Galapagascar: A New Year’s Bucket List

DSC01026I am not afraid to admit that in 2014 I will turn forty. A number that always seemed old, until I arrived at its door. Like all major life moments, I’ve watched my older friends battle or accept their ages with parties, major trips, quiet retreats, lavish dinners, homemade cards from their kiddos; and gorgeous jewels from their partners.

And like most of my major life milestones, I want this year of officially stepping into (gulp) middle age to be accompanied by a trip. A big one. Huge.

In my house this trip has lovingly been dubbed Galapagascar. Every moment I come up with a new adventure I want to conquer while I still have the agility to do so. Climbing Kilmanjaro; exploring the Galapagos; diving in Macao; hiking the Azores; chasing lemurs in Madagascar; surfing in Bali; lazing the days away in an overwater bungalow in the Maldives; riding the rails from Russia to Mongolia; eating in Turkey. And of course, the list goes on.

How does one select the experience to celebrate a milestone? How does one embrace an age that seems too unreal to be true? This is what I ponder as I quietly welcome 2014 into my life. I have ten months to find my Galapagascar–a place rich with experience and life, a place so wonderful and strange that being forty will pale in comparison.

And so I ask you, dear friends and readers, what places in the globe, and what experiences in these places, have the power to make life feel as boundless and inspired as it did when you were eight, or fourteen, or twenty three?

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