On Saturday 7th July 2012 the Olympic torch will be making its way through my town. My little, unknown market town! It’ll be going straight past the bottom of my street so I can see it with my own eyes. Ever since I was little I wanted to be involved in the Olympics, in some way or another, and it definitely wasn’t going to be as an athlete and so this I was excited about, this was my way of getting involved in the Olympics. I have also always wanted to go to Italy, eat pizza in Naples, take a ride on a gondola in Venice and visit the Trevi fountain in Rome. I planned on marrying an Italian man who would cook me traditional pasta dishes and teach me romantic sayings in his native language until the early morning. We would live a life of culture, travelling across Europe whenever we wanted and having friends in every city.
Obviously I am aware that the Italian scenario is unlikely to happen, and if it ever did I still have years to fulfil it, but I have to admit I was still a little heartbroken when I found out that I was going to Rome the same week the Olympic torch was coming to my town. I wait 19 years for something exciting to happen and I go away for one week and miss it! I have no reason to be annoyed though, I will be in Rome, one of the greatest cities in the world, whilst the Olympic torch will be on television, looking exactly the same as if I had seen it in real life for a whole 10seconds. Yet I am still disappointed, but why?
I am one of those annoying try-hard people. Not in the sense that I try hard to get noticed or to be successful, if fortunes shines itself upon me then ‘yay for me!’, but what I mean is I try hard to get the most out of things, and the widest meaning of ‘things’ is life! I try to get the most out of life, and I really don’t think this is a bad attitude to take. We’re on this planet for a short amount of time, why not try to do everything we can? Why not relax in a French café and get drunk in an L.A nightclub? Why not learn to surf in Hawaii and teach maths in China? Why not write stories in a book and share them with the internet? I genuinely can’t understand why people would want to waste their lives in a boring town doing the same thing every day, but then again it’s their lives and they can do with it as they so please. The reason we can’t do all the things mentioned and more is because there just isn’t time, well not, at least, for us mere humans like you or I. Of course if you’re Paris Hilton, you have millions of dollars to your name and MTV are willing to do a documentary about whatever you do then there probably is enough time for you to do everything you want, but unfortunately most of us have to work, pay rent, pay off student loans and build up a life before we can do something as selfish as enjoy ourselves.
Of course you can say it’s just coincidence, and that it most definitely is, but it’s the coincidences in life which can either hold us back or propel us forward. In 2010 I went to Lesotho, hands down the greatest experience of my life, but because of that experience I missed out on the opportunity to go to New York 9 months later because I had spent all my savings on Lesotho. Obviously as a girl growing up in little old Essex in the 90s I watched Saved by the Bell, Clueless and Sabrina the Teenage Witch non-stop, much to my mum’s annoyance, and therefore could dream of no better place to go other than America. Admittedly I wasn’t quite that naïve and I was aware that America probably wasn’t as great as I had been lead on to believe but once again I had missed out on something I was looking forward to just because of how my cards had been dealt. Do I regret going to Lesotho? No, because that was an experience I’ll never forget. New York will be waiting for me one day I am sure.
I think that’s why I am annoyed at the prospect of missing the Olympic torch, not because I will have actually missed it but because that’s ANOTHER thing I will have missed in life. It’s not so much the specifics that upset me but more the realisation that some things in life just can’t be done. I have worked hard all year juggling university with work and sacrificing my social life so I really do think I deserve a holiday but the price has been paid and that was to miss my childhood dream of being involved in the Olympics (in some way or another, definitely not as an Athlete). So this is what I plan on doing, continue as I had been before. I must have been doing something right all these years, I have done some amazing stuff and been to some amazing places and even met some amazing people so why would I want to stop that? The one thing I suggest, stop feeling guilty about the things you didn’t do or dwelling on the opportunities you have missed out on. Who knows, while I have been writing this I could have missed out on an experience of a lifetime? So remember to relax in Paris and dance in L.A but do it with a smile, there’s no point in dwelling on what could have been instead try to change it to ‘what may be’.