#1 Spent 2 weeks in Slovenia and saw the market square in Lubljana where I was stunned to find a statue of a poet and his muse instead of a politician.
#2 Visited a concentration camp memorial and walked the grounds – Dachau, Germany (http://www.dachautour.com/index.html) that my great uncle helped to liberate. No words to describe the silence.
#3 Stood next to a fern taller than me at Hawaii Volcano National Park, and stupidly walked close enough to the action to see hot lava under my feet.
#4 Spent a month in maid quarters of a mansion on Oahu with daily visits to a Japanese Buddhist temple.
#5 Lived and worked in Japan for 2 months and spent weekends hiking bamboo forests and Mt. Fuji.
#6 a) Took an air boat ride in the Florida Everglades and ate key lime pie in the Keys. b) Sat next to the director of Port of Miami customs on the direct flight from Seattle to Florida and heard 6 hours of stories about every possible way to smuggle drugs. Okay, maybe that’s not cool, but it was definitely once in a lifetime and outside my bubble, considering I am the only one I know who has not ever used a now-legal herb in my state.
#7 Sea kayaked from Shilshole Bay to Bainbridge Island and back each weekend for a summer. First time could not move my arms for a week.
#8 Won a statewide piano competition at age 14 with Rachmaninoff’s Prelude Op. 23 No. 5, played here fantastically by a favorite classical pianist.
Here is the piece I played at 16 that brought me a city-wide competition win:
#9 Attended a Midwest music conservatory my freshman year of college at 17 and practiced piano 7 hours a day.
#10 Raised $215,000 in 5 minutes for a charity with a speech I wrote and gave in front of 600 people, my only public speaking experience.
I would add having a child to the list of cool things, but I DO remember it like having a coconut dropped on my head (in a good way). An awakening at age 34 to a part of me I never knew existed. Glad to be sharing the journey with her.
Having spent the past decade typing like a mad person in front of a PC screen to put food on the table, it feels important to recall the incredible things life has shown me.