Monday, 10 March 2014

five things i've learnt this week (or...recently)

1. My Oyster card will always need topping up.

I swear to god the bloody thing doesn't cap. One of the bad things about being able to walk to work every day means that I can't particularly justify a travelcard, which means I am just going to remain one of the hordes at the ticket machines topping up. I swear I must have topped up a tenner every day that I've been in London thus far, what is going on? 

2. I can actually get of bed at 4am.

Admittedly its a bit of a struggle, but I thought I'd drag myself to work kicking and screaming. Actually, getting up at 4am isn't so bad. I probably turn up to work with eyeliner on my lips and my dress tucked into my knickers but we can ignore that....

3. Having a job you enjoy is so different to having one you don't.

I don't really get chance for a lunch break at work and this is the first job that I've ever had where it hasn't mattered. I don't stare at the clock praying that home time is coming, and it probably has something to do with the whole not minding getting up at 4am thing. Having a job you dislike is miserable, it makes you cry everyday and it pretty much ruins everyday too. Its early day but I enjoy this new job and things are very different. 

4. Living with housemates doesn't get easier even when you're not a student.

They're still annoying and they still do the most ridiculous of things. This evening my housemate stole my garlic bread but he did it in the most blatent of fashions. I.e, he took it out the fridge, cooked it and then ate it all in front of me - leaving me to wonder how I managed to get to the grand old age of 23 and I'm still too much of a wuss to have just said something like "Oi, mate, why are you eating my garlic bread?" and also leaving me to wonder how he got into his twenties and still thinks that eating someone elses garlic bread is okay. Housemate drama always sounds so petty but its so real when you live it.

5. Organising holidays is an arse ache.

I'm going away with five boys (do you perhaps see where this is going...?) and I somehow ended up being the one to book the flights. I sat there for three hours on Saturday morning trawling through websites and trying to find the cheapest deals. We've now ended up flying out of one airport and flying in to another. Not everyone wanted cabin baggage and maths still isn't my forte. I'm still not overly sure everyone has paid me, and I'm still waiting on some passport information. If we fly off to Amsterdam without a hitch then it will have been nothing short of a miracle.

Have you learnt anything special this week?

Friday, 7 March 2014

the frying dutchman london.

A while ago, me and my friend Tom set out on a search for Dutch food in London, and found it in Shoreditch at a stall called The Frying Dutchmen. Dutch food isn't very well known across the world, but it's definitely good stuff, and should be a lot more famous than it is. The Frying Dutchmen sell most of the snack foods that Holland is famous for - from the krokets I used to get when I'd had a few too many Heinekens, to the kaassoufles my vegetarian friend would cook for me on "fry nights", to the chips with peanut sauce I'd share with a guy at 4am on his sofa - with him telling me that I should be eating them the correct way (with peanut sauce and mayonnaise - one step too far for me). 

Even without those memories, I have to recommend this place. You can get great food in Shoreditch on a Sunday, but I bet most people there haven't tried Dutch food, and it's always a good idea to try something new! The best thing about this stall is that it couldn't be more Dutch if it tried - it's actually a bicycle, there's a massive Netherlands flag, a Delft blue patterned table and even the chips come wrapped in Dutch newspaper. 

The service seems different from the other busier stalls, even having a table where you're encouraged to eat is a rarity compared to the other stalls. The owners are always willing to have a chat, especially if you have any stories about being in Holland, the servings are cheap and huge (the stall next door sells sandwiches for £6, come on now...). Tom and I left full and moved on to a bar, where we ordered a pint of Heineken and a pint of Amstel and suddenly realised we might be taking the Dutch thing a bit far...

You can find them on Brick Lane every Sunday, but I'd get there relatively early as they do sell out. Go there, get full and try something new.

Wednesday, 5 March 2014

wednesday wishlist: what the hell is smart casual.

wednesday wishlist work


I started my first big girls proper job this week, and I've been thrown by the whole smart casual dress code thing. Seriously though, what is smart casual? Is it smart? Is it casual? They are not connecting things. It's like you don't get apples and oranges and throw them in a bowl and call it a appnge. Smart and casual are opposite things. They can't get mixed. Anyway, that's my rant over. I don't get it, I never will, and it's bloody stupid. But also, HELP. WHAT DO I WEAR? If I'm really honest, I've been a little bit thrown by having to put my own outfits together. I won't lie, when I applied to go to sixth form, a little part of me applied to go to that particular one because it had a school uniform. I loved the fact that someone told me what to wear everyday and I didn't have to think about it. It was fine, I could do it two days of the week for the weekend, when I had more time. Then I became a student and even though I had to dress myself each week, I could do that because to be honest, if I looked like a bit of a scruff (which was often) I could always just blame it on a hangover. That same tactic cannot be used in a job. 

So this week I've been perusing the net in the interest of finding things that are smart casual (!) and if you have any ideas, please share it with me...

Monday, 3 March 2014

52 lists: my best qualities.

I've been trying to write a blogpot on this subject for a while, so it's probably a good thing that this has come along. I don't think we look at ourselves in a very good light most of the time, and it's important to think of something we're good at occasionally. This is something I need to remind myself of more often - I'm an incredibly self-deprecating kinda person. 

  1. My Dad says I'm the kind of person who just gets on with things. It's not something I see much of myself in, but it's nice to know that that is something someone thinks of me. He reckons that when I'm faced with a task I find boring or miserable, I will crack on with it and get it done, even if I moan and whine along the way.
  2. I'm really good at getting train seats, and I pride myself on doing it without being rude and pushing everyone. I think I've been travelling back and forth between London so often recently that I've honed my skill. Even when the train is busy, I will be on a front facing window seat at a table, and there is no other reason for this other than my sheer determination. Is that even a quality...?
  3. I'm quite to the point and I rarely ever play games with people. A lot of the time, what you see is what you get with me. 
  4. Even though I'm shy, I would never intentionally exclude anyone. I try and make sure that everyone is included in a conversation. 
  5. I'll admit to being judgemental at first glance, but I'm open minded and would never act upon those judgements - unless they're confirmed.
  6. I'm incredibly honest, whether it's about my feelings or whether it's on my own shortcomings.
  7. I'm aware of my shortcomings and never pretend to be something I'm not - and will admit if I'm wrong.
  8. If I know I need to apologise for something, I will do just that, even if it's humiliating.
It's really not easy to think of good things about yourself! What are your good qualities?

52 lists is a series of posts by Ema at Made in Hunters. Let me know if you're joining in, and you can see my other posts here.

Sunday, 2 March 2014

no pop february.


WHAT is it about fizzy drinks that I just can't stay away from? Whereas dry January was a complete success, no pop February has been the opposite. It honestly could not have been more of a failure. I think I was quaffing pop at midnight on the 1st and it hasn't stopped there. Admittedly, I have cut down from my six cans of coke a day habit from last year, but there is still a bit of a problem going on here. I am a bit disappointed in myself for not carrying through. I was going to do no chocolate March*, and I still am, but I'm also going to try and add no pop to that as well. If people can do it for lent, then I should be able to do it. Any tips are welcome. I have a feeling I'll need them.

*I am not including my birthday in this, a birthday without a Malibu and coke or chocolate cake is too miserable to be a birthday.