I had to think about these a little bit because obviously as the years go by, our priorities change. Of course, I'm not the over adventurous type, so my list doesn't include bungee jumping off of some cliff or sky diving. So here's what I'd like to do before I die at this moment in time:
1. Go on an African Safari. Now as for the vaccinations that I need to get, not too excited about those. But who wouldn't love to see a White Rhinoceros, or an African Giraffe, or a herd of lions roaming the African Savannah!
2. Visit the Galapagos Islands. One of the last remaining places in the world that is semi-unharmed by the damages that we have caused. Many of the plants and animals that live there are found no where else in the world. To be able to walk 5 feet away from sea lions or a Galapagos tortoise because they don't have the innate fear that the rest of the animals in the world have for people would be amazing.
3. Visit Paris, France. Granted my husband has already been there and he was not too impressed, but I studied French for several years in high school and college. Although I can barely remember "Parlez-vous francais?" I'm sure if I took a refresher course I could make my way around Paris or any other city in France. From there I'd love to see the mountain side and visit small vineyards along the way.
4. Ride an Olympic Dressage test. Although I haven't been horseback riding since 2000, I still have the love for it. I miss it on a daily basis and really hope to be able to get back into the sport soon. It's one thing to just ride a horse leisurely around the back pasture, it's another thing entirely to be able to dance with your horse. Dressage is an amazing sport not only to watch (ok, some think it's like watching paint dry) but also to experience.
5. See the Grand Canyon. I've seen the beautiful variations of colors along the Colorado River in pictures, but I'd like to see it for myself. Then I'd like to go on a donkey ride down to the bottom because I'm lazy and wouldn't want to walk all that way. Plus it's kind of like riding a horse.
6. Gallop horseback on the beaches of Hawaii or some other exotic island. Stop at some remote spot and watch the sun set with my husband while we sip wine together. (Little Man A? He'd be with gramma of course!)
7. Zip line through the El Yunque Forest in Puerto Rico and then kayak through the mangrove canals. My husband thought this would be something that would totally scare the shit out of me, but I think it would actually be fun. The only reason why I wasn't wanting to do it was because if I saw an animal that I wanted to take a picture of, I couldn't stop to get it. But then someone made a really good point to me: What animals would be hanging around an area where people were screaming as they zipped through the forest trees?? Good point.
8. Work on a wildlife rehabilitation facility. Not one of those places where people bring baby bunnies or skunks or chipmunks, but the real wildlife. Like mountain lions, bald eagles, whooping cranes, or a baby tiger. Although it was hard work, both physically and mentally, I really miss my days in the zoo field. After working at the Dallas World Aquarium which was privately owned, I felt like I could really have a say on animal conservation. My favorite day as a zoo keeper is hands down the day that I got to hold both baby Sumatran tigers at the San Antonio Zoo. Not only did I get to hold them, but both of them pooped down each side of me. I was so excited as I was walking back to the locker room to change, telling everyone, "I just get pooped on by baby tigers!"