What do you want to be?

I woke up this morning another year older and no closer to knowing what I want to do with the rest of my life. Well-meaning adults, perhaps because they cannot think of anything else to say, often ask youngsters “what do you want to be when you grow up?”. The children um and ah a bit and then list off the professions which attract them like firemen or doctors or actors or the like. I think I wanted to be a lawyer at one stage, until I discovered the amount of study involved. But here I am, seemingly all grown up, and still with no concrete notion of what I want to be or can realistically achieve!

Sure, I would like to write but not all the time. I’m not keen on a solitary existence and, as I live alone, I appreciate the social aspect of having colleagues around me. I would also make a very bad copywriter or such as I am not enthusiastic about being told what to write, or how to write it. I enjoy writing a blog post when I have something to write about and I hardly ever feel guilty if I miss a week or two.

In an ideal world, where money is no object, I would like to work on various projects, such as building communities for creative people, who practice across all forms of the arts. I wrote about my inspiration for this, the Westbeth community in New York, here http://bit.ly/2nzHN0p I can think of nothing better than rehabilitating and renovating old factories and warehouse to provide accommodation for creatives and a vibrant artistic hub for the communities they live in.

If I could help design and build such a community, I would make sure it is environmentally friendly, dependent on renewable energy, with gardens and open space. Perhaps even rooftop gardens, or at least artistic courtyards where residents would be encouraged to plant. I wish the town planners of Australia would all put more emphasis on the environment when they approve plans. Imagine a city of roof top vegetable gardens, or floral wonders!

But building a Westbeth type community is not the only project I would like to be part of. There are so many causes I would like to assist with. Volunteer you say! And I should, but I find there is already so little time left in each day for the things I want to do, like writing and researching. I’m no saint.

I would also like to study more – not necessarily for a degree or qualification, more for my own benefit. History, archaeology, languages, there are so many subjects out there which I would like to know more about. I often look up various courses and dream about the day I can afford to take them all. Imagination is a wonderful thing until reality jumps up at you and reminds you about the mortgage, the bills and the necessity of food to life.

But sometimes, one can launch an idea into the Universe and things happen. Maybe I will even find out what I want to be when I grow up!

 

Alex

Alex de Fircks is a writer of memoir and short fiction. She blogs about family, moments in time, memories and travel. Alex is passionate about history, genealogy and family stories.

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