The Little Things

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I’m reading a book currently called Outliers: The Story of Success – and although it sounds like your typical self help book it’s actually not quite what you’d expect. The book delves into the lives of successful people and asks what factors contributed towards their success? I think it’s typical to see a super successful billionaire business owner and decide that they must be different – some sort of super human super motivated genius that is certainly different to the rest of us normal folk. But this book kind of breaks that down. Yes, super successful people are all that you’d expect – hard working, determined, driven, smart, etc, etc. But there are other factors that contribute to success such as upbringing, being in the right place at the right time and social class that aren’t weighted as heavily when we’re singing people’s praises… the little things.

Now I’m only half way through the book – but it made me think of all the little things (and lucky things) that have seriously contributed to where I am now in my life – that were just circumstantial things I probably never realised would have such a significant impact over the long term.
 

fblogger, blogger, think pieces, bblogger, lifestyle, Outliers, Outliers by Malcom Gladwell

fblogger, blogger, think pieces, bblogger, lifestyle, Outliers, Outliers by Malcom Gladwell

 

Going to a grammar school made me hard working
Some many years ago an anti grammar school campaign meant that all grammar schools were wiped out of the area I grew up in (for those that don’t know – you have to take exams to get into grammar schools). Growing up therefore, I really had not much clue about what a grammar school even was and neither did my parents, until one day they stumbled upon a parent who encouraged them to prep and send my older brother to a grammar school out of the area. A few years and some intense prep later, and all three of us kids had made it into grammar schools and we had also moved areas to be closer to our new school.

Our new area had grammar schools all over the place and it was at school that I then realised most of my peers had been studying to get in for years and prepped by their primary schools, vs. people like myself and my brothers that had to seek out private tuition and fork over a lot of money for it in order to get the right prep to get into the school. Now the grammar school or not debate is one for another day – but without a doubt going to that school and being surrounded by a bunch of bright kids is what initially brought out the hard working nature within me. I was lucky to be afforded that chance that of course not everybody is, and lucky to have parents that were willing to give up a lot of free time to teach us to get us in (and to be able to pay for extra tuition on top of that). There were only 3 of us in my year in my primary school that went on to a grammar school, and it wasn’t necessarily because we were smarter than all the other kids, in my case – it was all due to that one random conversation my parents had many years back, and my parents having the tools to get us to pass the exams.
 

fblogger, blogger, think pieces, bblogger, lifestyle, Outliers, Outliers by Malcom Gladwell

fblogger, blogger, think pieces, bblogger, lifestyle, Outliers, Outliers by Malcom Gladwell

 

My dad working in IT is probably one of the main reasons I run a blog
I have been using computers since the days of dial up internet – the days where you couldn’t use your house phone whilst using the internet. Yup – it’s been that long. I’ve been on a computer either writing stories, making websites, playing some sort of game etc since before I’d even hit double digits in age. It’s one of the reasons I can literally type with my eyes closed. It’s also a lot of what afforded me the luxury of being able to develop this prior addiction into a hobby at such a young age; and both of those are really in my case attributable to the fact that my dad works in IT. Growing up we had 2 computers but also a handful of laptops that would lie around in the living area – just because of my dad’s profession – so we’d all always be using them and up to something or the other. Eventually, my cousin helped me set up a free website, and because I was constantly on the computer, over the years that has led to what you see here. I still benefit a lot from my dad working in IT, for example, if something ever goes wrong with my laptop I never have to call an engineer – it’s dad to the rescue. So whilst it may seem impressive that I’ve been using the computer before it was cool (and wireless), or even that I was able to teach myself to code HTML, the truth is that a lot of that is all down to just the job of my dad. If it wasn’t for my dad and his career choice, maybe Skylish wouldn’t exist at all.
 

fblogger, blogger, think pieces, bblogger, lifestyle, Outliers, Outliers by Malcom Gladwell

fblogger, blogger, think pieces, bblogger, lifestyle, Outliers, Outliers by Malcom Gladwell

 
Having involved parents got me to choose a career path
Parents / upbringing play such a huge role in where life takes you and that’s touched on in the book I’m reading. Sometimes your parents may not even have the time to give all the attention they want when you’re growing up as they’re working around the clock tying to make ends meet; sometimes people’s potentials are really never brought out because the situation they are in doesn’t allow it to be.

I had very involved parents – they still remain super involved and I’m in my 20s. Maybe not everyone needs this if you’re very self motivated, but growing up I definitely needed this support as thinking about the future was something I never liked to do – it absolutely terrified me and I only ever wanted to live in the “now”. I never really gave much thought to what I want to do and of course the way school is set up, being able to seek something out and plan ahead can really help to achieve it. I didn’t necessarily get into LSE because I was super ambitious and sought it out, a lot of it was really due to support from my parents.
 

fblogger, blogger, think pieces, bblogger, lifestyle, Outliers, Outliers by Malcom Gladwell

 

I met my boyfriend by accident
I met my boyfriend at a club five years ago. And actually, after we met, we had to re-meet a few months down the line. The event we met at was called a “Carnival pre-party”, i.e. just a club night before Nottinghill Carnival the next day. Now it was totally “by accident” because (i) I literally was so close to not even going to the event but also (ii) because when we met again a few months later, now at university, he wasn’t even meant to be at LSE – actually LSE had been his second option. If either of these minor choices hadn’t happened, then maybe we never would have met at all.

Once upon a time I read a book about how a man had travelled back in time, stepped on a butterfly, and found that this had completely changed how things developed in the future – leadership changed, languages changed, the environment changed. Of course it was a fiction book and maybe somewhat far fetched – but it highlights “the little things” better than I ever could. Often time, there’s little that tears us each apart from eachother, or even a Bill Gates, than the little things such as parents, social class and even year and country of birth, which have such a huge impact on what path life takes all of us on.

Outfit: Zara
Photography: Marianne Olaleye

Aug 19 2019 at 8:53 pm   ·   Leave a Comment   ·   Posted Under Think Pieces






Travel 

Split, Croatia – Travel Diaries

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travel, croatia, split, hvar, travel blogger, blogger

Summer 2019 – it’s time for the annual summer “baecation”. This year we set off to Split, Croatia. We were somewhat divided between visiting Split or maybe taking on the South of France or somewhere pretty in Italy; but Croatia, for this year, just seemed like the spot. Dubrovnik in Croatia was also considered however all the people we spoke to recommended Split as the “nicer” location – so, just over month or so ago, we booked our flights and got excited.

 

travel, croatia, split, hvar, travel blogger, blogger

travel, croatia, split, hvar, travel blogger, blogger

 

Where we stayed

I’ve done my fair share of not-so-great hotels in the past – especially when I was in uni and most likely booking my trip away using my overdraft or money from the government. I know people say “ah, who cares where you stay? You’re barely there anywhere…” But I simply can’t co-sign that anymore at my big age. The search for a hotel was therefore quite a lengthy one.

 

travel, croatia, split, hvar, travel blogger, blogger

travel, croatia, split, hvar, travel blogger, blogger

 

We (me) decided to pick a hotel over Airbnb just because I prefer this if I’m travelling in a small group (it was just me and my boyfriend), as I feel comfort in the fact that there’s someone at the reception 24 hours a day that can also answer to any problems I might have very quickly. Whilst I tend to organise flights, where to go and what to actually do whilst abroad, Levi usually takes the task of picking the hotel as he tends to have a better eye for that stuff. He booked us the Briig boutique hotel which is actually a hotel that has only been finished this year, this summer – and it definitely lived up to expectations:

  • It’s super modern – I’m definitely a fan of some classic hotels (e.g. “Grand” hotels), but this one was clearly a step ahead in terms of having a modern, contemporary design. I was also pretty impressed at how they used tech – we could message reception on iPads and we just had to click a button on the wall to call for a cleaner, put on the aircon, or put up a “do not disturb” flag.
  • Great facilities – The hotel had a pool, sauna and gym. Whilst we weren’t on a search for a place with a sauna or gym – a pool is just a must during an extended stay to a nice hot country!
  • Buffet breakfasts – They serve a daily buffet breakfast with all you can ask for – fruits, salad, delicious veggies, all your English-breakfast-type meats, a selection of bread – the list is endless. You can also get it ordered to your room (which was perfect when we woke up one day with a hangover!)
  • Convenient location – We were a 2 minute walk from the most popular beach in Split, a 5 minute walk from Split Port where you catch ferrys and finally we were 10 minutes on foot from the city centre/promenade.
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    What to do in Split

    • Visit Doecletian’s Palace – Diocletian’s Palace forms a big part of the “Old Town” of Split near the promenade – it’s one of the more famous Roman ruins. It’s a nice place to go if you want to learn a bit of history (they have walking tours), and transport yourself back in time. If exploring on holiday is your thing – this is definitely a monument for you.

     

    travel, croatia, split, hvar, travel blogger, blogger

    travel, croatia, split, hvar, travel blogger, blogger

     

  • Wander around Marjan Forest Park – What was alarming when we got to Marjan Forest Park is that there was a “chance of a forest fire” indicator that said “high”…but I digress! Marjan Forest was a cute little park which also houses a lot of mini, gorgeous beaches that you can discover as you walk around it. A lot of people go to the park to bike and also to hike. To challenge ourselves – we decided to walk the whole park, which was 2.5hrs+ in total (we were pretty proud of ourselves)… it definitely wasn’t easy.
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    travel, croatia, split, hvar, travel blogger, blogger
    travel, croatia, split, hvar, travel blogger, blogger
    travel, croatia, split, hvar, travel blogger, blogger

     

  • Take a day trip to Hvar – It was highly recommended to me before I went to Split to visit the island of Hvar whilst I’m there, so towards the end of the trip we hopped on a ferry and spent the day down on the island. It was definitely a beautiful island and I can see why everyone loves it – it looks very fancy in comparison to Split. We looked around a bit (wandering around the cobbled streets reminded me a bit of Mykonos), then we found a nearby beach and relaxed there for the day, it was so much fun. It’s certainly a much quieter city than Split and I wouldn’t imagine there’s tons to do there – so one or two days probably works just fine.
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    travel, croatia, split, hvar, travel blogger, blogger

     

  • Do an escape room – When looking up what to do in Split a few suggestions came back to try an escape room – so we found one nearby called the “Mystery Room” which is supposedly one of the hardest escape rooms in Europe. I’ve only done one escape room before and this reminded me of how enjoyable they were. My boyfriend and I can get competitive but we definitely made for a good team and the experience was exhilarating to say the least. We did make it through the escape but but that was with 20 minutes extra time and err… just a few tips.
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    travel, croatia, split, hvar, travel blogger, blogger

     

  • Join a bar crawl – On our first day exploring Split we were invited to a bar crawl (“Ziggy bar crawl“) which ended in a night at Central Club (the biggest club in Split) where Rudimental happened to be performing. Now I’m not even really big a fan of Rudimental but it sounded cool sooo, we went. It was actually a lot of fun, the group was huge and you essentially rode in a bus from bar to bar before ending up at the club. I usually don’t even get to clubs until at least 12:00AM so to be out and about since 10:00PM (when the bar crawl started), and out for hours and hours, I was absolutely DEAD the next day.
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    Onto the food…

    I can definitely say that the food in Split was everything I could have hoped for and more. Honestly, the bulk of the trip was spent touring different restaurants – I can’t say the thought that reviewing restaurants for a career didn’t pop into my mind.

    Here were a few of my favourite restaurants:

    • Zoi
      Only after eating at Zoi did I find out that it’s actually a Michelin Star restaurant! I can totally see why it gets that tick though – the service was absolutely A* and the food was clearly made with a lot of thought. Not to mention you get a great view over the promenade. You do however have to book in advance to get a seat!
    • Konoba Nevera
      Nevera Tavern was a bit away from the city (closer to the beach), but we went back twice for lunch on two occasions. The food there was simply delicioussss – service was fast (and to be honest – service in general in Split I found was pretty unbearably slow), the owners were so kind and the food was top quality. If you do visit – try some of their seafood, it was so good I think a tear left my eye.
    • Chops Grill
      This place is popular for their steaks but I actually got grilled chicken when I went. Overall – good meat, good quality food, a good place if you’re not looking for anything too fancy. It gets very busy so you may have to book in advance!
    • Terminal F
      A really lovely lunch place to eat in the sun – they have so many foods to pick from and it’s also pretty cheap. I would get the chicken burger when we went which was one of the best chicken burgers I’ve tasted.
    • Bakra
      Another steak place, I was definitely impressed with this one. I also loved the general vibe of Bakra, is was very casual/fun/relaxed. They give you a shot upon arrival. Again – one to book in advance as it tends to get very busy.

     

    travel, croatia, split, hvar, travel blogger, blogger
    Zoi

     

    A wrap up

    Wrapping up this pretty lengthy post – I can say that this was one of the better holidays I’ve been on. Of course, the company matters too (I always love travelling with Levi); but also the good food, amazing hotel and just good vibes definitely made it for me; I was so heartbroken to have to leave and return to the daily grind. In fact, I’m still heartbroken. Anyways – next year – I will definitely need to pencil a 2-weeker in the diary!

    Hope this itinerary is useful for any of you looking to experience Split. 🙂

     

    travel, croatia, split, hvar, travel blogger, blogger

     

    Aug 7 2019 at 9:31 pm   ·   Leave a Comment   ·   Posted Under Travel