What a 2015 I have had, there have been so many highs… no lows that I can think of… and a whirlwind of new adventures! Here is my 2015 in summary:
I wanted to start 2015 how I was meant to go on, and so despite still living in the UK, I spent New Year’s Eve in the Netherlands. Gino’s cousin Rafe threw an awesome party, and even arranged for us to celebrate the English New Year, which is an hour behind the Netherlands. The Dutch love their fireworks on NYE, probably because they are banned the rest of the time, so I got to experience the busiest night of fireworks I have ever seen!
Moving time! Gino drove over with a van and we packed up the last of my stuff and had a farewell family dinner. My mum cried and gave Gino an ultimatum about looking after me… bless!
February also brought my first Carnaval experience, I have written about this in a previous blog you can find here. Needless to say I am looking forward to 2016’s celebrations!
The BIG 3-0! This was the month that Gino really excelled on the boyfriend front, and has got bragging rights for the next 10 years (but don’t tell him I told you), he wanted to make my 30th go off with a bang, and BOY DID HE!
The first weekend (N.B. My birthday tends to last for two weeks at a minimum) I was whisked away to Amsterdam, on what I thought was a last minute break, little did I know that my friends Gemma, Char and Jimmy were all meeting us there.
The second weekend, I was taken on a surprise trip to Rome! The weather was fantastic, the food was incredible and we visited the Pope. What more could you want?!
Kings Day! Another thing the Dutch love, their monarchy. I really respect the way they love their Royals, which is probably due to the fact the King gives them a free day off an encourages street parties and drinking! Gino and I stayed round Den Bosch; he wanted to show me what Kings Day is all about. It was amazing, yet another Dutch festivity that I can certainly get used to!
We also moved into our apartment. It just took 30ltrs of paint, 12 bottles of cleaning solution, two trips to Ikea, six long days and nine amazing helpers… and we got there!
The Mother-ship turns the BIG 6-0. At the beginning of May we flew home for the Mother-ship’s birthday celebrations. She had a very English garden party… despite the weather being typically British I most importantly got to introduce Gino to my crazy extended family! He survived, and passed the test with flying colours (of course).
I also started my new job at Genie and was immediately sent to Paris and then Italy for training. So I can’t complain too much.
Tash visited! It rained, which stopped our plans of cycling around the Netherlands, but we persevered… with beer.
Finally, we got round to throwing our first house party… and the police were called… at 10:30pm! Sorry neighbours.
I went to my first hardstyle party! Finally the summer started which added to my first hardstyle party being a HUGE success. Gino’s friends did well in converting me to the hardstyle way, and even took me to the “hardcore” stage for a few minutes. The only way I can describe this is hardstyle on speed… insane beat, insane dancing!
The heatwave. The Netherlands was hit by the most insane heatwave in July, two weeks of 30-40 degrees of sweaty heat. It just so happens that my car has no air con (school boy error) and we were going to a festival slap bang in the middle, which can only be described as the sweatiest moment of my life.
CRAFT was rained off. In contrast at the end of July we headed to Amsterdam for another festival, however, the wind and rain meant that we spend three hours standing in a warehouse before the Gemeente (Amsterdam Council) called off the event for safety fears. Trains, buses and public transport were cancelled, so we went back to a friend of Gino’s house and carried on the party until the train lines reopened and we could get back to Den Bosch.
Back to the UK – Tash’s Birthday! So I was back to the UK again, the short 45 minute flight makes it so easy, this time for Tash’s birthday. She decided she wanted a Made in Chelsea weekend (a TV reality show for those of you that don’t know). So with my ex-landlady Georgina we headed to London for cocktails, overpriced cocktails and… the Ice Bar.
Bye bye teeth. Despite asking for the NHS to take my wisdom teeth out for the last ten years, they continued to refuse! Cue the Dutch dental system where one trip to the good old Tandarts meant that I was booked in to the hospital to have my teeth pulled out. I couldn’t eat for a few days, but that’s just a weight loss bonus!
HELLO BALI! Despite being budding travelers, Gino and I hadn’t had an official holiday since returning from Asia in July 2014, therefore a break was well needed. After a false start and a 27 hour flight delay (thanks Malaysia Airlines) the holiday was what dreams are made of! We had two weeks in Bali to dive, play with monkeys and eat our body weight in Indonesian food! Now… where to next?
Oh and it was Gino’s birthday… which makes me slightly less of a cougar for six months. He once told me I could “never scare him enough” so I sent him up in a stunt plane!
Ik Spreek Nederlands. I finally started Dutch lessons, and have two hours each week to practice my best Dutch words. Gino has noticed that my confidence has improved, but I am still quite a way from being fluent!
It’s CHRRRRIIIIIIISSSSSTTTTTMAAAAAAAAAAAASSSSS! Probably my favourite time of the year, and this year I am passing on some English traditions (mainly turkey, mince pies and Christmas crackers) and adopting some new ones. Therefore SinterKlaas visited on 5th December, to find out who he is take a read of my previous job post here, and I will have a “Second Christmas Day” rather than “Boxing Day”.
So… what now for 2016? Hopefully improving my Dutch, getting on the property ladder and many many more fun times… Bring it on!