'orrible yet optimistic .

My photo
I don't mind if you despise this blog,yes it's great if you enjoy it, but rather selfishly, it's for me.It's oddly comforting knowing that my little opinion is floating around in cybersapce and will always be here.

Sunday, 21 December 2014


It was the morning of the 21st of September, I was tired and sluggish but the adrenaline pumping through my veins catapulted me from my slumber.  It was the day of my first protest; for something I have felt passionate about for years but have never acted out against, maybe for a fear of ridicule or a lack of knowledge, or simply that I was too young to attend similar events on my own. All that I woke up knowing was, we had the potential to change the world.

 A flash of a dreadlock, an awkward shift of a placard, the district line was growing evergreen. It was the morning of the global ‘Peoples Climate March’ and my destination was Temple Place, London.  Hands stretched, allowing a plethora of creative placards to reach high into the sky, below, brimmed blossoming natural arm pit hair of its female beholders. An hour of standstill flew by, fuelled by the overheard sparkles of conversation, the pitter patter of passion. .  I was home.   A loud and varied cheer alerted us that we were on the move and like a waterfall of peaceful protest we cascaded through the city, ebbing and flowing through the most famous streets in London.  The atmosphere was spectacular. As the sun beat down on us, it felt like the whole world was watching us and thanking us for our little, but noted, effort. Although, it may well have been the fact we found ourselves lodged behind a group of Harry Krishna with a mini-mobile stage, hefty amplification and a full band signing ‘Wild Thing’ on loop, that made us feel like the whole world was watching.

Simply by studying the demeanor of the free-spirited protest attendees, I began to draw striking parallels between what I would associate with being an Eco-Warrior with what I would expect to see in a Feminist. Maybe it’s the phrasing that caused these links, as the lexical item ‘warrior’ elicits connotations of stereotypical male attributes; strength, power and aggression. With this in mind, a female Eco-warrior could be viewed as subverting society’s gender roles by expressing these ‘male’ attributes. Caroline Lucas of the Green Party is prime example of an eco-warrior, although heavily grounded in politics within in a system some would argue is anything but free-spirited, the basis of all her campaigning is to protect our planet, pouring all her physical energy into revolutionising green energy via her anti-fracking movement. The semantic links between an eco-warrior and feminist may be one reason my mind led me to ponder the similarities, but I feel it spans deeper into the roots of reason, into the earth. Eco-warriors wish to protect our natural land, they essentially fight for those that don’t have a voice (animals, plants, resources), which is what Feminists do for gender equality, they speak out for those who may see the problem but fear to act or those that ignore the problem despite suffering the consequences, or the mass of Western women who simply deny the suffering altogether.

For years, we’ve felt the negligence of our Earth and of our most oppressed groups, it could even be claimed that the way in which we continue to destroy and consume our fertile land, mimics the way in which we exploit our women. The recent viral videos of Leonardo Di’Caprio and Emma Watson delivering powerful speeches at the UN summits on both climate change and feminism, evermore highlight the intrinsic nature of these topics. There definitely seems to be a rise in global awareness and it’s certainly an exciting time to be alive and to be passionate. Global protests fighting for Eco-change highlight a milestone in forward thinking in an age where the backlash can be strong and repressive to those who want to speak out. It gives a remarkable sense of hope for the future and creates a sense of community and courage for the activists in us all whether it be feminism, climate change, peace, LGBT rights, human rights etc. If we keep pushing forward, the world cannot continue to ignore these problems and the uneducated will lose the ‘un’ and the support will grow and things, eventually, will change.

 Ultimately, it’s not about why we need feminism; it’s about why we need equality for the land and land dwellers alike. We need to protect our Mother Earth as much as the mothers upon the Earth.

Wednesday, 5 November 2014


I moved to London just over two months ago and have been working as a Communication Support Worker in and around our capital. Today was the first day in my new ‘English as a second language’ class. I was supporting a deaf girl whose first language was British Sign Language and today something amazing happened.

The room was heaving with people who had immigrated from around the world to set up a base in London. Some had been here for years, others simply months, one lady had been here for a mere four weeks. Within the class we looked at the importance of conversational skills which meant I was signing flat out for almost three hours yet despite this I was still mesmerised by the pull of our capital, all these students were so enthusiastic about learning more English in order to broaden their horizons here. It caused me to reflect upon my own situation, I’ve slipped into city life rather easily, firstly having English as my first language already puts me in a fantastic position, it’s not until you witness English being taught that you realise how complex it is. I also had a lot of friends already based in London and even family a short train ride away which I often over-look. The people in the class had given up entire lives, jobs, friends and family in search of a ‘better life’ in the UK. Maybe I’ve been taking it all for granted, maybe I’ve been selfish for constantly wanting to escape?

Following an intense twenty minute group discussion about money (payday loans, credit cards, bills etc) all giving one another advice on how to stretch the pounds further, one woman from Jamaica hesitantly raised her hand.

She timidly exclaimed that she intends to save up every single penny she can in order to pay for the flight back to Jamaica to start again from afresh. She spoke passionately (albeit in broken English) about the simple life out there and the unnecessary complexities she found over here. She described the vegetable patch she hopes to nurture and the power of the community spirit over there. Some of the other students instantaneously gasped in disbelief, why would someone want to leave this country that we have fought so hard to live in? A few solemn faces showcased a mutual desire to flee this mechanical system, mine alike.  Having spent a few weeks volunteering on an Eco-farm in Sweden I knew how magical daily life was when you are truly self-sufficient. The Jamaican lady went on to ask in other words ‘What are we all hankering for? More? More?’ There was a long pause of silence filled only with puzzled looks and pondering minds. She had certainly refuelled the burning desire to find a simpler way of life in myself. That night I preliminarily booked a trip to a healing retreat in Peru for a month next year, I doubt I’ll ever truly be able to leave this country but the longer I’m away from it, the more I’ll just be me.

Wednesday, 18 December 2013

Vimeo needs to be more accessible!

-There is vast amounts of creative and visual content online that is still inaccessible to deaf  audiences due to the lack of subtitling through online video hosts.

Being a CODA (Child of a Deaf Adult), I have found myself straddling both the hearing and the deaf world my entire life. I was involved with a Deaf and hearing drama group from a young age (Words Signs and Vibes) which provided me with some incredible opportunities to spread awareness and have an amazing time whilst touring with Sign Song extraordinaire Jayne Fletcher.

Supporting the 'Filmore Gears' at Birmingham Artsfest alongside Jayne Fletcher and Emma Case.

The beautiful visual aspects of the deaf world continue to inspire and aid me when making creative decisions on my degree. I am currently at Bournemouth University studying Scriptwriting for TV and Film and wherever possible I am writing scripts that are accessible to deaf audiences.  For example here is a short film I wrote and acted in last year.

I am now approaching the second term of my final year on the course where I am feverishly writing a dissertation centered on ‘The Lack of Deaf Culture Represented in Mainstream Television’ as well as A twenty minute short film with a deaf lead character.

With the increase in social media and video content on the internet I found myself becoming increasingly frustrated with the lack of subtitles featured. I want to be able to send my Mum a video and for her to be able to understand it fully without these constant barriers.

This is what inspired me to create an online petition. My petition asks Vimeo to ask its up-loaders to make subtitled versions of their videos available. Vimeo  is a huge video host that specialises in short films that are usually Drama, Documentary mixed in with loads of Animation. It prides itself on its high quality content, rightly so, as it is brimming with thousands of exceptional videos, however, they do not even provide the unreliable captioning option that Youtube has. The captioning option is certainly a step forward but there needs to be more research poured into it as the result is often inaccurate gibberish.

Following this continual frustration I have recently signed up to Amara to voluntarily add subtitles to videos so the Deaf/hearing impaired can access more content however it is incredibly time consuming and unrealistic for  these online video websites to rely on volunteers to make their content accessible.

They should be creating agreements in there terms and conditions (which every user must agree to) by which the uploader will be encouraged to add a subtitled option or version upon the upload of their video. At the very least it will make them think about other audiences that they could be reaching.  Arguably it may take a few hours to do this but it would be worth it as the creator will be able to reach millions of more viewers and Deaf and HOH viewers will be able to access more content online. It may be hugely beneficial to those learning English as a foreign language too , as well as saving many volunteers’ hours or trawling the net and manually subtitling videos, in this instance, everyone wins.

This is precisely what my petition proposes. More subtitles online. If you do agree with what I am suggesting please do sign it this online petition:


The very least it will do is raise awareness and let these huge hosts know that they are preventing a huge body of people access to their videos.

Thank you for reading, Joanna.

Thursday, 22 August 2013


* Warning this post has not been edited of even spell checked before posting, I wanted it to be as raw and free as possible, the filters of my mind tarnish it enough.

        Please view this post as a stream of consciousness as opposed to concise and contrived. I have no idea where this may lead but I haven’t done any free writing for a long time, maybe that should be the theme of this post: Free. Recently I have been expanding my mind and weary pupils at ridiculous hours of the morning, learning all about the lives of Freegans and Dumpster Divers as they are so aptly named. I stumbled across a user of Instagram who holds monthly  ‘Free- Markets’ whereby the salvage as much quality objects, from clothing to bikes as they can and set up a stall on the street so passers-by can pick anything up ; FOR FREE! This already had me in the palm of their anti-capitalist hands but to put the organic home grown cherry on the top this group host Freegan banquets in New York twice A month, now I was totally swept under this new exciting hippie wave. I’m not sure of how many people know what Freegans are, usually they are people who are Vegan and try to sustain their diets by growing their own food, thus spending little money in Supermarkets and opting out wherever possible in the Consumptive nature of our society.

  I have had so many slight opinions for so long but never truly felt like they were grounded anywhere, but through stumbling across this bold groups movement , I honestly felt like things were starting to click. I have never felt like I belonged in huge supermarkets, I’ve never really wanted to drive a car even (I’d happily cycle everywhere for the rest of my life) I suppose growing up a tiny village until the age of 6 and then moving to a city may have contributed to this overwhelming feeling of disbelonging. Anyway the strong community of like-minded Freegans and those who believe in mutual aid (doing everything in their little power to help as many people as possible) really struck a chord with me.

  This sense of care and help is what I feel is lacking in so many industries, potentially all industries, I have heard someone exclaim ‘why should I do that, it’s not my job!’ far too many times, if you work for a company or on a project you should believe whole heartedly in that company or project and want it to move forward in whatever way it can, even if it means mucking in with jobs that are not deemed ‘yours’.  I know there are a hell of a lot of people in the world who are doing jobs to just get by and may not take (or can) take an active role in the structuring and shaping of the project/company  but I truly feel, anyone at any ‘level’ (I hate the thought of anyone being ‘above’ anyone else) by being that little bit more conscious of the people working around them, and doing things to move the whole things forward will not only make them a happier person and their colleagues happier but it will also reap those superficial monetary rewards/targets which everyone is so focused on achieving.

  I’ve had some real ‘birds eye view’ moments recently, where I allow myself to totally extract everything from the life I lead, all the feelings I have and almost analyse the human race and world from an alien birds perspective. We are so odd. As a race, I have been questioning the word ‘civilized’ an awful lot of recent for it is those who are deemed 'uncivilized' that seem to show the greatest awareness for the Planet and forming a mutualistic relationship with their surroundings, anyway, I don’t want to dwell. There are so many reasons to be happy as humans, it’s the mindfulness and appreciation that is needed, I would urge everyone to take just 5 minutes out and view the world as a whole, then slowly bring it back to your life, all those ‘significant’ worries soon evaporate and I usually just feel an overwhelming sense on contentment at just being alive, just being able to breath, see, hear, feel and read all about the world. 

   The point I have been trying to make is, we may ultimately feel free, yet it is so hard to act upon this natural desire to be free as responsibilities, that we create, weigh us down and begin to cloud the beautiful vision we once had of the world, our child-like awe,  we become surrounded by negativity but we can make a change and that’s what I aim to do. I feel like a great cloud has been lifted and I have been observing life from a slightly clearer angle, everything is consumption and a lot of it is without even thinking about the consequences.

    I have been a Vegetarian for almost 10 months now (admittedly having a few small blips) and know in myself and my body that I couldn't be a Freegan, or vegan for that matter, but I can adopt some of their philosophies, I want to try and only buy from local shops if I have to buy, I’m going to try and make/grow as much of my own food as possible and I am going to gear myself up for a Dumpster Dive in the near future. As I physically cannot stop myself from acting upon and directly challenging the absolutely ludicrous laws governing food waste in Supermarkets.

PS. I am also looking at spending a minimum of 8 weeks in and Eco-yoga-commune in Peru. Some may call it escape, I call it real life and what it is all meant to be about!


Saturday, 15 June 2013

The Politicians Husband. Poultons Review.

The Politicians Husband, BBC 2.

This three part drama proved to be a lot more controversial  than I initially assumed. The first episode gently introduced us to the world of Freya and Aiden Hoynes lives as the golden couple of Politics. Each character was established well, with some really lovely moments of touch. I often feel underwhelmed by the portrayal of human contact in Television and Film and the importance of it in relationships. However I truly felt they highlighted, not obviously, but subtly, the closeness of the couple through tiny moments be it their hands grazing one another of the simplicity of exchanging affectionate glances, without the need for a raunchy sex scene, although that was provided and I am certainly not complaining.

The raunchy scenes early on instantaneously allowed myself to place these 'wooden statues of power' , these politicians, outside the cold cage my judgement had banished them to and dragged them into the fiery  passionate sexual sphere , directly making them more relatable. That is exactly what I was already beginning to love about this drama, the humanisation of these figures in society who are far too often depicted as 'cold' with their only desire being the gain of power and status.

Like the sex, the pace was anything but slow, forcing the viewer to  keep up with every movement, name and headline featured.  There was reference to The Guardian, Twitter and other technological influences on politics that so few think to address, However like some other recent dramas (the finale of Black Mirror) I didn't feel like we were constantly bombarded with this, or that we were watching the screen on the screen as TPTH provided us with tiny tid bits allowing us to gain a slight insight into how the outer world perceived this fairly claustrophobic family based lifestyle.

By the end of the first episode I was thoroughly impressed by the subtly in double Oscar nominee Emily Watsons portrayal of 'Freya'. One thing that did grate was the overly childish characterization of their daughter (she must have been about 7, yet was still being picked up like a 3 year old) and her wooden acting didn't help matters either, but hey they're kids, they'll only learn!

The two later episodes felt less structured although I thought the opening scene of the second episode was truly GRIPPING tackling rape within marriage beautifully with a great soundscape and subtle character moments to show the effects.




I'm currently at Bournemouth Universities media school of excellence reading Scriptwriting for Tv and Film. I'm an aspiring Producer and Scriptwriter with keen focus on writing for Television Drama. I have written a handful of short films for Television Production students as well as orchestrating my own Originally formatted Talent Show 'Busking' and Writing and Directing my own 10 minute play 'Cardboard Cushions'.

Ideastap excites me.

I feel the potential of this platform, to bind and inspire creative minds could be one of the most exciting things on the web, because that's what the world boils down to, behind these screens, behind huge budget films, tiny theatre plays ; it's people. All too often we presume others don't want to help, but they do, creativity is collaboration. Nothing can rival the feeling of being a part of a beautiful creative process. The sparks that ricochet from that original awkward and clunky idea, that transform and blossom, I feel it is this natural high through idea generation that will continue to propel and inspire me through this bizarre but extremely rewarding industry.

I have so many ideas that are bursting out of me, I still find it incredible that at the end of a 30 hour Writing stint, you would have created something that wasn't there before. Something that will float around an agents office or in cyberspace or maybe it will forever remain, happily, at the bottom draw of your cabinet. It doesn't matter where it ends up, it's the creating that is important. If there is one thing that has inspired me to continue with this crazy creative career path , it is the subtle impact our work could potentially have , whether it's raising awareness of an issue or making one person stop and reflect for a single moment.

I truly feel there is nothing more exhilarating than having others surround you during those magical times, I love like minded creative spirits!

Tuesday, 14 May 2013

Tame Impala.

Brixton Academy 30/10/12

Brixton academy boasts an atmospheric and alluring venue, with it’s roman themed d├ęcor we truly felt like we were outside on a warm Italian evening. The ceiling seemed never ending, providing the perfect echoes for Tame Impalas encapsulating electric tones and dream-like melodies. Fortunately the set didn’t stray from their golden ‘Innerspeaker’ days which were anything but Tame.
Support: 'The Amazing Band' which were what they stated.

 A sea of indie shades and psychedelic waves washed over us as we stood in awe of the band and the captivatingly simple motion graphics that seamlessly merged into the music. Kevin Parker mid-set honestly announced ‘We can’t believe how nice you’re being, we thought you guys would hate us’ which only added momentum to the already swaying crowd. 

Absolute highlight of the gig was an exclusive mash-up of ‘Half Glass Full of Wine’ they performed as their encore. Just incredible, I’ve been bopping to the beat ever since.

Monday, 24 December 2012

Bones Festes Bonita.

I recently spent five days in the absolutely beautiful city that is Barcelona , instantly propelled into my top three cities, behind Berlin and Budapest.

This was our first glimpse of the glorious city;

We were scheduled to stay in the seaside town of Santa Susanna but decided to stay in a Hostel (Lullaby) smack bang in the middle of the city on the first night as we were so captivated by the place. There was so much thought and detail behind everything, from shop window displays to hotel lobbies, we were absolutely mesmerised. Like everything seemed to be in Barca, the Hostel was effortlessly stylish and really well run. Shame there were many a brawl on the street outside of our room that kept us from retreating to the much needed land of nodd, resulting in the worst nights (lack of) sleep during the whole trip.

The next hazy sleep deprived day was spent mooching around the city, being totally awe-struck by Gaudis architecture ;

(oh my gaud it is incredible)

 picnicking outside the Cathedral and discovering some true gems like this beautiful vegan restaurant;

We hadn't actually checked how much the train to Santa Susanna was and had visions of forking of 40 euros plus, with a £100 budget for the 5 days we were worried to say the least. To our absolute relief it only cost 4.30 euros, for a 90 minute train ride! We arrived in Santa Susanna at about 9pm, we worried we would be to late (a day and a half) to check in. But that was the least of our worries.

Once we'd walked down the beach for about 20 minutes to find our Hotel we also found that is was boarded up with a sign reading 'HOTEL CLOSED', on closer inspection it had a list of all guests that were meant to stay there and contact details for another hotel they could stay in. Our names were not on the list.

As, you can tell, we were overjoyed with this news. We decided we'd chase up the Hotel the others guests had been allocated to, somehow made it in time for the last train to Callela where we were directed to Hotel Amaika.

The lights were off. We were faced with another sign, diverting us to 'Callela Palace' A 10 minute walk away, my friend who studies Tourism installed further fears as he was dubious of any Hotel that bore the name 'Palace'.

We planned our whole speech, demanding rooms even though we weren't on the list, demanding the train fare back towards the city, proving our rights with various documentation however when we arrived at the warmly inviting plush Palace the receptionist simply said 'Ohh we've been expecting you'.  Talk about anti-climax. We would've been happy with any old room, all we craved was some silent slumber but the Hotel was even better than the one we had originally booked with. It had an indoors pool, sauna , jacuzzi and every room had a balcony that backed out onto the most glorious view of the hills.

The next day was spent exploring the beach and hills, we found a beautiful ruin and watched the sunset . We could see all the way to Barcelona centre. It was magical.

Once we made it back to ground level we supplemented the local Tapas and drained the local Sangria supply.

We were warned by everyone of the pick pockets but, probably due to the fact we went in December, we didn't come into direct contact with any, as far as we know anyway (cue the moment we look at our bank statements and realise we had our bank cards stolen).

The last two days were spent getting lost in the city, stumbling upon the most beautiful restaurants and spending far too much money on good food whilst visiting Gaudis 'house of bones'.

One moment that I will never ever forget occurred on the last day. We were sitting on a park bench in the centre, having lengthy conversations, mainly about tiny details of the beautiful landscape we were surrounded by. Despite the deep converse, my attention kept wandering to an old beggar man who sat on a bench on the other side of the park, all he seemed to own was a can of lager but seemed oddly content.

Throughout the two-and-a-half hour conversation that took place on the bench I would glance over at the man, who for the whole time was fiddling with his can, and what appeared to be a knife, not wanting to provoke him in anyway or seem rude, I would quickly turn away from him but was still totally captivated.

Then he stood up and began walking over to us, slightly aggressively but with an optimistic bounce in his step. He then handed me the most beautifully crafted candle holder whilst saying 'Bones Festes Bonita' which means 'Happy Holiday Beautiful' in Spanish. Before I could properly say thank you (despite shouting 'Gracias, es Bonito' pretty loudly after him) he had bounced away, waving  backwards, towards us with a beaming smile.

The single thought that he had nothing materialistically yet bore such creative skills and gave away all that he had ,makes me feel warm and fuzzy. In that one moment, it felt like Christmas. 

I was petrified we wouldn't be allowed to bring it back into the country as we only had hand luggage and it was pretty damn sharp, luckily, by a few (probably illegal) means it's now sitting on my window ledge, a permanent reminder of the good in Humanity and my beautiful Barcelonian break!

Tuesday, 24 July 2012


it's 04.43am, through hazy hungover eyes I relentlessly scroll down the news feed in hope of stumbling upon something of interest ,of worth, yet again I'm faced with superficial statuses that leave me feeling nothing but frustration and distain towards society and what we have all become. Drastic maybe but true for me nonetheless. Just think of all the knowledge, now I don't mean updates on people we don't really knows holidays, I mean real factual knowledge that will inspire us in ways that we never thought imaginable we could consume if we didn't spend so much time on facebook, absorbing often pointless, drivel by undereducated (myself included)of pretentious (myself included) teenagers.

When a sibling replies to an update of the day with ' I know already, I've seen it on facebook' I think that's when I really sat up and questioned the power of this website, because if we strip it back, that's what it is, just a website. I don't want to be constantly updated on my best friend’s lives let alone people that I've met once or sometimes not even at all! I would rather sit down face to face and talk, catch up like they used to, heck even as archaic as it may be even an email would be more enjoyable, something tailored to you.
Being a budding scriptwriter I really feel we have lost the capability to tell stories, and tell them well, whole experiences are summed up into statuses or captions.I'm going to challenge myself to have a facebook free summer, see how much I can read, learn and enjoy without hundreds of opinions clouding my sight. This will be a test for me, who actually wants to contact me, and who will really invest their time to tell me what they've been doing recently instead of expecting me to just peruse their life online.

Thursday, 23 February 2012

You came on your own. That's how you'll leave.

But I didn't come on my own, although that's how I'll probably leave.

Today it's my Birthday, it seems so odd writing/saying that, I normally say our. Today is the first day my twin sister and I have ever had a Birthday apart.

Last night/this morning at 12:00am we turned 19, that time last year we were literally counting down every hour minute and second to finally become 'adults'. This time last year we were getting ready to have our first legal night out in Birmingham. This year  I spent the night in my halls in Bournemouth, eating pizza and watching films whilst my Twin spent the night in her halls in London. Although I had company the first thing I did was ring her.

The conversation started with excitement and  congratulations as we both dug out our birthday cards from family friends and members, deciphering handwriting and stereotypical envelope colours we managed to open the same cards at the same time. When it came to opening the card from our parents we both stopped talking, stopped reading and just started crying.

It was such an odd rush of pure sadness. I think we finally realised it would never really be the same. I'm not sure about her but I had a flood of flashbacks, every memorable birthday, big party, but mainly the wake up call. Our mum would bring us bacon buttys every year and watch as we opened all our cards and gifts. Eventually the poor soulds who had the pleasure of our company whilst we were wailing managed to calm us down.

Throughout the day we kept each other up to speed with our whereabouts she even skyped me from a noodle bar in Leicester Square. Technology is a live saver. The last call of the day through a crackling line consisted of her slurring 'Joo it's our birthday, I'm so drunk. I love you'.

I guess we have to realise that we're leading independent lives now, it's just so hard.

Saturday, 28 January 2012


As much as I admire and endorse the usage of the Operatng System this post isn't about that, it's about the philosophy of 'Ubuntu' from which the OS stemmed.

A few nights ago I found myself trawling through the web in search of inspiration, starting on facebook (surprisingly). I've been really interested in the idealist views of the Zeitgeist Movement for a while now and they recently posted this video. The short documentary mainly revolves around the ideology of a resource based society, a society in which I whole heartily support.

Living in my ideal bubble money would be totally obliterated, we wouldn't need weapons, war or even oil (which is probably at the heart of most wars). WHY CAN'T WE ALL LIVE IN HARMONY.

Anyway, the video is where my naive ears first heard the word 'Ubuntu' I was instantly drawn to it and googled, wikied and youtubes it straight away. From inspirational speeches from Mandella and Bill Clinton to 'How To's' of the Operation System I sat through it all, gob smacked. I truly think for the first time I was resonating with something philosophical.

'Ubuntu' is a south African word which has been translated by hundreds of people and applied to hundreds of different situations but my favourite translation is;

 'I am what I am, because of who we all are'

For years now I have felt myself eventually coming to the conclusion that this sense of originality and individualism that we all (secretly or openly) desire is just a fascade. Whether we like it or not we all all influenced by hundreds of things in hundreds of different ways on a daily basis in this current society. Everyone wants to beat everyone, to have more money, to have the most 'desirable' features but eventually we we all wear out. The world will be populated  with egos, not humans. We all need to just stop. Zoom out of our 'hectic' and 'complicated' lives and realise how simple life can be, if only we would let it.

We don't need to stress over our favourite pair of jeans ripping, our beloved mug breaking, or gaining a few pounds or even loosing a couple of quid. Appreciate the time we spend talking at crazy hours of the morning, the times when we can't stop laughing and heck even the times when we are so bored we think our brains will just blackout. Even in those moments ,we are so lucky , we're given so much, to feel truly 'bored' (in which itself rattles my brain, is anyone truly ever 'bored') is almost offensive to those who don't have what we have.

 Anyway as much as the tangent is proving therapeutic to me , it's probably boring (or is it? ha) you. The feeling I got after a long night of delving deep into African philosophy and community spirit is the closest I think I've ever felt to having an epiphany.

Life is too short to fret, in fact you shorten it if you do. So smile more, laugh more and RELAX MORE.

Friday, 27 January 2012


Although my sister came down for a weekend in November half of my flatmates were either at home or had prior commitments so this Monday was the first time a handful (I have 17 flatmates) got to properly talk to her. I think my course mates who have only ever known me found it the strangest. One close friend kept looking at me and mouthing ' I can't do this' whilst reacting to my sisters laugh which is apprently identical.

I suppose we've never been exposed to anything quite like it, our entire lives have been spent with people being totally aware that we are twins (partially because we used to spend every waking moment together) so this is all a bit new. I can't imagine how bizzare it must be for one of my friends to meet Abi for the first time. When I try and think about how I would feel if I were in their position I actually feel uncomfortable.

Boyfriends is a new one too. I met my sisters boyfriend for the first time at Xmas, as she met him at Uni. He didn't cope very well, he found it very hard to not compare our every word, smile or intonation, he is adament that we are totally the same. I still don't think he has gotten his head round the idea, almsot 2 months on!

Wednesday, 18 January 2012


The past 24 hours have been everything I wanted out of Uni. You'd naturally assuming milk cider and mosh pits wouldn't mix well but last night was one of the best nights in Bournemouth.Surrounded by flat mates and coursemates, I wouldn't wanna be anywhere else other than the middle of a sweaty mosh pit on a Tuesday night.

This morning was spent drawing naked men for a free 'life drawing' class and this afternoon was spent devising and writing comedy sketches in the form of 5 second films in the bar on campus. I love Uni so so much.

Saturday, 31 December 2011

Why 2011 has definitely been the best year of my entire life;

   Stopped sucking my thumb

  Passed my driving test ( 3 weeks before my sister may I add)

 Became an 'adult' in age.

                                                    EMMA AND PETE GOT MARRIED!


                                                       Survived A-levels!(only just)

                                                Spent four weeks travelling Europe.

                                                           Soundwave Festival Croatia.

                                    Had my first proper proper job as a playscheme worker.

                                                 Got into Bournemouth University!
                                                       End of the Road Festival.

                                            Bought Mooshka my beloved dutch bike.

                                                         Moved to Bournemouth!

                                                             Granny got a boyf!

                                          Voulenteered at British Heart Foundation.

                                         Hitch Hiked to France and back for charity.

                                              Co-wrote and Co-directed my own play!

    Started sucking my thumb again (this is not a good thing) ah well at least lent is around the corner.

Although it'll be a challenge I like to think 2012 will be even better. Thank you to everyone who contributed to the most unbelivable year of my life ; I wouldn't change anything.

Tuesday, 20 December 2011


After 4 months of living on my own (well with 17 other flatmates, but independently nonetheless) coming back home was one of the most bizarre things I have ever experienced. From having my own room and life to being chucked back into a shared room with my twin sister and having to share EVERYTHING, it all feels very odd indeed.Adapting to the sudden influx of fruit and veg and being fed proper food wasn't hard at all, feeling the strains of parental control however has taken some more getting used to. From minuscule responsibilities  of walking the dog, to having to justify my spending habits (I really wish I didn't have my bank statement sent home!) , I've seamlessly slipped back into driving and my thumb has slowly slipped back into my mouth!


The initial yearnings of a long bath, dishwasher and endless access to wireless Internet soon wore off, especially my dreams of not having to wash up for 12 days , due to the fact our dishwasher is broken and won't be repaired until after Xmas! disaster. Once all the easy food in the fridge and easy viewing on the TV that my parents had recorded  had been consumed ,despite having the starting of a pot-belly, A strange feeling of emptiness washed over me in the bath (pun intended). There's not enough to do here but almost too much to occupy me, I find myself aimlessly logging in to facebook for hours, just to play catch up with my flatmates who are dotted about the country, enjoying their other lives. I'm finding it very hard to separate my student life and my family life.

Although I've managed to catch up with a lot of my nearest and dearest including all my neices and nephews, eaten extremly well and slept even better, there is a massive part of me which is itching to get back to Bournemouth ASAP! I have a whole new life down there, everyone knows me as me, a fully formed arcticle (which in itself is debatable) whereas here I feel as everyone knows my past , what I used to be, but not who I want to be. It all gets very complicated and confusing which represents my current state of mind perfectly. Before Uni everyone tells you of all the great times you'll have both at Home and there but no-one warns you of this feeling of dis-jointment and bewildreness.

Friday, 16 December 2011

Hometime already.

After spending the morning on the beach with my flatmates family and NEW PUPPY I've just finished packing to go home for Xmas.  Two days ago we had our fake Christmas with the flat, spread amongst 4 kitchens, we fed 14 people with 3 chickens and all the trimmings, to say we were stressed was an understatement. We played wink murder, yes, at the dinner table and exchanged our secret Santa gifts. It was such a lovely evening which was finished off with mince pies and Alladin.

Part of me is yearning for good food, good sleep and a good rest but another part of me wants to keep up this momentum. It'll be the first time alot of us have been separated for longer than 4 days, which is weird. At Uni you're worried that you'll fail to keep up with people from back home but now we'll have to consider keeping up with our Uni friends just as much. I'm sure it'll be fine.

Friday, 2 December 2011


Just need to write something to let everyone know I'm still alive, I want to blog so badly but have literally been so busy. From writing and directing my own play to trying to learn German aswell as completing coursework its all been a bit hectic. But I am alive, malnurished but alive.

Here are some photos of what I live a minute walk from literally;

Sunday, 23 October 2011

Freshening up!

It's 3am in the morning when I'm writing this, it's finally quite enough. To give you a rough idea of my living conditions and basic quality of life ;my halls were once a 10 storey car park which now has a night club at the bottom of it and it opposite a homeless shelter. Despite all these tiny details, it is home and will be for the next year. For the first time in 10 days I finally feel relaxed enough to write something. I've just had my first full week of being a university fresher and can honestly say I have never met so many amazing, inspiring and insightful people in such a short space of time, it is insane! I have contracted 'freshers flu' (I basically feel like poo warmed up) by lack of sleep and lack of decent food (not to mentioned a steep increase in alchohol intake). University is a bizarre but brilliant place, I'll try and describe my first week as well as I can.

The journey down to Bournemouth was intended to take 3.5 hours but ended up being 5.3 hours as someone had pre-set the sat nav to avoid all main roads, taking us on the longest ,wettest, most pointless route imaginable. Once we arrived at my university halls  we cracked the car boot open, just as the heavens opened. Due to the downpour and possible downpour from my mothers eyes I shooed the parents as soon as I had everything in my room and had used their help enough. They left me £5 to get a proper full English breakfast before the starvation commenced.( I wouldn't dream of spending a fiver on one meal now!)  Once in my surprisingly spacious new room I began to unpack whilst setting up my iPod docks. It was so strange how conscious I was of what music I was playing due to first impressions, I think I spent more time sifting through 'shuffle' to find an appropriate unpacking and meeting song than I did actually unpacking! ridiculous! I went around knocking on my new flatmates doors (as daunting as anything!) and grabbed two of them and went to the shops.Eventually corridors filled as much the parents eyes. A question that soon became the most asked question ever of 'what're you studying' was our first topic of discussion ,if ever there is a pub quiz night, my flat would win, we have it all from biological sciences to computer animation. Everyone is so friendly,  we've already started planning weekly meals and film nights (we'll see how long our budget and film collections last).
On the first night 'I have never'(a drinking game) got us all suitably sloshed , finding out some hilarious stories along the way (one girl broke her boyfriends nose accidentally whilst having sex). Fully tipsy and ready to socialise we headed to what is now our regular, the Old Fire Station, which is literally an old fire station renovated into a pretty amazing club. The next two days consisted of drunken divulging in drinking games, eating absolute rubbish and being totally sleep deprived. By the third day we were all physically and mentally drained so headed to Lidl to stock up on some much needed fruit and veg!

The second night was 'Back2school' at the Old Fire Station but once we saw the que to get in we decided to go elsewhere. We found a club called Lava , £1 entry and all drinks (including the essential yagerbombs) were £1.20 ; heaven. I met a fellow scriptwriter in the smoking area after he'd banged his head on the wall, he claims this never happened but I blame the concussion. The club soon turned into a sauna and we craved  cold air so headed down to the beach.It was 2am on a monday night and was the first time that I had seen the beach since I had arrived, naturally I ran as fast as I could into the icy waters, luckily I couldn't feel it as I was conveniently numbed by this point.

The next day were spent nursing my hangover and feeding my hunger, we had a quite night out at the Acoustic Fayre and saw some brilliant live music at The Old Fire Station. A personal highlight was the last act called 'Stanners' who sang Jamie.T covers, but had been given free beer the entire evening resulting in him forgetting the majority of the lyrics and turning to the audience for guidance.
The days that followed were spent sunning overselves on the surprisingly scorching shores as the heat wave began. We were in heaven! Our clothes were full of sand and our bellys were full of Harry Ramsdens fish'n'chips! One of my favourite and most poignant time I had was actually spent alone. I went for a bike ride down the seafront which gave me the opportunity to actually soak up what was happening without feeling hungover or distracted in anyway. The sun was beating and my face was beaming, I felt so so happy and privileged to be living in such a beautiful place.

To continue the beach themed day nicely we went to the 'Beach Party' at the Old Fire Station, I'd love to go into excessive detail about it but the truth is, I can barely remember what happened after we got into the que. I do however distinctly remember the sheer ,excruciating agony of receiving glowstick juice(this is not an innuendo) to the eye ball! The strange thing is when I went to the toilet to extract the scream evoking liquid I bumped into my flatmate who was already rinsing her reddened eye after being put through the same hell moments earlier. Like ,well everything in this snap happy life this turned into a kodak moment.

I hope you enjoy our pained faces as much as we did the morning after!
The night ended with an hour conversation in a chippy about films. Something that has been a continual conversation focus since I met other scriptwriters. I ended up inviting four people back for a sleepover (bearing in mind I'd known them 3 days top) , it's strange how quickly bonds form in such an intense environment though! We took all the cushions off the chairs in my living room and made a bed the size of the floor. The night was spent giggling until we slept. The laughter continued into the next day as we were given a break with 'Comedy Nation' at the Old Fire Station, it was absolutely hilarious.

My idea of freshers was wreckless drinking, drunken regrets and lots of sick but I hadn't encountered any of these things (okay maybe my drinkign was a little wreckless) but we were so tame! We spent the first Friday shopping for our first Sunday roast and beach bbq. We each contributed £5 and managed to buy enough food (including stuffing and parsnips) for the roast and two bbqs that followed! Our Friday night was even more wild as we stayed in baking cakes with our Romanian flatmate who is possibly the nicest boy I have ever met! If that wasn't crazy enough to feed our adreneline cravings we topped the night off with 'Bridesmaids' which was surprisingly less chick flicky and more crude than I ever imagined!

After living off bread and butter for a week, these badboys were heavenly!

Saturday was spent walking to the campus, soaking up some sun then winding down with a beach bbq. My flatmates boyfriend provided the bbq and the insanely loud sound system and the night was just beautiful. After filling out stomachs with steak, burgers and sausages, playing a bit of frisbee,dancing round in the sand and singing some disney classics , we went home (when you get to the point of singing disney classics it's usually home time).

Once we'd changed out of our smokey and sandy clothes we went to our favourite bar, Inferno, where you can get a drink and play pretty much any board game you want, for diddly squit! The games were childish and the night was still young. So a few of us headed out in search of 'sound circus' , a heavy metal rock bar. After having yager bomb pitchers and far too much sambuca we couldn't believe our ears when they stopped the music in aid of an annual award ceremony! It was, and still is one of the most bizarre things I have ever witnessed. To start with the host, intentionally or not, resembled dracula an unholy amount and the recipients were crayolas! There was also an award for best pole dancer which was basically an excuse for the host to get far too excited. We were given party poppers to pull and really did feel like an odd, gothic, slightly incestual family.

After Saturday nights shinnanigans Sunday didn't start til about 3pm. With a Sunday Roast to cook by 5pm the pressure was on we only had 2/3 ovens working aswell! We had two hours to cook two chickens , carrots, potatoes,parsnips,stuffing and gravy not to mention homemade yorkshire puds! Three of us did most of the cooking, between two kitchens, just to remind you though,our kitchens have no windows and a vent that you can barely call an extractor fan, oh and we have to keep the kitchen doors shut to prevent setting of the fire alarm. All in all our kitchens were roasting more than the chickens!  40 minutes into the cooking, the fire alarm sounded. Turning off all of our cookers we ran down the stairs, leaving potatoes and carrots still on hot hobs our timing was thrown right out of the window! We joked that we caused the fire, until the joke died along with a part of me as I saw smoke coming out of my bedroom.

After 20 minutes of worrying, the building was given the all clear, except we could all still definitely see smoke coming out of my bedroom. Once we were allowed back in the building I paced it up the 7 flights of stairs to check on my room, it was fine. I looked out the window with such relief as I realised the vent from the extractor fans is placed just above my window. Drama over, we got back to our roast. 2 hours later than expected but still highly appreciated our first ever flat roast was ready! Having small kitchens the sweat the food out of you before you even tuck in forced us to eat our dinner on the floor of the living room.

We finished our beautiful beach weekend off with a film, five minutes into it however I was flat out, the week full of new faces and new places had taken its toll and I just couldn't keep my eyes open.

Freshers week was unbelivable, luckily that was just the first week and we had another whole week of freshers to go!!

Thursday, 20 October 2011

European adventures: Wroclaw (Poland!)

In Wroclaw in Wroclaw, it's raining in Wroclaw!

The train journey was 6 hours and probably the smoothest yet, no thunder storms, no directional errors and I slept for 4 of the hours so it went pretty quickly indeed! On the train on the way to a new location I'd make a habit of whipping out my electronic translator ( a family friend bought it for me so I was determined to get some use out of it!) I'd teach myself and attempt to teach the others basic phrases like please and thank you. 'Jimcoya' , how you say it ,not spell it ,was thank you in Polish , I can't get it out of my head,whilst out there however I could not pronounce it at all! I made a habit of declaring my feelings of a country pretty early on. Annoucning ' I LOVE POLAND!' pretty much as soon as we crossed the border was maybe a little bit rash.

We arrived in Wroclaws temporary train station ( rubble,falling ceilings, paper walls) with no water, no food, no Polish money and no idea where we were in relation to the centre or more importantly our hostel! We walked through what appeared to be the slums of Poland, the entire time I was absorbing the new scenery I was dreading our two nights there! The slums soon turned into streets and streets turned into a beautiful square, bearing a much needed cash machine. We took out what we thought was enough money however when changing currency and exchange rates so much it was hard to keep track of what we were actually spending! Cash in had we headed to the first shop we saw, stocked up on crisps chocolate and supposedly,water. I was so dehydrated. The taste of carbonated water was the last thing I needed ,I was thoroughly gutted, it even said it in English on the bottle! The others found it mildly amusing, much to my dismay. Through asking many non-English-speaking Poles we eventually (after 3 hours of lugging our bags around, in the sweltering heat) found the 'Moon Hostel'.

Our backs were dripping with sweat, we were utterly exhausted after having to climb 3 floors of steps (later realising there was a lift), Eds feet were swollen and we were all sickening. John had been ill from day one and we had all slowly contracted it, morphing from your average, bearable cold into sneezing fits,headaches and phlegmy chests! Drained but still determined to get a fresh taste of Poland we went to the square, which we had earlier passed but had been too exhausted to appreciate. After walking around the entire block in search of a suitable place to eat we finally settled for an Italian, how very Polish!

After our meal we roamed the secret streets of Wroclaw, passing courtyards brimming with people and beer, lit up by candle light. In that moment of peering in through the iron gate I realised that Poland was nothing like I'd thought it would have been. Firstly, I was expecting it to be cold, I even packed jumped and jeans especially for this leg of the journey, secondly I thought it would be fairly expensive but it was beyond cheap! We managed to get two hefty jugs of authentic Polish beer for about £5, squeezing about 3 glasses out of it each, calculating as about 41p per pint! Beer goggles donned we walked back, batting about the idea of getting tattoos. Thankfully we dismissed the idea, however hilarious it may have been.

Our one and only full day in Wroclaw was set to be a corker. The weather was scorching and our spirits were high, despite our drinking antics the night before. We had one of our longest lie ins of the whole trip (until 10am) however we managed to do so much with the day. We had no plans, we rarely did but simply explored until we found something of worth to do. We walked through the town, through parks and beside the river, eventually stumbling across the fairly famous 'Panorama'. A 360 degree painting with 3D elements, we booked tickets for an hours time and filled the wait with blueberries in the park. We managed to keep ourselves entertained for quite sometime by simply seeing who could throw a blueberry the highest, catching in it their mouth. Leaving a mound of squished blueberries behind us, the ones that never made it, we walked over the hill to the Panorama.

There was an English commentary that I found very interesting although after 20 minutes of listening to the same man, talk about the same painting, we began to bore. Energy fully zapped we needed some grub. We saw a boat cafe with a jetty and decided it was perfect. It not only looked great, but the food smelt great, we ate pork straight from the barbecue with complimentary gherkins, bread and mustard. Probably the most Polish meal we had the entire time. On the jetty we saw people canoeing down the river and after letting our food settle, decided to join them. We entered the non-English-speaking boat house and managed to explain what we wanted, through hand gestures and familiar phrases. To hire a canoe for an hour was something silly like £3, we spent 45 minutes travelling in one direction at a leisurely pace then spent the last 15 minutes, having realised the time, going as quickly as our little arms would take us back to the boat house. When we returned the spectators and boat owners were laughing at our flustered states and typically touristy time keeping.

We already felt we had filled the day with fun but the best part was yet to come. We caught a tram to the not very Polish 'Japanese Botanical Gardens' and wandered into a massive fountain with synchronised music. Straight away we were blown away by the beauty of the place, I still couldn't believe we were in Poland and the sun was that strong! We hadn't even reached the proper gardens but one we did, we knew. There were ornate bridges, coy carp and symbolic statues, had you have been transported there, not knowing where you were you would genuinely believe you were in Japan. After a few hours sunbathing on a jetty and watching an entire synchronised fountain performance we headed back to the hostel.

When we went out on the evening we were greeted by a huge stage and an even bigger crowd, full of football fans. It turned out that Wroclaws football club had won some cup (clearly not a footy fan) and all the players had come to the city to see their fans. We were kind of annoyed,intrigued ,but annoyed. The beauty of the square at night time was ruined by dramatic X-factor esque music (which was repeated for every player) and strobe lights. We ate quickly then went to find a bridge that we'd passed the day before. We found the bridge and much much more, the bridge was full with locks (with lovers names on) but once we crossed the bridge we heard the all to familiar sound of an acoustic guitar. Following live music, as we found ourselves doing alot, we reached a small band of boys, one on guitar, one on Cello and one singing. It was magical, as was the majority of our time in Poland.

I say majority as the travel day that followed was one of the worst.
We woke up at 7:30am in order to check out and leave plenty of for getting lost. We asked the receptionist at the 'Moon Hostel' which tram to get to the train station, which she confirmed was the number 17, a fairly frequent tram. Naturally, as soon as we caught one glimpse of a '17', suitably placed on the front of a tram, we ran for it. Running , I do not mind, but running with 15kg of bag on my back is not fun at all. Puffing and panting we only just made it onto the busy tram. Once settled  in the fact we were going to make our train to Prague we began trying to relax but a rather rough polish family had made us their sole source of entertainment for the journey. They sniggered at us , clearly analysing our stereotypical 'tourist' appearance. However they may have realised that we were infact going the wrong way on the tram, forty minutes before we did. As soon as rows of shops turned into rows of crops and the number of bus stops and people dwindled, we began to get worried. We looked around the tram in hope for someone who spoke english. I noticed that there was a woman behind us reading an english book and asked her the question we had all been replaying quitely for the past half an hour ' are we going in the direction of the train station' she needn't have replied as her face confirmed our doubts, we had been travelling the wrong way for forty minutes, with 8 minutes to go until our only train left the station.
Thanking the lady profusely we got off at the soonest stop and ran across the road to catch it the other way. We had given up on the idea that we were actually going to make it to Prague that day. We got off the tram with no idea which direction the train station was, it even began to rain. Perfect pathetic fallacy. We had truly given up so we sat down to eat on a wall. Eventually we made out signs that pointed us to the station and quickly got up with our last threads of hope , we made it across the road when Ed realised that he was no longer in possesion off our 'European train timetable', bascially our bible! The threads of hope had snapped, Ed traced our steps as well as he could in search of the book but returned with a glum face. We all slumped and sighed, wallowing in one of the lowest points of the whole trip. A cheeky grin sprung on Eds face just before he got to us, pulling his jacket up he revealed the book! A little bit of happiness was enough to encourage us to continue on our quest; find the train station. Once a basic direction was acquired through asking various locals we managed to find it, after 2 and a half hours, for what should have been a 30 minute tram journey we made it, to the temporary train station which had no reliable train timetable, no seats, no shops, nothing bar rubble and pipework.

John being the most spontaneous of the group toyed with the idea of going to Warsaw then catching a night train to Prague. We wern't having any of it, after the two hours we had been through all we wanted to do was get out of Poland. John came up with the plan of going back to Germany (Dresden) the to Prague from there. We all agreed it was the best idea depsite having to wait 4 hours on the cold concerete floor. Eventually we made it onto the correct platform, unaware that the train we wanted had been stationary for the past 30 minutes and was literally just about to depart! We ran as fast as we could and just about squeezed onto the packed carriage. We were forced to stand  for 40 excruitiating minutes, John even had a nose bleed which only added to the stress.

Once we finally made it to Dresden we treated ourselves to ice creams and sandwiches then boarded the 17:08 to 'Praha', so after 10 hours of waiting , standing, running and bleeding, we were finally on the correct train with the correct destination!