Daughters of a European Summer.

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There’s a sort of mental and emotional hangover that rushes over you when arriving back home from an overseas trip, and I’m not sure if it’s normal or not, but I am 100% stuck in a European bubble – what’s scary is, I don’t think I ever want to leave it.

I’m ‘fresh off the boat’ as they say, from a 6 week stint through Europe, wheeling a suitcase which could double as my private room (yes, it’s THAT big, and I’m THAT small) through the world’s cutest cobbled alleyways, sipping the cheapest vino over-looking the most stunning sunsets and dancing on the bar-tops of every venue which wouldn’t escort us out for doing so.

I guess I am suffering the side-effects of a 2-month, daily scramble to pick up the remnants of my suit-caser life 5 minutes before EVERY late checkout, making sure that the essential: iPhone, Passport, Birkenstocks and three gal pals were in tow before departure. Or maybe it’s an epic “come-down” from endless bittersweet farewells to cities i’d re-fallen in love with, in exchange for the promise of a new tomorrow in an equally as fresh land complete with new mates and even newer moments to add to my expanding memory bank.

But, it’s now officially a week that my lungs have been privy to the Melbourne, if not Australian air, and I would be lying if I said that most mornings I don’t still flounder in my bed, confused and often delirious about which country I am in, and whether we have woken up too late and already missed our flight to Brussels.

I am constantly running into my sister’s room across the hall trying to decipher which of my friends are still not home from the crazy night before, only to find my Year 12 mini-me, fast asleep in her bed, awaiting a 7am alarm to welcome a day full of high-school torture.

Yep, I am definitely home; I just don’t know it yet and it’s ludicrously, the exact same feeling I had as we flew out on that chilly Melbourne night, 7 weeks ago. A pitch black sky we had been awaiting, for no less than 183 days, 17 hours and precisely, 22 minutes – I remember because I screen-shot the countdown when the travel agent confirmed our outbound flight.

After so long planning, throwing up ideas, making outlandish bucket-list entries and dares that I ‘shot-gun not’; the very hour had finally dawned, and even on the plane as we milked the mini vodkas just like we said we would (thanks Emirates), it still didn’t seem real.

Even now, as I look back at all the pictures we awkwardly asked strangers to take of us in front of the Colosseum, or as I comment on the “take me back to Europe” statuses of my new – now also returned – travel mates, or even listen to the songs which will forever compose the soundtrack to “that 2014 Eurotrip” – it’s still pretty fantastical and surreal.

So in an effort to relive every moment, non-sober epiphany, soul mate meeting and gorgeous view, I am belatedly beginning the memoirs of the summer that was (your Melbourne winter).

Better late than never, hey!

For now, “skies are blue”.

 

How liquid breakfast pulled me through a mini-crisis.

Image by James Lee Parry for Oyster Magazine.

Image by James Lee Parry for Oyster Magazine.

I recently had an epiphany on Up&Go’s claim of possessing the ‘goodness’ of 2 Weetbix and Milk.

It’s an inventive marketing ploy, to embed ‘goodness’ into something as simple as 3 breakfast ingredients, but the events of a certain yesterday have taught me that such combinations really are, inherently god sent.

I’ll break it down for you.

The events which took place less than 24 hours ago, saw me:

  • Experience one of my worst fears: getting a flat tyre, driving high speed on the freeway,
  • At the most inconvenient of times: on the way to an end of semester exam worth 70% of my overall mark,
  • In undesirable circumstances: 120km northwesterly winds, torrential rain and a deep dark sky.

Needless to say, my insurance finally came in handy after an almost perfect 3-year term on my P-Plates. I mean, I was running a stellar track record, and was was pretty proud of having acquired nothing more than a cheeky bump into the back of an old commodore, in my attempts to escape the Safeway car park up to this point.

But this was a whole new playing field, one requiring me to jump on board a tow truck, and effectively miss the essential 10 minute duration of exam reading time (not to mention the ENTIRE exam).

It was horrible, literally the worst possible thing that could have happened, but I have surprised myself in thinking that it was the BEST sequence of events to occur on that very, Melbourne day.

Firstly, I didn’t swerve off the road and cause a major collision, disrupting the homecoming traffic on a major freeway.

Secondly, I didn’t have to suffer a wrongly, prolonged exam duration – the lecturer accidentally prescribed the 3 hour exam as 4 hours on this exam day. Ew.

Thirdly, I came out alive without so much as a broken nail. AMEN!

My RACV ‘knight in shining armour’ says if I’d driven any further, the rubber part of my tyre would have completely stripped off, leaving me rolling fast paced on the metal part of my wheel – a prospect which could have been extremely catastrophic given the weather and road conditions.

This deserves another AMEN, because to be honest, I am in no position to accept any liability – I have a flight to all things Rome: Meatballs, Nonnas, Vespa rides and Italian stallions, in 48 hours time.

So essentially, I am one grateful cookie that these whole shenanigans played out they way they did. I am alive, I am safe and I finally got a chance to make use of those endless insurance fees.

Sure it doesn’t have the protein, energy and fibre of 2 Weetbix and Milk like my favourite, Chocolate Up&Go carton, but it’s pretty damn full of goodness.

Yay for being alive!

Where can you source goodness today? Holla!

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Why the best really is, yet to come.

Image by Caitlin Miers

It seems like every day, I’m like ‘Oh my god, its nearly Friday!’, and as soon as Christmas over, I swear it’s almost my late in the year birthday (which is August 5 btw), then it is New years again, … Continue reading

Forever Young.

Rolling down hills in Sintra, Portugal.

Image by Sheona Bello.

My dad keeps telling me that my “20’s are for learning” and every time he says it, I think I love him a little bit more. To me, learning implies a sprinkle of recklessness, a touch of experimentation, a hint … Continue reading

“I got the MAGIC in me” – B.O.B

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I’m sure you’ve all heard about the power of affirmations, and if you haven’t I’ll help a brother out.

Now, I won’t go all strong incense burning, new age spiritual counselor with bad breath and extra long hair on you, but basically, it is a common held belief that “you become your thoughts”.

For example:

“The Monash is going to be SO packed this morning”.

“There’s NO way I’m gonna get a park at Chadstone tonight”.

“The lines are going to be TOO long at the Night Noodle Market”.

“I can NEVER resist going to 7 Apples when I go to St. Kilda”

“I’m NOT going to be able to fit into the Bardot short shorts I bought last summer”

Each of these bad boys are exactly that, BAD BOYS. And although many of us totally batted for Ryan over Seth on the O.C purely because he was “bad”, I can assure you that looking/saying/repeating/talking/listening/re-instating/thinking/believing/raving (everyone loves a good rave #discolyf) these thoughts, will 100% make them true…for you. And that would be quite, well, bad.

So as Hilary Duff sung from the top of her lungs: “why not, take a crazy chance, why not do a crazy dance”, and maybe start chiming to some different bells.

I completely agree that stating “I have the body of Candace Swanepoel”may be unbelievable in the present, when clearly you’re not currently repping a Victoria’s Secret rig. So let’s take baby steps.

Try: “I CAN get a HD in Principles of Macro”, “I CAN get up at 6am for Crossfit”, “I can……DO WHAT I WANT”.

The word “can” is extremely powerful, I think Ghandi even told me one time, that it opens the mind to opportunities and events that would otherwise lie dormant, ready for someone “lucky” like Oprah or the winner of Australia’s Next Top Model to snap up.

Same goes for “can’s” evil twin sister, “can’t”, with this gem, you essentially cut off any chances you had with whatever it was you were thinking. I vote that you remove that 4-letter syllable from your vocab immediately!

Soon enough your confidence in “I CAN”, will lead to the assurance that “I AM”, and then, you my friend, very much will be….X.

So, what story are you going to tell yourself today?

P.S. Even the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air knows what’s up. Get around him!