Tapas, Alice in Wonderland and Old Friends

I’m on a train ‘up north’ to spend the weekend with my family. It is my sister’s 30th birthday, so we’re all getting together tomorrow night to eat, drink and celebrate. I love travelling at this time in a morning – it’s quiet, calm and I’m able to relax in the carriage and listen to The Smiths without being disturbed.

After a crappy few weeks I decided to take this week off and spend some time having fun and catching up with old friends. I must admit, I feel a little bit rough today. It’s a good thing that it’s Easter – I currently resemble an Easter egg as I’ve done nothing but eat and drink over the last week.

It’s been wonderful. Last Saturday was my friend’s birthday. After living in sweat pants and hooded sweaters for what seems like months, I decided that I was going to really make an effort, and spent hours getting ready. My hair was perfect, I chose an outfit that was flattering, my make up was perfect and I even managed to apply false eyelashes successfully in one attempt without glueing my eyes together. Winner. We went to a live venue where the band (who were brilliant) performed covers of my favourite songs and I danced, drank and sang at the top of my lungs until about 1.30am. The next day I discovered that some drunken fool had spilled red wine down the back of my favourite top, but I didn’t care – it was an awesome night. My hangover the next day was awful, but it was totally worth it – I needed something to get rid of the cloud that has surrounded me for such a long time.


An old typewriter with an invitation for the guests to ‘finish our fairytale.’ Beautiful idea.

On Wednesday The Bloke and I attended our friend’s wedding reception. It was held in a beautiful medieval building (the fact that these exist in this country is one of the many reasons why I love being British), it had an ‘Alice in Wonderland’ theme and in different rooms there were lots of fun and interesting things to participate in, including ‘flamingo croquet.’ I must admit, I was a little nervous about it – she works at the same school as The Bloke and is a former colleague of mine, so I was worried about the prospect of having to potentially see a few characters that I don’t particularly enjoy being around and haven’t had any contact with since I left the school three years ago.


My friend and I took advantage of the photo booth… Gorgeous!

However, when I arrived I discovered that all the people there were my friends, and I had a blast catching up, eating pizza (instead of a buffet, the Bride and Groom ordered a ton of small pizzas – I thought it was a brilliant idea), singing and joining in the different activities that were going on. The Bride (and Groom, of course, but especially the Bride) looked absolutely stunning, and above all, ridiculously happy.


Alice in Wonderland signs that were in the reception room. Unfortunately, the angle of the picture suggests that Alice is feeling a little suicidal…

There were brilliant live performances from their friends, and they had choreographed their wedding dance, which they executed perfectly. It really was a lovely evening, and I’m so pleased for them both. They’re off on their honeymoon to Paris for the next week, and I couldn’t imagine a more beautiful place to spend their first week as newlyweds.

Yesterday was a double food whammy. I met my friend for lunch at our local pub – she’s moving house this weekend after quite a difficult six months and after spending most Monday evenings consoling and supporting each other, we’ve both found ourselves back on track with a new start ahead of us. I’m proud of her – she’s faced a challenging time and has found the strength to get back up and kick ass – she’s a very strong person.



After eating my bodyweight in burger, I had a few hours to relax and then The Bloke and I met our friend in our favourite tapas restaurant, Bar Estillo in The Mailbox in Birmingham. I was still feeling quite full after my lunch, but I jumped in and managed to munch my way through filo prawns, halloumi fritters and patatas bravas, as well as indulging in a raspberry mojito (they aren’t cheap, but they’re the best in the city). My friend is really intelligent and interesting, and even though I’ve known her for years I find out new things about her every time we go out. Last night she was telling us about her travels – working in an olive grove in Italy and a sloth sanctuary in Costa Rica, living in Mexico City for a few months, teaching in Paris, visiting Cuba… I keep telling her she needs to write a book, about her adventures. I’m sure it would be a bestseller…

I’ve talked, I’ve laughed and I’ve felt nothing but happiness all week. It’s been amazing and I’m looking forward to the weekend, but I’m glad that I have a day to sleep it off… After a long period of stress, anxiety and feeling quite low I have started to feel like my old self again. Long may it continue!

What about you guys? Have you done anything exciting over the last week?

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