Finding Joy in Reading

I’ve always loved reading, even from an early age I have always had a book on my bedside table. I can remember my parents always swapping books with their friends what seemed like every few weeks and marvelling at how fast they could read! I now find myself about to begin my 4th book for the month and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

I know quite a few people who don’t like to read. They read for necessity, not for the pleasure of enjoying a story… they would rather watch a movie for that, it’s easier. They struggle to concentrate on the page, they get restless and impatient and they give up. Me on the other hand… give me a good book and I can be occupied for hours. I judge the quality of a book based on how lost in the story I get. Sometimes a story can be so intriguing that I will actually forget where I am.Β I especially find books a good escape when commuting on public transport.. combined with a good playlist you are able to block out any unsavoury characters, and if only for ten minutes of your day, forget that you are on your way to work.

While I was living overseas, I invested in a Kindle. Something I was reluctant to do at first, because I am such a lover of books, actual BOOKS with pages. But I have to admit, it changed my life. I was so strapped for space in my tiny bedroom, that I actually stopped reading for a time just to save space, I had to stop myself from wandering around bookstores (something I love doing) incase I bought a book that I would then have to find a space for.. so by having the Kindle, I was able to read tonnes of books and carry then around with me at all times. Perfect! Especially when I got onto the Outlander books, of which there are 8 and each book is about one thousand pages.. so we’re talking proper brick books! There is no way I would have even picked them up off the shelf just based on their size, but I was able to read them all over the city and even when I went up to Scotland where the series is based.

Upon coming home I have reverted back into my old ways, buying books when I see them, rifling through mum and dad’s collection and even going to our local library! Every time I go to the library I am amazed.. here is this resource full of amazing fiction, non-fiction, resource material, whatever you want! You can have up to 10 items and take them home for a whole three weeks, for FREE!! Why don’t people use libraries much anymore? Maybe they do but no one is talking about it, so if you want some advice, go to your library. It’s a great way to test out an author someone has recommended without potentially wasting your money and shelf space.

I have also rediscovered my favourite bookstores in Perth, Elizabeths Secondhand Bookshop. Their stores are packed to the rafters with books, all different types and their staff are super knowledgeable which I love. Something they have started doing is ‘Blind Date With A Book’, they have a stand of books wrapped in brown paper with a few dot points listed on the cover giving a quick snippet of what the book is about. I love this concept, it gives you a chance to read something you perhaps wouldn’t have picked up because of the cover. As it turns out the book I got was really good and I read it in 5 days! I will probably review on here at some stage because I enjoyed it so much and I can think of quite a few people who would enjoy it.

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But for now I just really wanted to share my love of reading with everyone. Living in such a technology heavy age it feels like something as simple as reading a good book is getting lost in the chaos. Life moves fast enough, sometimes it’s good to just stop and focus on a page and get lost in someone else’s story.

N

 

Ps – Anyone read a really good book lately? I’d love some recommendations πŸ™‚

 

Song on Repeat: Stonefield

It’s been a while since I sat down and listen to Stonefield. Previous winners of Triple J’s Unearthed High (2010) the four sisters have a distinct sound that seems to have come straight out of the 1970’s. Their heavy guitar sound is reminiscent of bands such as Black Sabbath and Led Zeppelin.

Their latest song ‘Love’ is covered in a layer of reverb giving it a chilled out vibe. Lead singer Amy’s voice is almost unrecognisable, a softer and more delicate vocal than their other tracks. I find this song really infectious, it’s super easy to listen to I’ve had it on repeat for the last few days!

Check it out;

Homecoming?

How can you feel at home when part of you feels like your home is on the other side of the world?

I am aware it has been a long time between posts and since I last wrote I have moved back to Perth, Australia. A lot has changed in my world back here and after 5 months I am still struggling to fit in. The first major change is a lot of my friends have become parents while I’ve been away. I am really happy for all of them, but it does at times, leave me feeling a bit inadequate. Our conversations have changed (naturally) but more than that, we are no longer on the same page about a lot of things. And how can we be?! Having a child changes your priorities massively and now all my conversational contributions seem trivial in comparison. Here’s me pondering my New Years Eve options for this year, while some of them would just be happy with a good night’s sleep! Don’t get me wrong, these aren’t bad things, and for those friends who might be reading please don’t be offended it’s just all new and different for me.

For the entire time I was away, in the back of my mind I would be thinking of home, Perth and all my friends and family here. Part of me was always excited at the prospect of coming home and being reunited with everyone and for life to go on as normal. How naive of me to think that just because I left the country, my whole world would be on pause, just waiting for me to come home so things could start again. Β It’s the realisation that actually a lot has changed, that’s completely thrown me. I find myself with a handful of good friends in Perth who have actually made the effort to see me, and whom make me glad to be back. While at the same time feeling like my best friends, my ‘crew’ if you will are on the other side of the world. I will miss London for the rest of my life, there is something about that city that just clicks with me, but the thing I miss the most are my people there.

So when I catch up with people and they ask, ‘are you glad to be back? Or are you missing it already?’ my first instinct is to say “I miss it so much, I’d be back on a plane tomorrow if I could be” but instead I am trying to focus on the positives. And there ARE a lot of positives.. aside from people..firstly, the air quality. Doesn’t sound like much I know, but when you’ve lived in a big city that has one of the world’s highest pollution levels, you notice the clean, almost sweet smelling and tasting air when you step off that plane. Secondly, the light. I never appreciated how lucky we are in Australia to have so much daylight. Something my body ached for when it was dark at 3:45pm in the dead of winter and you’re walking to and from work in the dark. Thirdly, the beach. It’s not officially summer here yet, in fact it’s barely been spring with the weather we have been having (British summer styles) but I have managed to get to the beach (and swim!) twice already! There really are no beaches like West Australian beaches. Soft white sand, clear waters.. they’re the best.

So I guess what I’m trying to say is, something they don’t tell you when you move away, is that coming home is a lot harder than leaving. I honestly thought after 5 months I would have some semblance of a normal life in place, but alas I don’t. I don’t have a full time job, a car, my own place.. and don’t even get me started on the Perth dating scene.. but I’m trying to STAY POSITIVE… as a good friend recently pointed out to me, ‘unfortunately things will have changed, but that doesn’t mean for the worse’. So my motto moving forward (perhaps an early new years resolution?) is EMBRACE THE CHANGE.. may as well, there’s no point chasing the past, what’s done is done, time to look ahead and make the future as exciting and interesting as possible!

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N

Ps – I am going to try a lot harder to be more consistent with this blog I promise!
Pps – If you have gone through something similar to this, I’d love to hear from you!

X

 

 

Song on Repeat: Elle King

I discovered this week’s track on The Graham Norton Show. Elle King is an LA native, and also dabbles in acting (naturally).

The track Ex’s & Oh’s has got traces of blues, rockabilly, country, rock, pop and it’s damn catchy!

Take a listen..

N

Weekly Digs: The Last Shadow Puppets

TLSP are back!! Fans have been waiting for their return since their 2008 release ‘The Age of the Understatement.’ The band is made up of Alex Turner (Arctic Monkeys) and Miles Kane.

The first taste we have been offered is ‘Bad Habits’, I only had to listen to this song once and it was stuck in my head for the rest of the afternoon. It’s rather catchy.. lead vocals by Miles, it has a very distinctive bass line that is reminiscent of their signature sound. Strings give the song a taste of the ‘spy rock’ sound they are so well known for.

Take a listen, it’s goooood.

N

Weekly Digs: Bowie

In light of this week’s news of David Bowie’s passing from cancer, I felt I ought to celebrate his music here.

This song is the ultimate anthem. It’s appropriate to play in almost any situation.. I love it, so I am sharing it.

RIP David Bowie, you will be missed.

N

Weekly Digs: Jess Glynne

Jess Glynne is a British singer songwriter I have recently been introduced to. She has a really strong, husky and addictive voice.

She has some heartfelt, raw and stripped back songs, but this one in particular ‘Don’t Be So Hard on Yourself’ is a really good jam. It gives you the feel good vibes and makes you want to dance! Check it out…

Her debut albumΒ When I Cry I Laugh is out now.

N