Hi there again. You might have noticed I’ve barely post anything through June, I’ve never post so little since starting out blogging. Even when times have been a bit shit and my heads not been in it, even when I was away with work for pretty much ALL of February, I still had the odd burst off inspiration and kept up posting. June was different and a break in blogging wasn’t planned at all, but was purely because I’ve just been having way too much fun.
The country is in a never seen before state of actual happiness, positivity and even sunshine. You can’t beat a heatwave, long weekends, the national football team doing well and BBQ’s for daysssss for cheering up the nation and enjoying life. Not to mention Love Island.
So I’ll get the blog update out the way first, the only post I wrote and shared in June was my guide to visiting the Vatican and St Peter’s in Rome. I’ve got a four day itinerary half written which I will get out as soon as possible, but that was it. I’ve got so much stuff to share, more on Rome, Lithuania, some new places I discovered in Edinburgh, and a post I’m putting together in defense of the 9-5. They’re all on their way.
So what have I been up to? Well as British as it sounds, making the most of this amazing weather, and enjoying it without then writing all about it straight away. Over the past month I’ve seen so many bloggers cramming so much in, churning out post after post and fair play to them. But I can also see why some choose to take a digital detox. When it starts to impact relationships, and time spent actually enjoying life then I’m afraid I’m out, albeit briefly, for a bit too.
I’ve always had the opinion that if you do something because you HAVE to, rather than because you want to it stops being fun. I hope I never have to write a blog post because I have to. I’ve still taken photos, plastered stuff all over my instagram, and like I usually do I’ve been ranting away on Twitter (strong contributor of the #loveisland and #worldcup2018 hashtags).
I’ve not taken a digital detox, I love social media and I’m lucky to work in the same field but still have a strong drive for it personally, and I’d not really even been aware I was doing it until last week. This was me just doing what I would always do anyway, but I’ve had a packed month and actually enjoyed being in the moment, going from one fun day to the next. I feel happier this month than I have for ages. But yes, occasionally I now look back and wish I’d post a bit more.
I think it really began last month when we went to the Lake District for the day. It felt like being on holiday and although I was snapping away taking photos I had no signal so just couldn’t post and it felt quite nice.
As the good weather continued I’ve had spontaneous days out and spur of the moment BBQ’s. The diet went out the window too obviously, and with any good BBQ comes alcohol, so it’s been a constant cycle of fun times and hangovers.
Here’s a handful of highlights, in no particular order as they all seemed to roll into each other in a fabulous string of summer fun:
I went to Parklife Festival in Manchester where again signal was limited and I was also pretty drunk for most of it, and stuck in a field. I had the BEST time. You might remember my post following the last time we went, which was the first time I’d ever been to a festival and it was full of fails. Well this time I was much better prepared, so no dramas or allergic reactions, and it helped that it was really hot. Liam Gallagher belting out Wonderwall in Manchester was an experience I won’t forget in a hurry.
To celebrate Nige my sister and I took him to the Broad Chare in Newcastle for Sunday dinner. It never fails to disappoint, and followed by a pint of Aspalls in the bar afterwards he was pretty content.
I went to the new Miller & Carter in Gosforth, and was very pleasantly surprised. I thought it was nicer than the one in the centre of Newcastle, and a much nicer environment, despite the location not being quite as good. The food was good and I was really sad to see that the week after I was there someone set fire to it. It’s back open again now so if you fancy steak without venturing right into the city then you should give it a go.
I also went to the Boathouse in Amble for the first time, and absolutely loved it. Seafood is completely my cup of tea and the menu was like Christmas morning to me, so much choice. I went for the shellfish steamer which was a big pan full of mussels, clams, prawns etc in a white wine and garlic sauce. YUM.
One lunchtime at work we went along to the new cafe/restaurant at the Royal Quays that has reopened as the Dock. Service is a bit slow but I’m giving them the benefit of the doubt at the moment as they’re new, but so far so good when it comes to the food. On a summers day by the marina you wouldn’t think you’re in North Shields.
Tour of Newcastle
Some of my colleagues from all over Europe were in Newcastle for a team meeting, and I gave them a couple of hours walking tour of the city. I took them to as many places as I could, including the Bigg Market, Central, to see all the bridges, the Quayside, Dean Street, Grey Street and around Monument. We finished up with a drink and some food in the Botanist.
They all commented how surprised they were at Newcastle, and how pretty it is. It’s just a shame that they missed the start of Get North, which is fully underway now. I’ve not experienced much of it yet, but can’t wait to. Any recommendations of what to see and what to swerve send them my way!
On one very sunny Thursday we went up to Edinburgh for the day for Kieran’s birthday. We just got the train, and after a bit of shopping we went to Copper Blossom, a very cute bar I’d had recommended but not had chance to visit the last time we were there. Here we watched the World Cup match that was on, and tried a few of the cocktails before heading to Rabble Taphouse and Grill for a steak lunch.
I mentioned Rabble previously and the steak there is amazing. They were great too as the steak menu doesn’t usually kick in until dinner, which we didn’t realise, but on special request the chef rustled up two fillets. Rabble have a summer pop up garden by St Germain, and it’s very pretty so even if you’re not eating give it a visit for a gin.
The rest of the day was spent in the pub watching the world cup, before getting the train back, for more world cup in Centurions, and rounded off with a Landmark Chinese takeaway – the finest on Stowell Street!
I’ve been in Amsterdam, yet again, which was as fun as always. I love it in good weather the canals are too pretty, and I ventured a bit further out of the centre to the Foodhallen, which was amazing! I’m not giving too much away on this, as my colleagues tell me this is the one place they hope tourists never find! It was good though…maybe I’ll write about it another time.
A weekend in Newcastle
Last weekend rounded of the month perfectly. I saw some friends I hadn’t seen in ages, had a relaxed morning in Newcastle admiring the new gin bar in Fenwick’s window, followed by a day out in Tynemouth to celebrate my good friend Lucy’s birthday.
Overall it’s been a nice break from posting, and I’ve enjoyed everything I’ve done without caring if I write about it or not.
I have been loving the World Cup, obviously helped by a fabulous England run. I’m really trying to not get too carried away, but let’s hope July is an amazing one…(it’s coming home….)…maybe?