December 31, 2016

We Should Always Create Possibilities For Ourselves

That time of the year has arrived. 

Despite the terrible events that have happened in 2016, I must say that for me it was a good year. 

At the beginning of the year I stayed home. I finally had holidays! Well deserved holidays. Which felt good for about 2 months. After that I became a bit bored. So I started running. I figured that my mind was a better place after a run. It's unbelievable! Who would have ever thought? Another thing that I figured was also that even when tired, a run fills you up with so much energy. You'd think it's counter-productive but it really isn't. Ah, the beauty of life.

I had so much free time, I started applying for jobs. To US. I got rejected by Harvard. Which I guess is something. Let's say that it was a bit depressing. Sending out applications is always depressing to me. You put all this energy in and then gah, people don't even deign you with a reply. In May I became seriously bored and made the decision to go back to UK. It's been my dream to move to Newcastle one day, and there was no better time than present. 

Another thing I decided at the beginning of 2016 is that now is the time to do all the things I've always wanted to do but didn't due to Uni/work/money/life. 2016 was gonna be the year I will put my 3 year plan into motion. Now I am single, young, and free. I only need to take care of myself, and therefore I am able to make this sort of decisions. They only affect me.

What is my 3 year plan? 

3 years. 6 cities. 6 months each. 

Rome. Berlin. Nice. Newcastle. New York. Paris.

And not just travelling. But living. Living it. Breathing the city. Take it all in with all the good and all the bad and to do with it the best that I can. And work. Work in the psychology field. Companies don't give out lifetime contracts anymore anyway, so 6 month plan is perfect.

And then decide where to settle down.

It's a good plan I shall say.  

So in May I decided to put my 3 year plan into motion. I booked the ticket to Edinburgh. I packed my stuff and left for an adventure. I visited my friends in Edinburgh ofcourse. I missed them. I still do. 
And then I moved to Newcastle. My first destination. And it was still as beautiful as I remembered. I still love you Newcastle.

I did not think it was going to be easy.. But I didn't imagine it being so hard either to get a nice entry level job. I kept getting offers for sales ... which wasn't really for me. In the end I ended up as a supervisor at Barburitto. And it was nice. I really liked my manager. He was the best boss ever. Work was kinda fun. Plus I could boss people around and not feel bad about it cause it was my job. 

I didn't make many friends in Newcastle. Very few. People were always coming and going. And people living there were very.. English. Yeah, I didn't make many friends. 

I got my heart broken, too. That was a quite painful experience after so many years. But then again, it's always painful when your heart gets broken no matter how much time has passed. 

In the healing process I started going around. And by around I mean everywhere nice. I visited all the beaches in the Newcastle larger area. Whitley bay, South Shields, North Shields, Tynemouth. Every lovely day that I had time off I went to the beach. I had a summer after all. Oh, I made the attempt to go to as many happy hours in Jesmond as I could. Jesmond is still a magical place to me, but you really need friends to go there. Going alone is not as fun, sadly. 
In the end of September I packed my stuff and sat on the bus to Brussels. On the long journey I thought about a lot of things that happened this summer, and I made the decision that I was done with UK. I spent almost 4 years there. If I'm not feeling it by now, then chances are I never will. It's sad, but in the end it is what it is. And, UK, we aren't.
I moved to Brussels in October. I got the EU Commission traineeship!! The one that I wanted! My dream came true! I did it! 

After 3 months here I can honestly say that this has been the absolute best time of my life. I am the happiest I've ever been. 

Work is great. The European Commission is awesome. Is this huge machine and every person is a little piece of the puzzle that gets the whole machine turning. It's overwhelming sometimes. I attended lots of trainings about cool stuff such Mind mapping!

I am also the Coordinator of the Parties and Euroball Subcommittee. Which means I get to organise really cool parties for the EU trainees. And I love it! I made a November Rain party in November and it was a huge success. And I did a Red Love Christmas party in December and it was a success too. People were happy. And I was super happy. Doing good for people is the ultimate goal for a higher life satisfaction. I love my life here.

I've met so many great people from all over Europe. Young adults full of hopes and dreams for a better future. All sociable. All very nice. Ok, some are not, but that's a given - it's statistics. 

I visited Paris again in October! And I had the best time ever. The weather was so nice, and I was wearing dresses everyday and I met my friends, and I love Paris. I have to make it to Paris. Have to. Everytime I visit I get this overwhelming feeling of happiness and life seems so good, and I owe it to myself to live there at least once. 

I went home for Christmas, and I had a great time there too. My cat was super happy to see me. I saw my friends and family and it was lovely. Going home is always relaxing .. as long as there is an expiring date :P
Books wise, I read a lot of good books. I completed my challenge of the year!
  The top 5 books I've read this year are:

pic name pic name pic name pic namepic name

But my absolute favourite was A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas! This book is brilliant!

As for new year plans and wishes..

I want to stay in Brussels for another 6 months. I love it here. And I'd like to stay at the house that I am now with my current flatmates. They are the best people ever, and our home is actually a home. Which is everything.

I want to find a job in the psychology field. 

After 6 months I should implement another city in my plan. Paris hopefully. 

I am going to India with Justina for a month to meditate and party. 

I am going to learn French and speak it fluently by the end of 2017.

That is all, I think.   
I wish you a very happy new year and may all your wishes and plans come true!

Create possibilities for yourself, and always remember: Be brave.

With love,

November 11, 2016

One Wild and Precious Life as an EU Trainee: Place du Luxemburg aka Plux

Photo credits: Bruno Maes Photography

You can't be a EU Trainee without knowing about the existence Plux. Place du Luxembourg on Thursdays is the best place to be. Trust me here.

Plux is also know as the networking place. It's the place to be on Thursdays. Lots of Parliament and Commission people go there. Important people too, apparently.

Guys. This Place. Thursdays are also one of the favourite days of the week. It's so cool infact. You finish work, pack your stuff and head to Plux. It takes me approx 10 minutes to get there and it's the best.

All the trainees are usually there. We all know that after work on Thursdays Plux is the place to go to. So you get to mingle with other trainees, hear about their DG and their work. It's a great socialising environment. I got to meet most of the trainees there. 

I love Plux.

Maybe it is not really the best 'networking' place out there, as I haven't seen anyone properly networking, but it's a great place nonetheless. Every Thursday is a bit different, but it's absolutely great. Everyone should experience Plux at least once in their lives!

To be honest here, the Traineeship is like a second Erasmus. Only you are not broke. There are so many things happening, so many places to be. So many people to meet. Exchange knowledge. It's amazing. 

I cannot recommend the EU Traineeship enough. It's once in a lifetime possibility, and it's honestly the best decision I've ever made. 
Days are funny. I wake up in the morning to go to work. I'm at work till 6ish, and then there is always something happening. Everyday I come home late in the evening. And then I wake up the next day and go to work again. It might sound exhausting, but I swear it's the best time in life I've ever had. I am so full of energy, the days are long and it feels great. It's dynamic and never ever dull. I guess that the only thing I could have ever asked for.  A life full of adventures with no dull moments. Life is so good.

There are many perks of this Traineeship. Numerous conferences, debates, networking events, but I'd say Plux is one of the best out there.

Ever been to Plux? Come along next Thursday! 

October 28, 2016

One Wild and Precious Life as an EU Trainee: International AfterWork

International AfterWork @ Mezzo Bar

As a EU Trainee you become fairly acquaint with the Brussels party scene. One of these party scenes is International AfterWork at Mezzo bar. 

It's held every Wednesday evening. And it's awesome! Every week there is a theme such as Italian night, Greek night, Romanian night, Russian night.. All international people are very welcome. 

People are encouraged to go to other people. So if you are coming alone, do not worry, you won't be alone for long. There is always an international person you can start talking to and discuss life, travels and general life in Brussels. 

To me Wednesday is one of the best days in the week. Plus, it's super good cause it's in the city centre. As a EU trainee I am usually hanging out in the Schuman area, and International AfterWork gives me an excuse to make a trip to the city centre. :) It feels nice to get out of the EU bubble for a night and talk about non EU related stuff. 

There is the usual crowd, and then there are the newcomers. Which makes the Wednesday night predictable and unpredictable at the same time. Which is good! It keeps the anticipation alive!

Oh, forgot to mention the best part! There is happy hour that lasts for 4 hours (6pm-10pm)! :) And the beer is  very cheap too! :) 

I have met really good people, and I developed great friendships at the International AfterWork. 

So, if you are a trainee, or you work in Brussels, or you are just visiting, I would highly advise you to come to the International AfterWork. It's always crowded, there is always good music, and I bet you can always find a particularly entertaining company! And ofcourse, networking!

October 23, 2016

Readathon: Hour 24

End of Event Survey

Which hour was most daunting for you?
Hour 18. I crashed. Went for a power nap (which thank god managed to stay a nap and not me sleeping till tomorrow!) for 3,5 hours and I feel human again. It was a good decision. I looked like a zombie in the hour 18.  

Could you list a few high-interest books that you think could keep a Reader engaged for next year?
I insist contemporary romance books are the best way to go. This time I decided to do a little change and read Fantasy because I wanted to startSrah J. Maas books in a while and readathon sounded like a good excuse to finally do it. But it's definitely slower place of reading. Took me 16 hours to finish the first book and it was 416 pages. I think I will stick with contemporary romance (again) next time!

Do you have any suggestions for how to improve the Read-a-thon next season?
As I state every year (twice) this event is made of awesome. Keep the good work readathon people! The only thing that I skipped this time were the challenges. I haven't done any at all. The titles didn't seem intriguing. 

What do you think worked really well in this year’s Read-a-thon?
The twitter feed was bat shit crazy good!

How many books did you read?
1 book + 

What were the names of the books you read?
A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas (416 pages)
A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas (about 75 pages)

Total of: 491 freaking pages! 

Which book did you enjoy most?
The one that I actually managed to finish :D

How likely are you to participate in the Read-a-thon again? What role would you be likely to take next time?
Readathon events are made of awesomeness. I love participating in this event! It's a blast everytime!

See you again in April 2017 lovely people!

Readathon: Hour 12 - Coffee is my best friend

Mid-Event Survey

1. What are you reading right now?
A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas - more than half way through :)
2. How many books have you read so far?
300 pages into the first book!
3. What book are you most looking forward to for the second half of the Read-a-thon?
A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas - apparently the second book is pure awesomeness!
4. Have you had many interruptions? How did you deal with those?
Apart from getting home 10 minutes after the start ... not much! Switched my phone to silent mode and it's amazing how noone can bother you.
5. What surprises you most about the Read-a-thon, so far?

That my reading is going so slow! I knew that I should have gone with contemporary romance instead of fantasy but I really wanted a little change this time aroud! And twitter! It's an awesome event and enjoying every moment of it!

Hope you're having an amazing read-a-thon! Don't fall asleep! Make yourself a coffee and most of all, happy reading! And thank you cheerleaders for cheering! This means so much! :)

October 22, 2016

Readathon: Hour 1

#Readathon is here! :) :) I am so super excited about it! It's gonna be an awesome experience, I can feel it! :)

What is my goal? To read and have fun on Twitter and discussing awesome books!! :D

To read list:
A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas (416 pages)
A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas (640 pages)

1) What fine part of the world are you reading from today?
This time around I am reading from Brussels, Belgium! Hehe, everytime it seems I'm reading somewhere else in Europe.

2) Which book in your stack are you most looking forward to?
For the second book, A Court of Mist and Fury! Heard sooo many great things about it!

3) Which snack are you most looking forward to?
Pasta, probably. And coffee :)

4) Tell us a little something about yourself!
I moved to Brussels 3 weeks ago and I started my internship at the European Commission. So far so good and I really like in here. Finally a grown up job that I studied for! I'm really happy :) I love to read Adult and New adult books. I like Romance. Dystopia, contemporary, historical.. it has to have some romance in it and I am a happy girl!

5) If you participated in the last read-a-thon, what’s one thing you’ll do different today? If this is your first read-a-thon, what are you most looking forward to?
I've learnt that reading contemporary romance books is the best for this kind of events - it goes faster. But this time I will try fantasy cause I've been meaning to start this series for forever - so it's time! And I'll try to check more blogs and meet new awesome bloggers :)

You can find me on Twitter here: @neabarabea

Happy readathon to all of you amazing people :) Good luck! Lets have a good adventure together!

October 10, 2016

One Wild and Precious Life as an EU Trainee: Let the Adventure Begin!

EU Trainees October 2016

It hit me all at once when we were driving through France that I can finally take a deep breath. And I am free. I am free. 

When we were nearing Brussels I saw from the window of the bus this huge rainbow. We literally went beneath it. And I thought to myself "This is a really good sign".

I'm ready to start over again. Brussels here I come! Let the adventure begin! 

In the first week I have meet SO MANY people. Guys I am not kidding you, so many people. I think of myself as a person who remember all names, but woah, not this time. There were just too many. Everything was very overwhelming. New city, new house, new flatmates, new job, new colleagues, new people, new potential friends to meet. 

Overwhelming or not, though, OMG this place is the best thing ever!

My job is awesome. I really like the tasks that I've been given. And I love my supervisor and the 2 ladies of the team. My girls, I really enjoy working with them. It's dynamic and challenging. I love my job.

For the first time after a long while it seems my education is finally paying off. Thank you Edinburgh University. Thank you Universe. I am the happiest girl on the planet.

Being a Blue Book Trainee at the EU Commission is the best thing that ever happened to me.

There are no words to describe how happy and proud I was the moment I received the EU badge. I felt so badass. All that blood, and sweat, and tears, and hardwork were fucking worth it. It was all worth it. 

All that excitement for the future. 

Bring it on. 

August 24, 2016

You can close your eyes and think of England, or you just don't and you let it go.

Dear England,

most of my life I thought you were the best thing in existence. I did. I really, really did. I thought English people were just better because they were English. I thought they were better because they speak English with the proper English accent. I thought they were better because they were born in England and not anywhere else. Because England. 

Not anymore.

England, I'm so tired of you and your people. I'm so tired of trying to fit in and trying and trying, and trying. I'm tired. I'll never fit in.

I will never be anything other than an Eastern European to you. Ever. And the way you say this is so insulting, even if you don't mean it, it still is (sorry Eastern European people, you know what I mean, and again I'm sorry) in fact insulting. And not because you have no fucking clue of geography (because btw I would have never ever passed my finals in high school if I didn't know which countries belong to which side of Europe), but because you never really try, do you? All the excuse I ever get is "I'm not good in geography". I can understand that if you are an American, or Asian, but fucking European?! How did YOU pass finals in high school!? 

Second thing is you make me feel lower than you just by being. Talking to me. Being like "Are you Swedish?" with all that glint in your eyes, and then I say "No, I'm Slovenian," and you are "ah." What does that mean? Am I lower than you just because I'm from the Balkan, even though you think Slovenia is in the Baltic?

Why was I ever envy of you and your way of life?

And your way of life. You know, we, Slovenians, we might be very direct, but fuck my life, we were never this mean.

Dating. We might not do it the way you do it, but we sure as hell don't drag people along making them feel like they matter when in fact they don't. And I'm not talking about the first date. I'm talking about the 5th where you should sure as hell know if yes or no. And I mean sure as fucking hell. We don't lie to each other. Not like this. Geez, if we are not compatible then we just aren't, but don't make it sound like the best thing ever when you're actually thinking this was the worst thing ever. Honesty is the key, no? Cause this is mean, evil even. And it's not okay. And believe me, it never will be. You should never play with people's emotions. It's not right. 

I've been living here trying to make it, you know. It's just not working. And I was working hard to make it. But you know what? I don't feel like doing it anymore. 

Your lifestyle where everything is about work. Cause you know work? Not about friends, not about family, not about free time where you do the fuck you want?! But work. Hang it, seriously.  If I was meant to be alive to work 10-11 hours a day for 17000 pounds a year (which equals less than the minimum wage) as a graduate job.. then honestly I don't even know what to say. I get it that we start at the bottom, but flipping fucking chicken should never get me more money than a graduate job. Thank you capitalism and fuck you.

And I miss the passion. Passion for life, adventure, and beautiful things. And as much as I tried to find it in here, sorry England you have none. 

So, here we are. With me counting down the weeks and you laughing at me bloody England. You know, you don't feel like anything like in the historical romance - at least then you had gentleman who treated ladies well and took care of them, so tell me, what do you have now?

I think this is us. Done. 

I'm tired of you letting me down and you're probably tired of making me try harder. Which ever it is.. I don't really care. Cause this is not anymore about doing what is right or what is easy, but it's about what can I live with and what I cannot. And I'm really sorry to say (or not so sorry anymore), I cannot do this anymore. I just can't. You are not good for me.

I need to start doing what is right for me. And you are such a huge obstacle that I don't feel like investing more years in it to make it (possibly) work. Sorry England, I can't be bothered. We are done.

See A.? I might not be Taylor Swift, but I have my voice and my words.

With all my love,

July 26, 2016

Hello, Goodbye and Everything in Between by Jennifer E. Smith Review

Hello, Goodbye and Everything in Between 
by Jennifer E. Smith
Published on September 1st 2015
Poppy, 246 pages

On the night before they leave for college, Clare and Aidan have only one thing left to do: figure out whether they should stay together or break up. Over the course of twelve hours, they retrace the steps of their relationship, trying to find something in their past that might help them decide what their future should be. The night leads them to family and friends, familiar landmarks and unexpected places, hard truths and surprising revelations. But as the clock winds down and morning approaches, so does their inevitable goodbye. The question is, will it be goodbye for now or goodbye forever?

Charming, bittersweet, and full of wisdom and heart, this irresistible novel from Jennifer E. Smith, author of The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight, explores the difficult choices that arise when life and love lead in different directions.

- description 

"Maybe the world isn't full of signs so much as it's full of 
people trying to use whatever evidence they can to find 
to convince themselves of what they hope to be true."

It's been a while since I read this book, but it has made such a big impression on me that I find myself still thinking about it sometimes, and therefore I thought it deserves a proper review. I love Jennifer E. Smith, I read most of her books and really enjoyed them all.  

July 20, 2016

Unwind by Neil Shusterman Review

by Neil Shusterman
Published on November 6th 2007
Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, 335 pages

Connor, Risa, and Lev are running for their lives.

The Second Civil War was fought over reproductive rights. The chilling resolution: Life is inviolable from the moment of conception until age thirteen. Between the ages of thirteen and eighteen, however, parents can have their child "unwound," whereby all of the child's organs are transplanted into different donors, so life doesn't technically end. Connor is too difficult for his parents to control. Risa, a ward of the state, is not enough to be kept alive. And Lev is a tithe, a child conceived and raised to be unwound. Together, they may have a chance to escape and to survive. 

- description
"It's all right to be frightened. Change is always scary."
"Change?" yells Risa, "What do you mean 'change'? 
Dying is a little bit more than a 'change'."

So, I've been feeling a little down and I wanted to read a dystopia that will rock-my-world-make-cry-make-me-feel-better. So I checked on Goodreads and this one came up that seemed quite perfect for the mood that I was in. 
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...