If Only I Had…

JohnWhat would you do if you had a to-do list to complete before turning 30 and just one year to achieve them all?

John is the Dean of Happy Cow, the children’s education division of Evam. He creates modules and syllabi for workshops and year-long theatre curricula that have been implemented in schools across India for children.


I just celebrated (didn’t actually) my 29th birthday. A birthday with no plans and a request to my wife to not surprise me with any online gifts because my credit card has already crossed credit limit last month.

This is how it has been ever since I started earning. But this year, I felt different. I will be 30 in a year. I have wanted to do so many things in life before hitting that milestone.

Things like… Wait, let me Google, “Things to do before you turn 30”… God! I haven’t done 90% of them. These are things that I thought I would do when I settle down. (Aang!?)

Google suggests the following. Let’s see.

  1. Get a tattoo
    What do I tell my father (a Pastor) who says I’ll go to hell if I get a tattoo!
  2. See your favorite band live
    Wait… I don’t have one yet.
  3. Run a marathon
    Where do I start from? My home? Should I wake up early in the morning?
  4. Visit all the states of India
    50% done on official visits – Land in the morning, conduct workshops and return evening.
  5. Get a passport
    Got it a week ago hoping to get business in Qatar. Didn’t get.
  6. See a Broadway show
    Will do. On some official visit.
  7. Have one hilarious blind date story to tell
    Married already. Can I try now?
  8. Say ‘enough is enough’ and quit
    Did that many times. Actually companies/people quit on me.
  9. Learn a foreign language
    Already done! I know English.
  10. Understand alcohol
    Shhhhh! What will people say?
  11. Travel alone
    Without anyone from my family? Not even my daughter?
  12. Splurge on an item you can’t afford
    Sure! When I close my current EMIs.
  13. Save
    Whom? I have saved many in life.
  14. Survive a heartbreak
    Who will give me that?
  15. Throw a lavish birthday party at least once
    “Surely!” – My words for the last 29 years

But yeah, all these seemed normal till day before yesterday. I feel like the student listening to a teacher in the examination hall say, “Tie your paper and write. Only 5 mins to go”. I have decided to break free now. Don’t know how or where to start from. I want to finish at least, actually all these in the next one year. I am not going to wait until everything is set and I am free to go. I am not Superman or Jesus Christ who was created to save the world. All my duties can wait. If I have time to work hard, pause everything and let things take backseat to reason everyone around me, I have time to do all these too.

If only I had one thing right from my childhood, I wouldn’t have written this on this day. #GutsToSayNo

About EVAM

Founded in 2003 by Sunil Vishnu K. and Karthik Kumar, ‘evam’ today is a profitable young thriving arts organization making people believe in the power of the Arts.
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