Unfriended Dark Web Review

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Heads up, this review does contain spoilers so please don’t read if you’re not interested in that!

I’m pretty sure I didn’t know that ‘Unfriended’ was getting a sequel until I got a trailer in front of a YouTube video I was watching to advertise this movie. It caught my attention so instead of skipping it like I do with most YouTube ads I watched it and was immediately intrigued. I liked that this time they weren’t going for the supernatural element but for the whole hacker dark web thing instead. I’d say it was more realistic but I’m not sure that’s the right word – it just wasn’t supernatural like the first one.

I’m not really sure what I thought of the first one, I like the idea of it and how it’s done but I think the overall storyline could’ve been a bit better. I watched it at home with Becca once and she hated every character and only really liked Val (the mean one, typical Becca) which made me realise that actually none of the characters were particularly likeable. I think that was part of the point by the end but it was just also a bit pointless.

This wasn’t really the case with ‘Unfriended Dark Web’. I actually liked the characters, especially Serena and Nari. The only character I wasn’t sure about was Matias which was a bit annoying as he was the main character. All he seemed to do was make stupid decisions and I’m just not sure I liked him that much.

I’m getting ahead of myself – for those who haven’t seen the trailer, ‘Unfriended Dark Web’ is about a young man, Matias, who takes a laptop after he notices it’s been sitting in lost and found in his local web café for a few weeks. He manages to log into the laptop and begins skyping his friends but notices the system keeps crashing so his friend advises him the laptop might be full. Matias investigates and finds a series of sinister videos and messages which creeps him and his friends out. Before long the group notices they’re being watched by the original owner of the laptop who warns them that if they disconnect or contact the authorities they will die.

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Some aspects of the film were a little unrealistic. Matias tries to convince the group that the scary videos and messages were part of a game he was developing in the hopes their lives will be spared but the group are sent a video of one of their friends being pushed off the top of a building. Matias finally finds a way to warn the group that the whole thing is real and the group return to their game night in the hopes of convincing the hackers that they’re unaware of the truth. None of them seem too panicked that their friend is now dead at this point.

Also, I liked the ending and I like the idea but it also seems a bit… Coincidental? How did they know he would take the laptop and go home and skype a group of friends? Sure I skype my friends occasionally but only really when we’re planning something and none of us like doing face cam so we only have the mics on. What if a lonely pensioner had taken the laptop instead of Matias, would they just have stolen it back immediately? It was really very dependent on Matias taking it and I just don’t know how they could’ve predicted that he would. This paragraph probably only makes sense if you’ve watched the film but I didn’t want to spoil the ending.

Equally, Matias was given the opportunity to return the laptop but didn’t because he found a message that intrigued him and that’s how he discovered the videos in the first place. What if the message hadn’t caught his attention though and he’d just shut it down and taken it back? Would the events still have happened or not?

While we’re at it I think logic went a bit out the window at some points. The owner’s email address and password is saved for most websites but Matias deletes this and logs into his own Facebook account – yet he gets pop up Facebook messages for the owners account even though he’s not logged in? Everyone has logged into their own Facebook on a friends computer before and that just doesn’t happen. I suppose it could be argued that the hackers did this to trick Matias in the first place but he didn’t even seem surprised that he was getting notifications for an account he wasn’t logged into.

I’m going off on a tangent here. Regardless of the logic and coincidental unfolding of events I did actually enjoy the movie. It made a lot more sense than the first Unfriended and I’m actually glad they made the sequel this way instead of going for another supernatural movie. This one seemed more like a thriller film than a horror and it worked so much better.

My piece of trivia for this horror review is that in the original plotline the movie was set to follow on from the events of the first movie and revolve around Laura Barns targeting college freshman for their role in her suicide. I’m very glad they didn’t go down that route and instead went with this.

Overall, I did like the movie and I would definitely go and see it again. I recommend it for any horror fan and you don’t need to have seen the original to get this one. In fact, don’t watch the original ‘cos that one pretty much sucked anyway. But go and see this one!

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24K in Paris Concert Review

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When 24K announced they were returning to Europe I was over the moon – until I realised that they weren’t coming to England this time. I was desperate to see them again but with my trip to Asia coming up this year I did wonder about giving it a miss. Or… Going to one of the shows and sleeping at the airport to do it on the cheap. Luckily I received quite a good tax return this year meaning I could turn all that into spending money for Asia and book my flights, hotel and ticket for the concert guilt free.

I debated about which show to go to but in the end settled on Paris because wherever I went I wouldn’t have much time to sightsee and I’ve already been to Paris and am going again in October. Plus it was the closest country to England so it seemed like a good idea. I got a bit excited and booked my flights and hotel before the tickets were even released.

Buying the tickets was a bit of a nightmare – they went on sale at 5PM UK time and I was debating staying at work to book them but luckily decided to leave work early to buy them at home. Just as well because the website went extremely slowly causing quite a bit of stress. I was going out with my friends that night and had to be showered and ready to go to Hirst’s for 7:30PM. Becca came to mine at about 7:10PM and as she stressed about her make-up I was still stressing about the tickets – with five minutes to spare before we were meant to leave I managed to secure a gold ticket and headed out to have a good time safe in the knowledge that everything was now sorted.

I decided to fly to Paris the day before the concert so I could get rested and that was good ‘cos it meant I could take three days off work instead of two. I’d asked my friends Becca and Jess if they wanted to come but neither of them had the holiday or the money so I had to set off on my own. On a plane. And I’m an extremely nervous flyer.

I had already flown to Poland by myself earlier on this year but I was still terrified at the thought of another flight alone and didn’t help myself by showing up at the airport way too early. I’d gone through security and had lunch with another two hours left to spare before my flight. I managed to distract myself by watching Friends episodes on my phone until finally it was time! Luckily I was sat next to one of the nicest women I’ve met in my life who told me she was a nervous flyer but actually spent most of her time comforting me on the way over! She kept calling me her little sister and tried to teach me some French but I was a bit useless and don’t remember most of it.

Arriving at Charles de Gaulle was just as stressful because the airport was massive and I found it difficult to navigate and then I had the travel ticket stress. The machine wanted me to pay 50 euros for a three day ticket but I wasn’t sure if it was the right type anyway. In the end I found a lady who sold me a week pass for 25 euros but told me I’d need to stick a little photo of myself on the travel card. She seemed genuinely surprised to find out I don’t carry a little photo of myself around with me and told me I’d need to get one. I didn’t bother; I didn’t really use the metro that much anyway.

I’d been worried I’d find the trains a bit difficult on my own but I’d had experience on the French metro with my friends and it was relatively easy to navigate so I got to my hotel quite quickly. It was a nice hotel, it was clean and I felt safe but unfortunately the room was stifling hot so I didn’t get the best night’s sleep. But I was still up bright and early the next day to get to the venue for the first check-in!

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I got there at 11:20 and there were already quite a few fans there and I knew I had to get a number but I wasn’t sure who to ask and I felt a bit intimidated so I just sat on my own and waited to see what happened. About five or ten minutes later 24K themselves walked down the steps I’d just been down and headed into the venue. I tweeted about it but shout out to the French 24U who were obviously excited about seeing the boys but kept their distance and didn’t scream at them as they came down. A few people tried to take pictures but put their phones/cameras away when the manager asked them not to.

I eventually saw a family going up to get their numbers so I plucked up the courage to go and get mine and a really nice staff member explained to me in English about the fan projects, when things were happening etc. She was actually amazing, she’d come down the queue every so often and give updates or instructions in French, look at me and remember I spoke English and translated it for me. I didn’t get her name but she had dip-dyed blue hair and she was fab!

At 11:30 we all queued up for ‘check-in’ which took a while and then we waited for the selfie tickets to go on sale at 12. I somehow got adopted by the family who had gotten their numbers just before me – they didn’t speak any English but when they saw I was alone they offered to stay with me and we got by with our limited understanding of each other’s languages and gestures. The Mom even bought me a bottle of water and nothing for her kids – you know like in Harry Potter when Ron’s Mom treats Harry like the favourite child? It was like that. They were with a little kid and 24K gave her a lot of attention, she was really sweet and absolutely deserved it.

My plan had been to grab my selfie tickets at 12 then do a little sightseeing before having to come back for the 2:30 check-in. This was super optimistic as the tickets didn’t go on sale until about 1PM and then it took another hour to actually buy them. I went for Cory, Jeonguk and Hongseob as I couldn’t afford every members. I’m really glad selfie tickets were an option this year but queuing for them was not fun as we had to queue outside and it was boiling hot.

I was so tired and hungry after that that I got some food at the burger stand opposite the venue and was soon joined by the French family who had some food too. The fan sign was supposed to be starting at 3 so I went to rejoin the queue but unfortunately this was delayed too and due to the size of the room that the fan sign was in we had to queue outside again, right by the river with no shade. I wouldn’t have minded too much but I was alone again at this point so I had no one to hold my space while I got myself some water. In the end I had to take the chance and ran over to buy myself two bottles because I was dying. By the time I got back the boys were in the room and we were being sat inside in about groups of 6 – 10.

Luckily I made friends with the three girls next to me in the queue who were all super nice. Their first language was French but they also spoke English so they mainly spoke to each other in French as that was their comfortable language then translated the important parts for me and if there were any announcements they kept me updated.

I was nervous about the fan sign because I was low-key (high-key) hoping the boys would remember me from the London fan meet (which I wrote about here). The night had meant so much to me that I was kind of hoping they’d remember. But unfortunately I realised they didn’t when I handed my album with my name on it to Cory and he asked me if he was pronouncing my name correctly.

I’ll be honest and say I was a little disappointed at the time but I’m kind of over it now ‘cos like to me it meant a lot but to them I guess they were just doing their job. Like when I worked at Blists Hill and people had their weddings and stuff… I don’t remember any of the brides names even though it was their special day or anything? It would’ve been nice to be remembered but they meet a lot of people so I’m not upset that they didn’t. I was in the moment a little bit but not anymore.

Cory signed my album, held my hand and said he hoped I had a good time so I thanked him and moved on to the next member which was Jeonguk. He attempted pronouncing my name, held my hand and then… The person next to me was still talking to Changsun so I couldn’t move over. So Jeonguk just looked at me without saying anything and I got so nervous that I started laughing. He gave me a weird look so I laughed harder ‘cos it was so awkward and I managed to say “It’s nice to meet you… Again” and finally the person next to me had moved on so he smiled at me and pushed my album down to Changsun.

He was really sweet, he made sure he was pronouncing my name correct and then held my hand before pushing it down to Jinhong. Jinhong had intimidated the fuck out of me last time but my interaction with him this year was nicer. I was wearing a t-shirt with two cats sat on a banana and it said ‘banana’ at the bottom so him and Changsun, who was free, both started saying ‘ban-AN-a’ and I didn’t really know what to say so I just laughed. I held his hand too and then he pushed the album down to Kiyong.

Kiyong’s the new member and I’m quite proud of 24U for being so welcoming of him – I love Red Velvet and the fandom but there are still people who bitch about the fact Yeri was added to the group whereas when Kiyong was announced everybody loved him before we even had any photos or information about him. He’s so cute, he checked the pronunciation of my name too (a common theme) and held my hand. It was nice to meet him for the first time and he’s honestly so sweet.

He pushed my album down to Hongseob and it was mostly the same, checking the pronunciation of my name, hand-holding and then he made the ‘ban-AN-a’ comment as I was walking off so I laughed. Then we had to head back outside to queue up again for the hi-touch and group photo.

Although it was torture standing outside in the heat to queue up for things I don’t blame Skey Ace for it. At the last minute there was a venue change and I think they did their best in the circumstances they were given – it was a strange venue but I’d have been fucked if they’d arranged it for a different date or something so I’m glad they got a different venue and made it work. It just sucked going back outside because by the time I got back in my face was tomato red and it just wasn’t an attractive look.

It was nice making friends with the three girls as they offered to go and get two of us some water while we watched their spaces so it made the queue a lot better especially since we were all freaking out about the fan sign. It felt like we waited a bit less this time and we were soon heading in for the hi-touch. I ended up being second in the line which I wasn’t a fan of and nearly ended up going first because I thought the girl in front of me wasn’t going to.

Maybe it was because of the delays or number of things going on but things felt a bit more rushed this year than at the London Fan Meet and this time at the hi-touch the boys just went for hi-fives instead of holding hands. Which like is fine, it was still good! The girl in front of me ended up apologising to Jinhong so I had to stand awkwardly behind her for a while which was weird.

Then we went around for the group photo and two people could stand at the ends and one girl ran in front of us to stand by Cory and I’m so awkward that I just kneeled anywhere on the floor ‘cos I didn’t wanna be a nuisance. The photos won’t be released until after the tour but I probably look a right mess and I have no idea who I was in front of – I have a feeling it was Jeonguk but I won’t know until they’re released.

After the group photo we queued up outside again to wait for the selfie event. One of the girls I was with told me that at the other venues the selfie event had been held in private rooms so it was just you, the member and some of the staff obviously. She asked one of the staff if this was the case here and we were told no all the members would be in the same room.

It was a bit weird to be honest, the members were just dotted around the room and you handed in your selfie ticket at the desk, they shouted out who you had a selfie with and this woman held onto my arm for a moment and then kind of just left me without doing anything. There were obviously other fans in the room but Cory had just finished up a selfie so I went over and handed him my phone and he was like “Hey! Let’s do this!” I like the selfie but as it was my first one I’m at my most red and I don’t like my face in it.

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It was awkward to navigate the room because it wasn’t very big and you were kind of just left to find the members by yourself. Jeonguk was next to Cory so I headed over to him and he was drinking some water and I felt bad ‘cos the moment I approached him he tried to quickly finish up. I think I liked this selfie the best and I set it as my phone background.

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Then I headed over to Hongseob who was just finishing up with somebody else and that selfie came out good too. I thanked him and turned around and bumped into Kiyong and I feel awful because he smiled and was like “Hi!” To be honest I’m not sure the staff would’ve known whether I’d had a ticket for him or not so I could’ve just gone for it but that would’ve been rude and unfair so I awkwardly smiled back and headed out of the room because that was all my selfies that I’d paid for.

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Luckily after that we didn’t have to go back outside we could head downstairs into the venue and we had to sit down whilst waiting for them which was a bit awkward but also a blessing as we got downstairs at about 6:45 and the concert didn’t start until 8. Most of the safety announcements were in French but I was still nearby one of the girls from the queue so she very kindly translated everything for me. She was fab but I didn’t get anybody’s names so if the girl in the yellow top who hung around with the awkward British girl is reading this, you were fab and thank you for being so nice! Unfortunately we had to move so we got split up a bit and I ended up by a group of girls who said something to me and when I replied they were like “Oh My God, you’re British too!” and I ended up chilling with them most of the night. It turned out we’d been to the exact same 24K concerts last year – both London shows and the Amsterdam one!

Eventually the boys came out and were full of energy as per usual. I can’t remember the entire set-list but I’m pretty sure they opened with ‘Superfly’. They performed a few songs then went off stage to change while a video played. We were told that in order for all fans to see we had to sit down while the videos were playing which you can imagine was a bit awkward but the videos were worth it. Kisu had prepared a video of him singing ‘To for You’ as a surprise as he couldn’t attend the concert himself.

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After the video 24K came back and performed a couple of songs before starting the Q&A. At first Jinhong read the questions out in English and the members would reply in Korean or some English and this was then translated to French by one of the staff. Cory told us he was losing his voice so he didn’t take as much part in the Q&A as he usually would do. Hongseob was hilarious and kept saying “Next Question! Fast Q&A!” Then Jinhong gave the piece of paper with the questions to the translator so at this point I didn’t understand much as the questions were in French and their Korean answers were translated to French. Me and the other Brits I was with tried to understand the questions but it was a bit hopeless, however the cheers from the French 24U’s suggested that the answers were good.

There were more songs and units – vocal unit, dance unit, hip-hop unit. I remember Jeonguk dancing to Black Pink’s ‘DDU-DU DDU-DU’ which was lit as fuck. They sang my favourites ‘Hey You’ and ‘Only You’. During ‘Blue’ we all put a yellow post-it note over our phone torches and waved them in the air then when they came out for the encore and performed the Bonnie n Clyde remix we all had banners to wave. I love fan projects like that.

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I was sad when the concert ended but was also low-key relieved ‘cos I could grab some water and I was eager to get back to my hotel and put my pyjamas on. I swear my legs were just pure sweat and denim at this point, it had been such a hot day. I literally sat in front of the hotel rooms’ air con drinking water for like half-an-hour when I got back, it was such a relief.

Also I managed to completely destroy my handbag. I’d popped some chocolate bars into the bottom of the bag in case I got hungry during the day but unfortunately my bag was so full of stuff that I couldn’t reach them. I do remember giving one a feel in the queue and they were very squishy so I decided to deal with them when I got back. They had melted so badly out of the packet that they were all over my stuff. Luckily my book had been at the bottom and that took the most damage because I had slipped my signed Bonnie n Clyde album in there but as it was at the top it didn’t get any chocolate on it. I managed to save everything except for the charger for my battery pack and the bag itself. It was brand new and when I got back to the UK I had to go back to Primark to buy one of the exact same kind. I was honestly gutted.

I’m so glad I went, it was definitely worth the money and I’m already counting down the days until their next Europe tour so I can see them again. Should hopefully be after me and my friends go to Asia and assuming I’m still in employment I should be able to travel again if necessary. Here’s hoping that’s not necessary and they come to the UK next time but I’ll still travel if they don’t!

What I loved the most about this tour the most was probably the fans – when I went to the London Fan Meet I found that nobody really spoke to me in the queue or inside and I felt pretty lonely even though I’d obviously loved the actual Fan Meet itself. But this time tons of people went out of their way to stop me from feeling lonely, even if they didn’t speak my language. It was worth it just for that I think.

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Growing up Fat

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Those of you who regularly read this blog must know that I am by no means a skinny person. I’ve been overweight pretty much as long as I can remember and although I’ve made many attempts to reduce my weight I have given up at pretty much every one of them. Part of me thinks I’ll be happier if I’m skinny whereas the other part of me wonders if I’d actually care that much if society wasn’t putting as much pressure on me to care. I’d probably be healthier but I’m not sure about happier.

I wouldn’t really say I was bullied at any point for being overweight, I’ve had people say mean things about me as pretty much everyone has but I was never specifically targeted for my size. Obviously some people have been mean enough to bring it up – I still remember the group of year nines walking behind me and my friend when we were in year eight and one of them whispering loudly enough for me to hear (definitely on purpose) “God she’s fat, isn’t she?” But as far as I can remember I was never harassed about it. But I did hate it.

Other than the occasional mean comments I also had to worry about/be insecure about certain things that skinner children/teenagers probably wouldn’t have thought twice about.

My main one was whenever food was mentioned at secondary school – especially in food technology which caused a bit of a problem. One year we were doing desserts and pastries which was probably the best topic ever and at the end of one lesson we were encouraged to talk about foods we liked. Most people in the class were giving answers which was always met with a chorus of ‘oh my god yes’ and ‘mmm yummy’ – but not from me. I was so worried someone would laugh at me or say something about my size that I did my best to keep my face remaining neutral and didn’t say anything at all. I’d sit there and long for the talk about food to end so that I didn’t have to worry anymore.

One of the people who brought me down the most because of my weight is actually the person I love most in the world – my Mom. I love her and I know she loves me but that woman said and continues to say things to me that really knock my confidence. Then when I tell her I feel insecure I’m met with comments about how I’m ‘beautiful’ and I only believe the negative and not the positive.

The one that sticks out was when she came into my room and spotted a photo of me and my friends which had been taken on my 20th birthday when my friends surprised me with a trip to the Harry Potter Studios. We’d been sat ‘in a carriage’ on the Hogwarts Express and were looking at the camera with a scared expression because there was a dementor looking through the window. We were all sat sideways to the camera and my Mom looked at it and said “Just a tip, to help you look skinnier in photos you should turn yourself so you’re facing forwards.”

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I suppose to her it was a throwaway comment but it made me want to cry and I still feel a bit negative about myself whenever I look at that photo. It was inappropriate to look at a photo that I associated with a happy memory and basically imply that I looked fat and should’ve sat a different way. It was also inappropriate when I was about fifteen and she looked me up and down in ASDA and blurted out “You look pregnant!”

Something that any overweight person can probably relate to is changing rooms at stores. There is nothing worse than having a breakdown in the changing rooms because nothing in the entire store fits you. As I’ve grown older I’ve learnt the kind of stores that just won’t fit my body type and now try to avoid them like the plague.

However my friends are all quite a bit skinnier than me so sometimes I end up in these shops anyway and honestly looking at clothes sized ’14-16’ being labelled as ‘XXL’ makes me want to go home and vomit. I’ve tweeted about this regularly but I hate finding a cute clothing garment online and realising their largest size is a 12. I might be big but I still want to wear cute clothes! We exist, make your clothes bigger!

One thing that annoyed me growing up were the amount of skinny people who would claim they were fat – I don’t doubt that they genuinely believed they were but I had one friend who was literally less than half the size of me who would moan she was fat then say to my face “You’re not fat, I’m really fat though.” It didn’t even make me feel better, I just thought it was stupid that someone who was clearly a lot smaller than me was claiming they were bigger.

Even now I have friends who regularly claim they’re fat and want to lose weight when I would kill someone to be their size. And every time they mention how much weight they want to lose it makes me feel awful about myself – I know that’s definitely not their intention and they definitely care more about their own weight than mine but it does make me wonder ‘what do you think of me if you think you need to lose weight?’

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Whenever I hear someone skinnier than me talking about their latest diet or whatever they’re doing to lose weight my stomach drops a little because I wonder why I’m not working harder to lose weight. My manager at work recently confessed she wanted to lose weight before her latest holiday and she’s literally the skinniest person in the office. I get so insecure snacking at work because everyone’s always on some kind of diet and doing their best to eat healthier and I’m worried everybody’s judging me.

When I was about twelve a friend confided in me that she liked being my friend because she didn’t have to feel embarrassed about eating in front of me like she did with other friends who were skinnier than her – I didn’t take offence at the time and it definitely wasn’t meant in a nasty way. I didn’t feel uncomfortable eating in front of her (if I felt uncomfortable eating in front of people skinnier than me I would never bloody eat) and I was happy that she felt comfortable. But it makes me quite sad that she felt that way considering we all need to eat to live – she wasn’t disgusting or fat just for having a basic human need to eat.

A recent thing that knocked my confidence was when Jess suggested that we all went clubbing together. Her, me, Becca and Jess. By that point I wasn’t against drinking alcohol anymore and the idea did sound quite fun but one thing was putting me off. People comparing me to them.

Okay it sounds stupid but it was a genuine concern. I’m bigger than the three of them and although I know it’s ridiculous I do look at photos of the four of us and wonder if I’m on par with them or if I’m significantly uglier. So when Jess suggested clubbing I was worried that people would hit on them and talk to them and basically ignore me all night. I guess films like ‘The Duff’ kind of fucked me up a little. Ultimately I knew it wouldn’t go down like that and that my friends would not ditch me or let anyone talk shit about me but I was still concerned.

It turned out I had nothing to worry about, people talked to me just as much as they did to my friends and I actually had a really good night. But I think the niggle of worry will still be there in the future even though I know it’s such a silly and petty thing to worry about. To be fair I did find I suddenly stopped caring about my size and whether people were judging once I’d had a couple of cocktails but I shouldn’t need to be tipsy to not be insecure!

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Something that’s worrying me for the future is that me and my friends are going to Asia in September/October… And I’m very worried about being fat shamed. I don’t really worry in Europe or America but like Asian sizes are always a lot smaller than European and I don’t know, I’m just worried someone will say something. It’s not stopping me being excited for the holiday because I am excited as I’ve always wanted to go. But I do worry that the insecurity will ruin my good time a little bit.

I feel like that as a K-Pop fan – I touched on this a little in my 24K Fanmeet London Experience post but due to Asian beauty standards I was a bit worried about meeting them the first couple of times. It feels horrible to say because they were so lovely but I was a bit worried one of them would look at me or say something that would make me feel awful. It’s the same with any K-Pop related thing to be honest. I fantasise about meeting my faves but I do worry that they would shame me for my size. Again, absolutely ridiculous but the insecurity is there!

I feel a bit more secure in my skin as I’ve gotten older and I feel like I am less obsessed about my weight but I do have days where I look in the mirror and wish I could just tear the fat away. But I just feel like even if I was skinnier I would still have insecurities. I would still think I was ugly 80% of the time, I would still be unhappy with many aspects of my life and the only thing that would really change is that I could buy more clothes from mainstream stores. Nothing ground-breaking would happen. My parents would probably still make comments about my weight, I would still be bigger than my friends and I would still be insecure.

The media doesn’t help either. I feel like I shouldn’t really comment on this movie because I didn’t see it but I hated the trailer for ‘I Feel Pretty’ starring Amy Schumer. It’s not like Amy is ugly by any standards and she’s not even fat, it just seemed a bit… Pointless? Obviously I didn’t see the movie so I won’t delve too deep but other media tries to make us think badly of fat people too. Young Monica in Friends was a laughing stock until she lost weight and suddenly she was desirable. That’s not okay! I’m not even gonna talk about Netflix’s new show ‘Insatiable’, a show I definitely won’t be watching.

I’m not really sure what the point of this post is because it’s not like it’s made me feel any better to write it… I guess I just want other people in my situation to realise that they’re not alone and there’s absolutely no shame in being overweight. It doesn’t make you a bad person, it doesn’t make you an ugly person. One of my favourite posts on the internet said ‘you can be the pretty friend AND the fat friend’ and although I don’t think that applies to my friendship group it was still super uplifting to read.

Feel free to leave a comment with any of your own experiences whether they’re recent or while you were growing up. It would make me feel a little less alone and we could make each feel better!

10 Favourite Supernatural Characters

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When I was in college I was all about Supernatural, there was nothing I loved more than that show. I’ve written about my love for it in other posts, about how I would binge watch the show for like 10 hours at a time and my heart ache when I finally caught up and had to wait for new episodes like everybody else. Recently I’ve fallen behind and I would love to catch back up and get back into it. To help motivate me to do that I thought I’d write a list of my ten favourite characters in no particular order!

Please excuse me if anything I say about a character isn’t in line with the show’s current point, I think I made it to the Season 10 finale (I might be wrong) so I might be a bit behind on character’s current situations!

Castiel

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I’ve gone with Castiel first because he was my favourite character when I was a fan of the show. I don’t think I liked him at first but like the majority of the fandom I quickly began to love him and soon I was basically Castiel’s bitch. I had so much Castiel related merch – I wasn’t hard to buy gifts for because you just needed to buy me something Castiel related and I would love it.

My love for Castiel made me love Misha Collins too which meant that like most fans I ended up taking part in a crazy event called GISHWHES which stands for Greatest International Scavenger Hunt the World Has Ever Seen. It’s a week-long event and I participated two years in a row and boy did I do some stuff. There is genuinely a picture of me wearing toast underwear in some far corner of the internet. But I did it because I loved Misha and Supernatural.

I was fortunate enough to meet Misha several times, my favourite was when I was called into the photo op and for some reason although there was a queue in the corridor the actual room itself was practically empty and Misha smiled at me and was quietly like “Hi, how are you?” It was only a small exchange but there was something really sweet about it that I loved. I met him a few more times over the next couple of years but nothing will beat that one.

I’m going off on a tangent here. Basically, I loved Castiel when I was an active fan. He was definitely my favourite regardless of the mistakes he made and I just love him so much.

Garth

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Come on, who didn’t love Garth and Mr Fizzles to be fair? I absolutely loved him and was always happy whenever he reoccurred. I’m not sure I liked the werewolf storyline (neither did DJ) because it just didn’t feel right somehow. It didn’t really feel like Garth. I love the story though that the producers rang up DJ, pitched the idea and he was so drunk that he was like “Yeah, sounds great!” even though when he’d sobered up he hated it!

I was also lucky enough to meet DJ Qualls, I won’t post the photo op ‘cos it looks horrendous but his coffee lounge and panel talk were the funniest of the weekend. That story of him getting so high that he thought he was Mary Pickford reincarnated still cracks me up every so often, I think it’s hilarious.

Crowley

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I’m so far behind on the show that I dunno if Crowley is still the King of Hell or if he’s even still alive but like he’s fabulous, I don’t care what anybody says. For the King of Hell I’d say he’s a pretty decent guy, full of sass and just generally amazing. “Hello Darling” how iconic. We love an iconic King of Hell.

I’ve also met Mark Sheppard a couple of times (I feel like this is turning into a brag post about how I’ve met the actors, it wasn’t meant to be this way!) and to be honest I was a bit nervous about meeting him but he was always lovely. The first time I asked him for a hi-five and he trolled me by doing the ‘down low, too slow’ thing and then laughed at me. The second time I was worried because he’d wanted to leave but the staff insisted he had to stay and he was going “I’m not happy!” to the staff so when I gave him my thing to sign I was like ‘omg he’s gonna get mad’ but he was just like “I’m sorry about that, how are you?” I like him, what a decent guy.

Bobby

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We all make fun of Hirst because me, Becca and Jess became fans of Supernatural whereas she wasn’t particularly interested. When she overheard yet another conversation between the three of us she piped up and asked “Is Bobby cute?” which we all found absolutely hilarious at the time. We then had a running joke that Bobby was her favourite and that the two of them were perfect for each other.

For real though I loved Bobby. What an amazing father figure for the boys like he didn’t have to go as hard as he did but he did anyway. He was also damn amazing at his job and the episode where he stands up to his own Father is absolutely amazing and gives you more of an insight to what Bobby was really going through. But he was so strong regardless and was genuinely just a massive hero. Let’s be real, without Bobby the brothers would’ve died ages ago. Well, you know, permanently died.

I did meet Jim Beaver but to be honest I can’t really remember much, I loved his panels though. Especially the man who told him the story of how his wife had agoraphobia but really wanted to see him so she came to the convention anyway. He looked so genuinely touched and he just seems like a lovely guy.

Meg

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I didn’t really like original blonde Meg because like she was a demon and was just generally a bit annoying but I dunno, when Meg 2.0 came back I ended up really liking her. I’m not even really sure what it is but I just loved her and was super disappointed when she was killed off because I just feel like it was a bit unnecessary. To be fair it may have been because Rachel Miner was going through some difficulties but I’m still upset about it.

Rachel Minor is another one who’s just so lovely, when we joined the photo op queue we were told to try not to talk to her too much because she’s so nice and tries to make as much time as possible for every single fan but unfortunately the staff have deadlines to get people in and out so no one misses out on what they’ve paid for. She is honestly so lovely though.

Dean

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Obvious one but who didn’t love Dean? It’s funny watching the first season and thinking ‘Jeez his voice is deep’ because now that’s his baby voice! It’s so much deeper now, I can’t believe it! I love pretty much everything about Dean – his sarcasm, how protective he is of his family, his love for pie. He’s just a great character even if he has made some mistakes.

I remember at these conventions I used to attend we all believed that Jensen Ackles would never come back so we were all shocked one year when he was finally announced. I knew I had to get a photo with him so I sent in my pre-order as soon as it opened and was lucky enough to get one in the first batch. I was so nervous when the day came but as predicted Jensen was absolutely lovely and was happy to oblige when I asked if I could have a hug. He was lovely and I’m so glad I got to meet him.

Claire

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Okay I didn’t think much of Claire when she was first introduced to the series but she was a bit of a badass even in that one episode. She was willing to let Castiel possess her so that her Dad wouldn’t have to and like that is love right there. When it was announced she was returning I was ecstatic, especially when I found out she was going to be played by Kathryn Newton. I’d loved her in Paranormal Activity 4 and I knew she’d be amazing as Claire. I was right, she was fantastic and I loved everything about her character. It sucks that her life was pretty much torn apart by Castiel but she’s stayed strong throughout and I love her.

Sorry to keep bringing up my experience of meeting the actors but I was lucky enough to meet Kathryn Newton at one of the Asylum’s and she is so pretty in real life like I was honestly shook by how pretty she is. My photo op with her is one of my favourites, she was so lovely and seems to genuinely care about every fan. She’s just amazing.

Gabriel

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You’re lying if you say you didn’t love Gabriel. Even when he was introduced as just a trickster he was still amazing. Pretty much any episode with Gabriel is a good episode let’s be real, my favourite though definitely has to be ‘Changing Channels’ that episode was honestly amazing. He was hilarious and I just loved everything about his character. Again I’m not caught up so I don’t know if Gabriel comes back or anything, I really need to catch up with the seasons I haven’t watched.

Richard Speight is another person who’s hilarious in person, I’ve been lucky enough to see Richard and Matt host karaoke twice now and it was super fun both times. He’s also really nice in person, he asked my name so I told him ‘Hozzie’ and he responded “So O-Z-Z-Y?” I had to correct him and he laughed and went “Well none of that was right, was it?” He was really nice and I’m glad I got to meet him.

Benny

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I dunno why but I just really loved Benny. To be honest it’s been so long since I saw his episodes that I can’t remember what happened that well. I know they all went to Purgatory but I can’t really remember much more than that. But Benny was sweet and I really liked him.

One of my favourite convention moments was when Ty Olson asked everyone to prank Mark Sheppard by only asking him Benny related questions at his panel and seeing Mark react to this was truly hilarious. I thought Ty was really nice when I met him and seemed like a decent guy.

Sam

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I mentioned that when I was an active fan my favourite character was Castiel but now it’s probably Sam. I shared a room with a girl at one of the Asylum conventions who loved Jared Padalecki and I feel like she brought out the Sam fangirl in me. I just love him and how he tries to do the right thing even if he doesn’t always get it right (like that time he accidentally started the apocalypse but like easy mistake to make). I just love everything about Sam AND I REALLY NEED TO CATCH UP WITH THE SERIES, I SWEAR TO GOD.

I was also lucky enough to meet Jared a couple of times, I had a solo photo op with him and then one with him, Jensen and Misha as a group. Jared’s really nice and his panels were some of my favourites, especially the story about how he stopped all the trains in Europe. I also loved the convention where Genevieve came and she went on stage with him, the way he looks at her you can just tell how in love they are and it’s so beautiful.

There we go, those are my top ten favourite Supernatural characters – feel free to let me know your favourite characters and leave me some motivation to catch up with the episodes I’ve missed!

Thoughts On This Year’s Love Island Contestants

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For the first time ever I gave into the social pressure and watched ‘Love Island’ – and ended up enjoying it a hell of a lot more than I thought I would. I was a bit behind when I started as the show had been running a few weeks so I don’t have opinions on every single contestant as some of them had left before I really got into the show. But I wanted to write my thoughts on the contestants because why not, right? So here goes nothing!

There were so many that I’ve only pulled out people I genuinely cared about whether I liked them or not!

Alex

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We’re gonna start with Alex because I hated him by the time the show ended. I’ll admit that he made me cringe for the first few weeks I watched it but in a kind of sweet way where I got over it because I still liked him and I was hoping that Alexandra would choose him over Kieran and Idris. But watching him with Alexandra honestly made me want to fight him. Fair play if he wasn’t attracted to Alexandra (even though she’s a literal 10/10 so what the hell?) but why play her like that? Don’t act like you’re interested then keep turning around and saying ‘actually you’re moving too fast’.

Also he banged on about them going too fast for ages when all Alexandra wanted to do was have a kiss and a cuddle, that doesn’t seem like much? And it was him that took her hand and shoved it down his pants, but that wasn’t moving too fast? And he always turned his behaviour back around on her, she’d say she was upset and he’d respond “I’m sorry that you feel that way” instead of taking responsibility and saying “I’m sorry I made you feel that way”. Absolutely pathetic and by the end I was practically begging for him to go. I can’t believe him and Alexandra were kept in whilst New Jack and New Laura were voted out, ridiculous. I definitely think the producers got involved to keep him in for as long as they did. Honestly couldn’t stand him by the end.

Alexandra

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I honestly loved Alexandra. I wasn’t too sure what to think when she first came in even though she was obviously very pretty but as the weeks went by I really began to like her. I’m annoyed that Alex screwed her over so bad and I really hope she didn’t take it personally, he’s just a dick. She was so lovely, funny and beautiful – definitely the kind of girl that you’d want as a best friend. I loved her and I wish she’d made it to the final with someone that actually deserved her.

Josh

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Okay I’ll be honest I didn’t really have many thoughts on Josh before he went into Casa Amor. I hadn’t really been a fan for long but I thought his relationship with Georgia was sweet. And then he met Kaz in Casa Amor and ditched Georgia and for a while I hated him. It was annoying how he’d pull Georgia for chats and then make faces behind her back as if he were getting lectured by his Mum when he had upset her so he should have at least listened to what she had to say.

But as I watched his relationship with Kaz I realised that actually she was definitely a better fit for him. They were always so unbothered by pretty much everything that was thrown at their relationship and I can’t stand the people that called them smug because they were just happy, there’s nothing wrong with that? I voted for him and Kaz to win and was disappointed when they came third because like, what is wrong with the nation?

Josh was also absolutely hilarious and when he accidentally pulled out his babies arm in the baby episode I was crying with laughter, especially at Wes’ reaction. He seemed pretty genuine and I think I believed in Josh and Kaz’s relationship the most.

Kaz

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I never particularly took issue with Kaz even when Josh left Georgia for her because like, that’s not her fault is it really? It’s called ‘Love’ Island and she fancied Josh so she went for it and it just so happened that he felt the same way. Right from the start I thought she was one of the prettiest girls in there and honestly I’m happy for her that she made it to the final. She was someone else who was just ace and always unbothered by whatever drama came her way. I thought she was fab, I don’t care what anybody else says!

Megan

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At first I didn’t really mind Megan – I started watching when Megan first took Wes. And I didn’t mind too much because I hadn’t been a fan of Laura and Wes, it felt like Laura was moaning about every little thing that he did so I wasn’t too disappointed when he said he was going to spend more time with Megan (and fair play to Laura for standing up for herself and saying she wasn’t going to be treated as an option). So yeah, I didn’t take issue with Megan. It was just as the weeks passed she started to get on my nerves.

The second that Wes was in Casa Amor she jumped ship and then when he walked back in alone she was suddenly whining about the difficult decision she had to make. It wasn’t difficult when her and Alex were faced with elimination and Wes chose to save her – she went to him without a backwards glance at Alex.

I think she tried to turn it around when instead of being voted as couples they were voted as individuals and she found that she was in the bottom three and Wes wasn’t. I think she was only saved then because nobody liked Grace as she didn’t get enough screen time and after that Wes carried both of them. She still tried to turn it around by talking more about her insecurities and asking Wes to be her boyfriend – I definitely think this whole bit was a kind of act when she realised people didn’t like her but fair play, she made it to fourth and although I think it was an act I don’t dislike her anymore. I’ve started following her and Wes on instagram and they seem quite happy so fair play!

Wes

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Okay, I loved Wes. I thought he was hilarious. I did think he was a bit foolish to pick Megan instead of Darylle but ultimately it paid off in the end I guess. Whenever couples were up for elimination I found it difficult because I really wanted Megan to go but I wanted Wes to stay because he seemed so funny and genuine. He’s the kind of guy you’d definitely want as your friend because he’d just know how to cheer you up when you’re down. I’m glad he got fourth place, he deserved it!

Dani

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Okay but how could you not love Dani? I loved everything about her from her personality, her looks to the way that she talked! She seemed like such a genuine girl and she’s definitely the kind I’d want as my best friend – she stood up for Georgia when the majority of the villa turned on her but also wasn’t afraid to tell her when she was being an idiot. I really liked her but I think she could get a bit paranoid sometimes, especially after the lie detector test. But ultimately she did say that the question Jack failed was the one that was most important to her so it must have hurt for that to come up as a lie.

It was a bit obvious that Jack and Dani were going to win weeks ago but I’m still really glad that they did! They deserved it, they’d been the longest standing couple and seemed like a good match for each other. Everybody loved Jani, let’s be real!

Jack

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I liked Jack but my Mom threw me off by saying that she didn’t think he was genuine. She thought that Dani definitely was but not Jack. I’ll be honest and say that I can see where she’s coming from, I just don’t want it to be true. I want Jani to be real and committed! I hope they do move in together and are very happy.

I hope Jack is being truthful because I think he’s lovely, it’s a shame about his dodgy past but other than that I thought he was a top bloke. He seemed like the kind of guy who was everyone’s best friend in the villa and seemed like a decent guy.

Georgia

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How could you forget the most ‘loyal’ girl in the villa? I liked Georgia from the get go and was really upset that Josh left her for Kaz. I thought she was brave to stand there and not cry in front of everybody and I really liked her. Her reaction and Josh dumping her really boosted her popularity – but unfortunately I feel like she tore it all down herself.

I don’t even really wanna talk about the Georgia and New Jack kiss because it went on and on for so long that I started to get bored – the kiss was filmed twice and I believe both of them were telling the truth. But after that pretty much every word out of Georgia’s mouth was ‘loyal’ and it was almost all she seemed to talk about. Was it edited to make it look like she said it more than she actually did? Maybe. But it got to a point where I was embarrassed to watch her because ultimately I still liked her but she was really shooting herself in the foot.

Because of all the loyalty talk her and Sam were given the option of staying in the villa as singles or leaving as a couple and I was disappointed when they both chose to stay ‘to prove everyone wrong’ because I feel like their point would’ve been better if they’d just gone there and then. I was disappointed to see Georgia leave but I think it was the right time before everyone started to truly dislike her. I wish her and Sam all the best for the future!

Sam

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When I first watched Sam was with Samira and I feel like really they didn’t have an awful lot in common so it wasn’t a surprise when the two of them coupled up with different people. I was disappointed that Sam chose to bring Jack’s ex into the villa but he was probably asked to so that things would be a bit more dramatic. I didn’t really think much of him to be honest until he coupled up with Georgia.

I really liked him at that point! I feel like he was brilliant for Georgia, he defended and comforted her right from the start and seemed to be really genuine. I also applaud Georgia for being honest and telling Sam she was a difficult person to be with and Sam just took it in his stride because he liked her and honestly, we all need a boy like that don’t we?

Adam

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I didn’t see Adam with Kendal or Rosie, I only became a fan when he was with Zara. I definitely need to go back and watch the episodes I missed! I’d heard a bit about his reputation through social media but you can’t deny the boy’s good-looking. It was disappointing to see Zara go because it looked like he genuinely did care about her – until he coupled up with Darylle and kind of ruined the whole thing. While he was in there I tried not to have an opinion of him – but in the end was really disappointed when he had to leave. He was a bit of an asshole let’s be real, but we were all disappointed to see him leave. It was sweet that he reunited with Zara – I’m not sure I’d have been able to forgive him personally.

Laura

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I didn’t like her at first. I liked Wes and it just felt like every time he did anything she was on his back about it. And then Wes called it off in favour of Megan and I actually started to really like her. I have a lot of respect for the fact that she ended it with Wes instead of waiting around to see who he chose. Like fair play! I think in the long-run actually that was better for her because I think if they had stuck together Wes’ head would’ve been turned at Casa Amor whereas she would’ve stayed loyal to him instead of going with New Jack.

It was a shame that New Jack broke up with her but to be fair she broke it off first – I can understand her paranoia though after what happened with Wes, and everybody getting involved in the kiss drama. It can’t have been fun to be dumped twice so I’m glad she found Paul – I think Paul was a good match for Laura even though I’m not sure I like him. He didn’t seem like a lot of fun, I’ll be honest.

Ellie

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I’m not really sure what I thought of Ellie to be honest. She’s pretty with a nice accent but I’m not sure. I think she was a decent girl to be friends with but she was a bit mean to Charlie, like when he told her she’d been rude to him and she kept trying to deny it. Also the way she got involved with the argument between Georgia and Laura, supposedly to stick up for Laura – it was a bit of an excuse to call Georgia an ugly c*nt I think. So I’m not really sure that I like her.

New Jack

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I wasn’t sure about New Jack at first but I was happy that Laura had gotten with somebody else. As the show went on though I started to really like him. He was absolutely hilarious and seeing him in the baby episode was so sweet. I’m still annoyed that him and New Laura got kicked out before Alex and Alexandra, that’s an absolute joke – they were a much better couple and I thought they were pretty genuine. I liked New Laura too even if I was upset for old Laura.

Stephanie

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Jesus wept, I couldn’t stand her. I don’t think I’ve ever seen somebody so overemotional in my entire life. She got proper mad at New Jack just for kissing New Laura and then started crying because Alexandra was upset even though she’d only known her a couple of days? I don’t blame Alexandra for walking away, I would hate some girl to start crying and hogging the attention if I was upset about something. And then the same night going “I want to sleep next to Alexandra, bless her!” Like calm down Love. When she was introduced with the other new islanders I voted her as a prettiest because she is genuinely very pretty but I just couldn’t get into her personality at all.

Samira

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I really liked Samira! She seemed like the kind of girl that had everyone’s back and just seemed really lovely. It sucked seeing her so upset after Frankie had left, it was annoying that the two of them got virtually no screen time together so we barely saw them. It was sad that she chose to go home but I think she made the right decision in the end and I hope she’s happy with Frankie!

There we have it, I’m not sure I have strong opinions on anyone else that went on the show.

Things That Make Me Happy

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I’ve noticed something strange recently. At the start of last year I had an awful first few months where I felt low and angry pretty much all the time but by August things melted away and I just enjoyed the second half of the year feeling pretty good. I was determined that the start of 2018 would be better so I got myself organised and did some things I’d been putting off that I actually really wanted to do – I got my first tattoo, went on my first solo trip abroad, started piano lessons and did my best to generally cram in as much fun stuff as possible.

Regardless of this though I still felt low and angry a lot of the time just like the beginning of last year. To be fair I feel like I tried harder this year but some things happened completely out of my control. My Grandad passed away in February. I’ve never lost anybody before and to reach 21 and not lose anybody is a pretty amazing but I don’t think I’m coping well with it now it’s happened. Then a couple of months later my colleague Malcolm also passed away. I had never attended a funeral in my life now suddenly this year I’ve attended two within the space of three months.

Other things were getting me down too but I don’t really want to dwell on them in this post. This post is about what makes me happy so that hopefully in my lower moments I can refer to this and do my best to cheer myself up. I’m quite dramatic so when I’m upset it’s quite easy for me to just wallow in my own self-pity but I don’t want to keep feeling sorry for myself. So here is my list of things that make me happy.

Travelling

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Okay obviously I can’t just get up and go abroad every time I feel sad because honestly I just couldn’t afford that lifestyle but usually at any given time I have a trip to look forward to. At the moment those trips include Paris, Japan and South Korea (and then Paris again). It doesn’t even have to be abroad, I love going to London which I do quite regularly.

I’ve been to some amazing places over the past few years including Benidorm, Paris, Amsterdam, Luxembourg, Lithuania, New York, Poland and Greece and I loved every single one of them. I travel so often that I figured out since starting my job last March I have visited six new countries within that time. I now have a reputation in the office of being a bit of a jet-setter and I’m not complaining, I love having that reputation.

In February I was telling a colleague I’d just got back from Poland to which they responded “So that’s you done with trips now for the year?” Done with trips? In February? I don’t think so. The moment I’m back I’m ready to book the next one and it’s usually never long before I’m off somewhere else again.

I went to see the nurse recently who told me “I do like going on holiday but I also hate it because of the depression I get coming back home” and I feel that, I do get quite down when I come back to work after an amazing trip but ultimately I could never stop travelling and don’t plan to. There are so many places I want to see!

Books

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I love reading books but unfortunately I don’t always have the motivation. I feel like I haven’t read as much this year as I normally do but I haven’t lost my love for it. I’m pretty much always in the middle of a book and I can leave it for a while then just get straight back into the story. My Mom told me she can’t do that, she has to read it all in one go or she loses the plot but I could leave it a while and just pick it back up whenever.

At the moment my favourite book is ‘Only Ever Yours’ by Louise O’Neill which isn’t the most cheery book ever but I still love pretty much everything about it and I’m looking forward to the movie version (I’m praying it doesn’t suck). Other favourites include the Harry Potter series, ‘The Lost and the Found’ by Cat Clarke and ‘Am I Normal Yet’ by Holly Bourne. I just love getting lost in a book for a few hours instead of staring at a computer screen like I so often do.

I definitely need to read more because there’s a lot in my ‘to be read’ pile that I haven’t look at even though they’ve been there for over a year. It’s on my bucket list to have a year where I read at least two new books a month so I might have to make that my 2019 goal. I’m actually so excited I might start collecting the books and preparing now!

Cinema

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I swear our local Cineworld has healing powers or something. One day I was up town and got really bad period cramps but the moment I got to Cineworld and was sat in the screen with my large chocolate milkshake they completely stopped. For ages I had an unlimited card so I spent an awful lot of time at that cinema and it never failed to cheer me up, even if the film I saw was dreadful. I got rid of the card but now have it back again because I go so often that I might as well.

This year I’m going to write a list of my favourite 2018 releases and films that I think will be quite high on the list are ‘The Greatest Showman’, ‘The Incredibles 2’ and ‘A Quiet Place’ because I just absolutely loved those movies. I don’t understand people who would rather watch the movie at home on DVD, there’s nothing better than watching a movie on the big screen.

My Mom

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The woman drives me up the wall but ultimately she is my best friend. Not a day has gone past that I haven’t spoken to my Mom, even when I’m away I text her regularly and we always know what the other is up to. We work in the same building so every Friday we meet up to have lunch and we always make time to hang out with each other.

It’s convenient having her in the same building because one day I came into work and my friend informed me that one of my colleagues had been bitching about me while I’d been off the week before. I was already sad about other things and that kind of tipped me over the edge so at lunch time I went into my Mom’s office and had a mope to her. She took me over town and treated us both to a slice of cake and had a chat about what had upset me.

Last month we started watching Love Island together, something I never thought I’d be interested in but it was cool that me and my Mom had something to watch and talk about together. I could tag her in the memes on Facebook and we could just have a laugh. It was nice, I enjoyed watching it with her and I just love spending time with her.

Theatre

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I’ve always loved going to the theatre but I didn’t really consider myself a ‘theatre fan’. I just assumed everyone liked going as much as me – it wasn’t until last year or the year before that I realised yeah I actually love the theatre an awful lot. One of my favourite weekends was my birthday present to myself last year – I spent the weekend in London and watched five shows – ‘Annie’, ‘Aladdin’, ‘Dream Girls’, ‘School of Rock’ and ‘The Comedy About A Bank Robbery’.

My favourite show so far is probably ‘Harry Potter and the Cursed Child’. Me and Becca went in March (as you can read here) and had such a good time that we’re going back next year but in the more expensive seats so we can hopefully have a better view. If I’m sat behind a giraffe now I may have to cry.

I don’t just go to London, I’ve seen some good shows at closer theatres in Wolverhampton and Birmingham. There is a local theatre a short walk away from my house but there’s not usually much on there to be honest although I do go and see the panto every Christmas Eve there.

But yeah, I’m usually quite happy when I’m sat in a theatre watching a show.

Going For a Run

Unfortunately I don’t always have the motivation for this which is annoying because usually I feel really good afterwards and I know that it’s good for me. We’re in the middle of a heat wave right now in England so I can barely walk anywhere let alone run but I love going for a run in the cooler months, especially when it’s dark and no one can see me. I thought about signing up for the gym because that might motivate me to exercise more as generally exercise does make me happy but gym memberships are quite expensive so I decided not to because, y’know, running’s free. Now I’ve written it down I can come back to this and hopefully force myself to exercise!

My Friends

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I already wrote a long post about what I love about my best friends but like… I do love my friends. An awful lot. Even when we argue I still love them. We’ve made some amazing memories together and I know we’ll continue to, probably for the rest of our lives. I can’t see us breaking friends any time soon and I can’t wait to see where we all end up.

This year we’re celebrating ten years since we all met each other. The idea was to get a joint tattoo but we’re not sure that’s happening anymore. Regardless I’m glad we’ve known each other for ten years and I can’t wait to celebrate twenty years in 2028.

Hanging out with three of them makes me insanely happy. I’m in the middle of writing a post of my favourite memories with them to celebrate our ten years of friendship but even the small times where we just sit in someone’s house and talk mean an awful lot to me. Even just our Facebook group chat can mean a lot to me. Hearing about Hirst going to ASDA to buy some garden gnomes at 11PM the other night really made my night. So yeah, chilling with my friends makes me super happy and I need to make more of an effort to meet up with them regularly – difficult because we’re adults and have our own responsibilities and schedules but we’ve managed so far.

K-Pop

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Lame but music does make me happy, especially K-Pop. Recently me and Jess went to a K-Pop Night in Birmingham which was amazing until around the 3AM mark when I was suddenly exhausted. But it was cool to be able to dance to songs I knew as opposed to when we went clubbing the week before and I barely knew any of the songs. It was a good night though and I’m looking forward to the next one when hopefully Becca can join us.

I also love going to K-Pop concerts – so far I’ve seen BTS, FT Island, f(x), IOI, SHINee, Block B, 24K, EXID, Snuper, Highlight, KNK and Dreamcatcher. There are plenty of other groups/artists I would absolutely love to see including but not limited to G-Friend, Red Velvet, TWICE, Hyuna, CLC and so many more.

Another thing I love about K-Pop is being able to learn the dances. Even though I’m sure I look like an absolute moron doing them it still makes me happy to give it a go. I’d love to rent out a dance studio for the day and just learn the dances to my favourite songs but as I can’t afford that I will have to make do with my living room whenever my parents are away.

Going out for Meals

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Okay but who doesn’t love going out for a meal? Having food cooked for you and then not having to worry about the washing up afterwards is lush. I never really eat anywhere fancy because I’m a fan of just simple food so my favourite place to eat is Wetherspoons. If I’m feeling more adventurous than I do love going to TGI Friday’s but the food there is quite a bit more expensive. It doesn’t matter where I am though to be honest I just love going for a nice meal out whether that’s by myself or with friends/family.

My only issue with this list is that a lot of the stuff costs money and I need to find more things that are free that make me feel happy. Feel free to comment with things that make you happy, I might be able to take inspiration!

Pros and Cons of Travelling Solo

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I’ve travelled solo a few times, mostly around the UK but I have been abroad on my own too. I do love going by myself but equally there are things I miss about going within a group. So I figured I’d write a list of the pros and cons I personally found when travelling alone. Here we go!

Pro: Setting your own budget

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Me and my friends all earn different amounts of money and we all have our own commitments to pay for like rent, petrol, car insurance, vet bills, transport and a ton of other stuff so we can often have different expectations for budget. This can cause stress when I know I’m getting a bad payday that month and my friends are telling me I’ll need £100 for a hotel, £300 for spending money and at least £50 for transport. The benefit of travelling solo is that you can set your own budget!

This doesn’t necessarily mean going for the cheapest options which I did when booking my first solo trip abroad to Poland. For my solo birthday trip to London I wanted to stay in a decent hotel so I spent more than I usually ever would on a hotel room and travelled first class on the train, something my friends wouldn’t necessarily have wanted to do or been able to afford to do. I also saw five west end shows that weekend, another factor that my friends might not have been able to afford.

Setting your own budget makes the trip way less stressful as you can sort the budget out yourself without having to worry whether your friends can afford it or whether you can afford it!

Con: No candid photos

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I’m pretty sure this began because Hirst took a photo of me, Becca and Jess looking out across Telford that we weren’t aware of. We all loved the photo so since then we always try to get cute candid photos of each other whenever we’re on a trip.

But when travelling solo there’s no one to capture those candid moments for you and the only photos you can take are selfies or if you’re truly feeling brave you can ask someone to take a posed photo of yourself. And these are amazing photos, don’t get me wrong, but there’s something I love about the effort my friends go to so that we all get cute unposed photos. Even though a lot of the time it’s just the back of our heads I still love them so much because usually you can tell we were happy in those moments or in some occasions that we were irritated which can be funny to look back on.

Pro: Planning your own itinerary

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I mentioned earlier about seeing five west end shows across the weekend – for some people this would’ve been too much and they’d have no interest in that whereas it was my idea of a perfect weekend!

When travelling with friends you often have to make compromises which should work both ways, you should see stuff they’re interested in that you don’t care about and they should visit things you care about that they don’t. However, sometimes this can be an advantage because you can enjoy things you wouldn’t have visited had your friends not suggested it. For example in Amsterdam Hirst insisted we visit the ice bar which I was a bit salty about because I didn’t want to but it was actually one of my highlights from the trip.

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Going by yourself though means you can focus on the things you’re definitely interested in seeing and you don’t have to run it past anyone else. You can also take as long as you want or as little as you want. If you visit a particularly boring museum you can make the executive decision to just leave instead of asking your friends politely if they want to go. If you have time to kill before the next item on your list you can choose where you want to kill that time.

Con: If you’re stuck there’s only you

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There have been a few times I’ve been with my friends on a trip and we’ve gone into a complete panic because we thought we’d messed something up or we’re lost or whatever else that sends us into a bit of a panic. At least when we’re together we can all try and sort the problem out together, or in some circumstances you can just let yourself get stressed until your friend comes up with a solution. When you travel alone though there’s only you to sort yourself out.

I was coming home from London one evening and as I sat on the train they announced they’d cancelled it. I had maybe £20 in my bank account and Telford is three hours away. No one was going to come and collect me so I needed to sort the problem out myself. Very luckily anyone travelling towards Birmingham could get the train from Marylebone with their ticket – I hadn’t heard this announcement but a man had heard me stressing to my Mom on the phone and very kindly told me where to go.

This must be a lot worse when travelling abroad. Like if my plane got cancelled and I was by myself with little to no money I’m not sure what I’d do. I did have a bit of a panic where I thought I wasn’t going to catch a bus in time and potentially miss my flight but luckily I got to the airport in plenty of time and I was fine.

Travelling solo means having to sort out your problems alone which isn’t necessarily always a bad thing because it gives you a bit of independence and proves that you can do pretty much anything if you put your mind to it. But it can be quite scary not to have someone to lean on and help you sort out the problem.

Pro: No arguments!

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Me and my friends go on a lot of sightseeing holidays and although I love the lot of them to pieces it’s safe to say that after a day of walking around my legs hurt, I’m tired and usually hungry, and often feeling a bit grumpy. So if one of my friends starts getting on my nerves I will snap at them. And they will snap at me. And that’s fine because we all know we’re just tired and grumpy but these ‘snaps’ could lead into more serious arguments.

Luckily we’re all used to each other now so we kind of know when to leave each other alone but there have been times we’ve gotten into proper arguments and spent a while sulking before eventually making it up with each other. The benefit of travelling solo is that even if you’re tired, grumpy and hungry there’s no one to snap at so you can just spend time recharging and you’ll feel better again with no harm done.

Con: Less confident days

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I have days where I either feel quite confident and can talk to anyone, or I’ll have a day where I have no confidence at all and I get terrified at the thought of just ordering dinner. When travelling with my friends if I’m having a less confident day I can rely on them for a while until I feel okay again and vice versa. But when travelling solo there’s only me and I have to suck it up and get on with it.

Usually in England I kind of get over myself and get on with it but in Poland I did struggle because I found my anxiety was a lot worse because I worried no one would be able to understand me. Because of this I found I didn’t eat as much as I should’ve because I was worried about attempting to order food. It helps having my friends around because I know they’re in the same awkward boat as me but alone it’s completely different.

Pro: Continuing with your routine

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It’s safe to say that me and my friends have fairly different routines. For example they get up super early to do their make-up whereas I would prefer to sleep in until the last available second. Becca pretty much never eats whereas me and Jess will eat breakfast and then an hour later be hungry for something else. And that’s fine, it’s not the end of the world having to plan your schedule around other people but let’s face it, it can be nice to just continue with your own routine.

Even if it’s something as simple as being able to shower as soon as you get back to your hotel room. In Greece it was so hot we’d all feel a bit gross by the time we got back to the hotel but since there were four of us we had to take it in turns to have the shower. Since I take the longest I generally go in last. Not when I travel solo though, I can hop in the shower without worrying that I’m being selfish for using it for too long.

Con: Everyone assumes you’re going to die

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When I booked my first trip abroad I went to my Dad’s house with two pieces of news. I was getting a tattoo and also I was going to Poland by myself. He freaked out so badly about Poland that I was terrified to tell him about my tattoo – when I eventually did he didn’t even care. It was bizarre.

Even those who had reacted calmly to my news were not chill while I was away. Apparently Sue, who sits next to me at work, asked several times if I was okay whilst I was away in Poland and Shirley had to yell “It’s okay, she’s put pictures on Facebook so she’s not dead!” I was literally not put in any danger throughout the entire trip yet you would’ve thought I was being held at gun point each night. However the moment you’re with a friend everyone assumes that everything is absolutely fine.

So there we have it, my cons and pros of travelling solo. Feel free to comment any pros or cons you’ve found!