By Clint Younts
I actually wrote this column last winter when my immediate future upon this earth was in doubt due to the pandemic. Folks were dying all around us back then as they still are today, but now, after two vaccines and a third coming in a few weeks, I feel confident I’ll be on this side of the dirt for another 30 years or more. So, with all this time I should have, I think I should share my bucket list with all y’all. I had to edit it a bit since I’ve already accomplished a couple of items last May after I became fully vaccinated. I finally went to Big Bend and saw the Marfa Lights, so I’ve scratched those off my list.
Since I already live in paradise, there aren’t many places I want to visit. I’ve always wanted to go to Montana and Wyoming. I’d like to see Old Faithful spewing water out of the ground. I once witnessed this phenomenon after a water main burst during an ice storm, but I suspect the geyser in Yellowstone is even grander.
I went to the Grand Canyon as a kid, but wouldn’t mind seeing it again. I believe Key West is still on my bucket list, although we made it to Key Largo a few years ago. We even went snorkeling around some reef in crystalline water. After returning to the boat, we were all informed there was a shark swimming among us. If I had seen him, that water would’ve turned murky right fast.
I’m not too eager to cross the Atlantic to visit other countries. I’m not real crazy about air travel, and Europe is a far piece from Texas. It would take days to straighten out my long legs after being crammed in a plane that long. I wouldn’t mind visiting Switzerland and Germany. I do like German food and they know how to brew a good beer. I have no desire to visit France, though. I don’t eat snails, and I doubt there’s any restaurant in all of Paris that serves good Mexican food.
I don’t plan to ever set foot on British soil. They serve their tea warm and in tiny little cups. I’m not right sure what a crumpet is, but they serve them over there. By the look of those Brits’ teeth, crumpets can’t be too good for my chompers. Nope, Britain isn’t any place I want to visit. I’d rather go to some place where they speak English.
I don’t have the Egyptian pyramids on my bucket list. One summer as a kid, my grandfather hired us boys to pick up rocks and toss them into a gully. So why would I want to stand in the scorching sun and gaze at a pile of rocks. Been there, done that.
I’ve been asked if I’d want to go to a Broadway show up in New York. Not this cowpoke. There’s too much concrete and way too many people for this country bumpkin to meander around in the Big Apple, and I have no desire to sit through some Broadway musical. Now if they make an adaptation of Tombstone into a play, I might consider going.
Someone once suggested I go scuba diving out in the Caribbean. Excuse me, but there are lots of sharks in those waters, and I don’t want to be responsible for dumping toxic waste into the ocean. And you won’t find skydiving on my bucket list, either. I’m not real fond being up in an airplane, but I’m certainly not about to jump out of one unless I see both wings headed back to earth first.
These are just a few things I plan to do or not do in the next decade. There have been other items I’ve added to my list over the years, but there seems to be a hole in my bucket. I just can’t remember what they are, or I sobered up and realized there’s no way I’m doing that. As for all y’all out there who are vaccinated, y’all might as well make a list, too. No reason not to travel. And those of y’all who refuse to get vaccinated, you should write down the reasons you didn’t want the vaccine so your kids will know why you’re in a coffin instead of taking them to the Grand Canyon.
Clint Younts like to peruse through National Geographic magazines to do some of his traveling.