Take Henry on stroller runs

Bike with my dad in Massachusetts

Visit the Eric Carl museum

Savor the morning with coffee on the porch at my parent's home in central Massachusetts

Teach Henry about the garden (plant a boulevard garden and build a bean teepee)

Get a stamp on our passports (Henry's too!)

Spend a night or two away, sans kiddo

Take in outdoor concerts

Touch the waves

What is on your summer bucket list?

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