Where I am the best version of me.

Is there a place where you feel like a different person, or perhaps where you feel like a superior or ultimate version of yourself? Somewhere that brings out your greatest aspects, diminishes you faults, somewhere where you excel. Mine is my old university town. I have yet to find anywhere that can make me feel safe and peaceful; it is where I formed some of great ideas about literature, art, friends and life. Aberystwyth in Wales lives in its own dazzling bubble, with little crime, vice or evil one can quite happy forget there is a big bad world beyond it boarders. It was a place where I could just be, just live and be happy.

I went through a lot of pain there but I never felt isolated or lonely. It wasn’t just the incredible people I met there, the place itself stood by my side, it laughed with me, stood close by me when I cried in the dark and stopped the world to comfort me. I miss it, I miss the people I love so much I cling to them as though I’m afraid they are a wonderful dream that will slip through my fingers. I miss the person I was there, the better, smarter, prettier and happier person. I miss the conversations about politics, books, comics, films, music, love, passion and life. I wondered if it was just me who had a place like this? Or does everyone have a place where they are the person they could be?   

Tumbling Pretties

It’s good to get lost once in a while

No one likes to get lost, that’s why we have maps, sat navs and 5 year plans. Getting lost is unnerving and frightening; it puts us face to face with the unknown, the unpredictable and unsettles us. Everyone likes to be in control and it is comfortable to always know who and where you are. The thing about getting utterly lost however is that we can learn valuable lessons and occasionally it does us some good. Getting lost can be a wonderful experience.

There are some places where it is good to get lost, the best example of this is Venice. The only way to truly experience this labyrinth is to throw your map into the Grand Canel and go for a wander. Get lost among the ancient street and find all the riches that are hidden in this city. I think to truly know the rhythm of a city you have to get lost in it. Paris will always be a mystery until you found that one cafe tucked away down a forgotten street that you and you alone adore. One of the things that is on that list of things in my head I have to do is get lost in New York just for a little bit and watch the city rush by in all its vivid colour.

There are the times you get lost by accident, lost in listening to music that sings to your heart and in art that speaks to your soul. Everyone at some point has stared into space and meander through thoughts, lost, roaming over hundreds of ideas as the world has just slipped away. You can get lost in your own excitement and interest reminding you what it is like to be truly passionate about something. Then there are moments, moments when the world stops, you become lost in an instant that lasts an age, it fills you up completely and removes you from time and space, and you vanish from the earth.

Getting lost is about gaining a new perspective, strolling off the beaten track and finding your own individual way in the world, to look through your own fresh eyes and not through the used eyes of hundreds of people before you. Getting lost means you can find something new, something unique, it’s how you find that beach with no one on it, that shop with the amazing nik naks, that place with the chef who creates the best food and that view that you don’t need a photo of because it shines brilliantly in your mind.

The really good thing about getting lost is not just losing yourself in something because of your zeal, but just losing yourself completely no matter how terrifying or daunting that is, because losing yourself means you can find yourself. How are you meant to know who you really are until you lose everything you think you are? Sometimes you simply, for the briefest of occasions, have to lose yourself and for a scary time not know who you are, to then find that fantastic thing that is the authentic you.

Maps are great and plans are excellent, the problem is they don’t help us when there is an obstacle in our way. They don’t teach us not to panic when we are lost or come up against the unexpected, that sometimes you have to embrace the unknown, navigate the unpredictable, to throw away agony and just see what is around the corner. Plans and maps don’t change but people do and it is people who have to alter the maps and the plans. If you don’t get lost once in a while how will you ever know where you really want to go?    All things lost on my Tumbling Pretties

Driving away.

Driving away on a new adventure

Driving away on a new adventure

Have you ever had the urge to climb in your car and drive?? That’s all, drive and keep driving on and on. I get it all the time; I want to see how far I can get on a tank of petrol. I wonder where I’ll end up, what far off place I could reach, what will be there and if I’ll stay. It’s not even to run away or get away from my current life, I’m just curious to see what else there is, what else is beyond my current world. On a sunny day when I fill up my car or sit in traffic every fibre within threatens to tear apart my skin as it vibrates with the desire to turn up the radio, wind down the window and leave nothing but dust as I race on to something at the edge of some unknown map.

I get itchy feet, I always have. Even when I was young I would complain of being bored but not knowing what I was bored of. It would feel like I was drowning, the impulse weighing down on me and feel terrible because it wasn’t that I was ungrateful of the life I had I just wanted to see what else there could be. I still haven’t squared that guilt. I have to be busy and doing something new just so the old doesn’t lose its shine. There was always a new school, a new place to inhabit and new people to gather. Life is interesting chasing the next adventure. My world is wonderful but sometimes I want to see what is over there and bring a bit back, just a little bit.

I wanna run, I wanna skip infinitely on, searching for something unique, I wanna feel new rough grass, smell scrumptious recipes I’ve never tried, be caressed by a fresh breeze and taste different air. I wanna hear a strange city boogie to its individual tune and the country waltz to a beat of its own and I wanna dance with them. I used to sit on trains with buoyant friends and jump off at a stop, any stop and see where we were, if we didn’t like the place we jumped back on the train to a new stop. I will never drive the same route twice; I’ll see what a different road has to offer, what treasure it has for me to find. There is always something new to see, people to meet, things to do.

The older I get the greater the urge to drive; it’s like fear, a fear that if I don’t do it now I never will and miss something, something incredible just beyond the edge of my world. Maybe I should listen to the nagging because I never do just drive away, I can always think of one good reason not to drop everything, frustratingly there is always a reason to stay. I don’t even think I would stay on the edge of the map when I’m done driving, I love the people in my life too much and without them it wouldn’t be the thrilling experience it could be. But that is the beauty of driving away, I could always fill up the tank and drive back.

Colourful Colorado

Waterfall in Steamboat Springs

Steamboat Springs

I’ve been feeling homesick for Colorado; this is probably because Britain has been having wonderful sunshine while still being cold and my current engagement in conversations with friends I left in the colourful state. I often long to be back in Colorado, it was the first time my heart felt truly at home away from my family and friends, and I’m completely in love with the state. I miss the vast geography, the irregular weather, the people and the place. I went to Colorado, to Colorado College on an exchange program to study while in my second year of university and it has been to date the greatest experience of my life. I miss the view that I have never been able to forget, it is the thing that can never be taken away from me.

I spent way to much time hanging out of windows getting photos

The heritage in Colorado was incredible; I found it remarkable that a place that seems so young can have such a depth of history. Everywhere I went in Colorado I seemed to adore, I loved Denver it was just so attractive, simply blissful to waste a day there. Steamboat Springs was so picturesque, relaxed and was just surrounded by land and ranches. I asked a police officer (cop?) what a buck was in Steamboat Springs because he told me and my friends to watch out for them when we were driving, I had no idea what one was and he told me eventually after a lot of laughter. Manitou Springs I maintain has the best chocolate and sweet shops I have ever found and was quant, yet diverse. In Colorado Springs I found that despite how big it was it felt like the small town I imagined America was full of, it was intimate and wonderful. It was where I watched my first hockey match, where I walked all alone in a strange city 4625 miles from anyone I knew and figured out what a block was. I made some amazing friends and met some fabulously interesting people that have stayed with me years later.

Pikes Peak

My favourite view of Pikes Peak

I miss the Garden of the Gods and feeling small in the majesty of nature. I miss how big it all was, I miss the vast sky that seems so small from my side of the pond. I remember arriving in the middle of the night dark and cold and went to sleep isolated in a strange room with no idea where I was and what to expect. I woke to an awe inspiring view of Pikes Peak and spent the next 6 months reassured by its dominance in the skyline and it gave me a height to strive for.

My mind doesn’t just wander there when I’m awake but takes me there in my dreams. I miss the space, the room to breathe that I have never found anywhere else and the beauty that just lives in you. I did a lot of growing there; I learnt how strong I could be and what I wanted form life. I learnt I could travel thousands of miles alone and make a whole new life, make friends and work achieving the standards I always had and be so happy.  I’d make memories and stories that would make my heart ache and create a smile. I lost my heart to Colorado completely.  Being posting my favourite images of Colorado here all week.

LIE: Mums don’t get ill.

   I have decided one thing, just one. I have decided that if I am ever foolish enough to bring life into this world I want to be able to sit in a giant bed with them it my child and drink Lemsip because my child and I are ill. This is what I have been doing with my own mum for the last few days. I have been ill for about a week, it is that horrific I feel like hell and don’t want to move, yet sadly I am still well enough to move so will, kind of ill. My mum has contracted whatever this virus masquerading as a cold is (it’s worse than a cold it makes you ache and nauseous) I had, but have yet to get over fully. Mum has it worse and it is Fanny Adams heres, fault.

    My mum is doing a rather good impression of a dying swan and I’m sure I’d be more sympathetic if I didn’t feel like doing the same impression myself. I’m still struggling in to work which is a mistake because two of my co workers are at war and despite claiming to be Switzerland they are both desperately still trying to get me onside and increasing my head ache. Dad who debatable might be a help is in Berlin, at one point I knew why, but now it has been lost in the foggy mist of my mucus filled head. My brother would help me look after mum but he is ….well a man and if he catches it…. I’m not dealing with man flu, no way, no how. And if that wasn’t bad enough our boiler decided to conk out this morning and cold showers do not help with moaning and aching bodies.

I want my mum back so she can take care of me and so I can moan, it’s no fun being ill if no one is going to look after you. I thought mums were meant to be invincible, superhero s even, surely that’s the gig right? They are not meant to snivelling, whining children themselves. And can I ask at what point do you get the special mummy handbook that tells you how to make people feel better? Is it possible to get it without actually having to have children? I give up, I’m going to take an unhealthy amount of shop bought drugs and snuggle down with my mum and sleep for about 4 hours before my drug induced slumber wears off.