So there’s a little llama (probably actually an alpaca) trinket tray I bought for my friend recently. When my anxieties were taking root and it caused a rift between me and another friend, she told me to pay a pound to the Drama Llama; a bit like you would give to a swear jar. It sounds so ridiculous, but in doing so it was easy to denounce the drama and not let it take root.
When I was 4, I won an award for being a Little Princess and (I jest that) it’s my most recognised achievement to date. The trophy has survived every clear out and house move my mum has had and as of today it’ll be 25 years old. I literally won it for being pretty (and also probably stood out due to the awesome hand-made dress that my grandma made for me.) I joked with my mum, that it was the only thing I’d ever really achieved.
If you aren’t scared of anything, are you even human? I have a few irrational fears, the kind that few people share and aren’t based on real explanations (like heights, drowning etc.) I am so disturbed by one of these fears, that I can’t mention it in case friends decide it would be funny to send me pictures of said creatures, my other is bathophobia.
Bathophobia; is a fear of unknown depths. (Not a fear of baths.) Places of utter blackness deep beneath the world, and my particular phobia relates to water too. I often get bad dreams about the vastness of the sea and rivers that defy gravity and surround me. I’d promised myself I’d address this fear and so this week when going on a trip to the Peak District I decided to face my fear!
This week has been… Eventful. So this blog instalment is a 2-parter! Visiting Romania was an experience I’ll never forget, for so many reasons. I’ll let my diary entries explain for themselves… These were all written in real time and I think you can tell from my writing style how much my mood changed!
Day 1 – Outbound
I don’t fly until around 20:00 tonight from Luton so I have quite a while to wait, and a long way to go. I realise now that I know almost nothing about visiting Romania… and I feel a little bad about that! I’m brushing up on some basic phrases so I am not a completely ignorant fool and just playing the waiting game. I hope I’m ready for this – I am super nervous about the flight. It’ll be the first time I’ll have been abroad for work so I am hoping it’ll be an adventure! Coach is at 3 pm then on from Luton.
The flight is delayed by an hour so I should arrive in Romania around 2 am. It hasn’t been the best experience. I can only say don’t fly WizzAir if you can help it! If you do, be really aware that they’re strict with their baggage restrictions. I have had no problems except snooty looks from the staff as they can’t decide whether to fine me £40 for my case being too big. Just don’t go there if you can avoid it. They wouldn’t know service with a smile if it hit them in the face with a spade.
2 am (local time)
We have arrived at an airport in Romania… 150 miles from the airport we should be at! The other airports are closed due to fog and low visibility and so we had to stop early. All I can say is at least I’m on the ground. It seems there will be a 3-hour drive plus transfer time from this plane. It’s not a grand start but I’m so exhausted from travel that I can’t muster up the energy to worry.
Waiting for the replacement bus service to Sibiu. Turns out that 3 hours is more likely to be 4. And that’s once we get on this bus. Still no sign of it. We are trying to make light of it but it’s a crappy situation. All flights after ours were cancelled. Wish we had been on a later one and not been one of the last in. I’d be back home after a return coach trip from Luton…
4 am… Zzz
This will be my last update today. Because nothing has changed. I’ve been waiting for a bus for 2 hours. And I have no idea when it will get here and the journey to the airport I should be at will be 4 hours following. Joy.
Day 2 (but it’s like Day 1 never ended…)
I wake up on the coach to see literally nothing. White and bleak fog all around. I don’t envy the driver. Been restlessly sleeping for a few hours but it’s been really uncomfortable. Now I can see outside it’s hard to go back to sleep. People keep having their normal phone alarms go off from their normal routines. I just got a call from the factory manager asking where we were and I told him I didn’t have a clue! I don’t know what to expect when we finally get there…. just desperately need a shower. We have been travelling now for 18 hours.
So we have arrived at our hotel which we now won’t be staying in. It’s peaceful. Breakfast left much to be desired but the shower was amazing. Going to the factory straight away so no time to sleep. I feel like my brain is functioning about 20 seconds behind me. Really odd. One thing I’ve learned is that honey tastes really good in tea… For the record, it’s -13 degrees outside.
Feels like I’ve been here for ages but at the same time not at all. We have been driving for 2 hours through snow-covered landscapes and I am feeling rather irritable. Our driver is pointing things out in the landscape and he introduces everything with such enthusiasm that I wish I could keep my eyes open. They do a lot of speeding and last minute swerving here and there’s snow everywhere and it just seems wrong to be going at 90km (50 miles) per hour!
The training went well. The women who came are really enthusiastic and seem to have previous experience. It was a little out of the norm for me – the ladies came in like a tornado of positivity, really friendly and just got stuck in! It was really bizarre but it doesn’t pay to be shy I guess. We are now off for dinner and hopefully an early night. I felt like I’ve had a 48 hour day… Zzzz.
At this point, it’s a bit like A Series of Unfortunate Events!
But believe me, it changes for the better tomorrow in…
Until Next Time
We all see the same stories repeated on our news feeds and Facebook memories. We start out with the best intentions for our New Years Resolutions and then somewhere along the way it just slips and we end up in old habits.
Lose weight. Make more effort. Try not to cry over pictures of puppies. I gave myself 15 (!) resolutions in 2016 and so many I’ve not managed to do. I think it’s because they’re either really negative, they lack focus or they are just unrealistic! We need to express ourselves, we need to become hermits once in a while.
In January of 2016, I gave myself some goals, some of which I haven’t managed but, that’s life. So now I’m going to review them, revise them and add a few more… (maybe discard 10 of them too but shhh… it just wasn’t meant to be.)
1. Lose Weight
The very nature of this command is that it’s centred around weight loss and not around the ways to improve myself. So I’m going to change this one to “Be more conscious of myself, my body, the things I do to my body and general health.” I think this encompasses my new goals which include ensuring I look after my skin and hair (which has gone to total crap over the past year.)
2. Brush up on my German.
Okay… It lasted all of a month and then I gave up. I lacked focus on this one and although I visited Switzerland and there were many people who spoke German I relied on my bilingual friend a lot. I didn’t want to seem silly or say the wrong thing and that made me just recoil into the safety of English. I think what I should do is “Gain confidence in speaking in basic languages for countries I intend to visit.”
3. Pay off my credit card
This one I probably should do… But again it doesn’t address the root of the issue, which is that I am TERRIBLE with money. So perhaps this year I’ll focus on ensuring I “Set goals for money and be more conscious of myself as a consumer.” I am particularly wasteful and tend to buy cheap mass produced items which I don’t see value in. I hope by being more conscious as a consumer I will make the right choices – cruelty-free, handmade, pre-loved etc.
4. Progress to the next stage of my career
Who can say where they’re supposed to be and at what age? In terms of progression in work, I’ve come quite far this year – managing my own projects and taking on new things. With the prospect of trips abroad and learning how to drive I feel like this is going in the right direction so just more of the same!
5. Be more creative
Vague, much? I think this year it’ll have to be “Focus on enhancing my drawing skills, be more confident about posting artwork on my Instagram, and write regular reflective blog posts.” I decided last year to write a blog and it never happened. I lacked direction and drive but this year, I’m reading up on techniques and I’m hoping to write a lot more artwork/fiction/reviews/creative writings and not be afraid to publish them!
I hope that these are more positive goals for 2017!
What are your New Years Resolutions? Did you manage to keep any this year?
Until next time,