My Trip To America


We’ve been planning this trip to America for about a year now, if not longer, thanks to my brother studying for a year abroad in California. As our plans changed, we found out about a family reunion that happens every 10 years or so with our American family. Deciding this was too perfect an opportunity to miss, me and mum immediately agreed to go, and added in Niagara Falls and New York City (per my request) afterwards. My brother didn’t end up coming due to unforeseen circumstances, but this has been the best holiday I’ve ever had. I haven’t felt this relaxed in a long time, if ever!

Dunkirk/Fredonia, NY & Chautauqua

I had no idea what to expect from upstate New York, but let me tell you, this was by far the best part of the entire trip.

In large part thanks to my family and how wonderful, nice and funny they all are. 140 people is overwhelming for anyone, especially when you don’t know anyone there, but they were all so welcoming to me and I had some great chats with several people. It’s so reassuring to know you have a good family to fall back on, especially if you wanna go back and visit.

I managed to tick off a few items from my bucket list, and my America specific bucket list, as well as cram a lot into the few days I spent there. For starters, I’d never been in a limo so you can imagine my joy when I finally got to ride in one*. I’d also been intrigued by the party bus and I’m glad I did go on, just to say I’d experienced it. I also went into Walmart with my auntie and uncle because I’ve heard so many things about it. It was huge! I don’t know what I expected, but you could honestly buy everything there. Well… everything except alcohol, as we found out one day.

We visited a gorgeous place one day called Chautauqua and while the art stalls and cute notebook I bought were good, it wasn’t anything compared to the lake and gorgeous houses around. God, I adore American houses. The space, the wooden panelling, how they design it – SO much better than UK houses. I took a TON of pictures of them all because I couldn’t resist.

*Most people go in one for prom but because there wasn’t enough room for all of us, I never got the chance

Niagara Falls


When we stayed in Dunkirk/Fredonia, we happened to be near enough to the border between America and Canada, which conversely meant we were close enough to go to Niagara Falls. So we did. Me, mum, my auntie and my uncle went for a day trip up to Niagara Falls and had a lovely morning/afternoon getting wet and taking pictures of such an iconic sight. Admittedly, we couldn’t go over to the Canadian side so we stuck to the American side, but you could still get a stunning view of it. Definitely worth visiting.

New York

I’ve been wanting to visit New York since I was a kid, so to finally tick this off my bucket list has definitely been a highlight. However, as much as I enjoyed New York, I did find the tourists annoying at times. But I adore the skyscrapers and the constant lights, especially in the night time. It fills me with inspiration to be whoever I wanna be.

Central Park


We went through Central Park to get somewhere else, which I’ll write below, but we took detours and ended up taking longer than necessary. Central Park is cool because you see the stunning skyscrapers from the park and it’s just nice to see them from a distance. Plus, there’s natural boulders and rocks dotted around that you can climb (I would like to add it’s harder than it looks!) and little ponds that you can play with toy boats on and statues of famous people around.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art

The Met, as everyone calls it, was great when we finally arrived after our detour through Central Park. I fell in love with this stained glass and continued my love of marble statues. I’ve never really voiced it out loud except to mum but god I LOVE marble statues! They’re so soft and smooth and how they do get it so detailed? HOW??? It makes me want to start sculpting, but I know it’d take me a million years to be able to do what they do. Ugh. There were some cool American paintings too.

Empire State Building

I find cities so much more fascinating in the night. Sure, the city looks great in the daytime with all the pretty buildings dotted around and you can usually pick out the tourist attractions. However, in the night time, the buildings all twinkle and sparkle and it feels more magical. Like the city has finally woken up and come alive. The buildings don’t look as much the same (although, in a city like New York, that’s not a problem) and it just feels more… soft.

Statue of Liberty & Ellis Island


It was so interesting to hear the history behind the Statue of Liberty. I never knew it was created by a French man! Nor that the virtues came from the French, although considering what they are, I should’ve done. It was so cool to hear how it was essentially funded by immigrants and how it was built, and where.

Ellis Island was a point of interest for us because our ancestors’ went through there to start a new life in America in the 1920s. Once the guided tour had ended and we’d eaten, we searched for our ancestors and managed to find six of them that had come over. But we couldn’t find anymore, which is odd considering more than six came over.


Someone at the family reunion told us about this ticket system to buy Broadway tickets on the day of the show for a discounted price. We decided, since this holiday was already costing a shit ton, why not end it with a musical? We’d looked through several shows and decided on Kinky Boots. I’d heard good things about it, but that’s mostly because Brendon Urie and Todrick Hall had been involved at one point. Anyway, we managed to get good seats for a reasonable price.

Kinky Boots was so good! The whole plot, the characterisation and the songs were spot on. I absolutely loved it. It had such a good message. Seeing drag queens represented too was awesome, because let me tell you, those drag queens slayed! They were stunning and incredible at dancing around.

Other Sights:

  • Rockefeller Centre – I wanted a picture so I walked over. It’s a cool building.
  • Radio City & The Tonight Show – I saw while passing to get to the Rockefeller Centre
  • The Late Show – we were staying in a hotel nearby
  • McGee’s Pub – i.e. the pub that influenced the pub in How I Met Your Mother (the creators of the show used to go there after work, before HIMYM was even an idea)
  • Macy’s & Target – two shops I’d heard about and I wanted to see what the fuss was about

Overall, this has been the best holiday ever. I haven’t felt this relaxed in a long time. Being with family and seeing the sights, as well as ticking things off my bucket list, really made this whole trip worthwhile.


My Trip To Norway


I went to Norway for the first time with three of my best friends that I’ve known for over 10 years and we were all wondering how it’s taken us so long to go on holiday together. It was one of the best holidays ever, partially thanks to how beautiful Norway is.

Before we had even arrived in the country, we were concerned with money since we’d heard the rumours about it being one of the most expensive countries in the world. Fortunately, we were careful with our money and managed it quite well. We were all quite shocked to find everything was either cheap or expensive with no in between.

25th May

I’m sure you don’t want to hear all about our journey over to Norway, but I will give a little overview and what we did once we’d arrived at our Air BnB. Spoiler alert: not much.

  • Our flight was delayed (classic RyanAir) and I was sat on the first row (an experience, for sure)
  • We tried to hire a car but realised it was too expensive even if there were any cars left
  • The bus to take us to the train station stayed parked for a good half an hour, and even when it did finally move, it literally went one space forward to pick up more passengers
  • We somehow managed to get on the train for free? The conductor kept walking through, but he never asked to see our (lack of) tickets so…
  • We arrived at our Air BnB in the nicest area. A family friendly neighbourhood. Our Air BnB owner wasn’t there when we arrived, so her lovely husband filled us in
  • To save ourselves some money, we agreed to go food shopping and eat dinner in, and shockingly, it wasn’t extortionate prices
  • We took the scenic route to the shop, then found a quicker way home
  • While eating dinner, we watched the TV on the only British channel we could find and decided we were all tired so we stayed in

26th May

Excited to explore, we ventured out for the day, ready to see Norway. We wanted to see as many of the sights as possible that were relatively cheap, or free.



We headed for the harbour first with the intention of finding the opera house and the palace. However, by some chance, we managed to walk in the opposite direction of both and ended up by this incredible building. We obviously climbed up it and saw stunning views around. Then we had a little break where I bought some delicious ice cream.

Medieval Park


We didn’t stay here long, partially because there wasn’t much to see. It was literally some ruins. I don’t know any more than that. I was too busy taking pictures, then running after my friends since they left without me.

Botanical Garden


We decided to take the scenic route to the Munch museum by going round the Botanical Garden. It was beautiful, but we didn’t see too much of it. If we had had more time, I definitely would’ve enjoyed the beautiful flowers and general scenery.

Munch Museum

I’ll be honest, Edvard Munch really liked death, illness and portraying women in a negative life. We had all wanted to see the iconic Scream painting, but as it turned out, it was in the National Gallery and none of us wanted to pay into another place for one painting. Still, we got to see one of the paintings from the Scream series, which was something I never knew before. I assumed it was one painting, not a series of paintings.

* * * * *

We then tried to find the food market but had somehow missed it. By this time, we were all feeling the heat, so we agreed to head back to the Air BnB for a while. I say a while. A while turned into a few hours. We kept trying to find places for dinner, and by the time we were done, the sun was really setting. Still, we’d travelled to go to…

Statue Park


We’d watched a documentary before coming with Richard Ayoade that showed a statue park. Fascinated by these quirky statues, we headed over. I wish we’d gone a little earlier so we’d have gotten better pictures of the statues, but we still had a good laugh. I posed beside a statue and watched two of my friends reenact some.

27th May

Hike to the Ski Jump


I’ll be honest, a hike isn’t my idea of fun. I actually dreaded it before we went up. However, it wasn’t as bad as I thought. Sure, I had to stop several times, but I was never that far apart from my friends. In fact, my friends were proud of me for reaching the top, as was I! AND I didn’t feel sore the next day*. Progress! The view was magnificent. Totally worth it.

*I haven’t exercised properly in at least five years, so this hike should’ve left my legs hurting the next day, but it didn’t.



Along the way to find an ice cream shop near the palace, we stumbled on a crowded beach. It was so nice to be next to the sea again. I’ve honestly missed the sea so much. I definitely need to head to a beach some time this summer.

The ice cream shop was so worth finding! I adore ice cream shops and a mint choc chip ice cream was so nice after wandering around in the heat. We chilled out by a bridge in the shade, just chatting and enjoying our ice cream.



By the time we reached the palace, the heat had gotten to me. I tried to be enthusiastic, or even chatty with my friends, but I couldn’t. I took a picture of the palace, but like, it was just another palace. Sorry but I’ve been to too many by now. Even the ones in England don’t make me feel anything. Not from the outside anyway.


I was so grateful when we got to just lay down in the grass in the park. Me and my friend napped, while the other two chatted. I desperately needed it. The heat had gotten to me, so napping in the shade was an actual necessity.

* * * * *

We then headed back to cook dinner and have an early night since we had to wake up at 4am. Yikes! But hey, watching Shrek 2 after dinner and before bed was nice. It was chilled out, which is what I love to do with my friends.

28th May

Again, you probably don’t want to hear about our journey back, but here are the highlights:

  • We woke up at 4am and managed to get out in half an hour
  • We walked to the bus stop, and while we were waiting, I appreciated how wonderfully quiet it was. Don’t get me wrong, Norway isn’t like big cities so it always feels quiet, but this was on another level. So peaceful
  • I napped on the coach to the airport and don’t regret anything. I’d had five hours sleep so…
  • Our flight was delayed by at least half an hour
  • I hadn’t eaten breakfast because I assumed our flight would be on time and I could eat something at the airport when we landed
  • Naturally, you can imagine how hungry I was by 10:30am
  • I bid my goodbyes to my friends and grabbed some breakfast before continuing the rest of my journey

* * * * *

While I wasn’t the greatest out and about, especially on the last day, I definitely appreciated the moments we got to chat or laugh. Basically, be ourselves. Those are the moments I really love the most, and I’m so glad we had those moments while on holiday. These three have been in my life since childhood, so they mean a lot to me. Having those moments where we could have a deep conversation, or we could just be goofy dorks, is incredibly important to me and any friendship I have. It honestly made the holiday for me, because it reminds me why we’re still friends, and probably always will be.

I’d definitely revisit Norway, but in a slightly cooler climate, because I didn’t feel like I fully appreciated it while there. The heat got to me a few times so I couldn’t enjoy it. But it was so beautiful, and so different from society as I know it. It’s so safe and quiet, albeit expensive. I could see myself living there for a short period of time, especially since they have wooden panel housing (my favourite!). But I think it’d be too quiet for me in the long term.

Norway is a beautiful city that’s just so quiet and safe. It blew my mind how safe it was. You could literally keep your front door open all day and nobody would rob you. Insane! I wish it were like that elsewhere.

I’d highly recommend Norway, for the scenery just as much as anything else.