Being 24 (And Why It’s Awesome)

Being 24 (And Why It’s Awesome)

MIND FUCK: 24 was the age all the characters in Friends were when the show started and that’s the age I am now (and have been for a wee while). WHAAAAAAT?

They were so grown up. They had sex, jobs, some money, apartments, relationships, annoying parents, and all sorts of grown up things. They were my idols. Their lives looked incredible. They were 24. And now I’m 24. Yikes.

But it’s a good age, isn’t it? I think it is. Here’s why:

Jobs

People who are 24 tend to have a job. Studying (URGH) is no longer required. You can go home at 6 and you can switch off — if you want. Because you can stay switched on if you like your job. Either way, you win. Love your job? You’re getting paid to have fun. Hate your job? You still have actual proper guilt-free free time. Also, at 24, you don’t have to feel guilty if you’re not doing your “dream job”. There’s still time.

Friends

Gone are the days when you have to be friends with absolute dicks because not having friends looks super uncool. You’re only friends with people you genuinely really like and care about. To be fair, they’re probably a bit dickish too. But dickish in a good way. They call you up on bullshit and keep you on your toes. And you can also be dickish. They forgive you when you make a drunken moron of yourself or don’t text them back for ages or bail on events because you can’t be assed or WHATEVER. You love them and they love you – annoying warts and all. See Peter’s Friends for reference.

Self-esteem

So you’re definitely not as self-conscious as you were when you were in your teens. And you’ve sort of come to the realisation that being yourself is alright. You do the things that you think are fun and that’s that. And instead of telling people lies so they like you, you tell them the truth. Although, don’t get me wrong, you probably still hate yourself pretty much 78% of the time, but it’s definitely not as bad as those teen years. Ugh, weren’t they the worst?

FREEEEEEEDOM

I actually don’t want to limit freedom to just being 24/in your twenties. Being free is certainly a lot easier in your twenties, but you have to be free whatever your age. You should always be able to change your mind. Don’t like a job you’ve been doing for 20 years? GET OUT. Don’t want to be married anymore? GET OUT. Had enough of being a parent? Sorry, that one you’re stuck with.

You’re the perfect mix of kid/adult

YOU HAVE THE BEST OF BOTH WORLDS. You don’t have to do what your parents say anymore, but you can still ask them for help.  It’s acceptable to stay in and watch Masterchef every night, but it’s acceptable to go out and get drunk. If you can’t remember the last time you had a home-cooked meal or changed your bed sheets or got 8 hours sleep, people still treat you like an adult! It’s jammy, jammy, jammy.

Money

My dad calls my boyfriend and I “TINKs”. Two incomes, no kids. It’s good, isn’t it? While we both have jobs, neither of us have any responsibilities. I mean, we probably should start saving for the “future”, but it’s a lot more fun eating out, drinking, and going on holidays and things. And it’s not like we don’t have a savings account. We have one, we’re just always taking money out of it. Because we can.

I think there are more good things about being in your twenties, but since I’m in my twenties, I drank a lot over the weekend and I’m sort of dying a little and I really want a crisp sandwich and a Pixar film. Yeah, I’m just going to just end this blog here.

 

Old Before Our Time

Old Before Our Time

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Yup. Ullapool’s lovely, but we’re probably the only people here who are under the age of seventy. This is not something that bothers me though as I LOVE old people. Like, really love them. I love speaking to old people, films about old people, books about old people and just old people in general. Well, apart from my Grandma – she was a bit of a scary lady. Terrifying, really.

Aaaaanyway, so yes, we’ve reached Ullapool. It was a nice journey, actually. I insured my boyfriend on the car so I was able to just kick back and have a wee snooze. I woke up when we arrived and it was absolutely pissing it down – pretty standard weather for here I’m guessing, although yesterday was quite sunny. I keep trying to tell my boyfriend that I’m actually a little sunburnt, but he’s adamant that the redness of my cheeks is due to the copious amounts of red meat and butter I eat.

RED MANSo we checked in and I’m pretty sure the hotel owner took a double take when he saw us. It did feel as though we were 12 year olds playing at being grown-ups, but he took us to our room and after another wee snooze (we definitely belong amongst the older generation), we headed out to wonder around the town and try a pub called The Seaforth – the place where I finally got my long awaited for mussels. I was going to take a photo of them to put on here, but I couldn’t stop eating. They were served in a creamy, garlic sauce and were absolutely delicious. I don’t know why you never get a spoon to go with your mussels because the sauce is definitely the best bit. I usually use one of the mussel shells to scoop it out the bowl, which I think actually adds to the flavour, but you do end up with sticky, fishy sauce all over your hands and running down your arms, but I don’t mind that.

We then headed to another pub called The Ferry Boat Inn and we were lucky to bag a comfy seat by a window that was decorated with fairy lights and overlooking the harbour. Ah, there’s nothing quite like a pint and good view to make you feel content. There was also a couple of couples sitting next to us who I was hoping to make friends with and as we were leaving the pub, I saw my chance! One was taking a photo of the three others so I offered to take a photo of all four of them. I was met with the reply, “Oh yes please, you’ll know how to work this phone better than I do”, but I didn’t. I ended up taking a video of them and had to ask my boyfriend to do it. They then told us to have a good night and wondered off in the opposite direction so my hopes of friendship were dashed.

Ach weel.

The next day, we had a proper wonder around the town and came across lots of jam and short bread and tartan. Classic Scotland. We then went on a wee boat trip to see some seals. We saw the seals and I guess they were cute, but I couldn’t help flinching at their shimmying down the rocks. I know they’ll have tough skin, but it still looked sore. The tour guide was a bit useless as well. He didn’t tell us anything. He just parked the boat next to the seals and we sat there for half an hour, listening to people go “Awwww…” He then took us around the corner, and parked there for another 15 minutes, but I wasn’t sure what we were meant to be looking at. There were a few seagulls and a lot of rock, but that couldn’t be it, could it? I think everyone else was a bit confused as well. There was one confused “Awwww…?” and that was it.

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Back on land, we returned to the hotel for another snooze before setting off for dinner and this time we thought we would try The Ferry Boat Inn as all the food we saw there the night before looked really good. And BY JOVE it was. I really wanted to get mussels again so we got some to share for a starter and they were even better than the ones I had the night before and what’s more, SHE GAVE US A SPOON! Finally, a woman after my own heart. It was funny that it was only one spoon she gave us. It’s like she knows drinking the sauce is only something some people do. We both had scampi and chips for our main course, which I’m sure was delicious, but I hadn’t eaten in 12 hours and before eating my mussels, I’d had a pint of cider, so naturally, I felt a bit drunk and sick. My boyfriend told me to stop eating my scampi, but I powered through and sure enough, the scampi soaked up the alcohol (hehe, drunken little scampi) and I was right as rain.

We also decided to go to The Ferry Boat Inn because they had an open mic night on so we thought we’d be in for lots of music and laughs. We were. A group of older people joined our table and didn’t stop talking about sex – or “bonking” as they called it – the entire night. They come to Ullapool every summer, by the sounds of it, and rent a bungalow that sleeps around ten people. They hit tea rooms by day and pubs by night and all I have to say, is that retirement looks AWESOME!!! After a few pints, my boyfriend then got up and played, and by the end of the night, I had to fight the old ladies (and a few old men) off him with their walking sticks.

So that’s us up to date. This morning I had haddock and a poached egg for breakfast – trying to be healthier – and it was nice, but I missed my sausages and black pudding. Tomorrow, there’s always tomorrow. As for now, we’re away for a wee drive to Gairloch.

But not before another snooze.

Can Peter’s Friends Be My Friends?

Can Peter’s Friends Be My Friends?

I kept telling myself that one day, soon, something will happen that will be so good, that I will have no choice BUT to write about it. And last night, just around half past ten, it happened. That’s right, I watched the greatest film known to MAN/WOMAN/CHILD/HORSE (SEA AND LAND). Peter’s Friends. Ever heard of it? If you haven’t, stop reading RIGHT NOW and watch it.

(Sorry, I’m being so bossy).

It was my dad who asked if I wanted to watch it with him, but I was already tucked up in bed and ready to sleep so I thought I’d just watch the beginning to see if it was something I would like…1 hour and 47 minutes later, I was dancing around to the credits. It’s probably one of the best depictions of friendship I’ve seen – even better, dare I say it, than Friends.

So basically, a group of friends (or, to be more precise, a crazy cat lady, sex maniac, over-protective mother, alcoholic, and a nice guy) who haven’t seen each other for a while get together for new year. Fights and fall-outs; make-ups and break-ups, and a secret revealed two minutes before the bells is probably the height of excitement in this film as nothing much really happens. The characters (played by Hugh Laurie, Emma Thompson, Imelda Staunton, Kenneth Branagh, and Stephen Fry – isn’t that just the best cast in the world?!) start from a place of self-loathing and end in a place of self-loathing with a bit of loathing each other in between, but in no way is it depressing. Funny and heart-warming, the film ends with the thought that you may not like yourself, your friends might not like you that much either, you might not like them, but you all still want to be in each other’s lives because, you know, you LOVE each other.

I actually felt so warm and fuzzy inside after watching it that I sent my friend a recording of the opening scene – “Some friends, you know you will have for the rest of your life. You’re welded together by love, trust, respect or loss…or, in our case, simple embarrassment.” This friend then replied, “Fuck off, Josie.”

I feel he would like this film.

Anyway, enough gushing. Time to get on with this damn essay.

Plan? I Don’t Even Have a “Pl-“

Plan? I Don’t Even Have a “Pl-“

Isn’t that just the best goddam episode of Friends? It’s The One with George Stephanopoulos, where they all freak out about what they’re doing with their lives, but then Rachel looks at them playing Twister and she’s like, “I’m fine, I’ve got my magic beans!” I feel like my friends are my magic beans, but if I told them that, I would definitely be excluded from the group.

FOREVER.

Anyway, enough about where lives are going; where is this blog going? Well, you’ll be excited to hear that on Thursday I shall be returning to the bright lights of Glasgow (oh dear, think I’ve forgotten how to put on makeup), then I’m off to Ireland on Friday for a week, then London for two weeks,  and then Italy for two weeks so hopefully I should have a lot of interesting things to write about and hopefully you’ll enjoy these a bit more because I don’t think many of you have enjoyed my Spar tales. I would have thought a blog that centres around a wee village shop tremendously exciting, but WHATEVER. I’m over it. I really enjoyed writing my Spar tales, a lot more than anything I’ve written about before. I don’t know, it just seems writing about other places can be a bit boasty and Oh my god, totally just climbed up a mountain and saw such a beautiful sunset and then a camel kissed me. Although, I suppose you won’t get that from me. It’ll be more: Oh my god, totally just climbed up a mountain and I thought I was going to die – mountains are so friggin’ HIGH! Then I saw a sunset that blinded me and I started freaking out because I thought we would have to descend the mountain in darkness and then a camel kissed me and I’ve spent the rest of the evening googling “Camel Diseases”, “Camel Aids”, “Rabies from Camel?” Yes, that’s more like it.

So if you fancy reading tales from a nervous traveller who pretty much has constant diarrhea then stay tuned!

Another Friday Night, Another Cup of Tea

Another Friday Night, Another Cup of Tea

I MISS DRINKING! Although, considering I have a wee tipple before going to my bed pretty much every night (yes, I’m drinking alone, but no, I’m not an alcoholic – I like the taste and it helps me sleep and also, isn’t a glass of wine a day healthy? SO STOP JUDGING), I’m hardly in the position to say that I actually miss alcoholso really, I miss getting drunk. Ah, that blissful state of fuzzy wuzziness. Yep, it’s the fuzzy wuzziness I miss.

The fuzzy wuzziness.

Boredom levels have reached a new high (or low?) at the Spar. I was stacking Coke bottles the other night and got so excited (too excited) when I saw a Share one with…and then the name of a friend! Oh my goodness, this is a Dear Diary moment!!!! I immediately took a photo and sent it to him.

I don’t think he was as amused as I was.

BUT THEN, half an hour later or so, I was stacking some more Coke bottles when I saw ANOTHER friend’s name! Freaky or what? So I went and got my other friend (in coke bottle form) and put them next to each other. Aww, sweet. And that was the moment that my awe-inspiring plan was born – Tonight, I will find all my friend’s names and get a picture of them all together! Oh my goodness, this is going to be so much fun. 

Turns out, it wasn’t. Three crates of coke later, I only found one other name, although I did find “Bobby”, which I thought I could use to my advantage since there is a sub-group within our group of friends known as “The Boabies” (Scottish slang for penis). But alas, my awe-inspiring plan just looked sad:

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Hey my little coke bottle friends! Looking gooooood!

And then I had to explain myself to the owners:

Owners: Josie, why did you open three crates of coke?

Me: Oh yeah, that – yeah, I didn’t realise that one was already open and then I forgot that I had opened another one…

(Quick thinking or what?)

Owners: Right…

Pffft. They were looking at me as though I was crazy, but imagine if I’d said “Oh that, I was just trying to find my friends!” They would have at least considered letting me go and so it is with this blog, that I do give you another example illustrating the necessity to tell a little white lie to people one barely knows.

Socially Inept?

Socially Inept?

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I’m not very good at meeting new people. In fact, I pretty much spout compulsive lies whenever it happens. Going to the hair dressers is the worst.

“So, do you have any plans for this evening?”

Only a loser would get their hair done and then go home, eat a pizza, watch some crappy t.v., and go to bed.

“Erm, yeah I’m going out for dinner with my family. My sister’s home from Canada so it’s kind of like a reunion thing…”

Oh god, only a loser will get their hair done and then go out with their family.

“…and…and then I’m going out. In town. Probably be a messy night. Had a messy night last night as well. Probably still drunk. I was soooo wasted.”

Nervous giggle, hiccough, cough, type of thing.

I don’t know why I do it. The lies just come out. And eventually, I get caught up in my web, go bright red, and successfully manage to alienate myself from the social norm.

I have managed to make some friends, however, and tonight we went out for some good ol’ pub grub. We walked in and asked for a table for five, and even though there was one in the cosy, social hub of the pub, where everyone else was; we were put through into the cold-hardly-ever-used-except-maybe-for-a-Sunday-carvary dining room. Huh? Why couldn’t we sit with everyone else? Do we look so socially inept that we must be kept away from the normal people?

It’s funny because we are quite an odd group and it’s probably a good thing we were kept away from everyone else. I rather liked it. Even though it was cold and quiet and very, very white, we could talk about what we wanted, without having to worry that we were making too much noise. We could be our usual, odd selves, without getting odd looks in return. 

My mum, rather tipsy, once said, “If you have one friend by the time you’re fifty, your life’s pretty damn good,” and while one of my friends couldn’t get over the fact that she only had one friend – “Seriously, one friend? You only have ONE friend? Like, ONE? And that’s it?” – and her one friend wouldn’t stop calling her a cow (all in fun), I think she does make a good point. All you need is one good friend. One person you can be entirely yourself with. And by that, I mean someone you can fart in front of. When one friend told me that he “had never been so flaccid”, I took that as a complement. 

And so, even though I’m pretty darn useless in everyday social situations, going by my mum’s standards, I’m doing alright. And so are my socially inept friends. Plural.