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10.13.2017

I choose to forgive

I choose to forgive
10.13.2017
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I've always thought of myself as a Blair Waldorf when it comes to people hurting me.

Revenge is the best option.

I mean I’ve spent the best part of the last 5 years re-watching every series to the point that I know most episodes word-for-word, I know the soundtrack and I’ve mentally envisioned myself marrying Chuck, Nate AND Lonely Boy, a.k.a, Dan.

So when my ex cheated on me, part of me wanted to channel my inner over-privileged teenager. I told him I'd do everything I could to ruin his life, I told him that until he felt as rubbish as I did in that moment I wouldn't rest.

I mean, imagine every dramatic set of words you can and I probably said it with a floating sensation that I’d follow through with every action.

And for about 30 minutes I believed it. I mean I genuinely came up with a genius idea to subtly annoy him for months, then go in for the bigger goals. But I realised - revenge isn’t for me. Revenge isn’t a dish “best served cold”, it’s a dish best served not at all.

When someone hurts you, you're often presented with two options; fight them or forgive them.

You can choose to fight; aim to make them feel as small and insignificant as you do some how. Try to bring some form of pain and trouble to them, spend your days thinking about what would hurt them as much as they hurt you.

And your thoughts will undoubtedly run away alongside your anger. You'll come to have thoughts that aren't in the slightest bit rational and your anger will manifest into your own deeply rooted unhappiness.

I know because that was me. These thoughts, no matter how fleeting, ended up hurting me more than they’d ever hurt that person.

And I mean, hell to the no will I be known as the psycho ex.

Because as much as I'd love to send a GG blast with the intimate details of his private life, do a BW and sleep with a best friend in the backseat of a limo or even marry a Prince in spite - that's just not how I operate.

Sometimes people need your forgiveness more than they need your anger - and sometimes it’s you who needs your own forgiveness more than holding onto the hurt they caused you.

I realised the worst thing I could do to him is forgive him, and forget him.

The thing is being angry and holding a grudge wasn't doing anything to help me.

Sitting there day in and day out thinking about why he did it, the girl he cheated with just manifested into my own hell. A bubble of unhappiness where I felt inadequate, when in reality I'm anything but.

So I chose - I chose forgiveness.

I forgive him for everything he did, I forgive him for hurting me and I forgive everything else that followed after.

The truth is you really do live and learn. You live, you get hurt and you can choose to cling to that pain or forgive and move on.

So in the words of Oasis, don't look back in anger. I mean it.
10.06.2017

LeBab, Soho

LeBab, Soho
10.06.2017
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Kebabs - I mean is it just me or do you associate them with the greasy cuisine, if you can call it that, that you stuff your face with in the early hours of a Sunday morning after a heavy drinking session at the Clapham North, or Infernos, or whatever watering hole you choose. 

I sure as hell did - until I ventured to LeBab.

LeBab is located in Kingly Court, moments from many bars if you do want to recreate the above, and provides the classiest take on kebabs I've ever seen.

The interiors are instagram friendly, the location perfect, the staff good-looking and the menu delicious. 



We dined on a Wednesday, and in true Wine Wednesday style opted for a "sensible" option of a bottle due to my impending job the next day. We went for the Sauvignon Blanc "Attitude" 2014, on the recommendation of the waiter. Truthfully - when it comes to wine I don't know a thing and my knowledge is really basic. I know what I enjoy (read: any) but I couldn't tell you what pairs well with a kebab given my knowledge stretches only so far.

However - wine wise - what I will say is that we enjoyed it. My friend, a skilled-wine-drinker, didn't struggle to drink it so we'll give it a pass at least.

But - now to the important part - the food.

More often than not, the moment I see 'Mezze' on a menu my heart skips a beat. My favourite kind of food, the food which thrills me to no end - and this was no exception. 

We opted for the hummus (because why would you not?) and the LeBab Bhajis. 



Believe it or not - I actually didn't know hummus was chickpeas until recently. Please don't ask me how I've managed living on my own for over four years, because I simply haven't got a clue.

But - my god - dat hummus, mm. I can 100% get on board with a hummus and this one was truly fantastic. Now I'm aware there is only so much I can say about hummus so I'll stop here.

Moving onto the Bhajis - not my usual style but stuff them with braised lamb shoulder, beef shin and onion bhajis with smoked chilli mayo then you've 100% got me on board. These were linked with being my highlight of the meal.

So now we go to the life changing revelation that; kebabs can be classy. 

I opted for the corn-fed chicken shish - trying to remember the last time I'd said those words and not aimed them at an unsuspecting taxi driver -  and eagerly anticipated my epiphany.

And what an epiphany it was.

Firstly, let's assess the instagram potential here:



I mean - bloggers dream right?

I can confirm there was not a plastic box in sight. 

The meat was succulent, juicy and - god I hate this word - moist. But truthfully it was! The additional trimmings are what takes the meat from standard to brilliant - giving something that traditionally gets covered in sauce a fantastic reason not to be. 

And because you all know I love a good 'cheap eat', you'll be glad to know this is exceptionally reasonable. Book in advance, if you can, for sure but if you're looking for somewhere chilled to enjoy some food, catch-up with friends then this is the place for you.

My view on kebabs has been changed forever - or until next weekend.


10.04.2017

An open letter to someone I loved...

An open letter to someone I loved...
10.04.2017
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An open-letter, because words when I'm faced with you fail me, but I want you to know. You are the one I loved in too much in too little time.

You came into my life, you made me happier than I've ever been, the happiest I've ever felt and I truly fell head over heels in love with you. A love I didn't know existed, a love I used to laugh at when friends told me about it and truthfully never thought existed.

Something so powerful that it hurt; in the best possible way. Something so powerful that the fear of losing it paralysed me.

Within a month, I'd begun thinking of our future. What would happen in 1 year, 2 years' and so forth - and you planned with me. We discussed our dreams, our empires, our seven-figure salaries paired with our house in the City accompanied by houses across the UK in places I'd never even visited.

We discussed moving abroad, taking our dreams elsewhere but together. We discussed things that were so far off, but seemed so possible when wrapped up with you, in you.

When I was with you anything seemed possible; you made me want to do more, be more and see more. You gave me a lease of life I'd needed for so long, something to look forward to and aim towards.

Someone to aim towards those things with.

I genuinely thought that you and I were against it all; I thought we could withstand the world and everything it threw at us.

Within just three-months we'd endured one of the worst things I'd ever had to go through; and you were my rock. You held me when I needed to be held, you told me how great I am (because I am) when I thought I was nothing and you showed me that glimmer of hope in a world of darkness.

The love I felt for you felt unbreakable, I thought it could never end.

Every plan, dream and ambition I had begun to have you tangled through it, stopping it from truly growing because as my love shifted to something more unhealthy, my dreams begun to shrink in my fear of losing you.

But the problem is the love I felt was a love out of need, not a love out of want. A love which stemmed from the fact I didn't love myself enough, a love that was routed in my deeply unhappy inner-self.

A love that was only palpable because I allowed it to be. A love that flourished in my need to be needed, my need to be wanted.

Perhaps you could sense that; perhaps you knew that every day the happiness I felt was being dragged out of me by circumstantial depression and maybe that's why you cheated. Maybe that's why we both grew apart, you resenting me and me trying to claw back the feeling I'd felt just weeks before.

Maybe you cheated because you knew we weren't right for each other - or maybe you are just a bad person - I don't know. But despite it all, despite any excuse you could give, you knew it had the potential to break me.

I'd told you of the pain I'd felt before, finding out before and yet you still did it. You cheated, you lied and you hurt me.

So I guess, for both of us, what we had was never true love. It was never the love we had in our heads, it was never the fairytale I'd so strongly hoped it would be.

Truth be told - it was a good thing that could never sustain the intensity it brought. The cracks begun to show in a surface I'd thought was stronger than anything in a mere few weeks, but I frantically tried to patch them together again. Pathetically suggesting attempts of 'date nights' and fun things to do in a bid to keep you within my grips, in a bid to not lose you.

But that isn't right. You should never have to hold someone so close out of fear of losing them. The pain and fear I felt was the fear of losing that feeling, the risk of not waking up feeling loved.

Because that's the thing; if something is meant to be then it will. If people are meant to be, then they will be.

I could cry all day over the loss I feel; but I won't let it break me, as much as it nearly has, because we just weren't meant to be.

You taught me amazing things, gave me the push I needed to want to explore the world and re-introduced my love for reading back to me. The memories we've made will live with me forever, most affectionately Winston who will never cease to exist unless he goes in the washing machine, and some of the best times in my, short, life have been with you.

Whilst I'm tearfully saying goodbye to a chapter of my life that I thought would manifest into a book, I look back with a sense of happiness. I learnt that my heart is bigger than I ever thought it could be, I learnt that I capable of love and that some day, someone will appreciate that.

Once upon a time yours,
KBJ






10.03.2017

Have we fallen out of love?

Have we fallen out of love?
10.03.2017
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The love affair began in the summer of 2015; it was the most overwhelming, exciting and fast-paced relationship I've ever had.

Every moment of the day I couldn't escape it, my mind and body were in it, and I was happy. It was an all consuming love affair that never offered an end, or I never thought of there being an end.

It was love at first sight.

And no, this isn't a relationship with another human.

This is my relationship with London.

I've had this blog for years, it's been London based for over two, and the reason I changed it was to talk about the love of my life.

But what happens when you fall out of love?

In the last few months, London has dealt me a shit hand and subsequently I've come to question our relationship.

Will it work long term? Will it get better? Am I putting in more than I get out? Can we survive this?

The questions one typically asks when on the brink of breaking up, the questions I've been pondering for over two months.

London was something I always talked about, probably from the age of 12, and in my first job my boss knew I wanted London more than the job so when presented with the chance to move I just did it.

Truthfully, I've never looked back, and I could never even dream of saying I regret that decision because it truly has been the making - and close to breaking - of me.

In the time I've been here, I've met the most incredible people. People who inspire me, people who have taught me, people who have cared for me, people I've loved and the people that remind me why I hate people sometimes. It's a mixed bag of the good, the bad and the ugly.  

I've seen some amazing things; a variety of sunrises and sunsets across London, talent from across the country being completely at home in this weird and wonderful city.

It's a place you can walk down the road in a matter of outfits, with the craziest hair or outfit, and Londoner's won't bat an eyelid. It's the place where people came together after attack after attack so show their defiance in the face of terrorism. It's the place where you can voice your opinion and be heard, a place where people talk politics openly without being overshadowed by their small-town view.



But truth be told - for a city which is so overpopulated - it’s the place which I’ve felt most lonely in my entire life. With all of these benefits, all of these amazing people - why do I feel so isolated?

Somewhere that I’ve felt I had no one to turn to, no one to speak to on many occasions all whilst being crammed onto a northern line like sardines.

It's hard when you love something so much - yet you're not sure if it's healthy, or right, for you anymore.

But in the spirit of the typical Londoner, I have stumbled across a lifeline. Something which could potential end a drought of let down friends, and no this isn't sponsored but the idea influenced this post.

Sebastian, the founder, moved to London with his partner a few years ago and found it hard to make friends. I can relate - making friends out of school is hard. It's not socially acceptable to randomly start chatting to someone in London like it was as a child in school. So they developed Pal App - an app where it's not dating, it's not sleazy but you can make friends.

Apps, or startups, or initiatives like this are one of the reasons I came to love London. People in London get it; you're a small fish in a pond, don't get me wrong, but people understand that sometimes living in London isn't like the films.

And whilst honestly I think part of me has fallen out of love with London - not enough to leave but enough to slightly alter our relationship, like when you forgive someone for doing you a wrong but can't forget it - it's not enough to ruin our relationship.

Don't let this ramble of emotions ever deter you from making the move - it has been the most insane few years of my life and I have had experiences that 5 years ago I only dreamed of and I wouldn't change it for the world.

But it's tough. Nothing worth doing, or having, is easy though - right?


10.01.2017

Maybe it's time to love me?

Maybe it's time to love me?
10.01.2017
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As much as I'd love to wish I wasn't, I'm no stranger to dating.

Truth be told - I've on and off dated for years. In primary school I always had a “crush”, someone's name I'd dot in my ‘play book’.

Now, at 22, I can't remember a time I was truly single. Whilst I've not been in many proper relationships, there's always been someone.

Whether it's a long term fling, a singular date, someone I'm perusing. It's truly been a long time where I've not felt I needed some sort of male presence in my life, perhaps some sort of male validation, but definitely someone.

Honestly I don't know why this is. I've tried to be single, when I ended things with a someone I'd been seeing for a year and a half, yet I found myself dating other people, revisiting previous flings after just two weeks of trying.

It is almost as if, despite my constant outpour of the opposite, that maybe I’m unable to be completely alone. That I seek the wrong people in search of the 'right' feeling.

But when I’m with them, it’s not as if I am even slightly dependent on them. I do my own thing, pay my own bills and just live as I would have if they weren’t there.

Ultimately it could be confidence thing - everyone wants to feel wanted and what's better than feeling that every day?

And that's where part of the problem lies. My need to be wanted by others, the need to feel desired despite not desiring that person myself.

This need pushes me to repeat mistake after mistake, date person after person, fall “in love” time and time again with the wrong person whilst convincing myself they must be right.

Holding onto the feeling they once made me feel months before, just for that singular moment that will never exist.
And the lack of confidence doesn't just lie with my relationship with men - it's my relationship with everything. Work, friends and family.

Confidence is the thing that will get you a job, help you achieve something you might not have before and push you to become something you never knew possible - and truth be told without it, you'd sink.

And truth be told - again - I think I'm kind of sinking right now.

But - in true fighting spirit - there's ways to learn to love yourself rather than waiting for someone else to love you, which is what I'm going to do.

I'm embarking on a journey of self-love, where the only love I will be perusing is for myself.

The thing is that whilst sometimes I think I need some form of validation - the truth is I don't.

Maybe I'm an attention whore, maybe I need someone to tell me I look great, that they love me - but that person could be me.

Trust me - I'm learning.

And no, this isn't a overly feminist narrative where I'll condemn every man because “every man is the same” is the biggest lie ever told, just like “every woman is the same”, because like f**k am I being compared to Theresa May.

So for everyone out there who has dated since the age it was socially acceptable, I feel every ounce of your self-doubt, need for attention and want of being wanted - and I also know that you don't need it.

I'm turning my back on my quest for “love someone”, in a quest to “love myself”, whilst blasting ‘Love Myself - Hailee Steinfeld on repeat in case I falter.

P.S, part of self-love is trying to get better at this blogging thing.



4.13.2017

Hangover Be Gone

Hangover Be Gone
4.13.2017
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In the summer more than ever, we're prone to having one too many glasses of wine or that extra shot we know we shouldn't be doing, but regardless succumb to the chants from our friends. If you're not spending at least a day hungover a week then are you really doing London right?

We're kidding, of course you don't have to drink to find London fun. But when you're hungover it's easy to think it's the worst place in the world when really it's, believe us, the best. And we've been there more than we'd like to admit, forgetting how much there is to do despite being hungover and instead scoffing Meat n' Shake on the sofa. 

But don't worry - we've got some ideas to help guide you through that hangover from hell...

Brunch...
The obvious option for any Londoner, and something we've expressed we're exceptionally passionate about previously. When hungover is there anything better than bacon, coffee and avo being presented in front of you? We think not. Find out our favourite brunch spots HERE

And if you're feeling brave, Bottomless Brunch
There is nothing quite like hair of the dog. Some people can, some people can't - there really is no telling. But if you can then you're in luck because there are so many different bottomless brunches across the City - and they're reasonably priced in most cases. We recently headed to Tootoomoo Bottomless Brunch and LOVED it.

Go and get some fresh air with London's sights
Get out, get yourself moving and before you know it you'll forget you're even hungover. We promise - 75% of the time it works.


Failing that - seek sugar 
Find some sugar. Whether it's trying a Freakshake from Molly Bakes in Hackney, or Dum Dum doughnuts from Shoreditch. If you're feeling exceptionally adventurous - head to either Maltby Market or Broadway Market for an array of sugary treats. 

Cold water...
Anyone else get MAJOR cravings for being in cold water? No - just me? Head to one of the many Lidos in London if you want to get your swim on...obviously weather permitting. 


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