What Will You Remember 20 Years From Now?
When I was in college in Ohio, one of my best friends was dating a nice Southern boy at the University of North Carolina. On a whim, we decided a weekend road trip as a good idea. But I had a big exam the following Monday that I really needed to study for and was torn. So I called my dad.
“Casey,” he said, “in 20 years, are you going to remember that biology exam, or are you going to remember that trip to UNC?” My dad is so smart. Of course, 20 years later, that UNC trip still tickles the back of my mind.
Heading out on a road trip wasn’t the most responsible, levelheaded option. But it was three days and two nights of fun with my girlfriends, wandering along unfamiliar roads, through an unfamiliar college campus and meeting new people — really, I think we just met guys on that trip.
Now that I’m much older and more responsible (ahem), my dad’s advice sticks with me. While I’m usually not the instigator of trips and weekend dance parties among my group of friends, I try to keep myself open to chances to go along when they come up. I believe that’s part of really living. A full life is one where you explore and get out there. If I always did what was expected of me, I just don’t think I would be very excited with myself.
I hope I readily pass on my dad’s advice to my boys as they get older. (I’m not saying this to my 8 and 5 year olds just yet.) Often, the best things in life and the best ways to create memories aren’t the smart choices. They can the spontaneous, irrational ones. Go Heels?