If She Wants A Unicorn, It’s My Job to Make It Happen (a.k.a. “Our” Travel Bucket List)

Disclaimer: I love my wife very much. So much so that I asked and was given her permission to write this post (Note from Sharon: Yes, dear).

I find myself amazingly lucky that Sharon and I agree on so many things. One of them is we don’t need to heap presents on each other to show our love and affection. That notwithstanding, there are some occasions when Sharon wants a particular item and it’s my job to acquire it. While it may be a larger item or one that might take some time to find, it’s never been impossible (yet), and I enjoy the challenge and the pleasure when I deliver.

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As we’ve started to try to declutter our lives, our lists of “wants” have changed from things we want to have to places we want to go, like a bucket list. But one that we tend to fill up quicker than we can empty it.

At first, we needed to go to the Grand Canyon. I accomplished this at first by a day trip by plane from Las Vegas and then again several years later as part of an Adventures by Disney tour of the southwest.

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Our first trip to the Grand Canyon (2007)

As my points and miles knowledge grew, Sharon learned the things she could ask for could be increasingly difficult to accomplish. Like going back to Hawaii for our 10th anniversary. Of course, this time we traveled in business class, just because we could.

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Then wanting to go to London to see the musical The Book of Mormon and visit the Warner Brothers Studio London – the place where they filmed the Harry Potter movies.

For her “round year” birthday trip, she had only a few small requests, Cuba and Salzburg, Austria. How could I let her down? (I’m glad we went to Cuba when we did). 

So what’s the problem you might ask? Well, the requests are starting to get more……difficult. giphy

Our Current Travel Bucket List Items

1. Try to see the Northern Lights…from a glass igloo.

Ever since reading about Kakslauttanen Arctic Resort in Finland, I’ve wanted to go there. I didn’t even know where it was. Turns out it’s in an area called Lapland, and it’s kind of in the middle of nowhere. I don’t care. I want to stay here. Before I even showed this to Sharon, I knew she’d want to go there, too. And I was right.

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Glass igloos at Kakslauttanen Arctic Resort. Photo from Instagram @kakslauttanen_arctic_resort

2. Go back to Japan

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There are so many places in the world we could visit, but we keep getting drawn back to Japan. There’s just something about the place that’s magical. That’s not even taking into consideration that Tokyo is home to the best Disney Parks in the world (and the best Disney themepark show anywhere!)

Our original plan was to visit Japan in 2020 to see the Summer Olympics. With the procedure to get tickets (Sharon’s desire was to see the Opening Ceremony), the difficulty in finding hotels, and how busy the country would be around the event, we decided against it.

It wasn’t that we didn’t want to go to Japan, we didn’t want to go when it would be more crowded than any other time we’d ever seen it before. It was also going to be summer in Tokyo. It’s hot and humid in the summer, and that’s not when we’d like to visit .

So we put the trip off until later in the year, but it really looks like this one is happening!

3. Go to Newfoundland

I never know if Sharon thinks I’m serious or cynical when I say that I’d like to visit Newfoundland, Canada. One of our favorite musicals is Come From Away, and it’s set in Gander, but it would be a really silly reason just to visit for that.

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While that would be fun, I’m more interested in going to see more of the area. Honestly, I’ve wanted to visit ever since I read the post on One Mile At A Time about visiting the extremely remote Fogo Island Inn. All I can say is that if you visit somewhere and think, that’s where I want to get married, there must be something special about the location.

4. Tournament of Roses Parade

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This was a newer addition to the list. Sharon waited to spring this one on me until after I managed to pull off our trip to New York to see the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. If I could get us to New York with miles and find a hotel with points for that trip, surely I could get us to Pasadena for New Year’s Day, right?

(Note from Sharon: going to the Tournament of Roses parade has actually been on my bucket list ever since I was a little girl. I just hadn’t mentioned it yet. Priorities.)

Honestly, I’ll take this challenge over the biggest thing on her bucket list.

5. Go to Sydney, Australia for New Year’s Eve

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We’ve been to Australia before and love it there, particularly Sydney. It’s like New York City, Los Angeles, and London all mashed up together but with a different accent and attitude. We only got 2 days to visit on our tour, and we said that when we go back to Australia, we will spend more time in Sydney. It was Sharon who then said that if we were going to go back to Sydney, she’d really like to go there for New Year’s Eve. I mean, who else would want to ring in the New Year there?  Um, apparently, like, everyone. I guess that’s why Sydney has its own website devoted to doing just that.

Final Thoughts

So this is my quest. To dream the impossible dream. To plan the unplannable trip. To reach the unreachable star. (#headdesk). Guess I better get started…

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This post first appeared on Your Mileage May Vary

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