Dreams, IDs And Shocks

You know when you have a dream that is so realistic that it takes you a moment to grasp where you are when you wake up? That moment of realization can be incredibly relieving when you’ve had a bad dream and a little disappointing when it was a good dream. I find that what makes a dream realistic is not how akin to life the setting and ‘plot’ are, but how familiar and intense the feelings you feel while dreaming it are.

Now, last night is an ideal example of this. What happened in the dream was not super realistic (lots of water everywhere, but I can’t recall a feeling of wetness… you get the image), but I felt a feeling of panic so acute that waking up came as a positive shock.

The source of this panic brings me to my next topic: I lose things. Everything. While in this particular dream I left my backpack (with all my belongings and valuables – my life was pretty much in that backpack) at the site of a festival and only noticed it on the bus home. In real life, however, this applies to practically everything. I have lost phones, money, and everything you could possibly think of.

Not only am I constantly looking for something, this habit can get really really inconvenient (hence the panicking). When I visited friends in English over new year’s we went out clubbing into the closest town – quite a shabby southern seaside town, the kind of town where clubbing is only fun if you are completely and utterly smashed. A girl like me is now faced with a lot of choices before even leaving the house: What do I wear, what about make-up, do I bring a coat (in December, the answer to this one should always be ‘yes’), do I bring a bag. The last one is particularly challenging for someone who has trouble keeping track of one’s possessions while sober and fully awake. To minimize the risks, I tend to take as little as possible. Annoyingly though, you need your most valuable items on a night out: phone, money, ID.

So, on this particular night out, I did get completely and utterly smashed and had a super fun time out. Trouble started when I woke up in the morning, a bit more sobered up but still ridiculously drunk and completely delirious. That is usually the moment when I turn over, check whether my valuables are on my bedside table and go back to sleep. This time, however, there was no bedside table, there were six people in one tiny room and I could not quite remember how I got into bed in the first place. Usually, this kind of amnesia is quite pleasant, it stops me from remembering actions that I would want to forget anyways, but in this particular situation it was hindering for once.

My panic was increased by the fact that the things I was hoping to find on the non-existent bedside table were vital to the next few days: My phone for communication as I was travelling across to London, and my ID, most importantly, because this was my (only) travelling document and I was due to leave the country the day after. It was, however, not my house and my delirious state of mind did not help my emotional output. There are not enough words to describe the height of the panic that I felt that morning. I pictured myself stranded at some embassy, with no way of contacting anyone anywhere, being interrogated by scary officers and walking alone through the streets at night. With these upsetting images in mind, I fell into some sort of half-sleep/half-wake.

Luckily, I did find all of my valuables in the morning and was able to travel to London and leave the country according to plan. Last night’s dream, however, (more than a week after the actual panic occurred) shows that this issue is deep-rooted in my subconscious.

Now, as I am still deeply immersed in my happiness project, I will not simply accept that this habit of losing things and the panic that follows will be a constant part of my life. So, I shall do some research into the topic, but, please, if you have any experiences or tips, do share them.

B x

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Leon, oh Leon…

Featuring today: The best ever cookbook(s) I have come across so far in my life. Woohoo!

We all eat. It is a necessity, yet it can also be a source of a lot of problems and issues. We eat too much or too little, we spend too much money on food, we don’t eat healthy enough, we don’t know how to cook, we never have the time and energy to cook, and then if we cook we always cook too much and don’t know what to do with the leftovers, … the list is bloody long. And we haven’t even started on actual eating issues.

Of course, now to expect a cookbook to solve all these problems would be foolish, but it can certainly help. More with the problems I mentioned earlier, but if you consider yourself to have eating issues and you consider to buy a cookbook, you’re certainly on a good way (or not, who knows). Anyway, I have found the ideal cookbook for myself, which helped (and continues to help) me out significantly in my day-to-day life.

Now maybe if I describe to you how and why this is true, you’ll also get to know some of the features of the book(s). As you have already established from the plural in brackets, there is more than one book. Basically, these books are written by some people who run a small chain of fast food restaurants in London. Their business idea was to make and sell fresh and healthy fast food that tastes delicious. So when they were successful with that, they decided to publish some of their tried and tested recipes in a book. And then another. And then another.

So, you now already know that these books help me solve some of my food-related problems: It is fast, fresh, (more or less) healthy and delicious. More importantly though: generally, the books feature quite simple meals. Simple not only in terms of making them, but also in terms of their style. For someone like me, who has the taste buds of a child, a lot of cookbooks are useless, because the meals they feature are waaay to fancy. Especially when people think that they should combine fruit with a savoury meal, they have lost me entirely. And this doesn’t mean I don’t love food, oh, believe me, I do. And my taste is very varied: I love classic dishes at home, Greek food, Italian food, Asian food, all of that. But rather rustic, please.

Then, the other major problem I have with cooking and eating is the effort. It just takes so much time till something is ready and so little time for me to eat is once it is ready, so why bother. Well, these books are beautiful. Like truly beautiful. And you don’t even have to be a bibliophile to notice it. Every recipe is elaborately illustrated, the entire book benefits from the ingenious graphic design and it is nice to look, even nice to touch. It all looks so delicious and easy to make that walking to the supermarket over the road and preparing a fresh meal feels like so much less of a hassle.

Now, I almost forgot mentioning the name, although you might have gotten that from the title. They are called LEON and so far five big books (one for vegetarian cooking, one for baking, etc., cost about £20 each) and several smaller books (for things like soups, breakfast and stuff, cost about £6 each – also make great presents!) have been published. This is the website, there are also recipes and videos online. I also know that some of the books have been translated into German, so chances are good they will be available in your language too (which might be more convenient with the measurements).

Please go to the bookshop closest too you and look at it yourself, this is not the kind of book you can check out on Amazon (unless you are absolutely certain that you want it and the purchase is just an annoying formality), you have to hold it in your hands.

Also, do share any cookbooks that lighten up your life day after day.

B x

Trashy TV and Very Little Time

My plan to write posts in advance has failed miserably. At first, I wrote the posts for the following day, which was not too bad, but now I have about 15 minutes in order not to fail my resolution to “blog daily”, plus my battery is running low. Life is tough (or ‘toff’ as they’d say in Chelsea). But I can do this.

Here we go. Today, I’d like to share my favourite reality TV show. We all watch some horrible TV, or read some horrible fiction or listen to horrible music because we enjoy it, and there’s no reason to feel ashamed about it.

I love reality TV because it gives me the illusion that those characters are real, and therefore judging them and their choices is much more fun. It is also amazing how invested you become in those people’s fortunes. And as it is ‘real’ it feels less pathetic to root for a particular relationship or person. Of course we feel the same way about fiction (please, don’t tell me you didn’t cross your fingers that Lizzie Bennett and Mr Darcy would get together already). But it all feels a lot less definite on reality TV. Such fun.

So, my all-time favourite reality TV show is “Made in Chelsea”. If you haven’t already, please, please watch it.

(I’M RUNNING OUT OF TIME, NEED TO TYPE FASTER)

It is basically about these rich kids in their early twenties in Chelsea (posh bit of Central London), and all they do is hang out in cafes and bars and there’s intrigues and everyone has slept with everything. It is hilarious and so great.

This ad for season 5 is perfect to describe how it all works (in a lovely ironic manner):

So, that’s that for now. Oh, I almost forgot. The close runner up to MIC (yes, acronym for Made in Chelsea) is Take Me Out. I know this is a format that exists in several countries, so please consider that I’m talking about the UK version that is hosted by that horrible and hilarious Paddy (… don’t know the last name and no time to look it up). It is the exact opposite of MIC in terms of poshness, but equally misogynistic and trashy.

B x