MMXII

Dear 2012,

Now that we are about to enter the time of your sweet and well-deserved retirement I would like to express my gratitude and thank you from the bottom of my heart. You have surely been one hell of a year. Full of ups and downs you will be the one I will most certainly never forget about.

I have to say I wasn’t too impressed to welcome you as a newborn baby in January. Following the amazing 2011 –the year of Gabri’s travels- I thought you were bound to be a bit of a disappointment. And as you slowly unfolded you seemed to only want to confirm that assumption as you saw me working my a** off and getting really sick (of it). Still we both know that no January can be too bad since it’s my birthday month. Spending two weeks in my lovely snowy country with Huggie and circled by friends& family- skiing, eating, chilling and celebrating our numerous birthdays and name days was simply perfect! Oh – and let’s not forget about my poor snowboarding attempts which shall never be repeated.

Snowtubbing

Snowtubbing

The February blues hit us pretty hard didn’t they? Not even that little break in the Lakes did much help. On the contrary –it made the whole month of working late weekends so much harder!

March, however, was the month of remedy. More skiing, more family time and the beautiful Austrian Alps. Life was good once again.

April was devoted to preparations for an epic Hen do party, then partying and then attending a wonderful wedding.

In May Geoffrey came into our lives. Good old Geoffrey. Geoffrey- the only serious competition I have in the contest for number one place in Huggie’s heart. It’s shameful to admit it but I think I may have lost in May. Even more so considering Geoffrey is a car. “He” even went on holiday with us. Rambling road trip to Cornwall, where I decided that camping on the beach might be a great idea -everywhere else but in cold Blighty.

Geoffrey The Golf

Geoffrey The Golf

Now –let’s be honest. June/ July period was your all time low. Or shall I say mine? Let’s just leave those two months where they belong- in the past, buried under great memories of my mum’s visit in August. My mum! No words will ever be enough to describe her. Let the picture talk instead:

Here comes the trouble

Here comes the trouble

August was also the official start to my Cabin Crew dream. September/ October – that’s just a blur in my memory filled with all things flying. November– auch- was the month of injections. And gymming. And shopping. November was gooooooooodl!!

And here we are now – me ready to jump head first into 2013 and you nearing the end or your service. You did me good 2012, you taught me that if life gives you lemons you make a lemonade and drink it chilled with friends. Shaken, not stirred.

I just hope you are not going to come to a premature end this Friday. Let’s suck it up till the very end. Till the 31st !

 

x

 

G.

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Goodbyes

With every big change comes excitement. Sometimes even fear. And then the inevitable – the goodbyes you have to say. A goodbye can be a good thing. It can also break your heart. I have decided to list all the kinds of goodbyes I’m going to have to face in the next 19 days :

Good-to-be-gone-bye to:

  • my headset at work
  • my crazy (I mean eccentric dammit) landlady and her habit of smoking in the kitchen/ lounge/ dinning room/ bedroom/ bathroom (!!)
  • paying taxes
  • paying national insurance and all kinds of bills in general
  • rain
  • RAIN
  • RAIN
  • srain ( snow + rain = srain , fyi srain is not half as cool as it sounds)

Good-lord-this-is-hard-bye :

  • my favourite cafe, where they already know my order and serve delicious coffee with a little chocolate frog on the side
  • all my fab friends
  • my little gerbils
  • skiing
  • Primark
  • polite shopkeepers
  • my bike
  • sipping a cuppa Tetley’s whilst watching the miserable weather outside (mental note to myself : pack some Tetley’s)
Ribbit, ribbit

Ribbit, ribbit

 Goooooohoooohooo…sniff..sniff..-somebody-pass-me-a-tissue-please-bye to:

  • Huggie, I honestly do not know how that’s going to go down at the airport

What’s gonna be your hardest goodbye?

x

G.

P.S. You might have noticed I have not included my family. That’s not because I am a cold hearted b**ch but because I’m already used to saying goodbye to them. And no it doesn’t get any easier with time. It’s always sad when I have to go.

Challenge Cancelled

Since I have spent most of this week sweating in bed instead of in the gym I have decided to cancel this week’s update on the 6-week-6-pack-challenge. I have however taken it upon me to work twice as hard next week and hopefully it will show!!

I don’t want you to feel cheated on the pictures tho so here is a bunch of random nice photos I found of things I particularly love. Enjoy!

x

 

G.

 

 

Mind over matter

Do you know that feeling when you are sooooooooo sick of being sick? When reading books in bed all day, watching all your favourite TV shows on catch-up and even shopping online stopped being fun days ago? And now all you desperately want to do is just being able to go to work and talk to somebody else than your crazy (and by crazy I mean eccentic kind of crazy) landlady? Well – that was me yesterday.

Today I am like : “C’mon body, what can possibly be wrong with you for so long?!”

Today I am really over this whole “sickness” thing. I think my body is just trying to avoid its responsibilities like having to move and function and go to the gym. The going to the gym is the part that’s bothering me the most because OBVIOUSLY I have got my challenge to keep up with.

And it was only today I remembered my mum telling me that as a child I was able to make myself sick overnight. I would be completely fine going to bed the night before an exam for example and wake up with a fever in the morning. Just like that I would order my body to create an excuse to stay out of school. “I wonder if that would work the other way around?” I thought. And then I tried really hard to concentrate on feeling good and healthy. Next thing I know I wake up three hours later. So much for healing myself using my mind. I did feel a bit better after that nap tho !

So I decided to dedicate this post to my body in hope it will then feel thankful and better in return ! I love you body so please don’t let me down! Let’s go to work tomorrow and feel great !

 

x

G.

 

 

Decisions decisions…

Like probably every girl in her teenage years I went thru phases. I went thru cutting my hair GI Jane short , bleaching it to death in a quest of becoming legally blond and even dying my fringe all possible rainbow colours. I went thru all this just to realise that if you are born a redhead you have remain a redhead.

I did my fair share of experimenting with hair styles and finally settled for long. Long is good. It requires near to no maintenance apart from occasional brushing and maybe even blow drying. Sometimes I decide to go “crazy” and change my fringe style. Right now I am in between haircuts and am considering what type of fringe would go with the famous EK red hat? Any ideas?

Side swept maybe?

Side swept maybe?

Or centre parting?

Or centre parting?

Or my beloved full fringe?

Or my beloved full fringe?

And here is THE HAT :

What do you guys think?

What do you guys think?

x

G.

Words and space

I have once briefly mentioned that I got finally approved for the Cabin Crew job. I feel like I haven’t really dedicated that big news enough words or space on my blog. So here it comes :  

words , words and happy words and more happy words and also happy space and happy face

No- seriously – I am very excited as you can imagine! All the obstacles have been overcome and I’ standing on the very last step of a long imaginary staircase ready to open the imaginary door and embark on what is probably going to be the biggest adventure of my life. There is no denying it now- I am actually going to Dubai in four weeks. There is no more ” I might not get thru” “I might not get the GC” “I might not pass my Medicals” there is just “I might have to start packing.”

This half a year has gone by so quick- from the first moment I thought of even applying for the job. It was on a crappy day last summer as I was feeling super sorry for myself because I haven’t seen sunshine for about three months running and had to keep on talking to people at work about their flying on holiday to or via Dubai that I suddenly decided I can’t live in England anymore. And out of a blue I thought – “I know what would be a great idea! To live in a desert ! There is always sun in a desert !”.  In the frenzy of imagining myself soaking up all the sun and feeling warm I applied for the first job that crossed my mind. Cabin Crew.

It wasn’t until I received the invitation for my AD (as an employee of the same airline I didn’t have to attend an OD) that I fully realised what I did. And what I was about to do. At this point I still haven’t told anyone. It was my little secret that I would think of when I felt down. A bit like ” You talk to me like I am a piece of s***t but I am going to be a Cabin Crew and flying places and stuff and you are not – hehehe I win” type of secret. It wasn’t the easiest news to break to people but I was surprised how supportive everyone around me was. I felt and am still feeling so loved! There truly is nothing better than supportive friends and family!

By this time I was back on good terms with England (could have possibly been caused by that one sunny week we had mid-August this year) and wasn’t even that fussed about going to Dubai anymore. I have already made my point to the UK. “You either get your act together about this weather thing or I go.” However I decided to still attend and see how far can I get with this whole thing. This mindset was probably what has made the difference at my AD (for more details on that click here). I wasn’t nervous at all, just really curious what’s this all about. And I got thru. Most of the girls there didn’t and they probably hate me now. Some of them looked like their lives depended on getting that job… well maybe they did.

After I got my Final Interview invitation I thought “Right, am I doing this or what? I better find out what’s going on.” And I started looking a bit deeper into the possibility of completely turning my life around. And that’s when I fell in love with the job. I started wanting it so badly. Who wouldn’t ? I got completely obsessed with forums such as CabinCrew and PPrune. Because I don’t know what the term “half measures” means.

My FI didn’t go as well as planned. For you all out there who think it’s just a chitchat about your past jobs- it is not. It’s pretty in depth examination of your customer service skills and demeanour. Watch out for any gaps in your CV- you are gonna have to explain them well! I made sure I had none but my FI  still took over an hour and afterwards I felt completely spent. I couldn’t talk for the rest of the day because my brain ran out of energy to produce anything more than “bzzzzzzzzzbzzzzzzzzzzz bzzzzzzzzbzzzzzz”. I gave it my all and felt it might have not been enough. And I don’t wish that feeling upon anyone.

And then the waiting started. And after that the Medicals. And after that… The Final Approval. And after that? Who knows … watch this space for more !

x

G.

Happy Name Day to Babs and Babsi and Happy “One month to go till Dubai” day to me!

In the Czech calendar each day of the year has its own name. When a baby is born the parents pick one they like and name their baby after that day. The 8th March is for example Gabriela’s day. It is therefore my Name day. All the other Gabrielas and I get to celebrate that day every year by getting cards, flowers and/or gifts. It’s basically just like having a second birthday only you don’t get any older so it’s actually even better than a birthday! Now there is something you surely didn’t know, right? Well you learn something new every day don’t you? Next time you are having a dinner party you can bring it up as an interesting fact and everybody is going to think you are really cool and know loads of stuff. No- no need to thank me! My pleasure!

 

 The 4th December is Barbora’s day. I am lucky enough to have two amazing Barboras in my life – beautiful little cousin of mine Babsi and then ex-colleague turned flatmate turned ex-flatmate turned best friend Babs. I love you both very much girls have a great and happy Name day!

 Here is a picture of both of them in one frame and I even put a festive touch to it, I am such a good friend and cousin seriously:

Babs and Babsi

Babs and Babsi

 

 On a completely unrelated note it is exactly one month from today that I’m going to check in for my flight MAN to DXB- for the last time as a passenger totally oblivious to all the buttons and commands on the aircraft! So Happy “One month till Dubai” day to me!

 

x

 

G.

This is a shoe story

Do you remember when as a school kid you had to write an essay on “3 things you would take with you to a deserted island and why”?And how hard it was? Because once you packed your favorite Teddy and favorite book you only had one thing left. What did you choose?

I used to say I would take my mum assuming she could take three things of her own and that would be an empty bottle, a pen and my dad, who would then take a piece of paper and a torch … and so on. I was a clever kid, you see, I usually found my way around limitations and rules.

However life has its ways of getting back at you. Like for example when you trick your way out of  “If you only had 3 things you could take to a deserted island ..” it turns around, rephrases the question and asks “ If you only had 50 kilos you could take with you to a desert(ed island)…” .

 I have already described how I dealt with clothes packing for The Big Move here. So what exactly am I going to put in my enormous suitcase? The same principle applies – only things that matter.

Once Misulka (my teddy) and MacBook (my favourite book) are packed away the remaining 48 kilos are going to be used for boxes full of my beloved shoes. Yes- because I own 48 kilos of shoes. And counting. And they all matter to me. And I see nothing wrong with that. Absolutely nothing. Do you?

Shoes to me are more than just footwear. My shoes are my life. And I mean that – I remember the story of every pair I have ever bought. I get emotional if a pair gets worn out beyond repair and I have to get rid of it. If I had the space I would dedicate an entire room just to my worn out shoes. Each pair would get a separate shelf with a laminated description. I’d call the room “Shoezeum”.

 I still have the pair of high heeled court shoes my dad got me for my high school graduation. I call them my Minnie Mouse shoes because that’s exactly what they look like. They are my lucky pair. They “got me” to uni, “helped” me with my first work interview and ultimately “landed” me my dream job. I don’t wear that often anymore because they are battered a great deal but whenever I feel down or nervous (like for example before my assessment day) I put them on at home and wear them for a bit. And the lucky charm still works!

Then there is the sky high golden pair I bought for my first Christmas party in England. It was shortly after I met my special someone and I was over the moon that I finally have somebody taller than me by my side. Even if I wear the highest heels ever made. They have blistered me awfully plus I had a couple of terrible falls trying to walk in them but I still love them. Almost as much as I love him. 

Or the faux-leather sandals from Primark that went to Asia with me. After two weeks in Thailand and one especially dirty trip to the “jungle” they HAD to be thrown away otherwise I was threatened with a break-up. The dirt and smell just wouldn’t go away. I was so gutted that when we got back I went straight to Primark to see if they still had a pair. They did and it was reduced! It was meant to be – me and the sandals were reunited! The new pair is still laying unused in my suitcase waiting to be worn in Dubai. I bet it can’t wait!

There is also the pair of green Zara kitten heels that I bought for my last 20 euros in Rome after I spent the whole summer working in Italy. I went without food for two days but it was totally worth it – both the shoes and the summer.

My red stilettos, black stilettos, black stilettos with golden heels (no girl can ever have enough stilettos), pink, blue, floral, boots, flats, expensive, cheap , old and new … each one of them have their own tale and all together they tell the story of my life. That’s why I can’t let go of them. Because it would be like tearing pages out of a diary and being left with an empty space. And barefoot.

So when I get asked “If you only had 50 kilos… “ my reply will be “2 kilos of necessity and 48 kilos of history and memories” 

 

not even half way there ...

not even half way there …

 

x

 

G.

30 hours

Here is a not-so-brief description of some 30 hours of sheer bliss:

It all starts when you finish work one evening and leaving the office you notice that the air already carries that unmistakable winter crispiness so you walk home all excited about Christmas quietly humming “Jingle Bells”. Your special someone is already waiting for you at home with a cup of warm sweet milky goodness and a biscuit and you suddenly get the feeling that he indeed is a keeper! When leaving the house for dinner& cinema night he gets the all important call with a job offer he has been waiting for so anxiously and it gives you two yet another reason to stuff your faces with even more sushi. He has to of course call everyone and tell them first so you get the precious 20 minutes head start and manage to devour the best pieces from the conveyor belt before he even gets to his seat. Hmmmm yummy yummy in my greedy tummy. When he sits down at last you are so full that everything around you has slowed down and all you can do is just sit back, undo the buttons on your jeans and listen to him chatting away happily.

After what seems like hours of eating you manage to roll off the chair and make your way to the bar to have one celebratory drink before the film. You opt for the Merry Mojito which is your all time favourite with a Christmas twist of cranberries, cinnamon and orange juice. Very festive but so sweet you probably turned diabetic after the first sip. The film is exactly what is expected from a guilty pleasure. Cringeworthy at times but on the whole rather enjoyable. You basically spend first half waiting for Jake to take his shirt off and when he finally does the film is over. 

 When you get back home it’s already past midnight and you really want to tell your special someone how your mum saw you off at the airport Gangnam style but since your day started way before 7am you are fast asleep before your head hits the pi..llo……wssshhhhhhhhh…….shhhhhhhhh……hhhhhhhhhhhhh.

 You wake up not because the alarm goes off screaming: WakeUpWakeUpWakeUpWakeUpWakeUpWakeup, but because the rays of sun shining through the blinds have made their way across the blanket to your face and started caressing your cheeks. Sunny mornings are so rare in England it immediately sets your day off to a great start. You turn around and see this next to you:

 

Huggie sleeping

Huggie sleeping

Only in human form. You contemplate letting him sleep for a bit longer but the cheeky side of you wins over and you start whispering loudly: “huggie, Huggie, HUGGIE, H-U-G-G-I-E” and when you see him stirring, pretend you are asleep again. Then open your eyes slowly, smile and say: Good morning! That never fails to make any morning perfect!

 After a couple of hours spent in bed watching TV, trying to blog but reading funny stuff on the internet instead and drinking about 5 cups of tea you finally get up and decide today is the ideal day to begin with the Christmas shopping although you said you won’t do any this year and people will only get best wishes and words of wisdom from you.

Armed with a tasty latte in one hand and payday-charged bank card in the other you hit the stores. As usual you hit the upmarket ones first and as every year you make a promise to yourself that one day soon you will be so rich that you will shop here absolutely guilt free. One day soon. After making a list of things that are cool to buy this season you start looking in the cheaper shops to find them at a bargain price. Huggie’s and mine favourite sport.

That’s when the day gets a bit blurry. All you know is that couple of hours later you find yourself stood there with bags full of stuff no one essentially needs scared of what the hell has just happened thinking: “What the hell has just happened?

 That’s when you realize you haven’t eaten for-what-seems-like-ever and a couple of minutes later you are both gorging on a chippy. Massive battered haddock fillet with chunky greasy chips, mushy peas and gravy (DO NOT forget the gravy)- ->English for happy.

 Hands and belly full it’s about time to head back home. The high street is fuller than normal and it seems to be because the Christmas lights are being lit tonight. You decide to hang about for a bit but after watching a choir trying to be all “gospel” (gospel only works well if the choir is coloured if you ask me – and I can say “coloured” because it’s politically correct in the UK I checked) you decide there is no need to see Santa after all.

Back at home your gym bag looks at you and says:” Remember me? We used to be best of friends! We used to hang out! And now look at us pretending that we barely know each other! It’s pathetic!” Just to shut it up really you grab it and head to the gym. You are all like “ 40 lengths and we are DONE” but then you get into the pool and it feels nice after 10 days of doing nothing so you are like “Well- maybe I will do 50 today. Just like that. Just because I can” and then it’s length number 20 and the 10 days off are starting to show and you are more like “I think 30 will do tonight” and the Better You in the back of your head start shouting “ YOU WEAKLING ! YOU FATTY! YOU HAD FISH AND CHIPS FOR TEA! GIMME 15 AND SUCK IT UP!”

So after 32 lengths you get out and sneak out to the changing rooms hoping none will notice your poor effort… Especially the Better You.

 In the comfort of your bed you once again try to blog but get distracted by challenging you brother to a six pack. For more on that click here. And then you try to remember what was is you wanted to tell your special someone so badly last night but you simply cannnnnnnnnnnnnn…………t….. sssssssssshhhhhhhhhh……….hhhhhhhhhh.

6-week-6-pack-challenge

My 18-year-old brother (damn why do I keep thinking he is a 12 years old brat?) has discovered bodybuilding not so long ago. It had near to no impact on my life up until recently when he started posting pictures of his hard work on Facebook.

“That little s**t” I thought ” I can’t possibly let him have a six pack before I do!”

So I did what our family does best. I challenged him to it !

I have been trying for a six pack for over a year now but for various reasons ( mainly purely my own laziness and sugar addiction) I have failed. So far. What I lacked was motivation. To simply “have a six pack” doesn’t quite cut it for me. To ” have a better one” or “get one faster” than somebody might just do the trick !

What we agreed to do is to post a weekly update on our rock-hard abs (ha ha ha in my case) for the next month and a half and see where it gets us. And who is gonna end up looking tighter (ha ha ha again).

Here are couple of points I am too exhausted to put into sentences because it’s so late at night but think will make a difference in this challenge :

  • my brother is 9 years younger = 9 years shorter exposure to beer (aka ultimate six pack enemy:)
  • I have watched Pumping Iron like 3 times
  • my brother already has a mini six pack (minor detail)
  • I am the true daughter of my father who is the most competitive person you have ever met
  • I have to be at work this Christmas far far away from home whereas my brother will have to eat for hours on end not only at our family’s table but at our grandma’s and other  grandma and so on and on and on and on…

And here are the  pictures :

My no pack

My no pack

His six pack

His six pack

Wish me luck 🙂

x

G.

Btw. Just to clarify -this one is not the same brother that I talk about here. This is a different one . I have many brothers. I also have a sister. But rather than going on about it in this post I decided to write another one purely on that topic later on.

UPDATE : Week 1

Negatives – still no six pack

Positive – lost 2 kilos which wasn’t even intended but it’s a nice plus

My still no six pack

My still no six pack

My brother really needs to get a girlfriend!!

My brother really needs to get a girlfriend!!

UPDATE : Week 3

After a week of being ill I made the effort to work out twice as hard… I think it paid off. On the other hand my brother is beating me fair and square. There must be a scientific explanation to why an 18-year-old is so much more effective at working out than me 🙂

If this is not a starting six pack then I don't know what is...

If this is not a starting six pack then I don’t know what is…

Ehm ehm ehm ...

Ehm ehm ehm …

UPDATE : Week 4

I’m still nowhere near Luda’s hard abs however I’m the closest to a six pack I have ever been and quite proud of myself! I’m starting to really enjoy this challenge and doing crunches has never been more fun! I’d encourage anyone who wants to get a six-pack or a just a flatter tummy to take pictures. It can be quite painful to look at to start with nonetheless nothing makes you happier than seeing the difference and progress every week !

IMG_1673

The flattest it has ever been !!!

 

IMAG0082