Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Big Things

We all have a list of big things we’d like to see before we die. Here are a few of mine, in no particular order:

1. The Hagia Sophia. When I took AP Art History in high school, this was the building I fell in love with. The Hagia Sophia has been both a basilica and a mosque, but I want to see it for its clerestory, a window-lined wall that rises above the roofline of the surrounding walls. The Hagia Sophia’s clerestory is just below its dome, and they say that at certain times of day, when the light’s shooting through those windows at just the right angle, the dome looks like it’s hovering on a cloud of light. I’d like to see what a cloud of light looks like.

2. Italy, any or all of it. I’m not picky.

3. New York City. I’ve had a fascination with this city for a long time, even before I started trying to publish a book:) When Honey Bear got to go there on a mock trial trip before we were married, I was supremely jealous. (He was kind enough to bring me back a New York City T-shirt, though, which I still wear proudly.)

4. The Grand Canyon. I live, like, an hour away from the North Rim (if I don't mind taking a four-wheeler up and over a mountain on a gravelly trail), but I’ve still never been there. Maybe when I-gots is a little older, we’ll have to make the trip (though I think I’d prefer going the long way around in a car).

5. Angel Falls. Have you seen that shot in the BBC’s Planet Earth, when the camera sweeps over the top of Angel Falls and down the drop-off? It’s not the world’s tallest waterfall for nothing.

6. Ireland. (See the comments.)

7. An erupting volcano. I'd prefer not to be in the path of the erupting volcano, but hey, if I ever am, at least I'll be able to check another thing off my list. Gotta look on the bright side, right?

8. The Mississippi River, 'cause it's huge. Have you seen how huge it is? Out here in the West, our rivers come in medium, small, and so small a three-year-old can hop across them.

And here are a couple of big things I’ve already seen:

1. Yellowstone. I’ve even stood thirty feet down a boardwalk from a wild buffalo. A herd happened to come through the patch of mud pots we happened to be looking at, and when I broke through a knot of people, well, there it was. My little sister was with me, so I muttered to her, “Let’s just put our heads down and back away slowly.” If a park ranger had been there, he or she probably would have had a fit.

2. The Alamo, which is actually much smaller than it looks. I lived in San Antonio for about a year as a kid, and we visited the Alamo several times. My dad is something of a war history buff.

I might come back and add to this list over the next few days or weeks, but for now, I’ll just turn the question back around to you. What big things would you like to see before you die, and which ones have you already seen?


Lindsay said...

Would like to see:
-The Moors
-The pyramids
-The Nile
-The Dead Sea
Also Hogwarts and a parallel universe.

Have seen:
-Ireland (Dursey Island FTW!)
-The Scottish Highlands (*worth it*)
-The Hogwarts train (actually near Ft. William, Scotland)
-The deep sea (dove to 120 feet [frighteningly colorless])
-A reef in Puerto Rico

Karen Amanda Hooper said...

You've got some great ones on that list!

A memorable one for me was seeing the volcano erupting in Hilo, Hawaii. I watched a sunrise and sunset there. :)

On my list is to watch a sunrise from Cadillac Mountain in Maine--in the fall when all the leaves are pretty and colorful.

Ben Spendlove said...

Uluru (Ayers Rock)
The Great Barrier Reef
The Twelve Apostles

Notice they're all in Australia? I spent two years there and didn't get to see any of these things. I did see:
All kinds of beautiful birds
Downtown Melbourne
Nothing at all (meaning places where there is not a hill nor tree in sight, only dirt and a road)
The sky, which day or night, just isn't the same as it is here.
Not really "big things", but amazing nonetheless.

Krista V. said...

Lindsay, I should add Ireland to my list (of things I'd like to see). I have this little daydream of sitting on a hill somewhere in Ireland, with the green farmland spread out around me and maybe a flock of sheep grazing nearby, listening to "Danny Boy" on an iPod. (Well, I'd prefer "Danny Boy" to just be ringing through the trees, surround-sound-like, but I think the iPod's a little more realistic:) )

Karen, I almost put "Watching a volcano erupt" on my list of things I'd like to see! How funny that you've already seen that and Lindsay's already been to Ireland.

Ben, what are the Twelve Apostles? Is that a rock formation of some kind? Also, stay tuned for tomorrow's post, which will be entitled "Little Things" ...

KarenG said...

Love NYC, and I'm with you on Ireland and Italy. Also London. Great list!

lotusgirl said...

I've been lots of places, but I still haven't been to Ireland and would love to go. My hubby's not the least bit interested either. Maybe I should go with you. Italy is also on my list. I've been through parts but never Rome or Venice or Pompeii.

Carol Riggs said...

Ireland, Scotland, Wales. Italy would be fun too! Altho I'm more about getting a book published than going to a location, as far as my bucket list. LOL

Hey, while playing blogger award tag, I awarded you a LOVELY BLOG AWARD on my blog! Come fetch the image to post it on your site:

artzicarol ramblings

Krista V. said...

KarenG, I'd love to go to London, too.

Lotusgirl, sounds like a date:)

Carol, thanks for the award! And maybe I should add "A book with my name on it" to the list:)

Myrna Foster said...

The British Isles, especially Ireland
The Great Wall of China
New Zealand
A contract from a major publishing house

I have seen:
An erupting volcano in Hawaii, but I preferred the critters in the ocean and swinging on the vines
Parts of Mexico, Holland, Switzerland, Germany, France, Spain, Portugal, and Canada
Niagra Falls
The Grand Canyon
The Valley of Fire
Old Faithful
Tillamook Cheese Factory
Pier 49
Pike's Peak

Liesl said...

I've done a lot on your wishlist but would still love to do:

1. Harry Potter Land
2. Switzterland, France, Italy, England
3. Run a marathon

That's it. I know there's plenty to do in this world but I'm kind of lame and would often rather read a book.

Ben Spendlove said...

The Twelve Apostles are big rocks named by someone who couldn't count:

Esther Vanderlaan said...

I would like to see:
-Pyramids and The Spinx
-The Taj Mahal

Have seen:
-The Great Wall of China (I walked on it many times!!!)
-Niagara Falls
-The Forbidden City
-Hawaii (I hope that counts! It should, because I saw the Pearl Harbor Museum :))

Great Post! You should post posts like this more often! :)

Esther Vanderlaan said...

Thought of some more places/things I would like to see:
-The Terracotta Warriors
-The Nile River
-I would absolutely love to get a book published (If that counts on the list)
-The Statue of Liberty
-Disney World or Disney Land
-The Dead Sea

I went to Inner Mongolia!
I also went to California.

OK, I have to write down some of things my Mom has seen and/or visited:
-The Alamo
-The Great Barrier Reef (She SWAM in it!!!)
-Played with dolphins
-The pyramids and The Spinx
-Niagara Falls
-The Great Wall of China
-The Forbidden City
-Inner Mongolia

She was a real traveler!

Krista V. said...

Myrna, when you decide to visit Istanbul, let me know so I can ride along and see my Hagia Sophia.

Liesl, as much as I like to run, the thought of a marathon terrifies me.

Ben, thanks for the info. That beach is BEAUTIFUL. I'd like to spend a day there frolicking in the waves. Then the next day, I'd leave the kids back at the hotel with the hubby and come back with a laptop so I could just soak up the inspiration:)

Esther, looks like you beat me to the Great Wall of China and the Forbidden City. Also, your mom sounds like quite the world traveler.

Abby Minard said...

This is fun!
Things I would love to see:
Hawaii- just any of it would be fine
Athens, Greece
The Sphinx and Pyramids
The Dead Sea (and the caves in which the Dead Sea Scrolls were found)

Things I've seen:
London and Stonehenge
Rome, Sistine Chapel, Vatican
Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island
The Eifel Tower
Niagara Falls
Grand Canyon and Yellowstone
Boston in the Fall

Thanks for letting us brag about where we've been, lol.

Lora said...

@lindsay- I would also absolutely love to see Hogwarts (especially the Room of Requirement) as well as a parallel universe. Sadly, the closest I'll ever get to that is in Harry Potter role play. Ah, well...

Anyway, here goes the list:

Things I've seen:

The Alhambra
St. Petersberg - the Hermitage
The Panama Canal
The Notre Dame Cathedral

Things I'd love to see:

The Grand Canyon
The Pyramids
Niagara Falls
The Louvre

Sharon K. Mayhew said...

I really want to go to Havasu Falls! Let me rephrase that....I desperately want to go there...It looks so peaceful and beautiful!

Krista V. said...

Abby, awesome lists. Boston in the fall must be lovely. But then, I'd take Boston any time of year:) (Except maybe winter. I'm not a huge fan of snow...)

Lora, you're right - I think we'd all like to live a semester (or two or three) at Hogwarts. I'd like to see the Louvre, too, although I'm pretty sure it'd take me a few days to get through the place. Wonder if they rent rooms for the night... :)

All right, Sharon, I admit it - I had to Google Havasu Falls (although it sounded awfully familiar). And it was awfully familiar! One of my little brothers-in-law (okay, so he's actually got me by almost a foot height-wise, but I've still got him by six or seven years) hiked Havasupai with his Scout group, but there was a forest fire that year, so they had to evacuate. He was literally driving through a burning forest to escape. (I think that was the Havasupai trip, anyway.)

lodjohnson said...

Places I've been:
All over Europe (except Spain and Portugal)
Mexico, Canada, Caribbean - all over the US.

May I recommend Nova Scotia in the early fall - gorgeous!

Places I want to see:
Great Wall of China
Figi (those little huts over the water "Sigh"
New Zealand (want to take the LOTR tour)

Krista V. said...

Lodjohnson, great lists. I'd like to take the LOTR tour in New Zealand, too.

Myrna Foster said...

Yes, that would be a great deal of fun.