Sunday, 20 May 2012

21. Celebrate a birthday abroad

Well ladies and gentlemen, as the dawn of my 26th birthday looms I am busy writing a 'to pack' list for my and Laura Fenwick's excursion to eastern Europe.

I've heard amazing things about this city (a castle, sex museum and beer?! what more could a girl ask for) and have been wanting to visit for the past few years so no better time than the present. All I need to do now is survive three days in Sunderland, four Ancient Greek & Olympic poster workshops, three minibeast workshops and an evening at Scouts (a task easier said than done!)

Watch this space for a blow by blow account of 24th May 2012, it's going to be epic. . .

Well what can I say? After having a few days to reflect on my break in Prague I can hand on heart say that it is one of the most beautiful cities I’ve ever had the pleasure of visiting.  I think the glorious sunshine could enhance the appearance of any city but the Czech people obviously take great pride in preserving the cities architecture and heritage. I would recommend to everyone reading this that if you haven’t been to Prague then get yourselves on low cost holidays and get booking a trip.

Walking into the Old Town Square just took my breath away. It’s an image that you’ve seen time and time again in the media but actually being there, seeing it for real just adds another dimension to it. The astronomical clock is as awesome as I thought it would be - The oldest astronomical clock still functioning in the world! The little skeleton (a representation of Death) that rings the bell on the hour every hour to allow ‘The Walk of The Apostles’

We spent an afternoon looking around the Josefov (The Jewish Quarter) including the Old Jewish Cemetery that is thought to contain over 100,000 graves which was extremely humbling. The exhibition of pictures drawn by children held within one of the Nazi concentration camps reemphasises how much the Czech people, especially the Jews suffered under the Nazi rule and occupation of the country.

The Vltava River splits the city in two and offers stunning views of the castle on the North West side and the Charles bridge, we took a stroll along before having beer and some really good Czech food (you may also be shocked to learn that I made Laura Fenwick drink my free shot because now that I’m the wrong side of 25 I’ve turned over a new leaf not to partake in the drinking of shots!)

I haven’t even mentioned the Castle, the Charles Bridge, the Cathedral, the Loreta, Petrin Hill, Salvador Dali’s exhibition, the Sex Museum, multiple beer & ice cream pit stops, the arduous climb up to the top of the lookout tower, Wenceslas Square or the most incredible buffet breakfasts (and I mean the ones that would make Laura Wilson quiver at the knees – sorry I didn’t manage to get a photo taken) I’ll fill you in over a pint if you want any further details of my escapades in Prague because there is too much to choose from to go into here.

All in all it is going to have to be something pretty special next year to beat turning 26. Thanks for reading and check out my Facebook page to see more photos of the trip.

Monday, 7 May 2012

1. Get a tattoo

I wouldn't describe myself as an impulsive person but getting a tattoo was not on my to do list this weekend. 

Getting a tattoo is one of the biggest decisions in life that you can make. Its a permanent accessory. Not many things in life are permanent but I've wanted one since I was seventeen. Its taken me eight years to think about where I wanted one (not anywhere that will get too wrinkly or stretch when official old age kicks in) and what design - something with personal meaning to me and a design will be timeless. I choose a heart for a lot of different reasons. Its a universally recognised symbol of love, which is something that we all need. According to some historians, the heart-shaped symbol has been here since the existence of man. Its a symmetrical shape, I love maths and it's sooo cute.

I can't wait to whip my wrist out when I'm an old woman and show my grandchildren. 

There was only ever going to be one person that I would get my first tattoo with - Laura Wilson - she rocked up at 10 pm on Friday, we discussed life, love and lists over cheese and Hoegaarden and then 15 hours later I find myself in the tattooists chair. We rocked up at Tattoo Station, (I think the tattoo man didn't think I would go through with it. He told us to come back in half an hour after a coffee to make sure we were serious.) I must admit there was one point where I thought I was going to throw up and wouldn't be able to go through with it but I got over it, I just thought fuck it, if Britney can do it then so can I. There was also no way I was going to ask the tattoo man for my money back.

A lot of people have asked me whether it was painful. Now, you've got to take into account that someone is repeatedly sticking a needle into your skin so its not going to be one of the most comfortable life experiences but I wouldn't say it hurt really bad. I can understand why some people say getting tattoos are addictive.  It may have eased the pain because the tattooist was fit - Mr hot tattooist guy if your reading this then get in touch and you can take me out for a pint.

Well I think the end result is pretty awesome.