This year was the 10th anniversary of my birthday list, so I decided to look through the list and choose a “top 10.” Here are 10–5!
10. Age 30: Dye my hair fuchsia
I started dyeing my hair in high school. It started out as highlighting and soon my hair was medium blonde. (I have medium/dark brown hair.) I look back at this time and am amazed that I have any hair left on my head. I must have seen fuchsia in the hair color aisle in 2005. I loved the color! Not sure why I LOVE changing my hair color, but I do.
I’ve only tried a crazy color one other time: the following year, I tried blue. I didn’t bleach my hair beforehand, so it didn’t really come out. One day I will dye it a crazy color again. Katy Perry is my hair color idol and I live vicariously through her.
9. Age 31: Visit the Boston Harbor Islands
There are 34 islands in Boston Harbor. The public has access to two of them, and there are special trips to some of the other ones. I’ve been to five or six islands. Different groups work together to maintain the islands (National Park Service, Friends of the Boston Harbor Islands, Boston Harbor Island Alliance…) and I can understand why so many people cherish them.
8. Age 32: Be an extra in a movie
This is a lost year, I’m sad to say. I don’t have a complete list and I don’t remember why. I think it has something to do with having the list on a computer that died or got replaced. Even if it were a complete list, I would probably still choose the same. I totally lucked out with my first experience as an extra in a movie. My friend and I were at the right place at the right time on the set and I can be seen in the movie for about a second (my friend longer).
It was fascinating to witness how much work goes into making a film. We worked for 12 hours on a scene that was maybe a few minutes long. When the movie was released, I went to see it with a bunch of friends, and I remember all of us exclaiming when I came on the screen for my one second of fame. So fun.
7. Age 33: Visit historical sites
This was one of the more boring years. I’m combining a couple: visiting Adams National Historical Park and the Paul Revere House. It took me nine years, but I finally made it to these great historical sites. When you live somewhere, you take its history for granted sometimes. I’m reminded of when I worked in London and my coworker, who was born and raised in London, told me that he had never seen Buckingham Palace. Really?? Well, we’re all guilty of this, so I can’t judge.
6. Age 34: Get a tattoo at a tattoo convention
I already had two tattoos by the time I attended the convention. But I really enjoyed walking around the convention and seeing all of the different work being done. Was this my first convention ever? I’ll have to think about that.
So I won tickets to this convention. I wasn’t planning to get another tattoo at that time necessarily, but when in Rome! I got my second Chinese character done, on the back of my neck. I now have four small tattoos and have one more in mind.
5. Age 35: Meet some inspiring people
I have to cheat again. I was in the same room as David Sedaris, Arthur Frommer, and Oprah in 2010. Don’t make me choose a favorite!
I can’t remember if this was my first David Sedaris reading or not, but it must have been the first time I met him and had a book signed. David is one of my favorite authors. I think he’s a comic genius and love the way his brain works. If I’m remembering this book signing correctly, we talked about grocery stores in England. I’ve met him a few times since and am over the moon that he is making two stops in Massachusetts this year!
Arthur Frommer is naturally a hero of mine. If you don’t know of him, he is the father of budget-conscious travel. He came out with a book around that time and did a reading and signing at the Boston Public Library. The one thing I remember him talking about at the reading is the fact that the States does not require employers to offer paid vacation time. Just add this to the list of reasons why I should not be a resident of this country.
Oprah. Some people hate on her, but I am not one of them. I think she has done a lot of good for a lot of people. She is all about self-discovery and helping people live a better life. What’s to hate about that? I won tickets to a special taping in NYC that year. I won four or five tickets so went with a group of girlfriends. I don’t remember what was talked about, but I remember having a good time.
Thanks for reading and stay tuned for Part 2.