the summer list #2

Last year, this post was written on 17th June, when my days were spent working and partying, without responsibility or commitment. 17th June 2019 was spent surrounded by paper and files, at my seat in the silent library, gazing onto the quad, and dreaming of the end.
Things change, but there's still a lot I wanna achieve this summer. Especially after receiving a reading list longer than my arm, and an onslaught of essay titles that I will undoubtedly avoid until September. 
The first 2 weeks of this eternal 3 month break were consumed with 14 hour shifts, days of sleeping and recovering,  blissful moments under the Spanish sun. But now the real flow has begun, and I don't want to waste this delicious freedom.

(some magical moments ive already had this summer !!)
So here goes:
1) an art project (I don't know what this should be !! Maybe knitting? Sewing? Collaging? send ideas!)
2) draft ideas for our to-be feminist society (again, send thoughts!!!)
3) journal, try daily, because a challenge is good 
4) run 15 km 
5) read the books on my summer to-read
6) make ice-cream 
7) write poetry/fiction/essays (non-academic obvs)
8) begin drafting ideas for after 
9) more days napping on the beach in the sun with old friends 
10) play tennis 
11) swim once a week 
12) art galleries (both in places I'm travelling, but also local)
13) read in (new) cafes 
14) find new bars 
15) go to York/Edinburgh/Durham for the day 
16) wild swim somewhere 
17) go down to Oxford, to tick off all the things I couldn't do in term time 
18) have a bbq in the garden 
19) make bread 
20) drink wine in the garden 
21) make a lil film 
22) sign up for another race 
23) go on a day trip to the countryside 
24) lie in the sun 
25) fill up a disposable camera

I'll add more ideas to this as they evolve. 
Much of my summer is taken up travelling and working, the former blissful and idyllic, the latter necessary, if a little dull. I want to spend time with friends, and time alone, enjoy the peace, and, most importantly, breathe. 

Hope ur all feeling free and summery!!!


but now, right now, i know this is the happiest i have ever been. 
This was scrawled in indecipherable handwriting in my diary on Monday 8th July. It was an overwhelming sense of contentment. Balance, flow, peace.
I even wrote: i am so indestructibly content, my yin and yang are in balance, life is flowing, I am at peace.
Maybe its turning 20 (fuck MAN), maybe its the resumption of normality, maybe its coming home, but this buzz of fulfilment has diluted into an uncomfortable blur of confusion.
I feel lost, my identity in crisis, self confused. Who am I.
Through the wisdom of 5 days, I'm laughing at 19 year-old me, i think i gradually know what i want, what makes me happy, what keeps me sane, and perhaps slowly, who i am. 
Wrong! On this slow Sunday, busy with a need to be busy, this feels fabricated, false, feigned.
I feel quite lost.
Home is small and stuck in the past, a mix of comfort and familiarity, and claustrophobic nothingness. Busy but also empty, mundane work which is both blissfully easy and exhaustingly monotonous, friends who feel safe and bring total ease, but also who force the past, conversations consumed with stories of years gone. Where I feel different, lost.
Fuck man, its confusing.
I like home because its safe and its comfortable, but I also feel different and outgrown. It feels as though the people here exist in a world of similarity, relatable experience, and my sphere is so distorted, expanded, different.  It's scary, but also exciting and kind of lonely. Where do I belong?
Nothing feels quite right, as though I am forcing the entertainment, doing it because I knew it used to be fun. Maybe its because I haven't actually relaxed yet. I've worked, travelled, slept, but haven't had days of nothingness.
Or maybe its maturity, age. Maybe 20 prefers pubs, bars and slow conversations to drunken 4ams. Maybe it sees a shift in people and activities, a fundamental 'out-growing' of the world I used to occupy. This makes me sort of sad, and at this moment, feel a bit lost. Where is home? Who are the people with whom I belong? Does it matter that my life is so different to these people?
So, I'm 20.
I knew I'd struggle with the realisation, knew it'd feel uncomfortably old, that it'd mark a shift in worlds. That I can no longer be in an unnecessarily bad mood with my mum, that the £100 battels I forgot to pay are both my issue and my financial commitment, that I have to work to exist beyond basic function, and that some people don't, and that that is shit. That I have to wash my own clothes, fill my own time, make my own decisions.
Its a blissful independence, where I can drink wine at lunchtime, sleep in the afternoon, travel, work, grow. It is also the rudimentary reality of growing up, the shift and the change lonely and confusing!
So who am I? What do I want to do? Why do I (eventually) have to be thrown into the real world?

In other news:
I'm back from a few days in Barcelona, which is perhaps where this existentialism began. I've got a week at home, of working and seeing friends, and then am going to Italy, for 10 days of swimming and travelling, and art. I've read crazy rich asians (pt 2!) which was deliciously trashy, and 'the new me', which got inside my head and made me feel uncomfortable, and question the purpose of life. It also made me fear the mundane, again perhaps the trigger for these emotions. Tonight I am going for a sauna, hoping to sweat out this existentialism and resume my peace. I hope it works. AHH!

summer books

I started writing this post in 6th week, sat in Waterstones, after hitting 'submit' on my final essay of term. The legacy of the Haitian Revolution. Interesting shit.
I grabbed 2 books on my way out, in an euphoric (and caffeine induced) flurry thinking i totally deserve this. 
4 weeks later, I apparently deserved a lot more reading material, and have since had to rearrange my shelves just to accommodate it all.
But I've got a long summer, an increased reading speed, and a substantial amount of travelling, so perhaps entertainment was required.
I'm well excited to sit down and read them, in snatched breaks between work and sleep (both of which have been occurring in borderline-ridiculous amounts), on trains and planes, and lying in the garden in the sun.

Here's what I want to read:
(conveniently not actually rlly the books pictured)

Circe, Madeleine Miller (see this post for an excerpt, which will make u want to cry)
Normal People, Sally Rooney (loved Conversations with Friends, apparently this is better)
Crazy Rich Girlfriend, Kevin Kwan (balance bitches!)
The Prophet, Kahil Gibran
How to build a girl, Caitlin Moran
The Girl Who Came Out of the Woods, Emily Barr
The Parisian Affair, Guy de Maupassant
The Waves, Virginia Woolf
A Spark of Light, Jodi Picoult

A nice mix of classics, trash, nd best sellers. Just what I like. I am pining for a day on the beach, under the caressing sun, drifting between reading and napping, feeling the sweetness of summer. I fully feel I've earned some relaxation, and thats an ace feeling.
Let me know what's on your reading list.