Tag Archives: adventure

Dream Dinner Destination: Hydra, Greece

As a young girl, on an international adventure to the far side of the world, I encountered a choice. I was on an idyllic Greek Island in the Mediterranean, wandering the light cobbled back streets, and was approached by a lovely local and after briefly chatting and getting to know one another was asked to stay for dinner. Being 18 and having a boat and head count to catch up to, I was obliged to decline and forever wonder what might have happened if I stayed that night for a once in a lifetime dinner.

Well, today we’re going to investigate the possibilities, and extrapolate in a fun and exciting way, what might have happened that evening if I had decided to stay. First I’m going to lay down some parameters. For the sake of this thought experiment, we’ll say I am 22 years old. Mostly because I wasn’t really into fancy new exciting food at 18. Secondly, it would arguably seem sorta dodgy, staying with strangers in a foreign country, so one may assume I would make better decisions at 22 than 18 (those who know me are laughing right now). Next, we’ll assume I wasn’t on a High School trip and didn’t have a boat to catch or a schedule to keep.

So let’s get crack-a-lacking shall we!

So I’ve been asked to join a local Greek family (very wholesome of course) for a delightful dinner and not having anywhere to be I agree to the generous invitation.

The first thing that crosses my mind is the realization and horror of a complete unfamiliarity of both language and culture; Particularly in a group social setting. Having only just fumbled though conversational Greek as a wandering tourist in town I have no grasp of how to sustain constant communication with another human being for longer than the thirty seconds it takes to buy some olives or a bottle of Ouzo. What in the lowest level of Hades have I got myself into?

I could solely rely on my handy dandy phrase book that has lots of useful phrases such as “efkharisto yia ti filoksenia sas” which essentially means thanks for putting up with me. But upon further investigation, I fear this book isn’t going to be as useful as previously anticipated…

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…So now that the phrasebook option is completely out the window, I’ll just have to get by with my wits about me!  The family decides it’s their weekly night to go to the local cafe for a meal, let’s say their strange uncle runs the place right on the water just to make it a family affair.

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There is a daughter roughly my age and her English is terrible, but way better than my Greek, so I do most of my communicating through her using my well known over dramatic hand gestures and repetition. Being in the same age bracket and living in the same century makes her surprisingly relateable, considering she lives on an Island that still transports goods by way of donkey. It’s a surreal experience, filled with sounds and smells I never would have dreamed of experiencing all at once. The sea waters are salty and I can smell it on the light breeze. There is spice in the air and a constant bustle as both tourists and locals flit by along the water getting to where they are going. Everyone can feel it, and it helps me take in what it must be like to live here.

At our table, the wind flutters the cream tablecloth and a massive Greek salad is brought to share among everyone. It has large chunks of Feta the size of a deck of cards just waiting to be crumbled into and I may or may not have started to salivate noticeably. A long day of climbing the hills around the town centre will do that to a girl. The tomatoes are ripe and flavourful, and the cucumbers are firm and fresh. As plates are shared, laughter ensues as I try to explain a bit more about myself; why I’ve come to this beautiful place, and where I am off to next. Laughter primarily caused by my misuse of phrases if course. Even in England I found that locals get a serious kick out of one using the wrong words according to the social standard. And that’s even in the same language. I feel like I would do my best in this situation to share in my love of Greek food, family and adventure.

After a lovely dinner I sensed my welcome had expired and with kind regards I thanked them all for their company and was on my merry way, with a few new email addresses to add to my book.

I have always felt a common ground with a certain type of person who is free spirited and open minded, and these people who have on a whim invited a total stranger to dinner are a shining example of the kindness there is out in the world. Where language is not a solid barrier; there are windows through it. All you need to do is draw back the shutters, wipe off the dust and you can see very clearly into a whole other world.

-Hailey Jane

NOTE: If you have a website that you want to easily make accessible to travellers like me I would recommend the use of translation software. It’s bloody amazing how far it’s come in the last few years, and literally translates whole foreign language webpages for them before your very eyes!

Also, the phrasebook that was handy on occasion is called The Lonely Planet Phrasebooks: Greek. 3rd Edition. It was gifted to me by my boyfriend and I will always appreciate it, even if it’s advice may lead me to do terrible terrible things.

xx


Vlog Update! Travel Preparation: The Good and the Ugly

Hi everyone! Looks like I went and made another Vlog on my channel!

Go check it out if you’re interested in how to prepare of epic travel adventures!

Lots of Love!

-Hailey Jane

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Some Writin’ Stuffs: Untitled

Painting by Sir Fredrick William Scarborough 1896-1939

      A man fights his way through the sweat stained crowds on a creaky wooden dock at a London port. It is 1887. He is on his guard, his back is up, and he makes a point not to meet the gaze of any of the individuals in the noisy and malodorous swarm that surrounds him.  He is past the prime of his life, but incapable of behaving in a way that would suggest he was. A strong man, as it were, all of his life, and with the full intention of carrying on that way he hauls his well travelled pack over his shoulders and shoves the lingering and lost pedestrians out of his way. There is a look in his eye of abject determination, but not a soul could tell you the reason for the fire that burns behind his lids.

Yet within the layers of clothing balled up inside his pack, there lies the secret to this man’s purpose. The years that lay behind him are held close to his calloused heart, and a detailed record of events that shaped his future are tightly bound within those layers of fabric upon his shoulders.

About to embark on a long and tedious journey into his past, he is to save what he has left of himself from the darkness that is eternal loneliness. There is always a lingering fear that it is already too late, but there being nothing left for him in London town, only one choice is clear.

Finally the sight of his vessel brings him a small wave of relief coupled with the madness of anticipation. He steps onto the slippery landing board and clamours onto the ship. Not being the most grand or sizeable piece of transport, she is nonetheless, not an amateur.  Our hero offloads his pack to the deck with a quick sigh and a prickle of what feels like electricity runs the length of his spine.  He gently lifts what he has left of his life, cradles it in his arms and descends into the belly of the ship to begin his final preparations for departure.

      What seems like a lifetime away, a marooned lover stares into the face of a traitor and coward. The traitors fair and fine features conceal the depravity of the crime of passion he has committed, but he has eyes that betray his real feelings. What turned out to be a classic case of misunderstanding and sacrifice in the face of love has left our gentle and innocent lover, only half of a whole. The two faces stare down one another in frustration and anger until tears begin to well in the corners of the lover’s eyes, eventually spilling in shame onto the white wooden dressing table. The traitor hangs his head for a brief moment and then reaches out to wipe the tears from the lover’s eyes. As his arm extends towards the adjacent face, and it encounters the truth of our reality. A reflective pane of glass meets his fingertips and reveals the barrier between the forgotten eyes of our marooned lover and the hateful treacheries of the coward who, in the same instance, both saved a life and condemned that same life to the gallows of emotional abandonment.

-Miss Hailey Jane


Some Random Things that Happened in England, Completely Out of Context – Part One

Ahh! David Attenborough! <3

Ahh! David Attenborough! ❤

Rogue Dinosaurs in England! Title of my new book I think? Hell yeah!

Rogue Dinosaurs in England! Title of my new book I think? Hell yeah!

Erotically caressing the Rosetta Stone...Yeah I did that....(it was the touchy replica...keep your pants on)

Erotically caressing the Rosetta Stone…Yeah I did that….(it was the touchy replica…keep your pants on)

Herman Ze German ...what else can I say? AWESOME

Herman Ze German …what else can I say? AWESOME

Buahh! Surprise flash!

Buahh! Surprise flash!

Mr. Bones in a provocative pose, slash unflattering angle.

Mr. Bones in a provocative pose, slash unflattering angle.

Knife juggler in Bath. "Yeah, I juggle knives...no big deal."

Knife juggler in Bath. “Yeah, I juggle knives…no big deal.”

Sissies...

Sissies…

SNOW! It wasn’t really all that much though.

A very suave Mr. Bones in Camden Town

Spontaneous bra shopping! *Intense*

Spontaneous bra shopping! *Intense*

I never thought I'd meet a rock that was as fond of baked goods as this little guy.

I never thought I’d meet a rock that was as fond of baked goods as this little guy.
I dont even....yeah.

I dont even….yeah.

Best antique text book ever!

Best antique text book ever!

Squirrel Jokes

“Just chilling in Hyde Park, and then a squirrel ran up my leg”….
“Hold on….say squirrel again”
“What, ok, squuurl?”..
“Ha! You say it funny!”
Thus the beginning of never ending Squirrel jokes.

Ohh Harrods, You've fallen prey to the inevitable, mullets and handlebars. It's the future!

Ohh Harrods, You’ve fallen prey to the inevitable, mullets and handlebars. It’s the future!

Don't we all love getting fiddled at! A Covent Garden adventure.

Don’t we all love getting fiddled at! A Covent Garden adventure.

And that was some of my random adventures without any context what so ever! Any questions, I will address them in the comments section…maybe.  Only if you’re good.

Stay tuned for Parts Two and Three in the coming weeks.

Miss Hailey Jane


Kissing Ron Howard

Upon returning to Leigh on Sea in the dead of night after my Brighton and London exertions, I met my friends downtown just in time for the Santa Clause Parade. It was a mild November night, and the stars nonchalantly floated in the darkness of a perfectly clear sky, above the sea.

The crowds were swarming, families with children too old to be seated in prams filled the closed streets. I felt like I was in Toronto for the annual parade, except all the order of that event was thrown to the wind, and chaos took precedent. We stood in the cool air and tried to get a glimpse of the festivities, but the crowds lining the main drag were ten to fifteen bodies thick, and we decided to give in before its’ conclusion, and to get a beer at the local Spoons.

Telling my story of the previous days and nights over a pint and some grub was magically relaxing and cathartic, and after finding our way home, I slept like a lumberjack for the first time since my arrival.

I met the next day with a stretch and then some coffee, getting grips with where I was, where I had been, who I had met, and what I could possibly accomplish in the remaining week-and-a-half I had left in this country. Four days here turned out to be more exciting than the better part of a year at home…it’s amazing what one can do when they let their guard down.

The daylight hours were spent winding down, chatting over fancy coffee at an Italian cafe’ that I will always love, and then dinner before getting ready to go out. Again I would be introduced to a handful of new and exciting people, and add another night to the pile of hazy recollections for my future. We got all gussied up in our classiest garb and headed out in the hands of another terribly friendly and polite cabby.

We arrived at a local spot, who’s name I could not remember, but it didn’t have the same comforting atmosphere as the other bars I’d been. People seemed less friendly and I was very uncomfortable in general; most likely because I was convinced to smuggle a mickey of vodka into the bar within the crevice of my slightly ample bosom. Large they may be, I’m sure it wasn’t the best hiding place…It just didn’t sit well with me. I wasn’t really in the drinking mood either, feeling like I had left all the fun behind me in Brighton. Cigarette breaks were numerous and I refused to partake until it was too annoying to say no. Shivering outside in my fake leather jacket which did little to keep the November cold out, I checked my borrowed phone frequently with hope of a pleasant word to lift my spirits. Words came and added some colour to a monotonous night but then stopped and I was left with only empty and hungry anticipation.

My friends, Miss Slovakian is on the left

Back inside, a few others arrived, including my friend’s Slovakian roommate’s boyfriend, and his mates. I wasn’t originally enthralled in the slightest. They seemed painfully immature and not at all interested in me, which suited me fine. I got talking to one of them, the older taller fella who looked disturbingly like Ron Howard, between checking the phone compulsively at this point which triggered a jab in the side from my friend, a clear complaint of my antisocial behaviour. I put it away and downed my drink and finished the conversation, only to hear the first interesting thing I’d heard all night.

Ron Howard is on the left…in case for some reason you weren’t sure.

Turns out this tall, fair, Ron Howard impersonator was in school, and had the pleasure of working in his spare time at an operation theatre. I was quite amused as we got to talking about cutting up dead things. I told stories of dead squirrels I took to school on the city bus, and playing with bones in the Osteology lab, and he went on about cadavers. It was turning into a good night after all.

This conversation turned the rest of the group off of us, until boredom and disgust hit them and they decided it was time to move on to the next establishment. Our next stop was a club called Dick DeVignes, we arrived, waited in line (I, with a bottle still in my bosom) and fearfully made it inside. I ditched the bottle in a pile of coats, and headed straight to the bar, desperately in want of a Strongbow, the elixer of life. It very much served its’ purpose that night, bringing me back to my senses, and I began to loosen up and have a decent time. Ron Howard didn’t seem to be much of a dancer which suited me just fine, It was too loud in there to hear him talk anyway.

Wooo! Fun Times!

After several beer, bad 90’s pop songs and a pair of rather painful feet, we decided to call it a night and left Dick DeVignes, heading out onto the cigarette butt covered streets. At this point if my memory serves me at all, the men looked for some form of eastern food, while we sought shelter from the cold inside among the other barely dressed night walkers. We called for a cab to take us the rest of the way, and I had mentally wrapped up the night’s excitement in my mind.  Ron Howard followed us to the pick up area, where his bike was parked and waited with us. When the cab arrived I was taken very much by surprise and felt a pair of cold lips on mine, followed by a tongue that tasted of whisky.  I wasn’t so much appalled, as I was surprised. He smiled and headed off on his bicycle, and we in our cab, into the night towards our beds. I smiled and thought distinctly, I will always remember this as the night I kissed Ron Howard.

Goodnight Ron Howard

-Miss Hailey Jane


Dancing on a Table in Brighton or Bon Jovi: The Enabler

My parents are in Europe for almost two weeks, and with any luck they’ll miss this post. Who am I kidding, it goes to their inbox…but it was worth a shot.

Sooo, here it is. The tale of the most fantastically excellent and clearly the most misguided and irresponsible decision ever made.

After A Considerably More Pleasant Moment in Time and immediately after My First London, but months before The Poo!, this happened.  This is a big part of why ‘The POO!’ eventually happened, as well as A Moment in Time and several other stories I haven’t been bothered to tell you all yet.

Date: November 2011

Setting: Brighton, UK. Several places..will go into greater detail later

Context: First time in the UK, Have been there…uhm…two days.  Visiting friends I hadn’t seen in five years. Experimenting with obscene amounts of freedom.

So, I feel the best place to start this story is the morning of the train ride to Brighton from north London. After reuniting, a day of sightseeing things like Harrods, the Palace, Hyde Park, Covent Garden and a delicious dinner of spag bolo, my awesome friend and I took off on what was originally designated as a day trip to the city where she had gone to University.

It was a lovely train ride, I marvelled at the countryside in the fog, and we discussed ethics, morals, and how they related to ‘sleeping’ habits. It was great.  Upon arrival at the train station I excitedly hopped off the train and headed towards an adventure of epic proportions.

Brighton, a popular vacation destination,  is known for it’s off the wall culture, it’s openness to alternate lifestyles, and for strange people doing strange attention seeking things in public. That means, not only is it a great place for people watching, but it has a FANTASTIC shopping area. We first toured the main streets, headed in the direction of the Royal Pavilion, where George IV spent quite a bit of his time.  It was a pretty snazzy place, and you really can’t miss it.

Look it’s me! And the flamboyant building in the background is the Pavilion.

Then we were onto the Lanes, where all the neat shops hid. In tight narrow, windey streets all sorts of magic seemed to happen. They opened up to larger streets with more fantastic shops, including Dirty Harry’s, a place called Vegetarian Shoes which baffled me, and a place where I met a rock who loved cake. I knew I was going to like it here.

After some  my first REAL chips, some vintage shopping where I found a sweet tweed cap and tried on other fantastic hats (see below), we went off in the direction of the water and the Pier.

I know you’re probably sitting there, going “What the hell does any of this have to do with Bon Jovi??…I just want to hear about Bon Jovi damnit!!”. So my advice to you is, either scroll down a bit, or get over it and read on. I’m almost there anyway.

At the Pier, which was essentially a carnival over the English Channel, we plundered our cash on games of chance and then walked back to the stone beach. I was happy. This place was great! (see below) I then got a rock in my shoe.

We went late night bra-shopping, and at a place called Bravissimo and was excited to learn the makes bras in a size that could fit giant fun-bags such as mine. And if you don’t believe me, you can look at this picture. I bought a bra and stuffed it in my purse, then headed for a friends flat for dinner and pre-drinks before going to a bar.

Then all at once, I met a bunch of people who were also awesome, and we played a card matching game that was full of breasts and penises, I kid you not. What a way to meet people…And I’m going to tell you right now, that it’s much more difficult to match a pair of breasts than you would think. It was at this point when I started drinking. What I was drinking I’m still not entirely sure. It might have been sherry, but I know I had never had it before, and have certainly not had it since. I also blame this for the headache I had the following day.

All the breasts were matched and put away, and we made our way to the bar to meet even more people and fill the night with our shenanigans. The bar, or I guess a pub is more like it, is called the Caroline of Brunswick, and the plan was to spend a few hours there and then catch a train back to North London. I figured we had lots of time.

Courtesy of brighton.skepticsinthepub.org

This place was fantastic, there was a giant Cerberus above the bar, and the beer was delicious.  Things were going great, a couple of Strongbow later I have made several new friends and the shell I usually lived in was long gone. There was jewellery shoved in my cleavage, then subsequently fished out by someone other than myself, my new bra was fished out of my purse and passed around, and I could tell at this point it was officially a good night.

Try not to judge too much. 😛

My glass was nearing emptiness, to the point where my wistful optimism could not fill it. So I hopped up off my seat and danced to the bar to grab myself another one. As I’m standing at the bar waiting on another pint, in walks what I would consider the quintessential English 20-something. Tall, dark, cable sweater, black jacket, leather gloves, with the leg-melting accent to boot. Ohh and the shoes! Sorry but the shoes will get me every time. Men of the world! Wear proper shoes! Women will love you more! I promise!

Alright, so I see this wonderfulness walk by, and think in passing that it’s rather lovely. No big deal, loveliness happens all the time. Just let it go. Little did I know at this particular time, he was coming to sit with us, having gone to University and lived with my friend. Aw, that’s just great. Still, I hold my composure, keep drinking, chatting, and eventually get to know this mystery man quite well. Well…as well as you can in 30 minutes.

Turns out, we had a lot of the same interests. And not exactly normal interests either, such as Sir David Attenborough, natural history documentaries and Dinosaurs, which made it even more awesome.  I did not want to leave this brilliant man’s side. It reminded me of the time I met a guy on the first day of University who knew who Chuck Palahniuk was and we subsequently had a sexually tense, off-again/not actual relationship for a year, some may argue more. This should have been a hint, but what the hell. I was on vacation dammit.

It was around this time that my friend pointed out that we should really get going if we were going to catch the last train out of here. She was eager to get home to her LTR (long term relationship) which was perfectly fine, except that I wasn’t exactly as eager to return as her. So, I made a suggestion. A rather bold, idiotic and risky suggestion that if my mother ever heard she would feel she had failed as a parent, or succeeded (depends on the day I guess). The suggestion was seconded and encouraged across the board of our table, and the issue of where I was going to sleep that night was left up in the air.

Let’s have a moment of context here.

22 year old girl. In a country she just arrived in for the first time, with a friend she hasn’t seen in 5 years, at a table in a city she’s been in for less than 12 hours, with a bunch of people she met less than 4 hours prior. What could possibly go wrong? It was then that I learned a very valuable lesson in friendship:

A good friend will always leave you with a tiny toothbrush and a condom.

Off she went, and I was in a crowd of new people who’s hands held my fate.

I got another round and settled in. We talked more and more about things I cannot remember for the life of me a year and a half later. What I do remember, however, happened next. I was for some reason dared to sing a classic Bon Jovi tune ontop of the table. Off someone went in the direction of the modern equivalent of a jukebox, and up I went. I would never do this at home, and the nature of the situation itself might have provoked this madness. But either way…I was in for it. With the help of another man, who just so happened to be the runner-up UK air guitar champion (real thing! I swear!), we hammered out a very drunken and enthusiastic version of ‘You Give Love a Bad Name’. This was also filmed on Mystery Man’s phone. Thank the Cosmos that I’ve never seen that film.

To this day I am secretly proud of this daring move, and wish that version of myself would come out more often. I have to be careful though, because that particular me tends to scare people sometimes.

There was a bit of bar hopping and to be honest I don’t remember the name of the next pub at all. I stayed with my pack of new people, following a trail that included a mohawk, the lovely man with gorgeous shoes and two men with long blond luscious hair, one the air guitar champ and the other a super-awesome composer of musical masterpieces!

Once we arrived, after some more preliminary drinking the question of my lodging was quickly solved without real words. Let me just say that both of my friends provisions were much appreciated.

Yes, it was very irresponsible of me to do such a thing, but if I didn’t I wouldn’t have had the chance to meet and get to know a group of such fantastic super-awesome people. And if anything, I’m certainly better for it. A life without calculated risks borders on the mundane, and as Oscar Wilde wrote:

“Everything is dangerous, my dear fellow. If it wasn’t so, life wouldn’t be worth living.”

Stay tuned for the next episodes of Hailey’s English Adventures, including “Throwing Up in London Bridge Train Station” and “Kissing Ron Howard”.

-Miss Hailey Jane

Remember….don’t judge too much!

xx


My First London

After experiencing the tilt-a-whorl of emotions that was A Considerably More Pleasant Moment in Time, smelling the smells and feeling the feels, and then drinking one of the most necessary coffee’s of my life, I and my companion hopped on a train from Gatwick and headed straight for the heart of London. Being my first time, naturally I sucked up every little new feeling I could, including being wobbled around on a train and track that may or may not have been built before there were strict safety guidelines. It was overcast when we arrived, and as I stepped out of the train station onto the London streets I was engrossed with how different every little thing was, yet fundamentally the same.

The people all had the same basic destinations, the office, work, calling on family or friends, buying groceries and other necessities. It was just they all did it in a rather different way, in much smaller cars, on much bigger buses and on windy-er more complicated streets.  The buildings were significantly shorter but were squished together and arranged with more talent, and everything seemed so much older. There were shiny buildings, but they were not the dominant feature of this iconic city. I was thankful for this.  We walked along the South bank of the Thames, past London Bridge, the new one, and then on towards Tower Bridge, the massive and beautifully designed crossing that defines the beginning of east London. The first thing I thought as I looked at it, was ‘Who the hell decided to paint it that awful blue?’.  Cool bridge, terrible colour, it’s a shame really. And just so you know, I totally felt like Bridget Jones as I  crossed it.

Tower Bridge in London

About crossing it…I had been carrying my luggage along behind me thus far, heading toward Fenchurch Station to continue the rest of our journey to Southend on Sea, and it was at this point when I encountered the most terrifying set of stairs I had ever seen in my life, that led up towards the bridge. OK, maybe they’re not THAT bad, but let’s keep in mind I am thoroughly exhausted. After an 8 hour night flight without sleep, five hour time difference, customs, endless queues, a train ride and then walking across London lugging approximately 20 kilos plus a carry-on full of books, plus a purse, I wasn’t sure I was going to make it. After slight motivation, I came around, and thought ‘I’m in London, dammit, I should be able to fly up these stairs!’. Well I didn’t quite fly, but after lots of very unfeminine grunts lots of laughter and a lot of “Sorry, pardon me”s I made it to the top, and crossed the Thames for the first time.

On the other side there was another terrifying set of stairs, very much exactly similar to the set I had just conquered. Of course there was, why wouldn’t there be. All of my pride and self praise for making it up the other stairs vanished instantly.  I eventually conjured some extra gumption after huffing and puffing a bit, and made the decent, only slipping and nearly falling to my death once….maybe twice. I swore to myself to pack lighter next time, but we all know that was a big lie.

We stopped for a well deserved break in front of the Tower of London. We had a quick drink and cigarette and talked a bit more in depth about what the two of us had been up to over the past four years. It felt like we hadn’t been apart that long, but the amount of things we needed to tell each other was a good indication that there was a lot of time between us. It would take nearly the entire two weeks to relay all the necessary information. It would have taken less if several existential life altering crisis’ hadn’t occurred in the meantime. But more on those later.

The November air was crisp and cool, and we loaded up again and trudged along in front of the Tower, snapped a few photos and then wandered around to the train station. On the train, after very embarrassingly fumbling with my change for fare, because I had never seen any of it before, there were more “I can’t believe you’re really here”s and “I can’t believe I’m really here either”s. Even though I was completely exhausted I was perfectly happy, and knew I was going to really like it here.

The Tower

As we arrived at Chalkwell station, the cabby was just about the most upfront and personal stranger I’d ever met in my life. I was a little nervous about how nice he was being, and when I say nice, I don’t mean polite and courteous like the average Canadian, I mean complimentary and in your face about it. The first thing he did was grab my bags and say “A beautiful girl like you shouldn’t have to carry your own bags” loaded them, and then when we got in (as I quickly got over the steering wheel being on the wrong side) he asked where we “lovely ladies” would like to go. When he found out I was visiting from Canada, he was full of praise for us Canadians, and continued being just as friendly all the way to the house. He unloaded my bags for me and walked them to the door. I could really get used to this!  My friend told me that was perfectly normal behaviour and that I really should get used to it, and also learn to take a bloody compliment without turning beet red.

Once inside I explored the tiny kitchen, funny light switches (that to this day make me happy), the funny faced outlets and the strange toilets. Everything was completely recognizable, just a little different. It was like I was in some strange parallel Universe, but I liked it. I then half unpacked my suitcase and had the most fantastic shower pretty much ever. It was absolutely glorious to be able to wash the ‘airplane’ and ‘streets of London’ grime off of me, I swear that stuff is like a film on your skin. After I was done and had dressed in a clean set of clothes, we sat down and had a delicious cup of coffee, and for the first time in about 24 hours, I relaxed, and it felt like home.

-Miss Hailey Jane