It's not one thing or the other, it's all things all at once.
I am couch-bound, a day late with this post because yesterday we arrived back in Dublin at midday but my brain and possibly part of my body were in a different timezone. Making the drive back to Belfast last night felt like - and I borrow this sentence - driving a marshmallow. You know those nights where you can't remember anything after your head hits the pillow? As someone whose mind panics most at night, I truly savour such nights.
Here's the thing about travel. We sort of force ourselves and other people to make it this huge, life-changing, forever treasured experience. And though being able to travel is a big old privilege, especially when you're young, sometimes you can't find that kind of experience. Sometimes you don't have time to get into the wilderness of a country and see its true beauty. Sometimes you're exhausted and you spend an entire day in a hotel room. Sometimes being a vegetarian is such a pain in the arse that you end up eating at Chili's. And I think these things are fine, travelling is a personal thing and is often put in a weird category of rhetoric. And I do feel a huge responsibility to represent countries well when we make videos, to show us having fun and going off the beaten track and smiling. It's a thinker, friends, maybe I'll get to talk about it on a panel at a big Youtube event soon...
18 flights, 8 countries and 6 shows. I loved Singapore. I loved Sydney. I loved meeting people who live THOUSANDS of miles away and have such interesting lives and plans for their futures. I loved returning to sharing hotel rooms with Dodie, and seeing people react to songs that have so much life poured into them. I had long overdue meetings with some wonderful friends, and I also met a koala and a kangaroo, which also felt kind of overdue.
When I spend time in other cities, I'm always amazed that no matter where you go, everyone is just doing their thing. No matter how beautiful the surrounding, there will always be someone working at the ticket desk, tapping the meter on a taxi, propping up a hotel reception. Living your life for yourself and for your needs is universal. I'm not sure why this is note-worthy, but it strikes me in big, overwhelming waves every time I am on a rush hour train but not partaking in the rushing.
This month I graduate. I get to experience a summer that is not an in-between from education, but the first page of Absolutely Everything Else. On the first flight I took last month, I watched a movie called Laggies which came out last year. I watched it because I love Keira Knightley and I love Chloë Grace Moretz, but also because it was directed and written by women. It reminded me that you don't have to be just a teenager or just an adult. There's a big blurry middle space and I think we all live there.
Have a wonderful summer, or if you are in a different hemisphere (look at me with my newfound respect for that), have a great July.
Yours, SO BLOODY TIRED,