Brighton, England

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I spent last weekend in Brighton with four girl friends, celebrating my friend’s birthday and I fell in love.

I arrived in Brighton tired, hungry, sweaty, clueless and with heavy bags in tow after a very long day at work.

The lively atmosphere gave me an immediate boost. Between the squeals of girls on hen nights, the excitable chatter of everyone around, the yells from lads on tour and the booming voices of train conductors, came the occasional squawk of a seagull, welcoming you to the seaside.

I needed to buy Aperol for the birthday girl. I couldn’t find it anywhere, which was a shame, but I did find that every single person I spoke to was jolly and helpful. Every off-licence owner tried to help me out, the people in Tesco and Sainsbury’s were eager to do what they could and even when they were telling me they didn’t sell what I wanted, they kept on smiling.  The people I passed on the street all seemed super carefree and happy. The driver of the taxi I eventually got was lovely too. I felt like I could have spoken to absolutely anyone and they would have tried to help me out.

The home we stayed in was booked through air b&b and it was absolutely stunning. The perfect seaside escape. It was a little way from the coast, but the seagulls could still be heard, never fear.

In my dreams I live in a house like this one when I grow up. It’s so tastefully decorated, so light and airy and everything has it’s place, but it looks lived in too. It’s just the right mix of old and new and it’s not too big or too small. It’s perfect. Aside from the fact it’s on a really really steep hill. Not only was the walk a challenge, but can you imagine trying to parallel park outside!?

I could have spent days exploring the centre of Brighton and I’ve still no idea how we got from one place to another. All I know is that on your way down to the coast you wonder through ‘the lanes’. There’s bunting everywhere, it’s a maze of madness that transports you to another time and there are shops and stools selling all sorts of bits and bobs. There’s something for everyone. There are so many cute independent shops. There’s so much street food and so many cute, eccentric cafes to be explored. Including Choccywoccydoodah which just has to be the craziest dessert cafe on Earth!

There are loads of cool independent bars and clubs on the seafront too, individual to Brighton. Not forgetting the cute arty shops down there and the fish and chip stands! Fish and chips is obligatory of course.

Brighton has the best of both though. There’s a big shopping centre with all your big name stores, there are chain restaurants and big bars and clubs with names you’d probably recognize.

The pier itself is the epitome of British Sea Front fun. There are arcades and fayre ground rides. I wasn’t crazy enough to brave the waltzers but those of us who did said they were sure they were the spinniest and fastest they’d ever been on. There’s donuts and ice cream and candy floss galore and there’s even a sit down restaurant and bar.

There are many other must-sees we missed simply because we didn’t have enough time. From the stunning Royal Pavillion to the Museum and Art Gallery, Brighton has culture and history too.

Wherever you wonder along the seafront the views are lovely. There’s even a massive 360 degrees moving observation tower you can go up, if that takes your fancy and you have the time. I imagine the views must be wonderful. Brighton’s beach isn’t sandy, it’s a pebble beach, but this doesn’t take away from the fact it’s really very pretty. I couldn’t take enough pictures. Particularly on a sunny day, the sea is so beautifully blue and everything looks so colourful and alive.

Colourful and alive. That’s Brighton for you. I can’t recommend it enough and I’ll definitely be back! I imagine there’s even more to discover than I know.

AMBEDKAR

As I wrote my dissertation I fell gradually in love with India’s dynamic  history and with the story of Dr. Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar. Dip in and out if you please. Read as much or as little as you want. My only hope is that I can draw at least a little attention towards Ambedkar; a man whose story should serve as inspiration to all of us.

Note: For the purpose of this dissertation I wrote in the past tense, but many people living in India today, still live as untouchables and are still limited by their caste, a caste they are born into and did not choose. Ambedkar’s movement was a beginning, but the story is still far from ending.

Continue reading “AMBEDKAR”

Expert Procrastinator

Sat at my desk doing nothing other than daydreaming out of my window and singing along to my shuffling iTunes library. There is so much I should be doing. My room looks like a small bomb hit it. I’m sat next to a pile of books so high I’m surprised I managed to transport it from Cardiff to home. My head is filled with dates for my diary that I haven’t been writing down.

Home comforts are beautiful, but they turn me into an incredibly lazy individual.

I headed back to Cardiff with Mummy Maggs for a couple of days last week. I needed to be back so that I could hand a music assignment in, but I wasn’t ready to head back permanently just yet. My mum hadn’t seen my new flat. She hadn’t even spent much time in Cardiff itself: The last time she came to visit she spontaneously turned up for an afternoon just after my 19th birthday… We crammed a lunch, a catch up, a shopping trip and student-style dinner into what felt like five minutes and then she headed home again.

This time, we spent two days tea drinking, restaurant dining, musical-seeing (Priscilla Queen of the Desert is a must-see; it had me smiling all the way through), drink sharing, Wetherspoons’ breakfast eating, sight-seeing, friend visiting, assignment handing in-ing AND shopping.

I now have one more week left at home to get organised, catch up on all of my reading, spend time with my family, see any friends still left in Chelmsford and eat as much food as is bronwenly possible.

You may be surprised to hear that despite all my procrastinating, I’m now finally beginning to look forward to going back for real. I never thought I’d say it, but that small part of me that always stopped me wanting to be back in Cardiff; that always hesitated and wanted to stay at home… It seems to have broken off, run away and left only me, looking forward to being back, to studying, to partying and to living the student life again. Bring. It. On.