A good start on the bucket list

I’m not sure if I like summer or Christmas best, but, really, I think it would have to be summer.

I’m not sure if I like summer or Christmas best, but, really, I think it would have to be summer.

It’s cheaper, it lasts longer and Mother Nature does all the decorating.

Plus, it’s much warmer.

The downside, of course, is it’s over faster than a wave on the ocean or a sunset that suddenly, without warning, drops out of sight.

This year, I decided to make a top 10 list of things to do before summer mysteriously vanishes into oblivion like waves and sunsets. I decided to do the list so that one day, in the deep dark recesses of winter, I can pull up those memories and warm up.

I decided on the list when I was sitting on the deck of an expensive home in Invermere, B.C. I was lucky to be here.

I knew that for sure. It’s not every day a working girl such as I gets to live in such luxurious surroundings complete with fancy coffeemakers and expensive wines and hired help who do stuff I am perfectly capable of doing myself.

The cabin was, by no stretch of imagination, not really a cabin at all, but one of those homes people look at when they drift by in a little boat, with an outboard motor that works sometimes, muttering to themselves, “Oh my gosh, look at those houses where all the rich people live. Must be in oil!”

For a couple of days I lived in all this splendour, in the fancy cabin with people who had an even fancier boat that apparently never, ever broke down.

And, it was then, when I was sitting on the deck, being humbly grateful for being there, I thought about the list.

And as I pondered the idea, I realized a couple of my summer bucket list things had already happened.

It had to do with flowers and children and doing that thing so many of us adults forget to do and absolutely nothing to do with the fancy cabin in which I was temporarily housed.

Live in the moment. Stay in the room. Feel the sunshine. Hear the laughter. Watch a child. Do what they do!

I was out walking through a brown ribbon of a trail with two of my grandsons; one in a stroller, one on a skateboard. The sun obligingly smiled on us and in the background these great huge craggy mountains filled in the rest of the postcard day into which we had been dropped.

And so we walked and talked, with me stopping every now and then to pick a flower. They were dotted all over, these brown-eyed Susans, springing up in reckless abandon, the way Mother Nature does her decorating.

My grandson was talking to me, seriously like he does and the baby was not, mostly because he can’t really talk a lot yet, only suck his thumb and rub his tummy and observe.

I didn’t think about it until later but I realized I could check one thing of my list. Spend quality time with grandchildren.

And, it simply happened because I happened to be in the right place at the right time.

Traipsing through the woods with two handsome boys, feeling the sun warm on my hair and emerging with a handful of flowers.

Does it get any better?

Moments. They only need to happen once to provide a memory that will last forever.

Life is good that way.

Now for the rest of the list!

— On The Other Side