Faux Pas

Fashion. Travel. Food. Bridget. Gin.

It popped up on my 'On This Day' app that my one year anniversary in Australia has already come around. This crazy year has flown by and I now feel like a proper Sydneysider! I've somehow survived being an actual adult, packing up a suitcase and figuring out how to keep myself alive all on my own - half way around the world. Well done me.

I bagged myself a sweet job 1 month in and have spent the past year living on the beach in Bondi, discovering something new everyday. E.g. I've discovered how much gluten scares people here and how you can apparently make a bloody mary out of quinoa... Really? The Hills Eatery, I'm looking at you hun.

There's countless bars, cafe's, brunch spots, beaches, adventures and road trips to discover and I've barely scratched the surface. New places constantly pop up to add to the list and there's always an excuse to get drunk in the daytime. Sydney's buzzing and I'm not sure you'll ever be able to beat walking past beautiful, bronzed, barefoot surfers running to the beach on your way to work.

Getting sponsored by my awesome employers has meant I'm one of the lucky ones and don't have to wash cucumbers or pick nuts in order to carry on with my Australian dream. I've made some beautiful friends who enjoy adventures just as much as me, so I've spent the last year causing trouble and making a lifetime of memories.

Some of my highlights of the past year include regularly walking to Sydney harbour on my lunch break to sit in the sun and stare at the opera house in awe, strolling along the beach after work and heading to Icebergs for wine whilst watching the surfers bob around below, watching the candy floss sunsets Bondi always delivers, showing old friends around my now home city when they come over from England, watching Bondi Rescue on TV then heading down to the beach to see it for real, not having to wear a jumper for the majority of the year, hopping on a ferry/bus/plane and finding new places to fall in love with, the weather, the air con, the beautiful people and the countless pop up events that appear around the place constantly. There's always a gin bar to drink dry I tell ya.

I've been to some incredible events over the last 12 months too like Wine Island - an actual island of wine where we got so drunk we nearly missed the boat off the island. I've seen Ellie Goulding and Coldplay, dressed up and drank wine on the beach for Australia Day, worn a santa's hat, listened to Wham and drank mulled wine in July for Christmas in July, spent an afternoon drinking with NRL players without realising who they were, been to a mansion party overlooking the harbour for my housemates birthday, been to Ramsay Street, seen Irene from Home & Away in Palings whilst drinking on a school night, been whale watching, celebrated Melbourne Cup, dressed up as a bag of jellybeans for the Sydney 7's in 41 degree heat, cheered on my housemate running City to Surf, partied on a boat in the harbour for my Christmas party, had copious amounts of day drinking sessions in the sunshine, experienced too much delicious food and put on about 12 stone. The list goes on.

I love you, Bondi. Here's to continuing the adventure and drinking all of the wine you continue to supply.

The perks of living in Sydney seem endless and one of my favourites is being able to hop on a plane to explore new beaches for the weekend. Myself and my housemate Faye often run out of work on a Friday night, hand luggage in tow and jump straight on a plane from the office to have a 48 hour adventure somewhere new.

This time we chose Byron Bay and it did not disappoint. I'm in love. I want to be a beach bum forever.

After a major storm in Sydney it was touch and go as to whether we'd actually make it out of the airport, as all flights bar ours were cancelled. With a stroke of luck, we boarded on time and ordered a glass of wine after taking off only 10 minutes late. The flight was seriously turbulent and I nearly had several meltdowns, but I downed my wine and grew a pair.

We finally arrived at our hotel around 9pm, dumped our bags and headed straight to the nearest bar for a celebratory G&T. Byron has such a chilled out, laid back vibe with live music most nights... Absolute perfection. We listened to some tunes, had a few drinks and caught up on our previous week (I never see Faye in the week as she's a lawyer and works too hard) and then called it a night before we got carried away.

On Saturday morning we took a stroll from our pad along Belongil Beach to town, which was about 15 minutes away. We fuelled up at Byron Fresh Cafe for brunch before we trekked up to the lighthouse viewpoint; exploring many beaches and coves along the way. The views from the top were stunning and we were lucky enough to see some dolphins larking around below which was pretty sweet. Faye thought they were fish. Oh no.

After dodging bluebottles, noshing off all the ice-cream, getting rather sunburnt and dehydrating ourselves, we explored the town and headed back to Treehouse on Belongil to refuel with pizza and wine. By this point it was 7pm and time for us to find the best local haunts and cause some trouble. If you have only one night in Byron, here are my suggestions:

Start off at The Railway bar where there's live music, a good mixture of locals and tourists and long tables where you can chat with strangers over a G&T. It's really laid back and the perfect place to start the evening. People were up dancing at 8pm and there were no pretentious people in sight.

Then move on to Balcony Bar for a cocktail or two looking over the town. It's a perfect people watching spot if you get a seat at the balcony. It's very chilled and they have a beautiful interior. We came back on Sunday for a (non alcoholic) beverage to cure the hangover.

We took a pit stop next at Ozy Mex which could possibly serve the best burrito that ever has existed. I could have eaten alllll of the pulled pork however I would have been asleep in a delicious Mexican induced coma, so resisted.

To carry on the Mexican theme, we went to Miss Margarita's for some strawberry margaritas to keep us nicely topped up. Very cool, budget friendly cocktail bar with lots of options on the menu. It was shutting up fairly early (standard Australia) but we managed to see off a few before the tequila was shut away.

Next we went to Beach Hotel as everyone seemed to be flooding there and this is where things start going hazy for me. It was rammed, played a mixture of 5ive, Backstreet Boys and music with no lyrics (I need a lyric so don't know artist names). At some point one of the bar women had several buckets of ice water poured over her by the other bar staff. I'm unsure if that's a regular occurrence or if it was a novel way of sacking someone. Either way, you get an idea of the kind of establishment it is.

Finally we went to La La Land to end our night. I don't remember much apart from there was a lot of dancing. I think. It'll forever be a mystery. Then we ate pies before passing out in a happy, slightly sunburnt and terribly drunk haze.

Sunday started at 10.20am when we were woken up by a knock at the door as check out was 20 minutes ago. We jumped in a cab to The Farm for lunch as food was the only thing to help us now. The Farm is beautiful, they have a mini cow, a wishing well, an ice cream cart, a barbeque area, other animals dotted around and Three Blue Ducks restaurant which had a pretty long waiting list. After an hour wait, we finally sat down and ordered some mussels and pork ribs which took too long to arrive! It was lovely food, however I'd recommend going to the cafe next door or take a picnic.

After an afternoon napping on the beach, it was time to hop on a plane back to Sydney and to wave off yet another gorgeous weekend.

I couldn't recommend heading to Byron enough, even if it's just a short stop off like us... Go! I want to go back already. I've 100% fallen in love.
I landed in Melbourne on the 20th February and went straight out to explore the delights of the city. Food is a big part of mine and Jack's friendship, so he showed me around his favourite eateries and bars as soon as I set foot upon Australia. Espresso Martini's and champagne are also vital components to us, so we had a week of drinking the world and creating some beautiful hangovers. Jack induced hangovers are the worst. This is the first time I've lived this close to Jack for 6 or so years, so whenever I get a spare weekend I fly over and have a booze infused weekend away. Lord help us both.

I also got to catch up with Becky in Melbourne and we went on the Neighbours tour and fell in love with the cast members. Standard. I tried to get myself a job. Failed. I can't act. Apparently that's quite important. Awks. Have you heard the joke about a pig?....... Oh, thats PORKward. No? oh.

Since I last posted on my once again completely abandoned blog, some major excitement has occurred. Not only did I have the dream holiday with one of my best friends to the Maldives, but I also made the utterly petrifying decision to try and start a new chapter living in Australia!

So, as I write this I am sat in my cute little house on Bondi Beach and am feeling pretty damn smug with myself actually.

It all happened pretty quickly and the last few months have been mad, but it's the best decision I've made in a long time. I'm a happy bean and am on a mission to hunt down my Bondi Lifeguard husband whilst drinking Sydney's whole supply of gin.

Since I came to Australia with my best friend 8 years ago, I've always wanted to give living here a go whilst I could still get my Working Holiday Visa. I'm getting old, fast, so thought 26 was a good age to give Sydney a bash.

On my post-Christmas escape in the Maldives with Charlotte, I decided 2016 was the year to leave, and a month later, I was on the plane flying half way around the world.

I didn't have a plan at all really and didn't know how long I would be away for or when I'd go home. I thought I could arrive and really not enjoy myself and be home within 2 months, or I could stay for my 2 years and see what happens. It was the scariest and most exciting decision I've made.

Having a really, really close knit group of friends at home made it super difficult as I didn't want to say bye for a year and be forgotten. Also being really close with my mum made it doubly as hard, but walking through departures at Heathrow was the most invigorating feeling ever. I did have a little cry over a bottle of champers, but I had to show some emotion ya know!

I had a smashing couple of leaving events and got showered in love and well wishes by my favourite people in the world, before being let loose on my own to try and survive. So far I am surviving. Great news.

I landed in Melbourne and Jacky G picked me up at the airport to begin my adventure. Fresh off the plane, we went for breakfast and caught up and got terribly excited. After an epic nap, we decided the best idea was to check out Chin Chin for some deeeelicious nosh and ended up getting royally smashed in true Brits abroad stylee. Woke up with a major hangover and minor jet leg. Great combination.

Melbourne flew by and a week of catching up, sightseeing, eating, drinking and napping was over too quickly and I hopped on my plane to meet Jamie in Sydney and start setting up my new life!

As soon as I met J at the airport, I felt like Sydney was the place for me. We caught up, reminisced about our old London life and drank champagne whilst looking over Bondi Beach. Life is better in Sydney than Streatham.

I've been in Australia for 3 months now and I've got myself a swish job, a beautiful beach side lad pad and some fabulous friends. If I could transport all of my family and friends from home to Bondi, life would be pretty perfect right now.

Birthdays are my absolute favourite. I always get ridiculously spoilt and all of my beautiful friends and family show me so much love. As my birthday is in October, it also marks my countdown to Christmas. Yes, I said it. Once my birthday is over... Festive excitement begins!

My 26th birthday did not dissapoint and I was treated more than ever. To kick off my celebrations, my dad cooked up a Thai feast and spoilt me with a flying lesson, lunch and spa day at Goodwood! Watch out world, I will be taking over the sky's of Hampshire shortly. Pilot Wood.

The day before my birthday, I was hand delivered the most gorgeous birthday biscuits by the Biscuiteers which made me overly happy. If you've never tried biscuits from here before, you really must. They are all hand decorated and look too good to eat. But I did eat them and they taste like dreams.

The weekend of my birthday went by in a haze of good food, too much champagne and causing trouble with my favourite people. I have been given enough champagne to open my own shop, and for that I am more than content with the first few days of being 26.

All I wanted was a giant pink flamingo rubber ring to float around on in the Maldives and I was not dissapointed. I got my flamingo and also the whole Ab Fab box set, some unicorn tears gin and a scratch map travel journal. Perfect presents for me. My gorgeous friends also provided me with gin & tonic themed treats, alllll of the champagne and some personalised sloe gin. I have the best people in my life and I love you all.

I was given a GoPro for my birthday last year and it's possibly my favourite gift ever.  I have documented mine and Sarah's travels since we first missioned around the world in 2009, but started off using a low quality, oversized handheld camera.  Which did the job, but my GoPro has taken my future travel filmmaking to new levels.  My first travel video is so old, it's on a DVD and I can't figure out how to upload this to You Tube, but below is our Asian adventure in 2014 and South American dream trip this year (first use of the GoPro).


South America - 2015

Asia - 2014