Boats, Bubbles, and Becoming Me; WTFHIBD episode 5

scubaYou know it’s about time I wrote another WTFHIBD blog post. After all I made a deal with my brother; regular WTFHIBD updates! So here we go again. Let’s start with my NOW List

My Now List

I’ve managed to tick off two NOW List items since I my last update; and I can’t really take credit for organising either of them.

For Christmas Jules – my long suffering assistant – bought me a Scuba lesson! Scuba is something that I always wanted to try as a kid. I remember begging Mum to let me join a club or something… and the barely concealed relief on her face when she told me I had to be at least eighteen years old. Then I turned eighteen. But now that I was big enough and ugly enough to send myself to scuba club… it just never happened.

I even had friends who learnt to dive and still I never got around to looking into it.

But… put it on a NOW List, make that NOW List public, and you’ll be surprised what can happen.

wiltonLike ‘HMS Wilton‘ for instance.

Not far from where I live there’s an old battle ship (a coastal mine sweeper to be precise). It serves as HQ of the Essex Yacht Club and for the longest time I’ve wanted to get aboard and look about. Not much of a problem you’d think – except that it’s not open to the public, and until recently there was no way of sending the Yacht Club any kind of message from their website!

Then one morning, a few weeks back, Della went for a run down there with Maggie her white German Shepherd and happened to bump into someone just locking the Yacht Club gates. Ten minutes of “oh what a lovely dog!” and “do you ever open this boat to the public?” later and she had arranged a personal tour from the chairman.

Goals

Last time I wrote a WTFHIBD post I mused about the importance of being true to yourself, and how it’s all too easy to get swept up in other people’s expectations of who and what you should be.

I’m ashamed to say that I’m still having thoughts along those lines all these months later. But after some significant soul searching it does feel like I might finally be getting to the bottom of them – like I might be recapturing some of the energy and drive that set me off on this journey in the first place.

TGGGTGTG drop shadowPart of the reason for this might be because I’ve made significant headway with one of the goals that came out of the Vision Exercise I put myself through a while back; ten years after Kate made me sit down and start writing it I’ve finally published a work of fiction – my debut novel (The Good Guy’s Guide To Getting The Girl) came out in paperback and as an ebook a few days ago. I am officially a novelist!

I was a little nervous about putting it out there, but so far I’m delighted with the response.

But enough about me

How about you? What have you been up to? What NOW List items have you managed to tick off? What goals have you set yourself or achieved? Feel free to drop me a line, here or on facebook, or post a comment below.


 

My Now List

Last week I brought you up to date with what I’ve been spending my time and energy on. You’ll remember that I came clean and told you that my Now List has been pretty much untouched for many months. In fact, it wasn’t until reader Maria emailed me earlier in the week (asking me where she could find my now list) that I realised the last time I updated it was a almost a year ago. Shame on me. So, with apologies for the lack of punctuation and spelling here’s how my Now List – as of August 2012 – looks…

The Top Five!

  • Cornwall (booked for this September)
    • Visit the Minack Theatre (August – September)
    • St michael’s mount
    • Fowey
  • See ‘The Woman in Black’ – sit near the stage
  • Charmouth beach in Dorset (done some research, just need to find time)
  • Drive a tractor
  • Bridgenorth – looks like a nice place

Time Sensitive

  • Estuary Boat trip – see my house from the Thames (found a company that does it, but trips don’t run all year)
  • Proper narrow boat holiday through the countryside of Birmingham

Food

  • Master the following recipes
    • Dad’s Broccoli and Ham bake
    • Angela’s Ginger Cake
    • Chocolate Brownies
  • Go to a place that serves a different wine per course
  • Eat deep fried crickets or some other food from the night time food market in Beijing (best do this quick, before I turn veggie!!)

Experiences

  • Get to visit The Wilton (old war boat near to where I live. Not open to the public)
  • Get close to dolphins
  • And seals
  • And otters
  • bootle feed baby tigers
  • Go inside a lighthouse (I think I’ve found a lighthouse)
  • Enjoy the experience of living in warmer climate
  • Thai chi
  • Get friends round and play cranium
  • See the four-act version of The Importance Of Being Earnest
  • Visit the Houses of Parliment
  • Learn to Scuba
  • Go to the theatre and sit in a ‘box’ with a select group of friends
  • Learn to speak French
  • Learn to fence
  • Do a live cover of the Flight of The Conchordes song, Business Time (video below – visit the blog if you can’t see this in your email)

Someday, maybe

  • get myself on Saturday Kitchen as a featured guest (guess I need to sell a few more copies of the book first)
  • Dinner with Imogen Heap.
  • Work with Steven Moffet.
  • And Richard Curtis

Holidays / Places to visit

  • Enjoy the romance of Rome (previous trips lacked this essential ingredient)
  • Go back to Sorrento
  • Visit Portmeirion, north Wales
  • Visit Hong Kong
  • Go round the world (in a westerly direction)
  • Visit oregan
  • Visit the cook islands (and stay for a long, long time)
  • Visit the remote parts of france.
  • Skiathos – stay in a cottage somewhere inland? Away from the beaches. Hire a moped to get around.
  • Visit Jersey
  • Visit “Taiyou no tou” (it means “Tower(Statue) of Sun”). Banpaku Park, in Osaka.
  • Go to Madagascar
  • the cave temples of Ellora
  • Zion National Park
  • Saint-Paul de Vence – lovely place in france.
  • Monteverde Cloud Forest reserve, Costa Rica
  • Taktsang monestery, Paro Valley, Bhutan
  • Antuigua, lesser Antilles
  • Portofino, Liguria, Italy
  • Visit Tikal, Guatemala
  • Vieux Lyons
  • Machu Picchu
  • Dunnottar Castle – www.dunnottarcastle.co.uk/
  • Swimming with jellyfish in Micronesia  (video below – visit the blog if you can’t see this in your email)

Feel free to share your Now List in the comments section below