Everyone Else

You know when you’re out in a public place and you take a photo and there’s someone in the background who you don’t know. At the time it never occurs to you and the subject of the photo is what or who you were originally photographing.

I think about this a lot, because think about all of the photos that random people appear in of yours, and then imagine how many people have photos of you, just the top of your head at a gig, maybe in the far distance or behind some friends in a group selfie.

It’s easy to dismiss these people in the back of our photos, we don’t know them and they mean nothing to you but it always makes me think because they’re real people. They’ve got whole lives and they go home and they talk to their partner and they eat their dinner. Maybe somewhere a teenager is showing their grandparents their holiday pictures and you’re in the background.

It feels strange to think that people that you see in the street, hurrying toward the supermarket or strolling along the street with their dog also have a large and complex life. I don’t know if it’s just me, but I am clearly so self absorbed that I forget or don’t consider that the people other than those in my family or friends, actually do live on when I’m not there.

It’s a crazy thought to me that there are 7billion other people  on the planet and they’re all getting on with their lives, whilst I sit here and blog.

More Books

Just got this stack of books from my mum, because if there’s one thing I need in life, it’s more books.

books-AUG2014

Planning My Wedding

So I never really thought I was one of those girls who knows what her wedding is going to be like from the moment she escapes the womb and to be honest with you, it never really interested me. I had never put that much thought into it really and when I saw other people with binders full of dresses and flowers and cuttings from bridal magazines I thought it was ridiculous. It often surprises me even in films when the girls are day dreaming about their wedding and their ideal man.

However recently I’ve actually been thinking a lot about it (which is completely preposterous considering I’m only seventeen). I found my dream wedding dress, and I found the ring that I’d want. It all started when I was watching Don’t Tell The Bride and be it hormones or being in my longest ever relationship but I suddenly was desperate to go wedding dress shopping, and when they’re walking down the aisle or cutting the cake I imagine what my wedding might be like.

What makes this even more bizarre is that I don’t even want to get married! Watching the experience of my parents and family members, and by all accounts my own opinion of marriage, I genuinely don’t even think I want to go through with it. What is it but an outdated social construct, that in this widely secular society has become somewhat obsolete. If I love someone I should think that they know I’m going to be sticking around without getting the law involved, and if for some reason it doesn’t work out, think how much easier it is to split up.

I know that’s quite a cynical view of marriage, but in all relationships either you stay together forever or you break up, it’s always going to be a fifty fifty chance. I’m sure when I’m older and I’m wanting to settle down with someone I will inevitably eat my words and have my ‘dream’ wedding, but right now that seems a really long way off.

BOOK REVIEW: The Art Of Fielding by Chad Harbach

the art of fielding

The Art Of Fielding is about seventeen year old Henry Skrimshander, a baseball player for his college team. He is an exceptional fielder and is scouted to play for Westish College Harpooners to improve their team. I am finding it really hard to accurately sum up the book without any spoilers and concisely enough. So much happens.

Although the book does centre on the experience of baseball, I found (as a 17 year old British girl with no knowledge of baseball whatsoever) it didn’t matter that I didn’t know anything and the story was easy to follow and the baseball language they use is easy to pick up from the book. It also highlights that although the book is about baseball, it’s not about baseball.  I would describe it as a sort of coming-of-age story, in a way that helped me identify as a seventeen year old myself.

I really loved Henry as a character and I really identified with him in a lot of ways, even though I laugh at the mere mention of sports. He was really real to me, and in fact all of the characters in the book were very three dimensional, I could completely believe that I was involved and I knew them all personally. It’s not a short book, but I utterly raced through it.

I have to say, however that I did find at a few points that I felt so much for the characters that it was hard to read on, I just wanted them to have their happy ever after, but I also think that in a way that’s what made the book so good – because it was really easy to be consumed by the universe and to feel for and with the characters.

I actually read this book quite a while ago and I just never got around to writing this review, there were moments that I remember crying, it evoked quite an emotional response from me (although to be honest with you, most things do).

I have to give The Art of Fielding five stars, I really enjoyed reading it, and it is written extremely well. You should definitely read it.

Re-Introduction to Blogging

I’m not sure there’s anyone who actually avidly follows this blog, so you who’s reading this probably has no idea what the heck I’m talking about, but here goes anyway.

You may have noticed I’ve been posting over-time in the last couple of days, or at least it feels like it (is more than two posts a day pushing it?) anyway, I’m just updating everything I always meant to and never did, and also I am totally feeling the creative juices flowing so I’ve got a lot more ideas for content all of a sudden. I’m scheduling up some posts for the future but mostly I think they ought to be shared now? So that’s what I’m doing.

Once I’ve finished with this sudden influx of posting I’m hoping to go to two posts a week for the foreseeable future (although if you have been here since before, you’ll know that that is extremely unlikely.)

Thanks again

VOLUNTEERING: Summer Reading Challenge

Just before the holidays started I was looking for a job, or something to do in the time I have off and my Mother emailed me a link to a SNJ article, asking for volunteers to join the Library.

The Summer Reading Challenge is a program for children where they must read six books over the course of the summer holiday and they can collect stickers and bracelets and activities, visiting three times and taking out two books at a time, and discussing what they liked about the books they read. It was started because children can lose two months of reading comprehension in the time they’re off for the summer.

When I was younger I participated and I thought that it would be really fun to help with. I absolutely love reading (if you hadn’t gathered from reading my blog so far) and I knew that I could gain valuable skills and experience applicable to other jobs and aspects of my life. It also looks great on my CV and UCAS application.

Through the Reading Agency I became a Reading Activist and by signing up to their website it has enabled me to record my work and earn ‘badges’ for the skills that I’m gaining from volunteering. It also means that there are goals to achieve when working and tracks how well your experience is going. I have got a really cool Mythical Maze (which is this year’s theme) t-shirt and a great badge with my name on it (extremely exciting), I’ve also been wearing an ace badge that I bought at Waterstones that reads ‘Will work for books!’.

So far I have explained the program to parents and children, helped them to sign up and handed out their starter packs. Depending on the reading speed of children it can take them all holiday to read the books or just the first couple of weeks. The idea is to get them interested in reading and to keep them going. Today I handed out two certificates and medals to two boys who had completed the challenge already, much to their (and my) delight! I am really really enjoying working with the children and working in the library atmosphere where everybody loves books as much as I do.

When the Summer Reading Challenge is over I’m hoping to have a more permanent volunteering role at the library, not only because I love it there but I also think it will give me a leg up in getting a paid job there in the future, which other than being an author would be the dream job for me.

 

 

Haircuts and Complaining

At the beginning of June I had all my hair cut off, and now, at the end of July I am full of regret. Even though at the time I weighed up the pros and cons (pros: easy to look after, cooler, easier/cheaper to dye, cons: won’t be able to plait, love having long hair) and I decided that it was time, I was bored and I wanted short hair.

And I do love it, a lot. It’s pretty great really, and I’ve bleached it too so it’s a blank canvas for colour, so I should be pleased. But I’m totally not. It’s boring and you can’t do anything with it and it sticks up and to be honest with you I just miss having long hair.

My problem now is that in order to have long hair I will have to grow it, which will take time and also mean I have to go through the awkward stage where it’s a stupid length that I hate, and I can do nothing with it. So I suppose I’m keeping it short for a bit longer.