washington dc in 24 hours

Hi friends. I’m decidedly perkier today, considering I have a train back to Jersey this morning and I am excited to do my laundry. Seriously, it was a mistake not doing so before break. In any case, I’m coming to you from a Starbucks in DC where I’ve spent the last day. Technically it’s just under 24 hours, but we’ll call it what we’ll call it. Here’s the trip!

Bri and I stayed in a lovely room full of light in the home of a wonderful family in Northeast DC. Surrounded by the Franciscan monastery and the Catholic University, our little nest in Brookland was so welcoming, especially after the night we had.

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We had lunch at what is probably one of my favorite spots now, Busboys and Poets. Busboys and poets has an extensive vegan and vegetarian menu (all so good) and such an incredible vibe combining culture with good food. There were books for sale and organic ketchup and it was everything I could have asked for in a tempeh panini and smashed avo toast. I love avo toast.

Seeing the sights in DC feels a little repulsive now. It’s definitely got something to do with the current administration, but I can’t help but be more aware of the city being something built on the bones of people. Idk idk idk. George Washington? Probably an okay guy. Also very racist. Slave owner. Kinda gross. Idk? Some things were cool to see though, like this church. Yes this church.

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We ended the night with an impromptu show, seeing Courtship, The Hunna, and Coasts. I have no photos because collectively, Bri and I had about 30% battery, so I kept my phone off until it was time to get home. One kicker of an evening minus the migraine that knocked me out not even halfway through the second band’s set. I spent the show mostly thinking about my lads and how excited I am to book them a big tour one day. One day soon, you guys. Let’s get carried away.

I’m nursing a coffee before getting to the station because I have a 9 am train to Jersey to be on. And you know, the more I think about it, the more I’m into these tiny trips. Granted, a three and a half hour drive and countless uber rides later, they don’t seem so tiny. I’m looking to do more of them, though. America is far too big not to go. Ya girl is gonna shut up and go.

love and light,
shalom xo

philadelphia, pennsylvania

My knowledge of Pennsylvania pretty much starts and ends with The Fresh Prince, Penn State, and “sorta kinda next to New Jersey I think”. I’m writing to you from West Philadelphia today, actually, and I want to tell you about my trip so far. So. Here’s my trip so far.

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We decided to make a trip out of a show and booked an Airbnb for the night, allowing us to see some of the must sees in Philly before and after the show. Despite some things not going to plan – we all love a good, old fashioned unforeseen circumstance – the trip was lovely. It’s also a bit weird that we went on a Wednesday instead of the weekend, because I keep almost writing “weekend”.

 

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Philadelphia has a charm that I hadn’t experienced before. The houses do this thing where they all look like they have secrets and stories to tell, but you’ll never know them because you’re a visitor and they know it. It was like they whispered to each other as we walked past and for a few moments, I desperately wanted to stay and catch up on the history that I’d walked by.

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I’m glad I went. There’s so much more I would have liked to see, but I’m happy with what the little vignette of Philadelphia that I now have. To more travels, my friends.

love and light,
shalom xo

currently #4

currently, i am sat in a barnes and noble in new jersey, typing away on candice,(pronounced kan-dees) my new computer. i’m sipping on a starbucks iced vanilla latte that i got along with a fancy cheese and pesto panini sandwich (??) and a packet of chips for $8 ($8.55 after tax, because nobody told americans that a good idea would be to include the full price including tax on the shelves) and i’m confused about why they’d give me a venti for the same price as a tall. also, everything is air conditioned and it throws me off, man. america.

currently, i’m sat looking at a building that, much like the university, predates the independence of the united states. the trains from new york and further north come past every so often; right now one’s going in the other direction but i don’t know my bearings well enough to tell you where it’s headed. people get off and walk with purpose, and others breeze through the wind before summer rain. a man with a briefcase and sunglasses on his head looks up at the cloudy sky, and shakes his head at himself.

currently, i’m listening to come on eileen and thinking of 2014 and grade 11. i’m thinking of jessica craven and a joke about a red dress. i’m thinking of a history teacher that made me realise i never want to act less intelligent than i am for anyone’s comfort, ever again. i’m wondering about the time at home (it’s 10:34 pm) while it’s 4:34 in the afternoon here. i’m thinking of yasmin and her cat, and her line jumping sister. bless, wits comedy jam.

currently, i am regretting the aforementioned iced vanilla latte. i forgot that i don’t do caffeine very well anymore. it probably has something to do with my medication, which sets my resting heart rate at 122 bpm. my doctor was a liiiiiiitle terrified, but i’m always terrified, so it’s okay. i’m okay. i’m berating myself for not taking my meds on time because time zones messed up my schedule, and while i never suffered from jetlag, all the lil shortages of neurotransmitters in my head did.

currently, i’m wondering how real all of this is. i made the big mistake of re-reading jean paul sartre’s nausea on the plane, and the big existential think that is my daily disposition flew into overdrive. i’ve been stuck in that overdrive for the week that i’ve been here. so far, all that really helps bring me back is the reality of how broke i am, and the tunes of walk the moon and the arctic monkeys. ~argumentative, and you’ve got the face on.~

currently, i’m exploding with adoration and ultimate affection towards everyone, per usual, but especially towards everyone who’s made my settling in that much easier. to sophia, my darling, and all of her friends (jenna, cris, jonathan, john, sophie, tara, kate) have all been such dears. soph carts me around in her silver four wheeled carriage, and i almost cry every time i see her. to my mama, who came with me and grounded me every time my brain flew me off too far away, and to everyone – especially my ex drama teacher – who sent a kind message after i updated my number. you’re all so important to me.

currently, i am in america. i don’t know. currently, i am in america and i don’t know.

(i think i’m okay with it.)

love and light,
shalom xo

 

 

six weeks

I’ve been talking about it but it doesn’t seem real? Still?

In any case, I leave South Africa in six weeks. Six short weeks, and then my room is no longer my room and my street is no longer my street. I have issues with comprehending time, and have done since I was 10, so my reaction to this isn’t shocking news. Not to me, not to anyone who know me, and definitely not to anyone on my street that has either seen or heard me having a “time isn’t real!!!!” breakdown on my balcony.

It’s not as if six weeks is a crazy short time, but we’re somehow nearing the end of June. I’m ageing in two? two and a half? weeks, and I haven’t even had time to freak out about 19 because TIME ISN’T REAL. I remember six weeks before a big party we threw for my father in 2013, when I had to draw up a massive calendar and fill in all of the upcoming events before the day of the party. I remember looking at that calendar on the day of the party and wondering how I possibly could have lived through all of those events and still feel like no time had passed since I made the calendar. It’s the same way I felt when high school was ending, and the last five days were staring me down and I just…I didn’t believe they were there. Not that I wasn’t aware that I was leaving high school, or that I was astonished by how quickly the five years had passed, but rather because I couldn’t believe that the time was gone and I felt like it wasn’t. It’s a stupid thing that makes no sense when I try to write it out, but it’s where I’m at with time.

It’s like backwards nostalgia. I long for the time for no reason other than it’s time, long before it’s passed. And when the time comes, I’m near incapable of living in the moment because I’m too busy begging for the time to stay  rather than the moment. When I tell people that I freak out about time, they ask me what it was about being 15 that I miss…and it’s nothing. I don’t miss being fifteen. But I miss the time. I so, so miss the time.

The next six weeks will be me grappling with the days that go by and probably laughing hysterically about it because crying takes more effort. Last week, for example, I skipped two days. Obviously, I lived Monday through Friday, but I went to bed on Monday and went by Tuesday and Wednesday in such a time-confused haze that when I woke up on Thursday, I was sure it was the day after Monday. I lost 48 hours. I don’t know where they went, but I lost them. It messed with me pretty badly, so I spent 40 minutes on my balcony laughing hysterically and yelling about how time isn’t real. Issa lot.

Have I lost my mind? Well, yes, but that’s alright. It always has been. Where would I be if I was my brain?

love and light,
shalom xo

monthly me | januARI ’17

deep breath. big sip of water. hope, dismay, repeat.

this is january.

january

january has just been a lot. i don’t know how else to explain it. this month i lost a job i never had (but 100% had in my mind), found out that i am fat (and had it consistently reaffirmed by people who think my body is their business), ran so many errands for my mom (because i’m not in school and i don’t have a job and i am essentially a bum) and wrote. i wrote some pretty good pieces this month. i’m proud of them. the trump presidency is…a disgrace and disaster of biblical proportions.

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i don’t know what we can do to fix it. i mean, i guess i have to become president. boop. but for real, it’s been a mess and i’ve been cutting ties like i do fresh bread because i’m not here for nazi sympathisers. watch your wrist if you punch one, friends.

from the camera roll

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i had no sleep and was thinking too much. so i got a breakfast bowl.

on repeat

talk with your fingertips
don’t stop the car, let’s drive

suck on your amber lips
just give me one bad night

i think of this song in the context of my friend, dani, and also how i’m tom incarnate.

friends, sometimes when you’re on, you’re really fucking on. (i’m gonna write a whole post on this song because it’s fits too well.)

obsessions

ARI FITZ.

man. don’t even let me start. this month has been januARI.

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ari fitz invented jawlines, facial expressions, cheekbones, tomboyish style, and tiny geometric tattoos. facts only. i’m enamoured with her style, her boldness, her carefree black girl realness & her die hard attitude. ari is intelligent and talented beyond measure, inspiring in a way i didn’t think i could think someone could be, and extremely gorgeous. y’all. my knees are the weakest.

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she makes videos every single day, and is the curator of the tomboy-style instagram & channel, the tomboyish (@the.tomboyish). ari is a big voice on androgyny in style & accepting and channeling one’s masculinity and femininity together. (did you know that androgyne is literally greek for male-female? andro – male; gyne – female. lit.) 11/10 would recommend. y’all seeing that? eleven out of ten.

other obsessions include

  • the never ending job hunt
  • the college apps check (login, sigh, logout, repeat)
  • crackerbread
  • tea in the morning

snippets of internal monologue

  • SHALOM. you can’t just run a 5k. you can’t just do things like that! do you understand?
  • are you ever going to edit that portugal vlog? (i did. it’s here.)
  • where in the HELL am i going to university LORD

today someone told me to keep writing. i had my freelance pitches rejected SO HARD, so i really needed to hear that. keep doing what keeps you up. it’s 5:21 AM here. here’s to february and resistance and progress. please, lord. progress.

love & light,
shalom xo

MISTER RACIST JOKES BRITISH MAN.

Hello gang. I went on the completely rad ridiculously fun filled trip of a lifetime to Lisbon in the middle of November, and had the pleasure of meeting some amazing people. I feel so lucky to say that I have a friend from Maine who ate ice cream at sunset with me, that I have a friend from Calgary who is my favourite person to teach dance moves, and that I have a friend from Miami who may or may not be secretly (definitely not) engaged to another friend from Ireland. (We’ll see how that goes.)

I also, as such, have the joy to provide you with a story of one of the not-amazing people I met on this trip. I don’t know if you can tell by the title, but he’s Mr. Racist Jokes British Man (Who BROKE MY GLASSES)™. Buckle up, buttercup: we’re about to go on a ride down pink streets and several alcohols and toasted sandwiches and shitty people. It’s storytime.

My friends, cast your mind’s eye to the 21st of November: a regular day in a hostel in the Lisbon city centre. I eat breakfast, I walk around the city centre. I fall in love with Portugal some more, while listening to WALKTHEMOON’sPortugal‘ on repeat. I return to the hostel, sign up for communal dinner by Mamma, and meet two brilliant human girls from Massachusetts. They inform me of a party. Word about the party travels down the table, and after a quick session of getting dressed and drinking green wine in the street, at least a third of the hostel is headed to Brazil. It was a Brazilian themed party. We didn’t walk to Brazil.

Brazil is mad, and there is much drinking and dancing. After a while, we leave, and the group I am with separates from the group with the Massachusetts babes. We try to find another party, come across a dodgy girl who asks us to wait for her on a street corner while she fetches her friend (we don’t) and sing along with a group of people and a seemingly homeless man playing ukulele. I yell, “what is happening?” a lot. (That’s not new.)

We return back to the hostel for more dancing, drinking, and toasted cheese sandwiches with lifesaving capabilities. Mr. Racist Jokes British Man (Who BROKE MY GLASSES)™ has been with us the whole night. He’s fine. Cool enough guy. Talks a lot about very random things and becomes less likeable by the longer he keeps his mouth open, but he’s alright.

At this point, the way that the conversations (there are about 96 happening) got to where they are is beyond my comprehension. In the conversation I am currently in, we are talking about boobs and birth control. I don’t know how or why. I, being well-enough versed in both boobs and birth control, am contributing to the conversation. Mr. Racist Jokes British Man (Who BROKE MY GLASSES)™, who is not very well versed at all in either, chooses this time to enter the conversation. He turns from the bar and says to me, “You’re not on birth control, are you? No, you don’t take that, no”. He is laughing, and I laugh because I am confused. I say, “How would you know?” and he says, “Oh, that was a racist joke! Because you’re black!”

Y’all.

I can do a lot when I’m drunk. I can do the splits, I can do six shots (with deep regret in the future), I can demonstrate my life saving hair-holding skills – I can do lots. I can’t be calm. Nope. Calm? Far friend. Second cousin thrice removed. Calm?

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I sat down, alone, and for four minutes went OFF. In a very drunk fashion, I mumbled to my cheese sandwich about how I wanted to tear this human man’s limbs apart. I didn’t tear him apart. I got angry and then drank some wine. So. Here’s my anger.

WHAT THE FULL FRESH EVER LOVING FUCK. Mr. Racist Jokes British Man (Who BROKE MY GLASSES)™, what the hell are  you on? You understand that a racist joke is racist, right? That it’s not a joke and that you’re a racist asshole? Why did you open you mouth and have your entire adult brain create that sentence and then expel it like it was okay? Are you jas? Are we going to talk about how (a) you stink of pigheaded white colonialism mentality, and (b) you know fuckall about black women? I don’t know if you know, but you know nothing about black women. You’re also not a black woman. Actually, the fuck do you know about boobs or birth control? Ugh. Male birth control is necessary. Please. It makes sense to take the bullets out of the gun instead of putting on a bulletproof vest. You’re also the same human man who thought that saying, “Yeah in high school they painted my face black because I was playing the black guy from Fiji”. You???? You are the STRAIGHT UP WHITEST BRITISH PERSON ON THE FACE OF THE PLANET AND YOU SAW THE ONE BLACK GIRL IN YOUR COMPANY AND DECIDED THAT THAT’S THE WAY YOU SHOULD TAKE THE CONVERSATION? Wow. Wow. What a wow. You are a whole wow.

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This foolish ass man also broke my glasses. Grown human man breaks glasses of human woman, laughs and continues his attempt at macking on her. It reads like an Onion title. A lot of my life reads like an Onion title.

Anyway, I thought of all these things because I’m wearing the same dress I was wearing then tonight. And, because I miss Lisbon.

I’m doing Christmas baking with a pal in twelve hour. I hope I never see Mr. Racist Jokes British Man (Who BROKE MY GLASSES)™ again. I got v annoyed looking at him for the last couple of days he was at the hostel.. I’m also really tired, and really glad I got this off of my chest.

Happy time of day to everyone except Mr. Racist Jokes British Man (Who BROKE MY GLASSES)™. My petty ass is being petty. The end.

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love and light,
shalom x

(all gifs from giphy.com xo)

a love letter to/from lisbon

take me with you
’cause even on your own
you are not alone

 

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i love you.

i love you, so much.

i have to keep pinching myself to remind my brain that you’re real, because loving by halves, like austen, isn’t my nature, and if something else has been taking up all the space in my brain, i’d like to know.

take me with you 
’cause even by yourself
you are something else

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this city has consumed me. i have been lost for more hours than i have been asleep; danced drunk for longer than i thought possible, eaten so many pastries i thought i would turn into one; made so many impulse maroon purchases that i wanted to forget that money was a thing; fallen on slippery cobblestone in the rain despite several attempts not to…

one summer turns into ten summers
one lover turns into ten others
but this memory is still with me

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you are a wonder amongst wonders. you are more than i can comprehend. you are all that i need to be thinking of to find myself. you are pale blue skies and obnoxious church bells ringing. you are every combination of strength and gentleness that i ever wished to find. i don’t wish for much anymore.

so close, bring me in so close
your clothes underneath my clothes
once upon a time in portugal

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in lisbon i have found parts of myself that i didn’t know i had lost. i found that a hostel can really become your home, that 3 am is an acceptable time to start partying, that getting a reassuring squeeze from a then-stranger from calgary, maine, los angeles, virginia, spain, luxembourg or india can really alter the course of your night, and that sometimes swiping your card and seeing what happens is really the best adventure that there is. i learned that i can write a short story about a thunderstorm of a person from a perspective that isn’t mine in dour days, and that it can be good.

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i arrived in lisbon with an arfrikaans property developer that i met on the plane, food poisoning, and a fear that i would run out of money. i start my journey back home via luanda in about 8 hours. i’m leaving lisbon with a cold, a new sweatshirt, no money, and a very, very full heart.

thank you for having me, lisboa.
thank you for having me, you.

i love you.

love and light,
shalom xo

Six Things I’ve Learned Preparing For My Upcoming Trip

If you’ve been around here before, you’ll know that I’ve spent most of this year (a) going through the absolute most, and (b) saving for a trip to Portugal. If you haven’t, or didn’t know: welcome! I’ve spent most of this year saving for a trip to Portugal.

In May this year, I was watching my favourite travel vloggers and considering the novelty of travelling somewhere alone. So I used mine and every other broke traveller’s saving grace, Skyscanner, to look for a cheap flight from Johannesburg (Any) to Anywhere. I was looking for the first and cheapest thing off of the African continent, and the beautiful city of Lisbon popped up and stole my heart.  And money.

After a session or three of I-can’t-sleep-so-let-me-research-this-decision sessions, i decided to tell my sisters, brother and mom that I would be going to Portugal in November. My mom laughed, and older sister looked at me and said, “I’m coming too”. And that was that. We had six months to raise all of the money we would need, and too many problems that tried to throw us off. So. Here are some things I’ve learned:

MAKE SURE YOU HAVE A VALID PASSPORT / VISA / VACCINATIONS.

This seems pretty obvious, but 2016 just so happened to be the year where both of my passports expired right before I needed to book flights. Check your passport(s). I ended up renewing both of them by myself and felt very adult-like, but I was still pressed for time for flights.

BOOK FLIGHTS EARLY!

Some tips on booking flights: most places where you buy a flight online have a booking fee, and if you’re a broke bitch like me or if you just want to save money, call into the place first – the booking fee is usually waived when you call in or go instore. Book early. That lucrative price you’re drooling over? You’re gonna keep drooling. Because it’s going up in three, two…

HOSTELS > HOTELS.

Why on earth would you stay in a hotel that you know you can’t afford if you could stay in a hostel, meet new people from all over the world who are travelling cheaply just like you, and still receive free breakfast and wifi? Y’all. Come on now. When deciding which hostel to stay in, check reviews and make sure you don’t pass over a great deal because there’s a bigger hostel overshadowing a little gem.

MONEY IS PROBLEM. KINDA.

Look, money is funny. There’s never enough of it, and just when you think you have enough, you remember that the exchange rate on Google isn’t the same rate the bank is going to give you. Walking into a forex place with a wad of cash and coming out with ten notes is a little discouraging, but you’ll survive. Have a plan. Capitalise on the free breakfast. Do your research on where to eat and how to move around cheaply. You’ll live. (I’m hoping you will. I’ll let you know if I do in about a week or so.)

LEARN A LITTLE OF THE LANGUAGE!

Even if it’s just little things like asking where the bathroom is, or how to say left and right so that you can interpret directions. Languages are amazing and impossible to avoid, so rather prepare yourself and know how to get to the airport shuttle than having a breakdown in the airport. 10/10 would recommend googling ‘(language) for tourists’.

PSYCH YOURSELF UP FOR TRAVELLING ALONE.

My sister and I are going on different dates because of exam clashes, and I’m a little scared about being alone. No, I’m not a wimp for this – I’m just scared. I’m going to travel through a country alone and make a stop in another’s airport (I see you, Angola) and it’s gonna be a little scary. But that’s okay, because I know I just have to feel the fear and to the thing anyway. I mean, I paid for it! I may as well. It may not be sunshine and rainbows from jump, so prepare yourself for the anxiety, fear, and wonder that comes with flying solo.

In three dayS, I’m going to write an exam, come home, say goodbye to my family and then hop on the train (subway? metro? gautrain.) to the airport. I’m going to leave for Portugal via Angola with nobody watching my back but myself. I’m excited beyond belief. Prepare yourself for the inevitable spam.

love and light,
shalom xo

 

ça c’etait quoi? | learning languages

I’m really quite unfortunate when it comes to numbers. High school maths was a mess of a mission, except for the very end when magic and blood made a miracle happen. I am, however, better with words & languages. So today, by request, I’m going to share any and all language learning things that I’ve got swimming around in my head (and that are on the internet).

As of right now, I can confidently say I’m fully bilingual. I can speak English and Afrikaans fluently, and that’s mostly because I speak English at home and spoke Afrikaans at school for ten years. I’m intermediate in French, and a basic beginner in Spanish and a very basic beginner in Italian. BUT! I am learning all three of these languages with the end goal of being an eventual polyglot. Here’s the how to from someone who needs a how-to.

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There are SO MANY language learning apps out there. I’ve tried many of them, and the trick to knowing whether it’ll help is this: if it promises a short cut, it won’t. Un/fortunately, language learning is a long and specific process, so those “SPEAK FRENCH IN FIVE DAYS!!1!!1” apps really won’t help. Here are two that will:

  • Duolingo

Duolingo is amazing. It’s a super user-friendly app that will guide you through your language learning process. It costs ZERO MONEY (relevant to the July series I’m working on) and is really effective.

How it works is that there are bite-sized lessons that you can do on your phone, laptop, iPad, Apple Watch, or any device, and you slowly but surely increase your fluency percentage. Duolingo works. They have research on it. My advice: use a pen and paper along with this. It’s easy to learn phrases like “elles sont riche et calme” and “nosotros bebemos el agua”  but the grammar lessons (which can be found with a simple click to the comment sections) really help to understand why certain verbs are the way they are, why you can’t add that -le to the end of that word, and how to pronounce some words like a local.

  • Memrise

Memrise is another really good app for language learning, with a big focus on getting you to store the words and rules you’ll learn in your long term memory. The idea is that your mind is a garden of knowledge, and you really, really need to water the seeds so that you can harvest that gorgeous five-language-fluency. There are also different ways of learning which keeps the process fun & interesting.

people and blogs

Again, bless the internet. There are some amazing sites & people who’ve proven to be incredibly helpful. Let’s start off with ever favourites, Damon and Jo:

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DAMON AND JO MAKE ME WANT TO SHUT UP AND GO. THEY BLOW MY MIND. The creators of shutupandgo.travel, Damon Dominique and Joanna Franco are pretty much GOALS. First off, they’re huge inspirations of mine with French, Spanish, Portugese, English, and Italian (I think?) under their belts. IMAGINE. What a dream. They’re travel vlogger-bloggers who decided to #shutupandgo: stop complaining about wanting to travel, making moves, and travelling anyway. They’re also so YOUNG (Damon & Jo are 24 and 23 respectively) and make videos about their travels, but ALSO (!!!) about how to learn a language, and help you sound more local when speaking a language. For example:

Another blog I love is brainscape.com which has tonnes and tonnes of links to resources you can use for almost ANY language (10/10 would recommend). FluentU is another well of knowledge if you look for the right things, even if you don’t want to pay for a subscription (because I sure as hell do not, cannot, and did not). Preppy Burro (previously ‘Always Spanish’) is a fantastic spanish learning adventure, and Talk in French helps you to do just that.

other tips

  • change the language on your phone! you know your phone. learn what ‘lock screen’ is in italian.
  • have an other-language day (this is how i learned to speak afrikaans). for a couple of hours on a chosen day of the week, translate every sentence you say into the language you’re trying to learn.
  • watch youtubers in that language! hello! it always slaps me in the face but like !!!!! there are other-than-english youtubers!‽
  • keep a journal and make sure to write in your new language at least twice a week. check for grammar errors!
  • get a book. for real. grammar is important. it’s a spend that i hated making (don’t worry, the books aren’t that expensive, i’m just that broke) but do not regret.
  • learn about the culture. it’s nice to do.

The internet is amazing. There’s so much STUFF. Go learn a language. Pet a dog and tell it that it is beautiful in Italian. Sing happy birthday to your mom in German. Learn. 

Love and light,
shalom xo


note: none of these apps / people / blogs are here as a paid for endorsement – i love learning & they can really help. // photos are edited by me originally from death to stock, or are assumed to be in the public domain.

Scoot on ~ The Beautiful Craziness That Is My Home

DEAREST INTERNET HOW I’VE MISSED YOU

MARRY ME

NEVER LEAVE ME

Beautiful beings, I’m back! Huge huge huge shout outs to my dearest dearest Jess – this girl is my the left boob to my life and I really did miss her! (‘Left boob’ being an affectionate term, and contrary to popular or unpopular belief, Jessica Rachel Craven is not a breast.) Then to Miss Beckensträter: JENNA YOU’RE LOVELY AND I HOPE YOU’RE DOING A-O-GOOD PIE! And lastly, to anyone and everyone out there who reads this, to beating hearts all around: I hope I get to come in contact with your beautiful soul someday! ♥

Now, the question at hand: Where the hell have I been, and WHY ME NO UPDATE????

To be frank, *takes deep breath*, I went to Ethiopia for 2 weeks because my dad now works at the AU and I sat in the lobby of the apartment we were staying in because the wifi was there and at every available moment, so was I, and I wrote posts and published two of them and also stayed indoors of the Furnished Diplomat Apartments, Addis Ababa, for most of the time except during the last week when I went to the AU (African Union) Headquarters and the National Museum of Ethiopia partially because I had to take pictures or my friend Rebecca would kill me with fire and then I packed up my stuff and headed back to South Africa for all of one day and then re-packed and hopped back on a plane to Nigeria where *ANOTHER DEEP BREATH* we’d be denied visitation rights to my mother’s insanely amazing familia and forced to go to y father’s village where everything village like exists including evil witches who use you don’t want to get on the bad side of and I got malaria and then flew back and I am now in Johannesburg in my house on a couch updating.

In brief, that’s where I’ve been the past month. 

I’ve been on 4 planes and in 3 airports, and I’m tired as hell on a stick (I do wonder how tired hell really can be if there are people burning in it?I I guess burning is rather tedious.) and right  now, I have some serious appreciation for South Africa.

Today, at 3am, I watched a sunrise from a South African Airways plane seat. I watched the sun rise from above the clouds. I saw my home unfold – and I was silent, for a while. I mean, it’s not every day, or even every second day that you see something like that. And I’m sure I could have been flying to Tehran and seen exactly the same thing, but there’s something about coming home that changes the way everything is. 

I guess it’s been difficult to orient myself with a specific nationality, just in my eyes though. My mom and dad are Nigerian born and raised (HUGE stigma in South Africa) and I was born rather patriotically on July 4th in Prince George’s County, Maryland, USA. I live in Johannesburg, South Africa. 3 passports makes it difficult to identify yourself. I’m an American born South African with Nigerian parents. WHAPOWOWOWOWOW!

After a month away from my own house, I can tell you one thing: Tonight, I may not sleep well. What’s certain, however, is that I’m here in SA, and it is my home; I love it.

I love this country, and I love these people, and I love this place.

Spend a month in the rest of Africa -or even just 2 countries- after living comfortably in Joburg, and you would too.

This pampoen is getting her SOUTH AFRICAN I.D tomorrow 😀 somebody drop a whoop! Stay wonderful now. 😉

All my love, all the time

-Scoot xx