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City Life: Don't use 'tomorrow' as an excuse

December 27, 2011|By Steve Smith

The transition from one year to the next is only the difference of a sunrise and the turn of a calendar page. The truth, though, is that there is no tomorrow.

Tomorrow is only a promise, a fantasy, a myth that plays over and over each day, stringing us along, cheating us out of the joy of accomplishing the simple acts in our lives because we believe there is always tomorrow.

My mother was born and raised in New York and lived there for 35 years, yet she never visited the Statue of Liberty and never went to the top of the Empire State Building. There was always tomorrow.

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I've lived in Orange County for 26 years. I've never visited the Sherman Library & Gardens in Corona del Mar, never seen the Christmas lights at Roger's Gardens and never been to the Orange County Museum of Art, even though I have been meaning to visit these places for years. There is always tomorrow.

This year, my wife and I took our first two-week vacation in 25 years, and even though we didn't do much beyond getting lazy at a Lake Tahoe beach, it was one of our favorite trips. When we looked back at why we never took two weeks, it was for all the wrong reasons, most having to do with work. A longer vacation was always something we could do the next year when things settled down, but they never did.

This year, we took a ride in the balloon at the Great Park in Irvine; it was something we'd been putting off. We also organized a long-overdue October family reunion in Yosemite National Park that was so much fun, some folks have already made reservations for next year. We went to New York to go ice skating at Rockefeller Center and had an escapade on the streets of Manhattan that would be a side-splitting scene in a movie if anyone ever produced it.

On the way back from Oceanside a few days ago, we turned off the highway to follow the signs for a historical marker, just because. On the way back, we stumbled upon a Mexican restaurant that served the best breakfast we've had in years.

This year, I reached out to some long lost friends, one of whom, Steve Greenberg, I have not been in contact with in 32 years. I had not spoken to Cheryl and Nils-Eric Svensson in 18 years before I emailed them earlier this year. Since reconnecting, we've met for coffee and lunch.

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