Item #9: 90-Year-Old’s Race To Space

My computer sounds like an asthmatic patient. It heaves, huffs and then puffs whenever I try to open a new browser. Accordingly, my Thanksgiving afternoon was spent cleaning out virtual files, anything from old school reports to bull-sh*t resumes. I tossed away record after record of documents detailing the past few years of my life. Four to be exact – from my late teens to my early twenties: the crucial years of young adulthood.

One particular file was labeled “My Bucketlist”

I don’t recall creating the file, but I’m certain I authored it. Go to Australia, go to Africa, go to every state in the U.S. Typical. This is 19 and 20-year-old Susan speaking. I know this because that’s when I wanted to study abroad. 18-year old Susan was less ambitious:

Item #1: Find a 4-leaf clover.

…and then further down the page, 21-year-old Susan somehow grew confident:

Item #9: Go to space.

The list ended there.

Surprisingly, I actually remember sending a message to my friend the day I found out commercial space travel was possible. I even did the math. How much would I have to save each day to afford the $250,000 voyage? A dollar maybe? That would take nearly 685 years.

I bargained with myself: $5 dollars a day. 137 years. $7. 98 years. $10? 68 years. Bingo.

Sixty-eight years. I’m 22 right now. That means if I save $10 dollars a day starting now, 90-year-old Susan will be able to experience zero gravity. A little ambitious? Maybe…but not impossible.

I guess that’s something to be thankful for this holiday season. Although every year, I’m grateful for family and friends, knowing that I can still go to space in my lifetime certainly ranks up there on the “Things I’m thankful for” list. As a preparation for the day, it’s only fitting that I prepare a “Space Fund” jar, which I will drop 1/10th of my daily wages into each night. In the meantime, however, 22-year-old Susan will see to it that the other items on her bucketlist are crossed of, beginning with a thorough hunt for a 4-leafer.