101 Things

Start date: Friday, 16th January 2009

Finish date: Friday, 14th October 2011

This is my list of 101 Things To Do In 1001 Days. See my blog post about it for more details.

I’ll be keeping the list updated as best I can manage, to track my own progress as well as let you all check up on me! Items will be crossed out like this once I’ve completed them, and will have the completion date and any relevant links. Items not yet completed but underway will be shown in italics.

Current total completed: 84/101

Health (11/12)

1. Go swimming every day for a week. (0/7)

2. Eat a piece of fruit every day for two weeks. Done 16th January – 30th January 2009 (14/14)

3. Give up caffeine for a month. Done October 2009 (1/1)

4. Record one thing a day that has made me happy, for thirty (not necessarily consecutive) days. (http://itjustmakesmehappy.wordpress.com) (30/30)

5. Go for a walk in a forest. Done 21st October 2009 (1/1)

6. Try three new fruits. Pomelo, Pomegranate, Blueberries. (3/3)

7. Get off one tram/bus/train stop early and walk the rest of the way, at least 5 times. (5/5)

8. Have a spa treatment/facial/massage. Done 23rd April 2010 (1/1)

9. Sit in a steam room. (1/1) Done November 2010

10. Walk for at least 30 minutes every day for two weeks.(14/14)

11. Do not go online at all for three consecutive days. (Done 26/12/09 – 31/12/09) (3/3)

12. Soak in a hot tub. (1/1)

Other people (13/13)

13. Write and post a letter or card to 7 different people. (7/7)

14. Show a visitor around my “home” city. (1/1)

15. Give €5 to a homeless person on the street. (Done 25th December 2009) (1/1)

16. Smile at absolutely everyone I meet for a week. Done 18th August-25th August 2009. (1/1)

17. Leave a favourite book on a public bench for someone else to pick up and enjoy. (Done 29th December 2009) (1/1)

18. Get my picture taken with a stranger. Done 7th November 2009 (1/1)

19. Ask someone I don’t know to come for coffee/drinks/lunch with me. Done January 20th 2009 (1/1)

20. Get involved with some kind of local/community event or activity. (1/1)

21. Send an unexpected gift to someone. (1/1)

22. Write a letter to an author or other artist whose work has moved/inspired me. Letter to Bill Bryson, April 26th 2009 (1/1)

23. Call someone I haven’t talked to in at least six months. (1/1)

24. Send an email to someone with whom I’ve lost touch. Done February 20th 2009 (1/1)

25. Offer to help a stranger. (1/1)

Fun (21/22)

26. Watch at least five movies I haven’t seen before from the IMDb 250 greatest movies list. (5/5)

27. Go to a bar to listen to some jazz. (1/1)

28. Climb a tree. (1/1)

29. Go to a comedy show. (1/1)

30. Make a new cocktail. Done 28th February 2009 (1/1)

31. Ride a rollercoaster. (1/1)

32. Sleep under the stars. (1/1)

33. Release a message in a bottle. (1/1)

34. Travel by boat. (Done on May 21st 2010: http://coffee-helps.com/2010/05/23/when-in-korea/) (1/1)

35. Take a fun self-portrait and use it as my profile picture on Facebook. (Done on January 28th 2009: https://coffeehelps.files.wordpress.com/2009/01/hat.jpg) (1/1)

36. Document a “day in my life” with photos. (0/1)

37. Swim in the ocean. (Done May 9th 2010: http://coffee-helps.com/2010/05/10/group-ignorance)(1/1)

38. Eat 5 things I’ve never tried before. (5/5)

39. Stroll along a moonlit beach. (1/1)

40. Watch a sunset and a sunrise. (2/2)

41. Sunbathe on a beach. (Done May 9th 2010: http://coffee-helps.com/2010/05/10/group-ignorance)(1/1)

42. Make pizza from scratch. Done on 19th January 2009 (1/1)

43. Kiss in the rain. Done April 28th 2009… you don’t get to hear about everything! ;) (1/1)

44. Go ten pin bowling. Done August 25th 2009 (1/1)

45. Paint a picture. (1/1)

46. Have a picnic. Done many times in Switzerland, April 2009 (1/1)

47. Build a snowman. Done 24th February 2009. (1/1)

Culture and learning (14/20)

48. Have dance lessons. Doesn’t matter whether it’s ballroom, salsa, or line, as long as I’m dancing! I changed this one, since I got the opportunity to take salsa lessons and also the opportunity to take guitar lessons. Apparently, I wanted to learn the guitar much more than the dancing! (1/1)

49. Read at least five classic novels from this list, including one by Dickens. (5/5)

50. Go to the theatre. (1/1)

51. Learn enough Korean to be able to write a blog post of at least 200 words entirely in Korean. And post it! (0/1)

52. Learn another language to the same level as the above. (1/1)

53. See a Broadway show. (0/1)

54. Visit the birthplace or grave of a cultural icon. (0/1)

55. Sing in a choir. (0/1)

56. Improve my geography knowledge enough to score over 500,000 points on the Traveler IQ Challenge. 537,684 pts on 17th January 2009 (1/1)

57. Watch 5 foreign language films. (April 4th 2009, April 2010, October 2010 at Busan Film Festival) (5/5))

58. Learn about an interesting event in the history of every country I’ve ever been to, and keep a written record of these. (Underway at http://travelinhistory.wordpress.com/ (3/17))

59. Read a biography of an artist, a writer, and an actor. (3/3)

60. Attend a service of each of three different churches/faiths. (2/3)

61. Learn how to say hello in 50 different languages. (Underway at http://boutye.wordpress.com 14/50))

62. Go to a local music event/festival/celebration. (Korean St. Patrick’s parade, Seoul, March 20th 2010) (1/1)

63. Watch a B&W cinema classic. (1/1)

64. Attend a large festival. Cherry Blossom Festival, Korea 2010 (1/1)

65. Read, speak, or write some French every day for a month. Done April 2009. (1/1)

66. Visit five museums or galleries. (Estonian History Museum on 18/01/09, Latvian War Museum on 05/02/09, Heidihaus Museum in Heidiland on 18/04/09 , Trakai Island Castle on 13/06/09, Auschwitz on 17/06/09 (5/5))

67. Shop at a local market in three different countries. (Riga, Latvia 07/02/09, Vevey, Switzerland 11/04/09, Daejeon, South Korea 10/10/09) (3/3)

New activities (12/19)

68. Go skiing or snowboarding. (1/1)

69. Ride a horse. (1/1)

70. Take a hot air balloon ride. Done 18th April 2010 (1/1)

71. Do one of those ‘extreme’ things I’ve always wanted to do, like skydiving or a bungee jump. (0/1)

72. Go on an overnight train journey. (Done 27/12/09 and 30/12/09) (1/1)

73. Milk a cow. (0/1)

74. Teach a class. (1/1)

75. Take a road trip lasting at least two days – and do some of the driving! (0/1)

76. Dine on a restaurant boat at night. (0/1)

77. Visit Russia. (0/1)

78. Photograph an endangered species. (Done 27/12/09) (1/1)

79. Visit at least 10 countries I’ve never been in before. (Switzerland, Italy, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Poland, United Arab Emirates, South Korea, China, Japan, Mongolia (10/10))

80. Swim with dolphins. (0/1)

81. Learn to do a magic trick (1/1)

82. Make a cross-stitch picture. (1/1)

83. Attend a sports event. (1/1)

84. Visit a concentration camp. (Done June 17th 2009) (1/1)

85. Go snorkelling or scuba-diving. (0/1)

86. Travel outside of Europe. (1/1)

Getting organised (5/5)

87. Make a website to advertise my writing services. http://hayleymillar.wordpress.com (1/1)

88. Set up a Flickr account and organise my photographs. http://flickr.com/photos/10510317@N05/collections (1/1)

89. Put a better system in place for managing money/work payments/exchange rates. (1/1)

90. Build a portfolio of writing samples, organised in categories. Done March 2009 (1/1)

91. File all previously completed work for easy reference. Done February/March 2009 (1/1)

Writing (7/9)

92. Research and compile a list of publishers to send work to. (0/1)

93. Get that novel finished, and then send it to a publisher! (0/2)

94. Write at least 6 short stories. (6/6)

95. Write at least three poems. The Facebook Friend, I Never Find Perfection, I Am (3/3)

96. Write a new blog post every day for two weeks. Done 09/06/09 to 23/06/09 (14/14)

97. Participate in a writing contest. Done June 10th 2009 (1/1)

98. Write a children’s story. (1/1)

99. Submit an article to a printed publication. Done February 2009 (1/1)

100. Write a song. Done 30/06/09: The ultimate Country song. (1/1)


101. Chosen by readers: write a letter to a childhood penpal. (1/1)

39 thoughts on “101 Things

  1. Yes, yes, you have to swim with dolphins. I have done it and it’s totally worth it.

    When you do the Estonian blogpost will you write a translation for us non-Estonian speakers please.

    My suggestion for 101 is stay in a 5 star hotel for at least one night and order room service. Mainly because it’s on my list of stuff I want to do before I die (which you’ve just reminded me I’ve been meaning to write a blog post about for aaages…)

  2. MO says:

    Are you sure that No 3 isn’t taking things a bit too far – sounds very ambitious too me!!
    rather chuffed to find I’ve read 10 of the novels on your reading list – For Dickens I can reccommend Martin Chuzzlewit – I’ve just finished it and it’s funny.

  3. erin says:

    one of your 5 books HAS to be “to kill a mocking bird”…if you haven’t already read it. it’s my ALL TIME FAVORITE. ever.

    101…come visit erin, john and dwight!

  4. K8 says:

    Wow, this is brilliant! So you’re going to come back and ‘tick off’ the numbers here too when you’ve completed them? This takes dedication, I can’t wait to see how you get on.

    I can email you my pizza from scratch recipe if you’d like? It’s really easy, totally home made if tinned tomatoes and powdered yeast count as scratch ingredients ;)

  5. McBouncy says:

    No 101 could be “Shave your pubic hair in the swimming pool changing area” I loved that post.

    There are a few on your list you could score off. No 12.
    How many times did you soak in the hot tub with me?
    No 37 I watched you swim in the see at Benone beach and you came out blue. Maybe you want to swim in a warm sea…
    No74 Did you not teach freedom classes?

    Or maybe you mean do again.
    Come to me for the hot tub soak… please.

  6. Thanks all for the suggestions!

    K8 – I’d love the recipe, ta! I’ve never made pizza, but it’s something I’ve wanted to try for ages now.
    McBouncy – There is a section of the list for “new” things… I may have done some of the other stuff before, but they’re still things I want to do again within the next few years! :)

    And the winning suggestion is K8’s: write to a childhood penpal. Erin, it was very, very nearly your suggestion, but there’s too much dependence on finances for that one, and I want to have a reasonable chance of being able to do all of these things! Doesn’t mean to say that I won’t try anyway…

  7. K8 says:


    Best of luck finding contact again… that in itself could be a bit of an adventure.

    I’ll post the recipe on de blog, I’ve been pullin’ my hair out lately wondering what to post about! Cheers for the excuse :))

  8. By the way, for the foreign language films, you don’t actually have to watch them IN the foreign language do you? Cos if not I could suggest a few for you…

  9. The pizza-making was a success. Many thanks to K8 for the recipe! And Bevchen – yes, the films do have to be watched in the foreign language. I don’t count dubbed films! Plus I find them very distracting… for some reason subtitles cause me far less problems.

  10. k8 says:

    Not a fan of kung fu flicks then? The lip sync drives me nuts! Well done for trying out the pizza… the kneading’s pretty therapeutic, and great for warming you up if your heating is broke :) Mmmmm pizza…

  11. Hmm, have you seen Downfall? It’s about the last days in Hitler’s bunker before the end of the war, told from the point of view of his secratary. Very good film. As far as I know it’s only available in German with English subtitles. By watched in the foreign language I meant actually in the foreign language without English subtitles to aid with understanding. As in you can only watch it if you UNDERSTAND said foreign language.

  12. A Bill Bryson one. He’s my hero. And it was a bench in a hostel, but I think that counts as a public one! I just figured there’d be more chance of an English speaker picking it up there, and the hostels in China have horribly few books in English – that one had over 20 in German and 5 in Swedish, but only 1 in English!

  13. Charlotte says:

    Hey! I’ve decided that I shall copy your list and attempt to do the same, however, I shall make a few changes i.e. coffee (I don’t drink it) and the Korean blog…perhaps a spanish one. Thanks for this. Really inspiring :-)

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