Half a World Away

I could never imagine I would be in the position I am in right now. I mean the literal position is extremely predictable, laptop, coffee shop, headphones in, intently checking my fantasy premier league team score. However, geographically I am on the other side of the world, 5 weeks into my newest adventure. It’s brilliant, terrifying, inspiring, romantic, ridiculous and exciting all at the same time. Its a risk, two fingers up to conformity, a hat tip to wanderlust and just beautifully unconventional.

I have always wanted to travel the world, I want to see everything, know everything, experience everything, its like the worst case of FOMO. Anyone who knows me will testify, no matter how big or small, I want to know whats going on and be included, like an excitable yet slightly irritating puppy.

I think my biggest fear in life is to not have lived it properly, I want to, for the good and the bad, have lived a life that is worth writing about. I want to have a real story. World changing brilliance and adventure isn’t too much to ask for… is it? Therefore when the opportunity to follow my heart to the other side of the world came knocking I jumped at the chance.

So, what happened to prompt this change of hemispheres? I met a boy. Classic, girl meets boys falls head over heels in love kinda tale. 6 weeks of dreamy Worcester dating later I decided to quit my job, booked a plane ticket and 2 days after my 24th Birthday travelled for 48 hours via 3 countries to meet him in Sydney Airport. Causal Tuesday right?

The boy. Without wanting to sound like the soppiest human alive, is the kind of person you dream about meeting. Someone who matches your competitive spirit, can make you feel special and that definitely isn’t horrible to look at. When the biggest downside they have is supporting Manchester United and can sometimes be too tidy you know your doing okay!

Thats where I have been. Exploring Australia and New Zealand and falling a little more in love everyday. Long may the days of chasing the sun continue!

True

Late one Friday night, a 23 year old girl lay in her messy childhood bedroom, hair in a top knot, pyjamas on, typing away on a Mac book which due to its temperature should be condemned,  listening to True by Spandau Ballet partially fuelled by white wine. Painted the picture? I know it sounds like something out of a rarely watched, but cult teen rom-com. But this, at present, is me.

Why do I find it hard to write the next line… well Tony Hadley I will tell you why. No one ever really knows whats going to happen or why or how. So many things have happened this week to make me feel all different kinds of things and I need to get them out of my head. I’m not going to pretend this was an extensively planned piece of writing, but sometimes things can’t be ordered or justified they just need to be noted. Documented that on that day and at that time I felt that way. Or whatever tense that last sentence needed to be in to make sense.

I feel angry at the world and how cruel and unfair it can be, how where you are born even in 2017 can be a life or death sentence. How some people can be so blinded by greed and fear that they start to lose their humanity. How they can fundamentally lose sight of what it is that makes us different from them, we should care, we should help those in need, we should stand up in presence and in policy. We can not, and I will not, be crushed by people that have already lost their humanity, have lost what it is to value a human life. I am not going to fear living my life or doing what I feel is right or standing up for what I believe in. I want to be thoughtful, kind and make a difference to other people’s lives both now and in the future when the next generations inherit this planet.

Now if you have stayed with this post thus far I can imagine your thoughts have strayed to… ‘oh my, it started so light and is she really subtly dissing trump and terrorists whilst listening to an 80’s classic’ yes, yes I am. But in other less politically charged news, I felt happy this week about my progress at work and that me and my family are getting on so well. I felt proud of my friends doing good and making positive changes to their own lives and other peoples. I also felt a pang of heartache when seeing an old couple holding hands walking in a super market aisle and maybe just a little sigh at at the sight of heart shaped paraphernalia.

Human’s are strange things, we have this unavoidable nature to not be alone. It is not just romantically or physically alone but the feeling that comes with wondering if you are the only one to be feeling a certain way. It is at that point the millennials, just like me, take to the internet to highlight their profound thoughts… hola! I suppose that is part of the reason I write some self reflecting brain babble on the internet, it is a search, it is unapologetically outwardly looking for some form of confirmation that your part of something bigger.

Apart from this ‘alone but not alone’ ridiculous non problem promblemness I am actually enjoying being a single person at the moment. I am finding a new level of respect for myself. It isn’t that I didn’t respect myself before, but I was definitely disillusioned as to how someone should be treated and feel about themselves in a relationship. So although sometimes its nice to have the confirmation that your not the only one, sometimes being the only one for a while is beneficial for your heart in the long run.

I know, its like an page long stream of contradictory thoughts. It has been an emotionally odd week.

 

And now bed.

 

Mindfulness on the M6

This weekend I went on my first solo road trip. I braved the motorway in my Suzukis Alto aka Casper, and headed to Macclesfield to visit one of my best friends and her boyfriend. I know that you may be thinking #thirdwheel, but lets breeze past that, I’m great at being a very entertaining and helpful extra! Moving swiftly on…

Oh it was a head/heart healing experience. This post is called mindfulness on the M6 because there is something cathartic and calming about having to concentrate on driving, and the next word to the song you’re belting out from Radio 1. Ed Sheehan’s ‘shape of you’ got a 10/10 performance. It’s like for the time I’m driving the part of my brain that stresses and worries is just turned off, because there are more important things going on in that moment. You know, like not causing a major traffic incident.

After 2 hours most of which was spent on the M6, I arrived at my destination. There is something magical about seeing one of your oldest friends doing so well. I truly believe that success isn’t quantified by material things but about quality of relationships and seeing her and her longtime boyfriend being so content kind of made me all warm and fuzzy. The girl is doing good. She also put towels out in the guest room, with miniature bathroom products on top, thats hosting to a whole new level.

I think that if ever you feel down or a bit lost, hanging out with people that really know you and care about you can completely change your outlook. It can be hard being a twenty-something with jobs, uni, travel plans, houses, cars and relationships to contend with as well as just getting through the day without napping.

The best friendships are those that you can pick up and they are just as brilliant as the last time you left off whether its days, weeks or months in between.

Clarity comes in all forms, I had a full on moment just chilling with a slight red wine hangover, coffee in hand, watching an awesome film (Sing Street – it’s on Netflix, watch it!). I think it was the calmness of chilling in a onesie, no make-up on, no bull shit just me, in a place, doing pretty much nothing, with great people and feeling like it was the right thing for me to be doing at that time. I know deep, getting transcendent vibes in a onesie is quite the achievement.

I am not quite at the place I thought I would be 10 years ago but I’m doing okay. I am moving in the right direction and surrounding myself with good people, and that feels pretty sweet. The bacon and egg sandwich also helped this epiphany.

All in all a lovely weekend, spent with lovely people and some me time on the motorway.

 

 

 

 

 

14.02.16

Today as I walked into work I was greeted by what can only be described as the physical representation of St. Valentine’s projectile vomit. Cards, balloons, mugs, plates and every other imaginable object with a heart plastered on it. All to the theme tune of Katy Perry’s teenage dream. Now in retail its like every holiday is on acid but this kind of made me feel uncomfortable and mildly wishful at the same time – I know I hate myself.

Firstly let me just lay it out, I am a romantic at heart – flowers any day of the year would do me, but the v-day hype creates a very uneasy atmosphere in the minds of many women. The v word, like voldemort or vagina, which yes I have already mentioned once, is not something I’m overly comfortable with saying repeatedly. Honestly, yes, I would probably be pretty happy if a gorgeous male appeared on my doorstep a week on Sunday with some type of cuddly toy, but that is more just my weak disposition than anything else.

After seeing a woman literally entangle herself in v-day giant helium balloons I thought – “what are we really doing here, is it worth being publicly trapped in ribbons?” and this induced many more questions and ideas about the ‘normal’ 14th of Feb festivities. This prompted me to ask everybody I spoke to over the last few days what they really thought of this lovey-dovey-commercially-charged tradition.

My mini research found that most people say they really aren’t bothered, that love should be shown to those you care about everyday of the year. However, there were a number of people, that like myself, wouldn’t hate it if there was some romantic surprise element amiss their public defiance of the day. Basically men, we can live with out it, we don’t expect much, actually in my case my expectations are literally non-existent, but if you wanted to get us a card or some flowers your going to earn major brownie points.

I am not one to conforming to commercially charged capitalism fuelled traditions but in this case I woefully make an exception… oh and christmas (who doesn’t love santa?!?). Although my v-day will probably be spent alone, if you can make it a little bit more special, for that someone special, no one is going to be annoyed or slightly give you the cold shoulder and use the word “fine” because deep down they were hoping you would have some kind of romantic epiphany.

My advice – be happy, if you care about someone let them know and have an extra snuggle on the 14th, just to gloat your couple status to all those less loved up than yourself if nothing else. But seriously love is a wonderful and magical thing and if your lucky enough to have it why not celebrate? If your single I am also not opposed to self appreciation v-day… that could catch on. I will be self appreciating myself with a gossip girl binge, possibly wine and much to much hot chocolate with marshmallows if that man doesn’t show up!

Happy 14th day of the second month in 2016!