On our last days in Thamel last year, I came across a pink drink bottle.

I loved it.

Absolutely loved it. Could imagine myself back in Cambridge, strumming the main street with it dangling from my thumb and forefinger.

But there was so much I wanted. And I was onto my last handful of cash. I felt it was more important to buy that string of felt poppies, that Pom Pom hooded poncho (why? I mean why?), those 50 keyrings to disperse to all and to many.

It came to my second-to-last afternoon and I had a mere 1400 rupees (about $20) left. The pink drink bottle called me – but in my sensibility, that 1400 needed to get me to the airport, to buy me some titbits for the day, to go out for an iced tea with the gang. I didn’t need a whole heap more rupees so it wasn’t worth the $7.50 fee for the transaction, and the shop with the only pink drink bottle didn’t take cards.

So I left it behind.

The last eight months I’ve thought of that pink drink bottle with a little element of grief. Everytime I caught up with Craig I’d bring it up, expressing my discontent at myself that I wished I’d just bought it. I actually felt sad; sad that I hadn’t just used that money or gotten more out or just something, to make my heart full.

So when we arrived back this time the first thing I did (apart from purchasing the avalanche of baby puffers) was hot foot it down to the store and buy the pink drink bottle.

Ok, so extremely simplified. But what I’m trying to get across is that I don’t want to ever look back and think, I should’ve just done it. Especially not doing so as a case of money. I always say I don’t believe in regrets – I like to think if I was in the same situation again, I’d do things differently. But I want to look back and be happy with the choices I made at the time I made them.

I say no to things because of loyalty – to work commitments in particular. But to the degree it puts my life on hold and I miss many opportunities. This trip is one of those instances where I put myself, my well-being and my happiness first – of course getting the OK from my bosses (could never just be like, “Laters! I’m out”).

I want to be 90, with a short blonde pixie cut, tattoos sprinkled about my body and my lip (more to come on that), having a frozen banana and glass of wine for breakfast if I so feel, surrounded by unicorn dream catchers and keyrings, photo albums of buying-the-pink-drink-bottle moments all around the room.

I don’t want to be the girl who didn’t buy the pink drink bottle.

(Just to add: I think the pink drink bottle had a hissy fit at being left behind – the sticker on it has clung to the casing and needs a really good soak and scrub to come off. It’s all good pink bottle, I’d have a sulk too).

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