Life is busy, isn’t it. So many things you want to do, and so little time to do them all.
While I do my best to juggle all of my conflicting demands, and I focus on the things that are most important to me, there’s always that sense of regret that I’m not able to do all the things I’d like to do. To that end, I keep a mental list of some of those things that generally fall off the radar when life gets hectic, just to ensure they’re not forgotten.
Top of the list of things I’d like to do if I ever get around to it are my musical ambitions. My guitar sits in the corner of the loungeroom. Sometimes, I pick it up and bang out a few chords or bend a couple of strings. It doesn’t usually sound great. When it comes to guitar skills, I’m pretty rusty most of the time.
I’d love to have a bit more time to develop my guitar playing skills. There are so many techniques I’d like to master. I’d like to train myself to be an intricate finger picker, and I’d also like to make myself into a slide guitar whiz. And that’s on top of my ambition to spin out riffs like Keith Richards and beautiful lead lines like Mark Knopfler. I tell myself that one day I’ll have the time, but I’m never quite sure.
Another area in which I’d like to improve myself is in languages. Like many typical Aussies, I’m sadly mono-lingual. The language I’d really love to pick up is Spanish – an ambition I’ve nurtured since a six week holiday in Mexico over twenty years ago now. Again, I sometimes manage to convince myself that one day I’ll finally make the effort and school myself in that wonderful and lyrical language, but I’m never quite sure when it’s likely to happen.
Then, of course, there are the ambitions I’ve long since written off. I always wanted to be an accomplished cricketer. I had a red hot go at it, playing for a number of years at a local club. I managed to lift myself up to the level of barely serviceable, if I’m prepared to be generous to myself – a stubborn opening bat who didn’t score a lot of runs but could drive the bowlers crazy for an hour or so. Alas, the time for furthering that worthy ambition has long since passed.
Still, I can’t feel too bad about the things I have achieved. I’ve managed to keep a roof over my head and my family well provided for. And alongside that, I’ve written and published three novels, three picture books, and several other pieces. Not too shabby in my book.
So, I still like to tell myself I’ll achieve these other ambitions, and maybe one day I will. But I can’t be too dissatisfied if I don’t.
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