Tuesday, 26 November 2013

Cover-tastic Tuesday

Jamie and I strike back with these two covers. We promise to cover happier songs soon.

Surreal in Sydney

I've often watched romantic films where the two love interests sit in Chinatown in some huge city and eat Chinese and share a drink late at night. I'd always dreamed that one day this might be me and having a similar experience with my "as close as a sister" best friend Sheree was just too surreal for words. 

We met in Sydney for the day. Bondi beach was our first port of call where we got all of the excitement out of our systems and picked a cute place on the beach for lunch called The Bucket List.

Bondi Beach baby! 
I'm jumping!
I'm expressing myself!
Is that right, aye? 
Attempt at a loveheart
Dancing skillz

So. Artistic.
"Sheree pretend you're taking a picture of me and get one of those cute wee boys"

"That prosecco is going tae ma heed"


We spotted Paddy's Market and couldn't resist the photo op being chicks from Irish descent. 

In true Samantha and Sheree style we went back to the hotel for a nap before dinner. We chose a place in Chinatown for dinner because it was around the corner from my hotel and it looked like it was going to bucket it down, and it did.

After far too many drinks at my hotel bar, where I got us discount, we called it a night. We woke up super early for breakfast in bed before saying our dramatic goodbyes. 

Oooh yeah, breakfast in bed!

I can't wait to visit Sheree in Melbourne in the new year. The more Aussie fun to be had, the better!

Saturday, 23 November 2013

Home for a premature Christmas

How glad was I to get back to Glasgow and snuggle my siblings? I can't even express the extent of my joy. Unfortunately my motivation for getting back to Scotland was because I anticipated I would be working at Christmas time. Seeing as I just recently discovered I'll be spending Christmas in Rio de Janeiro with Jamie, this premature visit really was it for the Campbells. I humphed all my presents back from Glasgow to London for opening on Christmas day and crammed as much QT as possible with everyone to make up for my Christmas absence. I managed to have some serious fun too!

I stayed with Christopher in his Stirling chalet. Chris insisted on making me dinner and thanks to a drama with his cooker and him forgetting to defrost the food, I ended up cooking the meal - thanks Chris.

It was Guy Fawkes night so we met up with his University friends and watched the fireworks.
Later we all trotted back to a friend of Chris's and enjoyed some mulled wine, a good old cinnamon challenge and a guitar accompanied sing-song. Standard student chat. I felt so blessed that Chris invited me out to meet all of his friends, who are all from different countries around the world, because they were so welcoming and genuinely the most interesting group of people I've met in a long time.

I had planned to come back to Glasgow in time for Nightwalk, which my friend Cara has been involved with for a few years. Luckily enough my beautiful friends Katie and Rosaline were attending so we met up beforehand and I stayed on the straight and narrow, accepting an alcoholic drink half way through the evening. One of the designers showing at the event was Rachel McMillan, a girl who went to school with us. Her show was fantastic! We also made sure we were close enough to spy these lads in their nicks.

My longtime honey Caitlin had a girls sleepover as some of the London ladies were back in Glasgow at the same time. The night consisted of onesies, far too much alcohol, prankies, facemasks (mine was the colour of poop) and loads of interesting videos to review in the morning.

Before heading back to London I went to the event I had originally arranged my trip around. STUDIO, my dad's wedding band were playing at Scottish Power's Got Talent (a contest to raise money for Cancer Research). They were fantastic and the highlight of the evening had to be when they announced that Gary Barlow was a guest judge and a lookalike waltzes out. My mum genuinely looked like she was about to pee her pants she was so excited and actually convinced Gary Barlow was on stage.

Glasgow, I'll be missing you this Christmas...

Tuesday, 12 November 2013

Things to do in Tokyo

As most of you are aware I spent most of my October in Japan and as a lovely finale to this strip of posts, I thought I'd share some of my weirdest and best experiences in list form... because I love lists. I hope you enjoy. 

Things to do in Tokyo:
1. Feel bad for the animals stuck in pet shops and kept in what appears to be a microwave.

The Halloween ghost in the top right corner looks more like grim-reaper hovering over this one.

2. Go to a restaurant. Order and pay for your meal in an outside vending machine. Walk in and eat. It's actually quite fun because if you're like me, and read no Japanese at all, what you order is always a surprise!

3. Take a jaunt down to Harajuku. You will NOT regret it.

Not pronounced as "take-a-shit-a street" contrary to the skim-read likelihood...

Takeshita street is one of the busiest and coolest streets in Harajuku.

Beauty store on Takeshita Street

Crepe stall on Takeshita Street.
Crepe Girl

Candyshop Girl on Takeshita Street
I'll take ya to the candy shop
Harajuku Girls and Boys
Harajuku Schoolgirls
Moving along to Harajuku Street...
... There are lots of small and uber-stylish boutiques.
These girls are seriously crazy when it comes to fashion.
So if you can't beat 'em...
... buy a pink wig and funglasses and join 'em

4. Visit the famous crossing at Shibuja Station.

By day...

By night...

Where's Wally?!

5. Spend a good few hours in an arcade.

The Japanese love video games so arcades are a real hotspot.
4-player Mario kart! Yes.

6. Visit a comic and memorabilia store and try to understand anime obsession. We visited Mandarake in Shibuja.

Think of this place as a library of anime. They catered for so many themes. I particularly loved the "gay boy" section titles.

They even had a whole section devoted to Anime porn!

7. Let these guys save your life.

From what you ask?
...these monsters! Blow that whistle!

8. Visit Meiji Shrine near Harajuku. It's ancient. It's huge. It's mesmerising.

Barrels of Sake

The cutest person I've ever seen on the right here. Look at that footwear!
Blessing yourself at these stations is important before approaching each place of holiness.
I'm pretty sure you have to wash your hands and mouth out with this water in order to complete the cleansing.
This bridge reminded me of Mulan

9. Meet a Buddha and buy him a drink. Apparently, even seeing one in public is extremely good luck. When I met my Buddha I pounced on the chance to buy him a beer and attempt to steal his wisdom.

This is an attempt at the 45°
My Buddha and I
Please note that this isn't as easy as it looks. I had the help of two Japanese men, both wearing suits and appearing very good at strategy games to enjoy this Buddha's company.

10. Hit up Sam's Bar and get a colleague to play something cool. Then ask Sam to sing you a song about Yokohama. 

11. Adore all the sights you'll see walking from each destination to the next.

Japanese babes
Condom shops
Really cool patchwork hippy vans
A place where you can buy your own Pinocchio!
I wish I went to school in Japan so I could wear a school uniform like this!

I can't wait to come back and explore more of you, Japan! All my love, Samba xoxo