Summer Solstice

Living in Wiltshire, within half an hour’s drive of both Stonehenge and Avebury, summer solstice is something that is pretty widely celebrated. But somehow until this year I’ve managed to miss it for some reason or other. However, 4am Saturday morning found me sat on a bank with Avebury stone circle to one side of me, and the incredibly beautiful rising sun on the other, surrounded by thousands of like-minded individuals fueled up on sleep deprivation and excessive amounts of scrumpy.

With record numbers of visitors thanks to the beautiful weather and the fact it fell on a weekend, the only way to describe the evening was magical. Fire-breathing and thunderous drumming that cut through the pitch black skies and midnight hush constructed an idyllic setting for talking to hundreds of people from all walks of life and dancing ’til dawn.

Even though there was a big police presence, I never once saw even the slightest bit of violent behavior.. the atmosphere was so laid-back and happy, with everyone united in the easily perceptible common purpose that was simply to have a good time. Stonehenge has been criticised for becoming increasingly commercialised over the years and losing its original magic, and I guess that’s probably inevitable, but there was certainly none of that apparent where we were. People told us to choose Avebury hands down, and boy were they right.

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Escape To The Sun

I’m hoping from the title and photos you can already figure out what my inevitable excuse for not posting when I was supposed to is. I arrived home from Spain on midnight on Monday and was at a uni open day all day yesterday, and being my usual disorganised self, I didn’t make time to write before I left or schedule a post for while I was away.. oops. Either way, I’m back home for the busiest couple of months in a long time and I am giddily excited (all in good time, people).

Although I don’t actually have my last exam until tomorrow, Spain was an amazing chance to completely and utterly unwind on a deserted beach in the baking sun by day, and accompanied by live music and mojitos by night. For a typically ghostly-skinned redhead like myself, the sun is as much a foe as a friend and seems to completely disregard the effort I go to in order to slather every inch of exposed skin in sun cream. Nevertheless, the warm weather was a perfect remedy to all the exam stress that has been building up over the last few months, seeing as the UK has unsurprisingly failed to provide us with more than a couple of days of bare-legs weather.

We stayed in a town by the sea about an hour from Barcelona called Calella (a large part of the trip was spent eavesdropping on people to try and find out how to pronounce it correctly- turns out it’s cal-ey-a for anyone wondering). Although this kind of touristy town is completely unlike the usual kind of holiday we opt for- we’re normally the cute villa in the middle of nowhere types- there was actually a festival on that my parents wanted to go to, and I’m never one to say no to live music! From impromptu jam sessions to all night beach parties, I can honestly say I had the best time.

Holidays like that make me appreciate so much the fact that I get to go to beautiful places and experience incredible things; I honestly believe that travel is one of the most enriching and fulfilling things a person can do with their life. The excitement of exploring somewhere completely new is second to nothing, whether that just be visiting a new town near you or travelling round the world.

I must say I do love being back to sleeping in my own bed though…