Awkwardly adulting

(I'm trying my best)

Nice to meet you *firm handshake*

The title of this post is how I greet new people that I meet. Many of them are a little taken aback by the formality of it especially if they are only my age. A hug or a friendly wave would be considered more appropriate in many cases. I didn’t get into the whole hugging people you’ve only just met thing, until I moved to New Zealand alone at age eighteen. It seems to be the done thing in this country. I feel people express their emotions more here than where I grew up in Ireland, in particular when it comes to how they feel about you. If they love your personality they will tell you, and if they seem annoyed by you it means they are.

When you move to the other side of the world the only people you meet are ‘new’. Since I’ve been living here for just over a year now, the people in my life are no longer new but have taken on a new meaning for me. They tell me I’m positive, outgoing, and crazy. Their support is the reason I continue to awkwardly adult on my own. If I ever doubt myself they will always remind me about the 18,628 kilometers I have traveled to be here. Thank you to all you wonderful people who have influenced my choices and experiences so far. It’s a privilege to have you all in my life!

My goal was not clear at the start. It was all a blur really, a gap year I had talked about taking for so long that people didn’t believe it was really going to happen. Suddenly I was sitting on a plane, traveling to Dubai with a man sitting next to me who was educating me on the mountains in the desert as you fly into Dubai. When I hit land again I was greeted by palm trees, stunning sea views, huge motorways, all manner of high rise buildings and SO MUCH TRAFFIC. I was alone, everything was new, a tad homesick; but overall I was happy.

Travelling, going to music festivals, and just meeting people on the street opened my eyes to a whole new adventure that was mine to take. So I did.

I do a lot of things on impulse and other people may call these decisions mistakes, but I don’t see them that way. I see these irrational experiences as part of me just like my smile or my eye colour. This blog is basically my attempt to share my funny/crazy experiences with anyone who is interested.

Hope you enjoy 🙂

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Some people measure their life in time, probably the most common system. How many days, months, years, decades will you get to spend alive? Always counting towards something, or rather counting down. You can easily spend years doing the same thing, or in the same place, because as humans we are drawn to safety, habit and comfort. Those years spent doing the same thing still count. They add on to the measure of your life making it seem full. But it is just the same as whenever you gave up what it was that made you happy. Time is not a fair measurement for life because it cheats. It keeps moving forward, and you automatically think you are moving, growing and learning at the same time but actually you are stuck. Stuck in routine; stuck because things got too hard and you gave up. It was easier to stop really living than it was to change.

I think life should be measured in stories. You can see yourself in stories, but you can’t see yourself in numbers. Stories make you feel the extremities of love and loss, happiness and sorrow. Stories are told from experience, and experience creates memories. Our lives are a memory, a passing phenomenon. No one can tell our stories better than ourselves. Whereas anyone can say how much time we have spent here. Start by making plans, and never stop writing stories.


Get Lost

Get lost in the enchanting mysteries held in their eyes,

Be taken by a heavenly scent to a world outside your own,

Experience hypnosis from the quavering tones of a voice you’ve always wanted to know.

Follow a touch until you can’t find your way back, but you feel at home;

Let the taste linger on your lips, because you are always craving more,

Get lost in love, just because you can.


Today I learned what an apricot is, because I picked up a peach thinking it was an apricot, but it was not. That was my dumb blonde moment of today. However I must not be too hard on myself, because I grew up in a house where we rarely ate fruits other than bananas, apples and oranges (I’m guessing these are the top three fruits that come to mind when everyone thinks of fruit). Mum and Dad didn’t buy exotic fruits because when they did no one would eat them, perhaps we were frightened by the foreign colours and textures and the bother of the pip in the middle.

As a kid I would race my sister down the grocery aisles dodging people and trolleys on the way, it was like a massive playground for me. Now I am either slouched due to the weight of the shopping basket (I don’t buy enough to warrant a trolley) dragging my  feet while debating whether I need to pay $2 more for 2 litres of milk, and cursing the cold fridge section. Or I might just happen to be hopping around like a kid on Christmas morning because I have enough money to buy some kind of alcohol (preferably the 4 pack of Bulmers apple cider over the cheapest pinot gris with highest percentage of alcohol available).

Being a successful grocery shopper is not easy. You can try so hard to avoid the gut wrenching feeling of getting home and realising you forgot a necessity such as bread or tampons; but more often than not it is inevitable. And then you will check the list and can almost forgive yourself if the item was not on the list, but if it was this could be the breaking point of your long adult day. Time to slide down the wall and cry. Cry until you laugh at yourself for crying because you failed at grocery shopping. (This is by no means a true story).

Labels are supposed to be read, and so I advise everyone to read them accordingly. My first ever grocery shop alone I thought I had done so well (stayed under budget and everything), until I got home and tried to make a cup of tea. Opening the box of tea, I did not find tea bags but tea leaves. Something I thought was only in movies or China. My new flatmates laughed at me and said I needed a tea strainer. We did not have one, or else we did but it was broken. I drank that entire box of tea leaves over a two month period using a miniature sieve, like for sieving flour but only tiny amounts. Since that experience I’ve been with tea bags all the way.

When mum did all the grocery shopping for the family it was only natural that everyone got to pick out one treat. One impulse purchase. If it wasn’t chocolate or sweets, occasionally it could be something slightly more expensive like a notebook or new markers. It meant that mum held the power while shopping, if any of us started “causing a scene” she could take away our special treat far quicker than she had reluctantly handed it out. My impulse purchases today kind of depress me. They are never chocolate or ice cream or any sort of comfort food. My impulse purchase is always one red capsicum/pepper (I grew up saying pepper, people here say capsicum so both are appropriate I think). Sometimes I put it in a curry, other times I will stir fry it. If I was feeling wild I might have the balls to eat it raw. Whatever way I eat it I always enjoy it and know that it wasn’t on the list on purpose, so that I could “impulse buy” it and have it as a treat. Which really contradicts the whole meaning of impulse buying, but we won’t loose sleep over that.

Maybe there will come a day when I am less awkwardly adulting and can get the groceries right every time and be happy to do them, but maybe not, and that’s okay too.

Happy grocery shopping!


Let Go

Neon lights flashed across your face,

Illuminating the fear held in your eyes.

It gripped you like a child grips stairway railings,

And soon it would strangle you because you couldn’t let go.

I could taste it on your lips and smell it on your skin.

If ever there was a time to let go, it was now

But you couldn’t and I didn’t wait.


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