Making Dreams Reality

What are we if not our dreams?

Are we any less because our dreams did not come true?

It depends on our dreams.

If we dreamed that one day we would be out of a particular situation and finally be happy and free, and never made it out of that dream, that is one type of disappointment. For as the ‘now’ generation says (and I wholeheartedly agree), all we have is NOW. Make that dream happen today or tomorrow, don’t wait until forever gets here.

But if we dream that one day we will buy a Ferrari or travel to some foreign land, and never buy that car or visit that place, that is another sort of dream. That is the dream of merely having fun stepping out and running around, rather than running away. This sort of dream is safer because, even if we don’t get that car or visit that world, we had a great time pretend planning it.

Well, I have a secret.

I have a pretend planning dream.

Well, lots of them, but this one has overwhelmed me for the past six months. A dream that, if I decide to take this gigantic step, will change my life. Kinda.

I want to go to a writing workshop in Paris next year.

Now. I have no money. I am still working. I have bills and a mortgage and a hubby and grandkids to think about. I am one step away from flighty, have to write everything down or I forget it, am 15 pounds overweight, over 65, and a hundred other legit reasons to wonder why I’m even considering it.

Yet I am considering it.

The biggest hurdle has been overcome — sorta. Hubby said go for it. I don’t think he thinks I’m serious. I could take money out of my 401K plan. After all, if I leave it all to my kids all they’ll do is spend it anyway.

So why does a 66-year-old scardy cat woman think Paris is the only place I can write?

I am not sure.

I know Paris is not the stuff of movies. There is no Midnight In Paris car to whisk me away to meet Hemingway or Picasso. There is no Eat Pray Love or Under the Tuscan Sun ending that will change my life, for I’m happily married and in love with my family. There are pickpockets and tourist traps and muggings like in any big city.

Why am I even entertaining going?

Maybe it’s because there are few challenges left in my life besides illness and death. Maybe it’s because I’ve always been afraid to do something all by myself, and figure there’s no time like the present to try it. Maybe it’s because I’ve got a wonderful imagination and believe I’ll overcome my apprehensions and actually enjoy exploring a world where I don’t speak the language (except for the American-sponsored writing workshop).

Am I crazy?

Perhaps I’ve always been a bit crazy. Who else would write novels about time travel and being taken to another part of the galaxy for adventure?

It’s easy to dream these things from the comfort of my livingroom sofa.

It’s quite something else to think that one day I might be dropped off at the airport and board an airplane and travel half way across the world to learn something I already know.

Yet I know nothing.

We all know nothing.

I don’t know if I will be brave enough come open registration season to really go through with it. But I’m having a ball planning and researching and picking out clothes to wear and what souvenirs I will bring back.

We all need to dream something that is just out of our comfort zone. Something just out of reach. It’s exciting and eye-opening and makes you re-examine your own hangups and fears.

And who knows?

Je peux aller à Paris après tout!



16 thoughts on “Making Dreams Reality

  1. You make me sigh a big sigh! My generation is so much more scaredy cat than today’s women…and although I’m the perfect single tourist (I worked in downtown Chicago for 12 years) and don’t interact with strangers, it’s still close to overwhelming. But if I can get some money together, the possibility is getting closer!


  2. I really hope you do make it to Spain. Even if it’s only for a week or month. I’ve always said I wanted to go to Ireland where my ancestors are from, or Italy, where my son went on a trip in college, or say I’d love to explore England (I am soooo a Rennie!). But this is the first time I’ve ever REALLY considered doing anything remotely like this. I’m not getting younger, although I AM getting flakier.But I figure if I plan the iportant stuff outright (buses and cabs and walking from A to B) I will also be able to do what I really love doing — write — in a city that seems to embrace writers. Let me know if you start to plan your getaway — we can correspond our support to each other!


  3. You are definitively not crazy, you have a beautiful dream! And what is life without them? I really can relate to your story, as I have a similar dream, I want to escape the much too harsh Canadian winter and go live under the sun for a month or two next February and March… preferably in Sevilla, Spain. I have always wanted to do so, but couldn’t, work, but now as a retiree it is possible. So why not? And it’s the same with me, I don’t speak the language, except for a few survival words, like tapas and vino tinto! But how exciting it is to be in a place where NOTHING is familiar? Now to get back to your Paris trip, go, you will love it, it is a great city, elegant… and while you are the, be sure to visit the Cluny Museum (Middle-Ages Museum…).


  4. Why shouldn’t you go? Dream big. Do something for yourself. What a wonderfully beautiful experience! I’m jealous that you are even thinking about it. Good for you!


  5. I think you and I should just go ahead and just do it and pay for it forever. We will never know what the world has in store for us if we don’t check it out. And what did God give us dreams for if he didn’t want us to figure out how to obtain them?


  6. I so appreciate thoughts from someone who has done just that. I tried to think of others to ask, but none would be fascinated as I would, none would want to do the things I want to do, eat what I eat, daydream like I would. Maybe that’s why I dare venture to think about going alone.


  7. You’re not crazy. Who wouldn’t want to write in Paris. I tell my daughter there are dreams and there are goals. Decide which it is, and then plan


  8. I say go for it. I packed up and moved to Spain at age 65. Now I write books in the sun. I loved Paris when I visited a year ago. I never once felt unsafe. You would always be glad you did it!


  9. I’m with your hubby, “Go for it!” Even if it never happens, the fun of planning is half the trip, right? I have a binder titled, “Maine or Bust!” I dream of staying in B&Bs in Maine, eating lobster everyday, and taking a cruise from there to Nova Scotia. I’ll be 80 this July and I have never been on a cruise. Don’t you think I should apply to the Underprivileged Children’s Society?


Share Your Thoughts!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s