London Fashion Week dressing code

You want to go to LFW and don’t know what to wear or how to act? Worry no more, I will disclose the drill for you. You are very welcome.

Basically, what you have to do is use the most awkward items you can find in your household. Spare nothing: recycling bin, the Halloween costumes drawer, pay a visit to that storage room where you collect things you don’t even remember anymore. If you wanna pull an old school Lady Gaga, check the food waste bin as well. Don’t hesitate to visit the neighbours’ bins too. They will not understand but hey, they don’t have a clue about your OMG fashion style.

Now that you are done with gathering the outfit’s main elements you can start to mix and match. Just make sure that nothing matches in terms of colour, fabric, style, era etc.

When you are done go to the LFW locations and lurk at the doors with the rest of the nobodies. Strike a pose whenever you see a flash nearby.

It is better to travel in pairs so that you have someone to take your picture when your picture is being taken by a complete stranger that happens to have an IPhone.

You can now instagram it with a caption mentioning the amount of paps at LFW dying to snap your picture.

If you blog about the whole experience in a week or two, you will definitely be considered a fashion blogger and a significant part of the industry. At least by your mother who loves you unconditionally.

I bought some chairs and it was complicated

I needed some high chairs in my kitchen mostly because boyfriend said he would rather eat standing than in bed (I love eating in bed, I can live without chairs as far as I am concerned).

I looked up the offer and I decided for a cheap pair at Argos. Only £25 and that’s awesome since I am not sure what I will do after my six months contract expires. I mean, I might be able to afford a one bedroom, right? Which will make my bar stools quite useless. I didn’t even care they didn’t match my kitchen at all.

Because I had some issues with how Argos makes the home deliveries, I decided to go buy them in person. By myself. I have a shop nearby so I thought I should be fine.

I went to the shop, I paid and while waiting to pick up my order I saw a box behind the shop assistant. It was almost my size and looked quite heavy. I started praying: please dear gods, let this box not be mine, pretty please, pretty pretty please. But while I was calling to the gods, the shop assistant took my receipt, looked at it, turned around, grabbed the very tall box and gave it to me.

Bloody hell, I said to myself (and something far worst in Romanian). I managed to take the box out of the shop in like five minutes, mostly by dragging it. There was a bus stop 30 seconds away. I got there in what seemed forever (ten minutes).

The bus came, I dragged the box inside and I was okay for the next three stops. Then I got off the bus. I was five minutes away from home, only five minutes. I could see my street from where I was standing. I looked at the box. Tall up to my shoulders, as wide as me or a bit more, and ten kilos heavy. All I had to do was get to the zebra, cross the road, cross the tiny patch of the park, cross another road, walk one minute up to my building. It seemed so simple.

But it wasn’t. I dragged the box to the zebra. I waited for the green colour. I dragged the box across the road, mostly on the red colour. Green didn’t wait for me. The drivers did, though. I must have put on quite a show. Green coat, black tights, short dress and a handbag, of course. Plus a carrier bag with a few things I had shopped before buying the chairs: some glasses and candles. And envelopes. A plant pot. But no plant, thank god. Oh, I also had nice shoes on, by the way.

Anyway, back to the story. Once I was on the other side of the road, I stopped. My arms were hurting. I was heavily swearing in Romanian like I didn’t know I could swear. I had to find a solution because dragging was not an option anymore. And I did. I dropped my load on the pavement, knelt by the box and tore it open with my bare hands. I took out the chairs and ripped the plastic off. I gathered my belongings, left the box there (I am really really really sorry for littering but it was a life and death situation), I grabbed the chairs and crossed the park to get home.

And I finally did. It took me almost half an hour to get from the bus stop to my flat! I unfolded the chairs and guess what? Too high! And I cannot return them because, yes, I left the box on the pavement.

I didn’t even bother to do some measurements, I figured my eyes are good enough. Well, they aren’t. And I feel like slapping the cheap me so bad, whenever I look at my kitchen.

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A pair of brown wood chairs is the only thing that could cheer me up right now and I might go ahead and get them, in order to forgive myself for being such an idiot. I will sell these ones on Gumtree, if the buyer is willing to do the pick up. I will never ever ever carry furniture on the street again.

P.S. For those of you who wonder, yes, I was offered a hand by some strangers but I refused them for various reasons, mostly because I didn’t feel comfortable to let strangers know where I live. A very handsome guy insisted in helping me and I almost let him but I felt sorry for the Burberry coat he was wearing. Aren’t I nice!

Nanny Diaries: Today I went up The Shard, I watched “Matilda” and I made Rice Crispy Cakes.

I have finally reached the next level of my life in London. I am living ALONE. In a studio flat but ALONE. The only time I lived in a tighter space was when I worked in Bucharest and I lived in a hotel room for nine months. Other than that I was always in a two bedroom (my parents’) or a one bedroom (my own). I was talking to my boyfriend the other day about how we put up with living in tiny expensive places for the sake of being in London. And we both agreed it is worth it.

I will leave the tales about my flat and about life on my own for a future blog post. Instead I will tell you about my day at work. My nanny job will finish in a few months and I am determined to write more about it since it is the best job I had in my entire life. And I had some “posh” jobs, mind you :)

Today I woke up to this glorious warm morning.

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I made some eggs and a strong coffee, preparing for the first day of half term. Half term means that the two siblings of the three year old I take care of don’t go to school and we get to spend time together. Which is always lovely but not always quiet.

I don’t know if it was the eggs or the coffee or both but we had the most perfect day. All children were at their best behaviour therefore we managed to do so many things that I feel two days have passed instead of one.

We started with a visit at The Shard (kids go free this week!)

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Then we had lunch at Absolutely Starving. I didn’t take pictures of the food, pardon me. They make custom sandwich baguets so you can let your imagination run wild. I would have expected some crazy combinations from the kids but they played safe and had only cheese in their baguets. I had a very good rice and chicken (I skipped the bread, saving myself for some brioche I was planning to have with my afternoon coffee).

After lunch we went to a park and played in the rain for a while. Rain, from my point of view. The kids said it was just a bit wet. Them Brits!

In the afternoon we went home, watched “Matilda”, made some Rice Crispy cakes, had hot dogs for supper and made plans for tomorrow. Apparently, we will go to the Museum of Childhood&more. I love that museum, please go visit if you haven’t been already, it is always a treat, no matter how old you are.

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P.S. See why I will terribly miss this job?

Lest We Forget

2014 was somehow great. It was a difficult one, as it was my first proper year in London (I will not count the first five months, which were nice, but pretty hectic).

To summarize, in 2014 I’ve worked on myself harder than ever. I took a class in Community Interpreting, I made friends, I got some nice writing jobs in English, which was probably my biggest achievement. I was in counselling for almost almost four months and that was the hardest thing I had to do in the recent past. I ended up exposed, with all my pain dug out of my brain, feeling too many things and not having a clue how to put together all the pieces, to make a whole. I found an amazing studio flat, where I will move next month, taking my life in London to the next level.

Which brings me to the point of this rant: life is amazing, if you let it take its course and go with the flow. At least mine is, especially since I have stopped making long term plans. In the past five years I worked for a secretary of state in Romania, in a museum, I was a waitress in London and a nanny (still am). I broke up with someone who seemed to be perfect for me at the time and by breaking up with him I escaped, without even being aware of it, a life that would have been completely wrong for me. Instead of living the small town life, I ended up living in Toronto for one year and later on moving to London. Instead of seeing the same people over and over again, I ended up meeting great individuals with amazing stories. Instead of doing the same job years on end, waiting for my pension, I got to start writing, learn new things that I didn’t even know they existed, open my mind, mending my soul.

On December 22nd 1989, I was almost 9, visiting my grandma with my mother and my sister, all sleeping in the same bed because there were not enough logs to heat up another room. That was the day the Romanian revolution started. I remember bits and pieces of that day: how scared my mother and my grandma looked and how I could hear the bullets outside, because my grandma was living close to a military camp.

On December 22nd 2014, 25 years later, I was in London, signing for my new flat in London.

On December 25th 1989 Ceausescu was executed and I never gave it much thought until December 25th 2014, which was four days ago. Without having a clue, 25 years ago, on Christmas day, the rest of my life had started. The end of communism meant not only heating, hot water and plenty of food, but access to the rest of the world.

I spent the Christmas Day this year with Netflix and Cadbury chocolates. And some fruit. When I was little, we only had about three hours of TV a day and it was all about communist propaganda. Chocolate was a luxury. Oranges smell like Christmas because they were only to be had on Christmas and to get them one had to queue for hours. I added the grapes because I love them and I am now living times when I can have what I like, whenever I fancy. The strawberries smell a bit like frustration. After Ceausescu died, we could have anything we wanted but not always. My family was modest and some things were still unattainable, like, for example, strawberries in winter. They were too expensive to have them too often. 10887127_955553384462769_421139256658286348_o

Bottom line, I was this close to have nothing and now I have so much. I am not taking it for granted, because I didn’t deserve it, I just happened to be born at the right time and because I know there are still people out there living like my parents did and like I almost did. Sometimes, by remembering the past, we are more grateful to the present. And we understand that life can be great, if we just let it flow in all its glory.

Interstellar – A Review

I saw Interstellar last week and now it’s time for a review. I know I should have done it earlier but I had to wait for my brain cells to regenerate after watching the film. It was a hard one. And long. Hard and long and I am still talking about the film, mind you.

I forgot everybody’s name already but it’s ok because so will you. There’s no way you can keep up with what’s going on on the screen. I even thought of taking notes but by the time I reached for my bag about 1 billion light years had passed and half of the people were dead and the other half on another dimension. Or something.

The film starts with Matthew McSomething (I don’t know how to spell his last name) wearing too much skin foundation, driving around like a crazy man hunting down a plane. Some of the driving happens in a corn field with zero visibility and all the time I was thinking why does he hate his children and where are the Social Services when you need them.

You know how usually the beginning of the movie hints to what happens next? Well, I honestly thought they were gonna fly to space to find a way to increase their corn crop, the corn is everywhere. What do people do with so much corn? How much corn can you eat? Can you live exclusively on corn? These were the questions hunting me while watching the beginning of Interstellar.

Then things happen with books falling out from the shelves in the daughter’s bedroom. Murph is her name, I can’t believe I remembered! Wow!

She says it’s a ghost, her dad says it’s gravity and he looks amazed (which made me think things were going wrong with gravity on the planet, yet everyone seemed to be benefiting from gravity). Isn’t gravity that thing that keeps you on the ground and makes your boobs and bottom hang?

Anyway, Murph was always taking weird notes in a notebook that seemed infinite (it never ended!) and she discovered that the books were falling in an orderly fashion, sending her messages. Which took them to a hidden NASA base (NASA was not allowed to legally exist anymore so they were doing the space stuff in secret).

One thing leads to another, a lot of science talk happens which reminded me of the science classes I took in school and never paid attention to, I felt sorry for the actors as I assumed they had no idea what they were talking about and boom, here they go, up to space, to explore some planets to start a human colony. Apparently the Earth was covered in dust or something.

They went through a worm hole next to Mars and got to Saturn really quick and then they started exploring. They were tight with time because an hour on that planet was like seven years on Earth and McSomething was keen to go back to his kids before they died of old age.

On one of the planets they almost got crushed by huge waves (all water and no beaches). On the next planet there was a forever winter and I felt like telling them not to waste their time exploring that one because if Earth was in danger I would refuse to move on a snowy planet. No thank you. Can you imagine paying a heating bill all year round and God knows how long years on that planet would be? I am sure they said it but my brain was already frying by then. It happens when too much science talk hits my ears.

They met another explorer there, they woke him up from his nap (they were taking years long naps in bags under the water, by the way), he tried to kill McSomething and take over the ship but the idiot actually opened the door to the ship when up in space and of course he blew up. I am no spaceman but I swear I would never open the door of a spaceship when out in the space. I know that much! By the way, this idiot was actually Matt Damon and I was sorry he was all wrapped up in that suit because I like his bottom.

Now, moving on. Lots of things happen to fast for me to follow and next thing I know, McSomething is going back to Earth by foot or so it seems. He doesn’t get too far, he ends up in a parallel world with several dimensions. Long story short, he is hiding behind the book shelves in his daughter’s bedroom and actually he is the one pushing down the books to send messages to his daughter. Creepy as hell. His daughter finally understands what is going on, they communicate through a posh watch, using Morse and they meet up years later on a space station. McSomething is over one hundred years old but looks the same, still too much foundation and his daughter is like 90 years old and dying.

The movie ends with McSomething stealing a spaceship and going back to space to find the spacewoman he left behind with a bunch of embrios, to find a way to start a colony.

And if they are going to make a sequel I am definitely not gonna see it.