I’ve been going strong during this hiatus from boozing, and I’ve been feeling pretty great! However, instead of tackling hangovers and limited productivity, it has left me with a new dilemma… I have too much free time! I used to spend a good part of my day filling the void of boredom scrolling through social media. Not as much as most people, but still a sorrowful amount of time in hindsight.
Lately, I’ve been pretty absent from my Facebook and Instagram accounts. I promptly regret the decision the moment I take the first swipe through the feed, so I mainly just utilize it to add scheduled material to my page, search for local events, and to use Messenger when I get notifications. I’ve been even more ghost from Instagram; forcing myself to at least post something once in a blue moon.
This has left me with two options: one, I can continue this downward spiral of lethargic inactivity while bitching and moaning about how bored I am all the time, or two, I can take a plan of action. I don’t know about you, but two sounds slightly more appealing, yeah? I know people usually compile their yearly bucket list in January, but I’ll keep mine fashionably late.
GOAL #1: Learn Japanese
I don’t expect fluency by the end of the year, by any means. I need to be realistic in my ambitions. Historically, I’m incredibly lousy when it comes to learning new languages. I’ve tried Spanish, German, American Sign Language, and struggled with basic Thai and Khmer phrases. This has resulted in the discovery that I can’t roll my R’s, my ‘Deutch‘ is ‘schlecht,’ the only sign language I’ve retained is flipping the bird, and I’ve probably said “hello” when I meant “thank you” on too many occasions while abroad. So, what makes Japanese any different?
- I have partial ties to the heritage,
- There aren’t gendered object to make me question why a chair is feminine,
- and I’m planning a long-term trip to Japan, so I’ll be able to use it in the long run.
If I can be moderately fluent or just get the characters mastered by the year’s end, I’ll be pretty damn proud.
GOAL #2: Get Back Into Running Condition
Since being diagnosed with “granny bones,” I’ve been taking a breather from long-distance hiking, but since the meds seem to be working, I’m happy to finally get back to the things I love. Well sorta. Running and I have a love-hate relationship. In other words, I love the sense of accomplishment after a run and eating all the foods, but I hate the activity of running. I’ve ran a half marathon in the past, however I’d be happy to just complete a 5K race by the end of the year. Maybe I’ll be up for a 10K. We’ll just have to see.
GOAL #3: “Officially” Complete the Appalachian Trail
Technically I’ve covered the entire distance of the Appalachian Trail since I repeated 200 miles during my second thru hike attempt. However, there’s still a section in Pennsylvania spanning about 170 miles that I need to make-up in order to hike every mile of the AT. Fortunately I live in a bordering state, so completing it in sections over a couple extended weekends is doable while also continuing to work full time. The good news, it’s mostly flat; the bad news, it’s mostly rocky and most thru hikers say it’s the most miserable section out of the 14 states the trail passes through. They don’t call it Rocksylvania for nothing!
GOAL #4: Extend my Peak Bagging List
I’ve hit the highest point in Maine (Mount Katahdin), New Hampshire (Mount Washington), Massachusetts (Mount Greylock), Connecticut (Bear Mountain), New Jersey (High Point), Virginia (Mount Rogers), and Tennessee (Clingmans Dome), all while hiking the Appalachian Trail. It would be rad to eventually add the remaining 43 US state’s highest peaks to my list of life accomplishments. Although they won’t be as epic as the five I’ve already done, I can easily bag Maryland, Delaware, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia on my weekends.
Now I got the time so I gotta run, finish what I started and ascend some peaks! Jā, matane!