Monday, June 30, 2008

Crazy Capers... Hostels

I am suffering from house arrest and along impending travels has got me thinking reminiscing about past travels especially in regards to hostels... I am going to be spending ALOT of time in hostels over the next 3-4 months and it is kind of exciting because I've met so many cool people at hostels.. I've also met a lot of freaks.

Going back through previous entries, I couldn't find anything on Dave or Louise so I just have to give tribute a post to these two people who were absolutely crazy but made hostel life so interesting (because they really were so crazy).

Dave... A 30 year old Lithuanian man who had come to the UK to make a better life for himself... by DEALING DRUGS! The first night I met him, he seemed so sweet and had a cute accent and wasn't bad looking... and then the second night I met him he pulled a bag of small white tablets out of his suitcase and offered me a free sample (which I quickly stashed somewhere 'safe' and later flushed down the toilet)... He then kept asking me if I would like to come with him on his drug dealing escapades which I politely refused - he couldn't understand why I wasn't interested because you make so much money apparently!

Then, he used to come into the hostel room off his face at random hours of the morning and when he fell asleep, he shook the bed... it drove me nuts. One day, the room stunk and I found about a dozen banana peels on the floor next to the wall of my bed. I was horrified. Dave came in that afternoon and I was lying on my bed and he came over to me and started patting and playing with my hair and trying to talk to me about random stuff. I'd had enough so I calmly told him to eff off and to never, EVER, leave banana peels lying next to my bed because it was dirty and disgusting and a whole bunch of other stuff that I can't remember now. He walked out of the room and was a little bit more reserved towards me from that day on... I think by that stage I was ready to leave the hostel and had had enough so didn't care either way.

Then, there was Louise.. the crazy cane woman who used to go to Oxford Street chanting and shaking her stick at people. She used to mutter and talk to herself in the hostel room and would start singing at random. She would pick her moods as to when she wanted to speak to you and she never did like me, mainly because I thought she was a nutter and didn't want anything to do with her! Kelly liked her though. Kel and I went for a walk down Oxford Street, many months after we'd moved on from the hostel and saw Louise with her cane shaking it around and ranting and raving about... well, we're not sure what she was on about but it was something to do with religion.

They are the two who stand out in my mind mainly because I spent a month sharing a room with them - not by choice - and I am excited by the new people I will meet on my adventures.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Sweet Little Old Ladies and Gentlemen...

This has been something that bugged me on the drive home from work today. Everyone seems to think that old people are so sweet and innocent. I was listening to the radio and the presenter said something along the lines of 'there was an armed robbery last night and there was an old lady in the store when the robbery occured' and I went 'awww I hope the little old lady is okay' but then was thinking about it the rest of the drive home. I have a theory.

The little old lady may APPEAR sweet and innocent but she is really not. She was probably a bitch in high school and treated everyone like shit so now she is getting her bad karma by being held up by some scared 17 year old kid who needs money to buy a baby food for his pregnant girlfriend. Okay, so the guy holding up the store isn't innocent either but it really bugs me that they make all old people appear innocent. She may have been in jail herself when she was younger for dealing drugs but because she is old, the media makes her out to be some innocent victim when she has probably been more dangerous than the kid with the gun shoved in her face.

See where I'm going with this?

Yes, a totally random thought but I think it is a valid point. Just because someone is old does not automatically mean they should get an 'aww you're so sweet' card. Just because they may not be able to run fast (or run at all) and need a walking stick (which they could probably use to trip you over or if you're unlucky, belt you over the head with) does not mean that they are nice people. We as a population should say NO to treating old people nicely just for the sake of it. Take a stand and if that old biddy decides to glare at you or tut at you under his breath then don't smile nicely at him and say 'ohhh he's just old and bitter'. Being old does not mean that you can all of a sudden repent for the years of bad behaviour and shitty treatment of other people.

And what also really annoys me is the old people who LOOK sweet and innocent. You know the ones I mean. The ones who are real grandmothery with their bags of lollies and presents for the grandkids and any kids. The ones who are all smiles and seem really genuine. Well, I think they are hiding something. I think they are shifty and I don't trust them because they look too good to be true. They are probably the worst offenders. Check under their grandmothery attire and I am sure you will come across wrinkly, discoloured tattoos and scars from belly button and nipple piercings. It almost makes me think of that old witch from the Hansel and Gretel who lures the kids in with sweets and once she's got them under her wing she wants taint them with her cynical ways.

Okay can I just state that I do not really believe this (well, I do believe that not all old people are sweet and shouldn't be trusted) and that this is just a random post gone haywire!

So, you have been warned. Old people = keep an eye out because they were young once too. Just because they don't have the stamina they once had does not mean that they are nice people. Just because they are old does not mean that they deserve our respect. Sure, if they smile at you, smile back - if only for the fact that you don't know that they're going use their wrinkled fingers to call their drug lord son who will get his mob onto you just because you didn't smile at them when they were wheeling their trolley past the lolly aisle... Old people are scary at the best of times.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Memories... not so long ago

Just a quick post before I head off to bed! I don't miss London as such but I have been reminiscing on some fun times that were had while I was there and I thought I'd share a few of them even though I've probably posted about them before...

Lots of my favourite memories involve Kelly in some way or another because she always made me laugh with her random comments and upbeat attitude...

There was a time went we went to Leicester Square to see a movie but got to the theatre only to find out that it was a ridiculously expensive price to go and see the movie (Kelly wanted to see Music and Lyrics or whatever it was called) so instead, we sat outside the theatre in FREEZING cold London weather and had some random take a photo of us - only to find that the billboard for the movie was directly behind us in the shot which made us laugh even harder because we felt like such losers.

Then there was the time we went to Amsterdam and probably inhaled too much of other people's polluted air and ended up with a ridiculous amount of the giggles - so much so that walking into the chemist Kelly started talking to shampoo bottles thinking they were me... and the bikes - I have NEVER seen someone more unco on a bike than Kelly! The amount of times she crashed into objects that were METERS away from her was ridiculous... So, I ended up going on a nice bike ride in the country on my own while Kelly had a picnic in the park... and I was taught how to roll my own joints by some random guy named Nick at the hostel we stayed at.. A useful skill no doubt...

Karaoke in Sweden with our new Swedish friends... This was one of the best nights ever although probably not for Kelly after she was attacked by one of the guys who we went with from our hostel. He was South African so that explains everything. Okay, so not really but it wouldn't surprise me. Up until that point it was a great night and I'm pretty sure we got a kebab at the end of the night and some random guy asked us to suck his dick - yeah, you get wankers in every country!

Other random things that I miss are messy nights at the Reddy where everyone is so shit-faced but it is just a given and if you're sober you should not be there.

Catching the tube and being squashed in like a sardine and feeling like you're going to vomit because you have a smelly armpit squashed right up against your nose. Okay - I don't miss that at all.

I miss Pret and the banana cake and I miss walking down Oxford Street oh shit I just remembered I owe one of my friends a dinner when I get back to the UK... Let's hope he forgets that he paid for my dinner last time! I went out with one of my friends, Alex, a few days before I flew back to Melbourne and as I do, I started playing with the packets of sugar that were left on the table. I decide that it would be fun to put the sugar on the spoon and melt it - which Alex was quite intrigued by and he decided that once it had melted it would be a great idea to stick his finger in the gooy liquid. I did warn him that it would be quite hot which he laughed off - until he stuck his finger into the spoon and burnt his finger.. I felt torn... should I laugh or should I be compassionate? I went for the former and laughed my head off while he sat there and tried his best to laugh it off - until the pain became too much and he asked if he could please have the rest of my water - to which I agreed and he hastily dunked his finger into my glass of water and breathed a sigh of relief. Highly entertaining - he reckons his finger hurt for days after... as it would after being burnt! Someone once told me that liquid sugar can get hotter than boiling water. I'm not sure if this is accurate but after his reaction it wouldn't surprise me.

I just never want to forget anything. I don't want to forget how I felt on particular days or when particular things happened because some of those feelings were just so real and so amazing that I never want them to leave. When I write things down and come back to them later, they re-create those feelings and I love it!

Oh I could go on forever, I am in a writing mood which is a pain because it is definitely time for me to go to bed because I have to work tomorrow. Fun fun fun...

Well, til next time...

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Tax and Money

Well my UK tax has been posted to the tax offices in the UK and hopefully they have enough information to complete them! After the numerous emails sent back and forth between the tax offices in London I think that I should be okay. Now it is just a waiting game to see how long it takes before I get my cheque - which I won't be here to cash in... Ugh. Still that is easy enough to work around.

I am also looking forward to completing my Australian tax return thanks to a really smart lady at work who decided that it would be a fabulous idea to tax me in the highest possible tax bracket resulting in a terrible pay for a fortnight! I have had so many people say 'yeah but think of it as prolonged saving' but that doesn't help when I am leaving the country in 5 weeks.

So, money is thankfully trickling in from places here and there. I'm not looking forward to these 3 weeks spent in the UK cos I just know they are going to cost me a fortune but at least I have lived there and can be savvy with my money when I'm there. I think I will spend a lot of time hanging out in parks and relaxing. I'm just looking forward to getting my pale white skin out into the sun and working on my tan.