This is a list of memories and possibilities and dreams.




Watching summertime movies and reggae bands in the tiny village square at Takaka


Finishing my Year 13 Scholarship project, in the holidays, at school, and dancing around the sewing department to Florence and the Machine


Joining the throngs of would-be-wizards for the final screening of the Harry Potter Series


Having bonfires with the neighbours


Getting my article and a few pictures of my artwork published in Bride and Groom magazine


Reading The Return of the King in ONE DAY


Driving only by the light of the moon


Hearing Elton John play Benny and the Jets live


Visiting Queen Elizabeth's tomb at Westminster Abey with mum, and realising that this icon I had studied was once a living, breathing being


Sneakily trying to get photos inside St Paul's cathedral with mum.


Feeling pure joy all the while in Florence, as I studied the paintings of Fra Angelico, Filippo Lippi and Botticelli


Reaching my goal of a full year of University A-pluses, nothing less


Running full-tilt across a grassy hill singing the theme tune to the Sound of Music


Visiting Steamboat hotsprings at night, the snow on the trees formed into weird shapes by the steam, and skinny dipping after dark


Cooking a dinner of sausages on a hotel coffee-maker.


Grabbing the tire-tubes, and going sledding on fresh powder that graced the big hill near Oliver's place in Colorado


Listening to Pink Floyd's Dark Side of the Moon, in the complete darknes, while taking a shower


Sneaking into the inhabitant's only area of a castle-strewn French island


Walking the length of the Catedral de Cordoba with Uncle Jason, and marvelling at the twists of history


Steaming, showering, lathering, getting thoroughly scrubbed and very nakey, and making friends with a Parisian and her elderly mother at the Hammam


Sketching the boats moored on the Seine, from that small jardin that Hemingway used to visit


Running all those stairs from the metro to Sacre Couer, at 6am, to see the sunrise. Then watching the patterns of light dance from the windows inside the church


Watching the sun rising over the rooftops of Paris, everything in a pink haze


Gazing upwards at Sagrada Familia with Rita, tears in our eyes


Laying down in a graveyard, and feeling at peace


Performing a Haka with Penny in front of the Notre Dame


Sneaking Maylena, and then Rita, into that one hostel in Paris, when they had nowhere else to stay


Giving the full tour of Versailles to the gang, and lazing on the meadows of the Petit Trianon in the afternoon


Dancing in the deserted streets of Lyon at 4am


Being skint and sleeping at the only 24/7 Macdonalds in Paris with Rita - one of us on bag-guarding-duty as the other slept. 


Laughing with Rita over smashed easter eggs at the supermarket

Always taking the long walk home, past the flowering lilac-strewn houses in Oullins


Racing through a fountain, barefoot


Getting to know Paris like a second home


Receiving a standing ovation upon entering class, from all two hundred of my class-mates, for writing up and sharing my notes before the final test


Going doubles on a Velo'v bike with Nicole, careening down the Croix Rousse with a smile and no helmet


Knowing all the metro stops on the Gare D'Oullins line in Lyon


Sketching the Cathedral of Notre-Dame de Reims, and listening to the advice of a religious nutter 


Practicing yoga with nimble French countrymen in an old barn


Meeting a new friend on the train home to Lyon, hanging out, drinking a spot of absinthe (for the first time) and finding myself with a group of Irish people at the end of the night


Joining in with an improvisational singing group, on a whim, in the beautiful Roman Amphitheatre of Lyon


Skinny dipping with Oliver in the camp pool, at night, during a wild lightning storm, just outside the forest of Fountainebleau


Gazing, mouth ajar, at the size of the dome at St Peter's. It gets me everyime


Getting completely lost in the Tuscan countryside, walking between small villages, and looking for water before taking a dip in a bright blue pond amongst the grape vines


Having our flight canceled, then spending 19 hours on trains, through three countries, to get to Barcelona. Sleeping on the floor of the train station with many other vagabonds


Dancing with Oliver to Cuban Music among the sure-footed locals of Barcelona


Hammocking in the Parc de la Ciutadella, buying beer and samosas from the hawkers, and watching the hippies slacklining


Sleeping in the car in Annecy, after arriving too late to find a campground; waking and walking to the market, buying fresh food, then picnicing, boating and swimming on the lake


Driving with Ollie all over Europe, but especially on those hair-pin bends in the Swiss Alps, with Monsters and Men blasting from the little car stereo


Breaking into Spree-Park, that most popular of abandoned theme parks in Berlin, then getting caught within the first fifteen minutes


Sneaking into that abandoned sanatorium on the outskirts of Berlin


Spending two days at Europapark, camping for free on the grass in a spare lot, and then rattling our brains on the rollercoasters


Having the whole top-deck of the night bus in Edinburgh to myself


Having a heart to heart over a simple meal with a homeless woman named Sarah


Seeing the Orca Whales with Nicole, who could not stop gripping my arm with excitement


Watching an NBA game in Denver, popcorn and pretzels, and putting a penny on the tram tracks


Hiking to the arches in the desert lands of Moab, till the sun set 


Walking into the Grand Canyon


Swimming with sea turtles in their own wild underwater environment




Learning Bellydancing in a small studio by St Kilda


Learning to make all kinds of origami creations


Slowly but surely learning to paint, to draw, and to create what I envision


Teaching myself to write with my other hand


Baking a steamed Christmas pudding from scratch


Teaching myself to sew, then slowly perfecting the art till I could sew a couture wedding dress by hand


Building a nine-story card tower


Learning to at least get the basketball in the hoop


Sketching in front of my favourite paintings at the:
Musée D'Orsay - Musée du Louvre - Musée de l'Orangerie - National Gallery, London - Uffizi Gallery - Sistine Chapel - Vatican Museums


Learning enough French to hold a five-minute conversation with strangers over the cheese course


Learning enough Spanish to understand simple dinner conversations at Oliver's house


Learning history at the top-ranking University of Edinburgh


Learning more about my family and my ancestry by going back to my roots




Building a ten-story card tower


Creating an igloo all by myself


Being able to distinguish wines by taste... and the same for beers!


Catching a fish, by myself, and cooking it


Using an original medieval manuscript in my history research


Building our Hobbit Hole of a house


Expanding our Hobbit Hole into a Hobbit Village


Building my very own Lothlorien-esque city of treehouses


Learning enough Spanish to speak with Oliver's family


Learning to cook all kinds of world cuisines


Learning the art of calligraphy


Learning to speak Latin


Continually learning from the wisdom of others




Painting en plein air


Keeping my grass plant alive


Camping on the tippy-top of Montserrat, Spain


Hiking to Hohenzollern Castle, through the Black Forest, and meeting some lovely Swiss strangers


Swimming on the salty Coast of the Cinque Terre, and narrowly missing a swarm of jellyfish


Boating in the eery light of the Blue Grotto


Romping through fields of flowers, wherever I find them


Dipping my bare toes into brooks and streams and lakes


Hiking the five hours to the beautiful Crystal Mill, CO


Scrambling behind the waterfall at Hanging Lake, CO




Living in a cave in India 


Tagging along to the annual Pilas family camp-out at Lake Powell


Working on my 'green-thumb' and growing my own veggie garden


Walking the width of New Zealand


Making a long and nerdy pilgrimage to all of the Lord of the Rings movie locations in New Zealand, and finishing with an arduous trek to 'Orodruin'


Climbing Mount Elbert, the highest summit in the Rocky Mountains


Making friends with a dog-sledder and hitching a ride


Hiking the Appalachian Trail


Boating and reading poetry on a lazy day


Hiking to Angel Falls, Venezuela


Seeing midnight sun in the North of the world


Gazing at the reflections of the sky on the salt lakes at Salar de Uyuni


Standing behind Seljalandsfoss waterfall


Camping at both Yellowstone and Yosemite National Parks


in a hammock - and on a beach - and under the stars in Arizona


Wild Swimming:
- in the blue pools and limestone caverns on the Côte d'Azure - in the Dead Sea - in the Devil's Pool atop of Victoria Falls - in the fairy pools on the Isle of Skye - in the Reykjadalur valley, in Iceland




Spending a week in mindfulness with the wonderful Sangha at Plum Village


Listening to Thich Nhat Hanh speak about happiness


Hearing the Dalai Lama speak in person




Getting my PhD in the study of French and English Gothic and Neo Gothic Cathedrals


Living in Spain for a while


Living in France for a while longer


Living in Paris till I get sick of it (and that won't take long)


Traveling with Nomads, anywhere 


Undertaking the pilgrimage on the Camino de Santiago de Compostela
- to walk, to think, to learn


Attending a TED Talk, or better yet, giving a TED Talk


Road-trippin' through the U.S. of A. with only my friends, and a car and some clothes in a backpack


Working at Disney World for a short time


Joining an expedition


Hearing Eric Clapton play live


Chasing a wild storm - seeing a tornado with my own eyes


Publishing an article in an academic journal


Reading all the books on my reading list


Journeying into the Peruvian Amazon


Seeing Uluru on a day when it is raining


Experiencing the flavours, sights and sounds of the grand bazaar in Istanbul


Getting lost in the back streets of Morroco


Traveling through Russia


Seeing both the Northern and the Southern Lights


Undertaking a pilgrimage to the Basilica of San Francesco d'Assis


Walking to the very bottom of the Grand Canyon


Traveling on all seven continents



Committing a petty crime (and getting caught too)


Getting well and truly lost in a new place (many times over)


Listening intently to the ramblings of a religious nutter


Driving the wrong way on a one-way road (twice)


Making a gingerbread house every Christmas


Reading Lord of the Rings every year, without fail




Getting kicked out of Walmart for causing a ruckus


Participating at a nudist beach


Finding and logging in my first geocache


Busking for my dinner


Finding new friends while couchsurfing


Help X-ing and WWOOFing all over Europe






Sneaking into the abandoned Cargill's Castle (twice)


Bungee Jumping at Kawarau, NZ


Jumping into the Shotover Canyon, NZ


Driving at over 140km/h on a German Autobahn


Laying down in the middle of the road, at night, when it is quiet




Bungee Jumping the Verzasca Dam, Switzerland


Taking the Polar Plunge in Dunedin, NZ


Surviving white water rafting with Oliver's family


Sky-diving, anwhere, anyhow


Finally undertaking the Nevis Bungee, NZ





Holding a Harry Potter party, in true nerdy fashion


Watching the Nutcracker ballet at Christmastime


Celebrating a white Christmas in snowy Montreal




Experiencing Diwali - a festival of lights in India


Traveling to Lapland and to the Santa Claus Village


Making my own lantern for the Pingxi festival in Taiwan


Participating in Burning Man, in Nevada


Getting into the spirit of a Hogmany New Year's party, in Scotland


Throwing tomatoes with abandon at La Tomatina, in Spain