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10 things I hate about you.

SJW is back from across the pond! People keep asking me how it was and I literally can’t sum it up any better than ‘It was amazing!’ which feels like a bit of an understatement. It was genuinely the best month of my life.

I planned on blogging about each place as I went around but… that went out of the window. I mean I did have a lot on my mind… like deciding what type of food I wanted for my next meal. And where the nearest Urban Outfitters was.

So that I don’t make you all too jealous (ha that sounds so up myself), I’ve decided to blog about the things I hated the most about America. This actually came out of a conversation I had with the family we stayed with in Philadelphia (yep, still find it hard to spell that), when during dinner we were faced with the question ‘so everybody asks what you loved the most, but I want to know the one thing you hate the most about America?’. So here goes, apparently my response was pretty funny:

1. Automatic Flushes on Toilets.
I have so much hatred for them! And yes I brought this up at a dinner table haha. But seriously, do they ever flush when you want them to!? You walk in; they flush. You sit down; they flush. You stand up; they don’t frigging flush. And there you are with a wet bum, flailing around like an idiot trying to get the stupid thing to flush. Just give me a button to press at least!

2. Accent Issues
I grew to love the hilarious blank stares I got when I was speaking and the person had no idea what I was talking about. It was actually really interesting to find out what words just don’t translate. Too much crisp / chips / fries confusion.

3. I ❤ America
All jokes about American deriving from English and how therefore we’re the best aside, is there really any need for so many American flags hanging about? I haven’t forgotten what country I’m in…

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4. The amount of tramps in San Francisco.
On a really boring political note, the wealth divide in America is actually quite shocking. Like yo, what is up with that Barack? However, whilst in San Fran I was happily walking along the street when a tramp started following me, shouting at me asking if I had any tissue. Maybe hayfever was really hitting him bad, but he was going pretty psycho about the tissue. I didn’t have any tissue and I was scared of his reaction. But then he harassed someone else for tissue and my Kleenex were safe. I also witnessed a man getting arrested in Bloomingdales for shoplifting (OOO draaaaamaaa).

5. The lack of vegetables.
I just wanted a good roast dinner.

Okay I’m done with the hating. Here’s a few things I loved:

1. 7-11
I need one of these in the UK. It’s basically a corner shop full of snacks. Okay, the hot dogs constantly cooking by the till slightly gross me out (A cheeseburger hot dog, seriously America!?). However, I am craving a slurpee; these incred slush puppy like drinks but in actual good flavours. Like Fanta Fruit Twist and Coke. I’m also a fan of the 99 cent Big Gulp soda machine. (They have good names, right?).

2. Food Food Food
Burgers. Pizza. Burritos. Chicken. Milkshakes. I think I still dream about some of the meals I had. My food highlight was San Francisco and this place called Limon, who served whole rotisserie chickens, with two sides and three dips for $22. It was some of the best chicken I’ve ever tasted. If you’re in San Francisco, go there.

3. Evening dips in the ocean.
One of my favourite memories of the trip is from Venice Beach. It was our last evening; I went for a stroll whilst the sun set, AJP went for a run. When we met up, the sea felt warm enough to actually get in it. Being so yolo and all, both fully clothed we ran in. I cannot explain how incredible it was. It’s moments like that which make travelling so worth it you know.

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4. San Diego Zoo
There was a cable car across the top of the entire zoo. We saw a Giant Panda wake up, do a massive poo and go straight back to sleep. We saw two turtles mating. Need I say more?

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5. I never wanted the adventure to end.
In case I didn’t say it enough, I loved exploring and I loved doing it with the person I’ve missed most over the past year. It made me realise how well we know each other and how that really hasn’t changed even though we’ve been apart; and for that I couldn’t be any more grateful. I’m only being nice because I know he won’t actually bother to read my post this far. There’s still so many places I want to visit; I’m so jealous of everyone only just jetting off on their own adventures!

For me though, it’s on to the ‘Find-a-Job Adventure’…

SJW x

 

 

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The Big Bad City

Oh hai there! SJW has gone stateside for a month of travelling, so for the next few weeks I’ll be posting about my adventures… Please try to restrain your jealousy.

Since I last posted my life has been a little bit hectic (hence why I haven’t posted), between interning, dissertation, travelling and (trying) to get prepared for Americaaaa. For a little round up, I went home home to Devon for a while, spent a week in Edinburgh with my Mum and Aunt, interned, went to my Cousin’s wedding, celebrated my friend’s 21st aaaand FINALLY FINISHED UNI!! The last stretch of dissertation felt so looong, with many days being spent in my pjs and surgically attached to my laptop. I have a ‘How to Survive Dissertation’ type post drafted out, which I’ll post once I’m back home. A week later I think it’s finally sunk in that it’s all done and I couldn’t be happier that the stress is all over with; as Papa SJW has said, all that’s left now is to pray.

However, now I’m out in America and life could not feel jazzier. I flew out on Tuesday and my first stop is a week in New York. Doing a standard SJW, I left my packing a little too late… Sorry Mum! But dragging a suitcase nearly as big as me bright and early on the tube was definitely the start of the adventure. I somehow got the job of directing a couple of Romanian women who could barely speak English off the tube to find their train… As you can imagine there were some hilarious scenes of me pointing where to go and them just looking back at me with faces of total dismay. There was definitely a point when I genuinely got worried they would just follow me onto my train to Heathrow… Fingers crossed they made it! Also, big shout out here to the man at Paddington who carried my suitcase down the massive flight of stairs, you da best!

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I somehow got to Heathrow really early, only to find out my flight was delayed by a few hours. BOOOO YOU BA. Also BOO YOU to both of the security people who told me that I look about 16 / asked if I needed my Mum to approve me being searched. Naaat cool.

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After a journey that felt like the longest day of my life, I finally got to be reunited with that friend who moved to New York and all was well in the world.

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The next day we went for brunch, then went on a cable car over to Roosevelt Island, where a woman cycled past me and made my day by telling me she loved my JuJu’s! After that we embarked on a journey to candy heaven; Dylan’s Candy Bar. As a girl who is caps lock KEEN for pick and mix, I had to restrain myself to not spend all my dollars on sweets.

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We then went for a wander to Urban Outfitters, Bloomingdales and Grand Central. Obama obviously heard I was trotting the streets of New York and decided to drive by to say hi. (Yes, that really happened… Okay, he maybe didn’t say hi but we saw his car). #WelcomeToNewYork

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Today is my second day of Americaaa adventures and I headed to MOMA, the museum of modern art, which even stretched my inner culture vulture as the place is so huge. After this I met my friend and as we were walking for lunch we got invited to be in a small audience for a TV interview. I think this makes me allowed to say I’m famous now? With Obama yesterday and TV appearances today, America clearly loves me. We then went for lunch and walked around Times Square. I can hear you’re all dying to know what I’ve been wearing for this big adventure so here’s a snap of my outfit today:

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Jelly Shoes are JuJu’s (£25 from Office), which were a dissertation hand-in day treat, they’re actually so comfy and haven’t rubbed at all (I definitely have nightmares from being a child crying about my jelly shoes destroying my feet); T-shirt is from Reason Clothing; Jeans are New Look; Socks Primark; Shirt Jacket is a freshly purchased bargain which I am so proud of! Cost me $10 in the Urban Outfitters sale yesterday!

The plan for our trip after New York is to head over to the West Coast which I’m mega excited for!

Adios x

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SJW the Scrooge: One Day Only.

At the weekend I was full of Christmas cheer, taking it upon myself as the youngest in my house to be over-excited about Santa’s impending arrival; today though, this all changed. SJW became scrooge.

I woke up this morning and got ready for work and as I opened my curtains to the lovely weather I noticed something weird about my car. Being the grown up adult I am, I instantly shouted to my mum for back up. Mumma SJW promptly went out the door to inspect my car and confirmed the bad news; some idiot had smashed my wing mirror off. Merry Christmas, SJW! As I didn’t have my shoes on, I was hanging out my window shouting to my Mum, including some inappropriate language aimed at the culprit, who had long since driven off into the distance, only waking up my brother and his girlfriend, and probably the rest of the street. Oopsy.

I eventually ventured to work, whilst thinking that the consumption of a Marks and Spencer’s sandwich and cookie at lunch time would cheer me up from my scroogey state. Oh how wrong I was.

On the journey home, I was merrily driving along, heading home for the ladies night out to the cinema with Mumma SJW and my brother’s girlfriend. This journey should take me approximately 10 minutes, but I soon hit a shedload of traffic, which in the small city I live in, must have been the entire city out in their cars. It is always at a time like this when I actually look at my petrol gauge… low and behold, it was under the last white line and heading straight towards the red. Was I going to make it home?! At this point, I literally had no hope. Crawling up the hill, I was getting more stressed, eventually screaming ‘I hate people!!’ in my car. To myself. Once over the top of the hill, it became clear what the problem was; a flood sign. I know you’re all imagining a huge lake covering the entire road here, as was I. Oh no, in true P-town style, this ‘flood’ was just an enlarged puddle. I wasn’t sure whether to laugh or cry…

Anyway, determined to enjoy the film, we went to see Saving Mr. Banks, which turned out to be really good and afterwards the best after-cinema treat: Nandos. With no shame I ordered a double chicken breast fillet burger in Mango and Lime, I don’t care if you’re judging my taste in spice, it’s ma fave. After what seemed like an eternity, my food came and I was looking forward to chow down, something just seemed wrong… first bite of my burger and my mouth burnt up. This was not Mango and Lime. Maybe I was just being an idiot? Got my brother’s girlfriend to taste and she had the exact same reaction as me, coincidentally she also ordered Mango and Lime and they did not taste the same. No way, hosay. Good old Mumma SJW took my food back to complain and possibly my favourite moment of this was when I heard her getting slightly irate and across the restaurant all I could hear was ‘she eats here a lot and she knows it isn’t right!’. Yep, loyal fan right here! Possibly the worst part of this experience was when the manager wouldn’t admit that it was wrong; I don’t care if you tell me they cooked it right, she refused to eat it herself, so how can you possibly argue that I’m wrong?! After giving me some spiel about how the sauce all comes in from a supplier so it couldn’t possibly be wrong, she offered to re-cook me a new one in a plain sauce.

Yeah it came quickly, but I wasn’t feeling particularly impressed and was vowing to never go to Nando’s again. The final cherry on the top of the never-go-to-Nandos-again cake was when another waitress came over and gave me a speech about how Nando’s sauce can be quite hot if you aren’t used to it as they use chilli’s. These chilli’s also vary in temperature due to how long they are left to grow in the sun. I genuinely couldn’t hold in my laughter; just admit something was wrong and leave me be to eat my dry, plain burger.

So all in all, I’m feeling pretty scroogey, but hopefully I will pick up my Christmas spirit again tomorrow.
Have a lovely Christmas everyone, and avoid Nando’s.
SJW x