Brain Vomit About Reassuring

21 March 2018

I am, in no way at all, a strong person. I think I fit the definition of a cry baby perfectly. Insults sometimes don't sit well with me (depending on the way they're delivered, if it's just banter than go ahead I think I'm quite good at having the piss taken out of me) and in many ways I am not overly comfortable with myself. However sometimes 'reassuring' really annoys me. I feel fine with being comforted over some things, so if someone else were to insult me I would like to be reassured by my friends and what not but some things are just facts and it bothers me when people try to reassure me against them or when people try to deny things that aren't necessarily bad as an attempt to comfort. I don't get into an irrational state of rage or anything, but there are just some facts that can't be disputed, or even some things that don't need to be reassured about.

this photo has no relevance at all to the post
Don't get me wrong, reassuring is great and being a good friend is even better, but when it comes to comforting over something physical I think things can get a bit blurry in my case. There are some things that are just facts to myself and they may not be facts to you but to me they are and if they are a fact to me, chances are I've accepted them. However, when people try to tell me those things aren't the way they are then it sometimes makes me feel like I shouldn't have accepted that 'fact' and that it's a bad thing.  For example, I think I have quite a chubby stomach, I don't really care though as if I'm exercising and eating well it's not a problem as I'm healthy- but then when I make a passing comment about it sometimes people are so quick to try and deny the fact which can make me feel sad about having a little bit of chub because it makes it seem like it's a bad thing even though, as well all know, chub is perfectly normal. Obviously, some people insult themselves looking for compliments and in which case reassurance should be given because if someone needs a compliment then they need a compliment! Kind words can go a long way and all that. However, for a simple passing comment reassurance isn't always necessary. I think if someone does insult a part of their body it's hard to know what to do, because 'reassuring' can go either way. Who knew socialising could be so difficult!! I think it's best to provide comfort in things that aren't physical, just in case someone makes a passing comment that can make you a bit concerned its best to go for a compliment about their personality rather than their body. This makes no sense, hence the 'brain vomit' title aha.

On a similar note, if someone calls themselves unphotogenic- don't dispute it! I am unphotogenic, that is a fact of life. I can get some good photos after ages of trying and sometimes I am lucky enough to get a photo that looks nothing like me at all in a glorious way. However the majority of the time I don't come across well in photos. My face becomes wonky, I actually have to practice smiling for photos because as soon as there is a camera it's like my natural muscle memory of a smile fades and my face weirdly contorts into a grimace no matter how great a time I'm having. I haven't mastered the art of working my angles (unfortunately) and it can be annoying as it seems to ruin many group photos/attempts at capturing a memory but it's no bother really. Even if I'm not unphotogenic and I do look exactly like I do in real life in photos which I think look terrible, don't tell me I am photogenic because Jesus Christ I do not want to be looking like that in real life!!

Enjoy the brain vomit, just some thoughts I wanted to share. It can be hard comforting people but I think moral of the story is never go against someone who says they are unphotogenic and that sometimes it's best to refrain from comforting about physical things. Another moral- if someone insults their physicality just call them healthy, even if they're not (lol) as who doesn't want to look like the human embodiment of pure health!? But then again sometimes it is good to dispute peoples complaints about themselves, good luck figuring out when to do that lads. The stress of growing up!
(side note I have another post coming soon about my travels they just take me a while to sort ) 

Travel Diaries: Cambodia

15 March 2018

I have honestly struggled so much to write this post, I'm not sure why I've found it so hard to write about my travels. Probably because I have no experience writing travel posts, and I always ramble on when I shouldn't. Anyway, here we go!

So I went away for just over a month exploring Southeast Asia with a company called G-Adventures, I booked the tour through an organisation called Gap360. My time away was amazing, as were some of the people I met. Coming home was greatly dreaded, but fate (my bank account) wouldn't let me stay any longer. It's okay though, because I have a million new, great memories and a few new great friends and it has made me excited for all my future travels.  ps- my first day was actually spent in Bangkok, but for ease of these posts I have separated the posts by countries, as I also spent a few days at the end in Thailand as well. 

We spent 2 nights in Siem Reap, and it was great. When we first got there I went for a stroll with someone else from the group around our hotel and literally within 5 minutes I found out what people meant when they say Cambodian people are some of the friendliest you will ever meet. We walked past a school and all the kids ran at us waving and saying hello. Their enthusiasm was so heartwarming and the welcome feeling the kids gave us stayed throughout the entire time we were in Cambodia. The adults were equally as friendly, albeit minus the obvious enthusiasm, but adults smiled at us after a few questioning glances and some would speak to us, asking basic questions as a way to practice their English which was just really lovely. 

Going for dinner at the New Hope Restaurant is a must if you're in Siem Reap, as it stands on really great morals. The restaurant is surrounded by a school, and all the money from the restaurant goes to help fund the school. Not only this, but the restaurant works uses local woman as their chefs, training them up so they can become qualified as real chefs so that they can move on to work in other restaurants and better their lives. 

We were lucky enough to go into into one of the English lessons which was a bit strange, we were definitely intruding but no one seemed to mind. We were told to just talk to the students, but surprise surprise- me being awkward isn't limited to England. I pretty much sat in silence next to a girl after a mini conversation, I could hear everyone else chatting but for some reason no words came to my head. One of the girls in my group told me that after she told the boys she was talking to that she was 19 they were all shocked that she she wasn't married yet, which was a bit sad but honestly the school is so great.  The school really seems to care about their students, checking up on them if they haven't been in for a while and if there is a problem with money they try and figure out if there is a way to resolve it.

There are many ways to help what the people at New Hope do- or if you're ever in Cambodia you should 100% go to the restaurant. Just click here to have a look.

We woke up at the actual crack of dawn so that we could see the sunrise over Angkor Wat, and let me tell you it was definitely worth it. If you go to Angkor Wat, you have to go and see the sunrise because you may have seen a 1000 beautiful sunrises before, but they're all magnificent and no photo or words can explain what it felt like seeing the sun peak through behind the temple, or just how many colours illuminated the sky or the way the water ripped with the colours of the sunset and reflection of the temple. So if you're in Cambodia, go check it out! It was sad there though, as kids were rushing about collecting cans and waiting for you to drop some rubbish, then I found out that they do this because they get paid for collecting a certain amount of cans. When I say kids I mean young kids as well, ones who shouldn't have to worry about picking up tourists litter. 

We then spent hours exploring the temples, we had a guide but to be completely honest he sort of repeated the same things over and over again just in different ways, so it got quite confusing trying to understand what he was going on about so I haven't really come back with any fun facts other than the temple that inspired tomb raider is there. Angkor Wat is massive, there are so many temples to see but it has to be done. We didn't see all the temples and I can't remember the names of all the ones we saw but all of them were beautiful and had so much detail put in to the tiniest things. When we were walking in-between temples our tour guide kept telling us not to touch any monkeys, which let me tell you was the last thing on my mind. I'm pretty sure my entire time away the word RABIES was constantly pulsing in my head. 

Siem Reap has the best night life out of everywhere we went in Cambodia. It has a street just full of pubs and is also round the corner from the night market. Let me tell you, both are equally as crazy as each other. The night market is so hectic, you turn your head slightly and someone is bargaining about the price of something you haven't even seen yet. The market wasn't as bad as they are in Vietnam, but the stall owners don't really have any qualms about touching you to get your attention (which I found uncomfortable) but they are all very polite about it but some other markets I went to in other places the stall owners could be quite rude. Supporting the fact Cambodians are some of the friendliest people you will ever meet! I got my best elephant pants from here, but alas I have now shrunk all but one of my comfy pants. 
Pub street is equally as fun, I won't lie- I don't remember much. The drinks are so strong in Cambodia  and are ridiculously cheap. I'm pretty sure drinks are 9/10 alcohol 1/10 mixer. Also so many straws are given to you! Forget the environment (to be fair I do feel like Cambodia has more pressing matters than the environment) but Jesus Christ they don't hold back on the straw front. Also, I don't know if it was just the club place we went to but there were fire dancers there which was sort of terrifying as throwing about fire whilst surrounded by drunk people doesn't sound safe (fyi I wasn't drunk by this point so I was full of pure fear) however all the drunk people seemed to love it, and no one got hurt. Although they then set up a limbo game, and the stick was on fire. Healthy and safety?!! I don't think so. It was a fun night though, the fact we had a super long coach journey the next morning didn't seem to stop anyone.


Phnomh Penh was strange, as you the streets were dirty and run down and randomly there would just be a really expensive, modern looking building. I feel like by just looking at the street, it seemed as if an architect were made to draw the unequal disposition of wealth of Cambodia in city form. That didn't make sense. Anyway, it was strange and a lot busier than Siem Reap. I think this was one of my least favourite cities- but essential to get exposed to the history of Cambodia and also there is no denying the centre of Phnomh Penh has some beautiful sights.

Briefly about night life... This place is full of roof top bars! Fancy ones or basic back packer ones, their is always something to do at night although it can be hard to find which place is the most popping.

We done both of these on the same day and oh my god was it a heavy day. Knowing the history is one thing, but going to the actual place where such horrors happened was life changing and I can't quite put it into my words. I spoke to my sisters boyfriend about it, and he said when he went to The Killing Fields there were really graphic murals of what happened there, but they aren't there anymore. If you go to the Killing Fields you should definitely get a tour guide, the S21 Museum there are things up explaining what you're seeing (a tour guide is still recommend though in my opinion) but in the Killing Fields you have to. 

I think the thing that got to me most about the Killing Fields is how well preserved everything still is. The tree that provided the guards with poisonous fruits to feed the victims was still there, remains of the victims clothes were still on the floor and in some places you could see victims bones peeping through the ground. It was awful and especially having been in the country a few days and already having recognised the Cambodians as such friendly people, I don't know it just still shocks me how people who have been through so much are still able to form such a friendly and welcoming community. I'm not going to go into depth about some of the things we were told (I'm sure a lot of information is online but you can ask as well) but I still find it unfathomable the murder techniques used, because they didn't kill just to end lives but the guards made sure the victims had the most painful deaths possible (physically and emotionally- mothers had to watch their own children go through the most gruesome deaths). I wasn't aware of the fact the rest of the country didn't know what was going on at the time, in the fields you can still see the poles that held the speakers which played music to cover the sounds of the victims screams.  There is a building that shows some skulls of the victims and there's signs to let you know how they died and some of the victims ages. It felt weird, seeing the wound that actually ended their lives and the amount of skulls made me become a bit desensitised to the fact that those were the actual skeletons of people who were alive not even that long ago. Sad doesn't do it justice, but after going to the Killing Fields we were all just unable to talk. I don't really know how to explain how much going here changed me, going to the Killing Fields is something you have to do in your life.(Top tip, of course we can't just all jet off to Cambodia so a good film to watch to understand more is 'At First They Killed My Father'. Be prepared to cry) 

The Tool Sleng Genocide Museum was equally as jarring as the Killing Fields, and in the same way as the Killing Fields, so much is still in tact there as well. The floors inside some rooms are still stained from blood and bed frames that victims were chained to are still up. It was just such a shock seeing it at first as well, as I had expected it to no longer look like school considering the gruesome events that happened in there; but it still looked exactly like a school. Outside there were even some exercise bars up from the school still, but then we were told about how the soldiers used the bars as a way to torture their victims. It was just so bizarre because seeing schools and typical playground things is so familiar to me, like my brain just automatically links these things to childhood. Yet being somewhere where the link is so different to what is natural to me, especially where the link is one to such extreme tragedy was so strange and twisted.  Hearing more about the torture techniques was shocking as well as it's just hard to imagine anything but a monster doing such dreadful things, replacing the monster with what looks like a man is just impossible to do. In the museum there are rooms dedicated to showing the victims, and one of the victims was a relative of our tour guide. Not even a distant relative. It's not that the history hadn't really hit me by this point as the Killing Fields kind of gave me the moment where my brain shoved aside the label of 'history' and replaced it with reality (if that makes sense?) but being with someone so connected with it all seemed strange. Ah it's so hard to explain and I've said strange so many times. Moral of the story, being in a place where so many lives were lost, in a place which changed the world felt completely different to how I expected it to.  We were able to met two of the known survivors of the prison, Chum Mey and Buo Meng. How they have the strength to go back to a place where they were tortured relentlessly is beyond me. Here's what got me most though, when Chum Mey saw us he was waving and beaming at us and he just seemed to be radiating positivity and when he spoke to us those vibes didn't fade. I bought his book and got a photo with him. I think both men are the a lot of the time, so if you ever go you will most likely get to meet these incredible men. 

I feel the need to say this but I wasn't sure how to slot it in. Opposite the Killing Fields there is a School that was full of children playing in their uniforms. When we left Phnom Penh we went past the University of Phnom Penh, and the roads were often filled with teenagers going to and from school. Cambodia is an amazing country. It has been through so much and the people are still struggling so greatly, but they are moving forward. It was heartwarming seeing all the schools, yet it was still tinged with sadness as it's hard to forget so many people were killed purely for being educated- or not even educated, some were killed just for looking educated. Considering all the educated people they lost though, it's amazing how many schools and places for education they have, and how many children attend. 

This was the beach part of Cambodia and it was nice, but it wasn't anything overly impressive. The most we done there was relax on the beach, and the beach wasn't overly nice or anything. There are a few good bars in Sihanoukville though, apparently there are some along the beach but I didn't see them. It was nice and had things to do but there wasn't an overwhelming list of things to do.

On the second day in Sihanoukville some of us went on a boat trip (one of the girls was so hungover, it was pretty funny but also felt quite bad for her) to a little island with the most beautiful beach. The boat was nothing fancy, but it was fun. The sun was beaming down on to our backs, and it was so quiet- we were so far away from any other people and the feeling of isolation created such a blissful and relaxing feeling. It were if the sea was protecting us from any negativity. In saying that, it was fun and relaxing but it wasn't the most amazing experience of my life. That's not to sound ungrateful, but I easily could have stayed on the beach all day. I don't really like snorkelling, and despite knowing this about myself I still went. To be fair, to say I snorkelled is a bit of a stretch. I pretty much just swam with a pair of snorkelling goggles on my head, whilst in a constant state of nerves due to the threat of fish and sea urchins. I just really hate fish, I hate the thought of one touching me and I don't want to see them, which is rude of me since I am entering their home by going in the sea. The beach where we stopped for a while was absolutely beautiful, we spent a few hours lazing about here, trying not to forget a single detail of the beautiful scenery, before heading back. 

Two extra things. Firstly, in Cambodia you have to try an amok curry- it's a classic Cambodian dish and they are delicious (although it is restaurant dependent). Also, in Siem Reap you can go to a circus  show, which is pretty cool. By circus I mean acrobats who dance and do gymnastics- I just thought I'd include that as I found it really nice that they still have time to appreciate the arts and show off their skills. I am a bit delirious now as this post has genuinely taken me a week to write. So with that, I bid you good bye and will do my Vietnam adventures next!

Back From Some Travels Update

8 March 2018

I haven't written a post in ages, and I feel like I've forgotten how- but I'm going to do a mini update. I want to share all my travelling stories however at the moment I'm a bit hesitant because

a) I've forgotten how to write. That's my only reason to be honest.

However, nonetheless I feel the need to update my blog about minor matters, just to get the ball rolling and whatnot.

I went travelling for a month around Asia during February with a company called G Adventures and if you have any questions about it just let me know as I'm more than happy to help- booking a trip abroad, especially in a culture so alien from your own, can be scary but there is no need for it to be! I went to Laos, Cambodia, Vietnam and spent a few days in Thailand and I had an amazing time. Amazing doesn't really do the experience justice, but I can't think of a word that captures just how incredible the trip was. I wanted to stay in Asia for longer, but as Katie pointed out to me- the return to reality is inevitable and even if I stayed longer my 'problems' would still be present. Now I am back in rainy England, wearing my dressing gown like usual but am planning another change. I plan on getting back into my health and fitness as over winter my life can easily be summed up into one word: lazy. I also want a physical change, with the hopes that this will be a catalyst for a mental change (but after travelling I have come to the conclusion that a mental change can't be sparked by materialism, but still the idea of a physical change brings comfort). Tomorrow I'm going to cut my hair, I am planning another tattoo which hopefully I will also get sorted tomorrow and also hopefully getting back into health and fitness will help get some muscles. Not that muscles are for show, but if I do get muscles I sure as hell will show them off. I also need new glasses, so I'll have a look tomorrow but if that fails I know of a shop in London I can use for glasses.

Materialism may only be a surface level cure, but hot damn am I excited for this haircut. I've always had long hair, I think I'm usually recognised by my long, blonde hair. As my mum said, my hair is iconic- but I just hate that. It's annoying that my hair is more well known than me and I hate that it just hangs there and feels like a load on my head. I know I've placed so much metaphorical significance on my long hair, but for as long as I can remember I have had long hair. 'But you are your hair' but I'm not, my hair isn't as important as I or anyone else makes it out to me. The only thing that is slightly true about my hair is that I used it as a shield, to deflect attention.  I want to feel new and shiny and I think a new haircut and a new tattoo with significance to me is the way forward. future me- have now had the haircut, been made blonder and in certain lights fairly peachy. I am in love with it. 

what I be wearing

19 February 2018

I have always been an advocate for dresses for so many reasons.  After writing out the list I change my mind, it's only a few reasons but still good reasons.

1) They make it look like you've put in more effort than you have
2) They can be dressed up or dressed down
3) Equally, can be worn to match winter or summer weather
4) Comfy

dress: motel rocks  |  jacket: asos  |  shoes: underground
I've been looking for a baggy dress like this for ages, that can be worn by itself in summer or with something underneath but I found it hard to find the perfect dress that is baggy enough and doesn't cling to anything weirdly. To be honest, this dress isn't perfect but I love it. It's not perfect because the straps you have to tie up yourself, which is annoying as it is hard to find balance in the dress and also because there is pressure to make the two knots be balanced. Aka, when I first tried tying it up one bow was on the front and the other was on the back. I don't think this will be an issue if there is a helping hand though. In my head this looks perfect with a baker boy hat, and I ordered one which arrived as I was taking these photos, but the baker boy hat was either abnormally small or my head is truly as big as I thought it was. But envision this outfit with a baker boy hat- cute right. I just think this dress will be so good in summer with a short sleeved white top underneath or just by itself. It's easy and flowy and I am falling in love with it.

I paired this with a pair of glittery socks and my creepers, which you can't see but only to make the outfit a bit more funky as I am meant to be going to Brick Lane as I type this, but I have a feeling the plans are going to fall through. (future me- the plans sort of fell through but ended up being amazing. We drank wine and went to a fancy cinema in London where you can make the seats recline and we saw an incredible film and then went to Wetherspoons and got drunk, despite me having a 6:30am start the next day). I am trying to shop more ethically, but I am so lazy when it comes to leaving my house, however the dress is the only new thing in this outfit. Also the denim jacket is relatively new, but not overly new. To be honest, I'm only mentioning it to let you know that I now have a denim jacket which seems to fit me perfectly. Shout out to ASOS.


12 February 2018

The title makes it sound like I love the month January- I can't say I particularly do, but the January of 2018 actually bought quite a few favourites into my life. Usually I can't do a favourites post because nothing jumps out, but some good things popped up this month. It was a weird month, but then again most are, but in the months which feel stranger than usual it's important to find good things to help provide a mental place of refuge when thoughts and feelings get too much. Although, some of the things I'm going to say are extremely materialistic but here are some of my good things from January.

I've discovered I love pink eyeshadow and found a foundation even better than NARS
I was bummed out when NARS said they wouldn't be a cruelty free company anymore- I share the general view that it's such an outrageous shift to go from cruelty free back to testing on animals. I was in love with their foundation, however I got the Too Faced foundation 'Born This Way' for Christmas and I love it even more than NARS, and it's cruelty free. It makes my skin look absolutely banging. I thought the NARS foundation was the best ever, but trying this has made me realise the NARS one was way too runny and thin. 10/10 recommend Too Faced Born This Way, I don't really know how to review foundation but it makes my skin lookpopping. Although, I have found out that Too Faced were bought by Estee Lauder, which has now made the whole animal rights thing more complicated so I'm going to have to research more about what this means. Also, I got this Urban Decay palette ages ago, and I have become addicted to wearing pink eyeshadow. When it runs out I don't know what I'll do- I don't feel like I'm truly ready to go outout if I'm not wearing this pink eyeshadow.

New favourite songs and new favourite book
Book wise, well I read 'The Great Gatsby' and that has become one of my favourite books. I've already gushed about it quite a lot here, if you want to have a read. For the record, this isn't just a favourite of January (nor are the songs) this is just an ultimate favourite. It's not even one of those where I wish I could forget it and reread it and have the first reading experience all over again because each time, despite knowing what will happen, it's still just as amazing!

Song wise, I actually have so many new favourites, which kind of invalidates the meaning of the word- but I've discovered so many good tunes lately. I go through phases where I need background noise, and sometimes I need silence but lately I've needed songs in the background which is my prime discovering time and woah boy- have I discovered. Ultimately, I think 'The Wombats' are my favourite band, they've just always been in my life- I remember listening to their songs when I was in primary school and had no idea what the lyrics meant yet I just loved their sound and the band has just stuck with me since. They released a new song called 'Turn' lately and I think it's one of their best yet and despite the fact I'm trying to break the cycle of listening to the same songs over and over again, this song is an exception. If you have time, I recommend giving it a listen here .

Side note- I've also been loving Everything Everything, Whitney, Rex Orange Country and Yellow Days. I've linked each to my favourite songs by them if you fancy a listen. Oh god look how much I've written about music, whoops. So here are some good things January bought, new favourite songs and a new favourite book.

I discovered the true healing powers of lemsip
Before this month, I have only had lemsip once before, but it was just a sip because I couldn't stand the taste so I didn't bother carrying on. Clearly I was not ill enough, now when future me is ill, I will drink this by the bucket load (well, as much as is safe). I regard this drink as the bloody nectar of the gods. Something about the mixture of pain killers and hot water and lemon is magical and just cures you for a few hours. I felt as if I was drunk after I drank my first proper lemsip, that's how good it made me feel. If you're ill, don't be a baby about it- it may taste gross but just drink the lemsip.
(side note- I got lemsip max the other day, but I can't really say I felt a difference between that and the normal one)

Not going to lie, this was probably the worst part of Newcastle (and most disappointing waggamamas I've ever had) but it's the only photo I have
Made some great memories
-I had a date night with my friend Sophia, we went into London and drank the best rose of our lives, then went to a fancy cinema and saw Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri which absolutely blew our minds. I can't put into words how incredible this film was, no expectation was met- the film took so many turns and the interludes of happy country music didn't distract from the intensity of the film. Also, it was quite Wes Anderson-esque in the style it was filmed in my opinion- a lot of focus on the way the film looked combined with such an intriguing story line made for a great night. We wondered the streets of London aimlessly for a bit after as we couldn't come to grips with reality, then we went to Wetherspoons and had nachos and cocktails.
-I saw Katie in Newcastle and almost died walking up the stairs but didn't want her to know how unfit I am, and we went to bar that was so cute and I fell in love with Newcastle (as well as Katie's coat which I think I'll forever be jealous of to be honest)
-I then saw my friend in Newcastle and we had such a fun night out, with disco lights and smiles and groovy music. Newcastle was a very lovely experience, the city and the people. Also, everybody there is attractive.
-For the first time this month whilst me and my sisters were laughing my nephew done a fake laugh, just so he could be in on the joke. It was absolutely adorable and hilarious and I just love it, I don't know why I find it so funny he does this. Just because it seems such an awkward thing to do, like when you're older and you have to fake laughter it's just a bit uncomfortable, but seeing him do it was hilarious. Now he does it all the time when other people are laughing.

So there are a few good things from January, I hope you're all having a great February! I'm away at the moment, so if you comment I will reply when I'm back. Adios pals!

Latest Instagrams

© Libby-Jade. Design by FCD.