Home monthly rewind April was no better

April was no better

by On The Fly Blog
23 comments

Science is about spotting trends emerging in data and extrapolating to predict future patterns, right?

Well, after February’s high, March and April have kickstarted an exponential downwards curve and I’m not sure I want to know where May is going to take us.

A disclaimer: you know that scene in Brooklyn 99 where Rosa says she wants to have her tear ducts melted shut? That’s the kind of mood I was in when I wrote this intro. Even though I feel better now, to delete it would erase a very legitimate part of the month, so I’m leaving it in. It’s true that April had its lows. By “lows” I mean 10 days during which I barely left my room except for food and the occasional shower. I woke up and logged straight onto Netflix and didn’t press pause until I went to sleep. Some days I didn’t even do that; I just fell asleep in front of my laptop. When I did go downstairs to prepare food, I had music on the whole time and did it as quick as possible so as not to be alone with my thoughts for too long.

This sounds really obvious, but I’m constantly astounded by the temporary nature of emotions. They’re so powerful and raw, and yet so changeable. As I’m writing now, I obviously haven’t forgotten this part of the month, but I feel a world away from that place. I could almost convince myself that it didn’t happen. I’m struggling to articulate it quite how I want. Maybe somewhere in the world, there’s a nice neat word for it. But if there’s one in English, I don’t know it.

Anyway, so April came and went again faster than I was expecting thanks to that lost time in the middle (the desire to quote Royal Blood there was strong), and as a result I didn’t meet my goals of finishing the blogging course I’m doing, or practicing Romanian. But, the point is I’m much happier now and that was just a bump in the road. Sure, the kind of bump in the road that you think is just a little bump but then turns out being deceptively large and you hit your bumper off tarmac with a sickening crunch and you’re not 100% sure about the integrity of your steering rack afterwards, but just a bump in the road nonetheless.

image of a sunset
An actual photo of an actual sunset taken by me this month

Cool stuff that happened this month? I like this part because when I have to write it all down I realise that actually, lots of cool things did happen. I met a friend while studying in Spain a couple of years ago, we added each other on Facebook and then didn’t really keep in touch. That is, until he posted a photo album of his travels in Peru and I dropped him a message to check he got home safely. I expected a message back asking me who I was, since we hadn’t spoken in so long, but he actually called me and we had an hour long catch up in Spanish, which was really cool. And yes, he is home safely, although sometimes I think he wishes he wasn’t. I can’t imagine it’s easy going back to living under your parents’ roof after 9 months traveling solo.

I started a weekly bit of fun over on my Instagram account, #wanderlustwednesday, and got way more people involved than I was expecting, so I’m loving that. I’ve also enjoyed weekends this month where we’ve chilled out together as a family. My dad made the mistake of asking me if I wanted to do anything over the long bank holiday weekend and I roped him into helping me do up my bedroom – which largely consisted of chipping plaster off one of my walls to expose the bare brick. One of our local restaurants has started doing home-delivered Sunday roasts, we got one, it was incredible, end of story. Thanks, Six Poor Folk!

There was one night I spent dancing in the kitchen after midnight because I decided at an odd hour to bake brownies. The didn’t turn out well at all and I no longer trust my mum’s Delia Smith cookbook (“I said use Lorraine’s recipe, not Delia’s!!”) but the dancing was fun.

Most recently I’ve rekindled my old passion for the night sky and discovered a great spot for stargazing – I even wrote a post about it. I’m particularly grateful for some awesome friends who have really helped me out this month. I really hope I’ve done a good job of letting them know who they are.

Music

I’ve mentioned music already, and as usual I’ll run you through what I’ve been listening to this month. I found a great lofi playlist on Spotify which I’m loving for when I want to chill out or study or write blog posts, and Sohayl Ryder came out with a new song, Resistance is my Best Friend, which I can’t get enough of. Big Spring also had a new one this month, Keep the Lights on Me, which is great. My love for Tame Impala has only grown, and interestingly, I was rather underwhelmed by Twenty One Pilots’ new song, Level of Concern. That said, I’m morally obligated to argue with anyone else who trash talks it. I will love it out of principle if nothing else.

I’ve started stretching every day and it’s actually become a kind of meditative thing to do? It’s not quite yoga, but it’s certainly relaxing, and I usually listen to Hang Massive, who I saw live back in October, while I do this. The aforementioned friend introduced me to Calle 13, an outspoken band from Puerto Rico whose music makes me want to start a revolution against nothing and everything.

Music was also the foundation of a project of mine this month. When I came out of my funk I realised I don’t have any records I can dance do, but this is a tricky one because there aren’t many albums I listen to enough to buy on vinyl. Here comes the brainwave: a custom vinyl playlist. Is it possible? Yes it is! Obviously it’s pricey, but I figured it would be worth it and spent a few days finalising song choices and creating my own sleeve artwork. I’m very excited to see the finished product, which I bought at One Cut Vinyl, if anyone’s interested.

Other things I listened to

Hey there, new category. I fall in and out of love with podcasts and either listen to loads or none at all. This month I discovered the Coffee Break Spanish podcast and a few TED talks: this one about building walls (psychologcal and physical) and one about the importance of indigenous languages.

I also discovered (or rather, finally indulged) a love of True Crime, which I enjoyed this month in the form of Buzzfeed Unsolved (followed by insomnia) and Red Handed.

Film and TV

On my dad’s recommendation I watched The Platform on Netflix, which was intense enough due to the storyline but doubly so because I watched in the original Spanish. This is not your typical weekend evening viewing and I don’t recommend it to the faint of heart, but it is an interesting watch. It’s about a prison in which the cells are stacked on top of one another in a tower, and every day a platform of food moves down from the top levels to the bottom, so those at the top get first dibs while lower down, prisoners are left starving. I was left with more questions than answers and a little freaked out if I’m honest, but the social commentary was very interesting and oh so relevant. The platform was actually filled with a calculated amount of food meaning that, if everyone just ate their fill, there would be enough to go around. However, this concept was madness to the people on the upper levels who actually felt cheated when they couldn’t gorge themselves. Now why does that sound familiar? I was actually quite shocked when that twist was revealed at how much that resembled the recent panic buying. Talk about a parallel.

Elite has been on my list for a couple of years and I finally got round to starting it, although I haven’t made much progress. It feels like Spain’s answer to Riverdale, but then I haven’t actually watched Riverdale so I could be completely wrong. I also started rewatching Brooklyn 99 from the start, finished Line of Duty and binged season 5 of Peaky Blinders when it arrived on Netflix. Currently I find myself inexplicably hooked on Being Human, a werewolf/vampire show from circa 2010 which is a fine exhibition of late 00s bad fashion and acting.

Books

I got Nadiya Hussain’s (of Bake Off fame) book Finding My Voice for Christmas and finished that in about a week. It made for easy reading – poetic, funny, sad and an eye opening insight to growing up in a culture that I know very little about. Highly recommend! I’ve now started Great Expectations which is harder to read, but I like to delve into the classics every now and then.

image of the novel Great Expectations

Posts I’ve published

An interview with Positively Loz about sustainability, which was awesome.

An updated version of My travel bucket list, which is always bound to change, but definitely expanded somewhat after my recent trip to Ecuador (no I’m not done talking about that yet).

Staring into infinity, the aforementioned post about stargazing and watching the meteor shower, and probably my favourite out of all my recent posts.

Another interview post with The Poky Little Wanderer, whose travel blogs are keeping me going right now!

Posts I’ve read

This one about British culture from a Danish perspective which was a really interesting and cute read – and also taught me that roundabouts are not universally accepted.

The Curious Case of Cognitive Dissonance from the same blog. Love a nice bit of psychology. I think I ought to find more psychology blogs, actually.

Cai’s post about being Stuck in Peru which I think everyone tucked up safely at home should read. It was terrifying enough to have the story recounted to me, never mind to imagine actually living through it, especially as it could easily have been me or several of my friends. If you click one link from this post, please make it this one.

I love all of what Bill Fonda writes, but Relationship Status – Traveling was a favourite of mine this month.

I loved this very raw and real post about body image; and I bookmarked this one for the future when I will hopefully visit Panama, and this one for Costa Rica. Then I caught up with a bunch of Alex’s posts on his awesome site Depth Of Mind. Just keeping the wanderlust alive.

Let’s Talk About…Death was a tricky read. I had to take a break halfway through to blow my nose and sniffle a bit. But a brilliant one.

But I also know that I am who I am—a million emotions when five would probably do” was the standout quote for me from this post.

I was supposed to be a boy was yet another tricky but valuable read, and since Nadiya’s book also touched on being a girl in a family desperate for a boy, it was the second time in a month that I delved into this devastating topic.

Some blogs I discovered this month, if I haven’t mentioned them already:

Sophie’s Politics – in the midst of Instagram bots and MLM accounts, Sophie’s blog was a spot of genuine joy!

Philosophy Stuff 101 – Marie is a good friend of mine and I hope she enjoys this exciting venture.

Life In Postcards – this is a really lovely travel blog run by the even lovelier Megan!

And that concludes April, I guess. I have no idea how to sum it up nicely, and I have no idea what my hopes and goals are for May (WHERE did may come from I swear NYE was last week). All I can say is that I’m sure the next month will be a rollercoaster just as varied as the last.

And I hate rollercoasters.


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23 comments

Bill Fonda 01/05/2020 - 13:20

Thank you! That’s far too kind! I’d be remiss if I didn’t cite this post from Rosie Culture that inspired it. https://rosieculture.com/2020/04/16/breaking-up-with-the-places-youve-been/

And “The Platform” sounds intense!

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On The Fly Blog 01/05/2020 - 18:10

Wow, I love Rosie’s too!

(Yes the Platform is intense – strong stomach required 😬)

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LifeInPostcards 01/05/2020 - 17:44

I’m so glad to hear that you’re feeling a bit better as the months progressed! Even though it’s been a bit of a slow month it still seems like you’ve discovered a lot! I’m a huge true crime buff myself 😂 It’s been really lovely getting to talk to you this last month!

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On The Fly Blog 01/05/2020 - 18:11

Thanks for reading! I’ve loved chatting to you and seeing your blog progress! x

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The Newbury Girl 01/05/2020 - 19:39

I’m so impressed by all the music, entertainment, and reading you did! I didn’t actually realize that TOP came out with a new song – I’ll need to listen to it!

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On The Fly Blog 01/05/2020 - 20:09

Haha it’s pretty much all I’m doing at the moment! And yeah it was kind of lowkey and last minute but quite a different style to their usual stuff! x

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darinaiv 02/05/2020 - 10:57

You have done so much…. The new people you have discovered are great. I love the idea of looking back at what happened in the whole month, it just makes you appreciate the good and bad….thank you for sharing and letting us get to know you better.
Darina from daramiblog

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On The Fly Blog 09/05/2020 - 12:55

Thanks for reading Darina! I love it too, I’ve been doing it since the beginning of this year and it’s nice to reflect. Stay safe x

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Fadima Mooneira 02/05/2020 - 11:59

I love looking at that sunset picture. It is so beautiful.

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On The Fly Blog 09/05/2020 - 12:55

I’m glad you think so! Sunsets are some of my favourite views x

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Angie Soul 02/05/2020 - 13:01

I’m happy to read that you are no longer in that dark place as previously mentioned. Emotions really are a funny concept as they are ever changing and remain constant in that aspect. Sounds like you have a lot of exciting things taking place for you ❤️ Keep it up and use that momentum to keep your spirits lifted! P.S. I’ve also started stretching and meditating and like you said not quite like yoga lol but it’s a start! Also, if you’re into true crime and paranormal podcast, check out And That’s Why We Drink 😉 thank you for sharing this!

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On The Fly Blog 09/05/2020 - 12:54

Thank you for reading and for such an uplifting comment! Glad you’re enjoying stretching too! I’m DEFINITELY going to check out that podcast; sounds right up my street! Stay safe x

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Angie Soul 12/05/2020 - 20:01

You too! And yes, great podcast- enjoy!

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The week gone by — May 3 – A Silly Place 03/05/2020 - 17:02

[…] April was no better (On The Fly) — Life is a rollercoaster right now. […]

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Paulina Stelmach 04/05/2020 - 14:53

This was such a lovely post to read – I am excited as I love anything interior related (being an interior design student) so I’m looking forward to a big reveal! I am so happy you enjoyed my blog post – I wasn’t expecting this!!

I so feel you; April went by so fast I feel like I missed out on a whole month I really hope May is good to you. Sending you loads of love, Paulina x

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On The Fly Blog 09/05/2020 - 12:52

Thanks for reading! The pressure’s on now haha! I think it’ll be a nice touch though, so a room that hasn’t updated since I was much younger. Your post really did have an impact on me. Stay safe! x

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Austin 09/05/2020 - 17:23

Great Expectations is my favorite Dickens novel. I hope you like it. I kind of feel like Miss Havisham during this quarantine. 🙂

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On The Fly Blog 11/05/2020 - 13:44

I’m really enjoying it so far. And I definitely understand you there – some days I feel like I’m channelling her a bit too!

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Austin 11/05/2020 - 23:10

I sometimes wish I were Pip and had a mysterious benefactor. 🙂

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On The Fly Blog 13/05/2020 - 00:19

Ha, that would be ideal

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May flowers - On The Fly 31/05/2020 - 08:10

[…] April was no better – my April rewind post. […]

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Dawn 04/06/2020 - 12:14

Sorry to hear that April was hard for you. It was not the greatest for me either. But i love where you say about feelings changing so quickly. They really do! And thank God for that. I let a lot slide in April as well, but got my feet more planted on the ground this month.
I really love your writing. It’s so real, and you can feel the emotion in it. I hope that mine gets like that one day. Thank you for this post.

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Fizz 14/06/2020 - 11:27

This was a really lovely comment to receive! Thank you for taking the time out of your day. I’m glad we’re both doing a bit better now – I guess bad phases come and go, even though at the time they feel like they’ll last for ever! Take care xx

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