After a long month of procrastinating and deciding if I’m going to study or spend one more day just doing nothing, I’ve decided that I need to change my behaviour and approach towards my free time.
As I wrote in my previous posts, Leeds is the perfect place if you are a student/tourist or just a resident in West Yorkshire. It’s an affordable train journey and Leeds is one of the biggest cities in UK in terms of small and medium businesses which means more places to see!
On a Tuesday morning , Raluca and I decided that we were going to visit Leeds because we both needed a girls’ day and an escape from our routine (student life best life).
We looked online at restaurants and bars because she was quite hungry and we saw the cutest thing ever. A KITTY CAFE! I mean… A KITTY CAFE!!! With actual cats sitting on your lap or just around the table while you are drinking your coffee or eating. We were both really excited to go there and we made a reservation from Raluca’s phone. We were supposed to be there around 15:15. The train arrived in Leeds around 15:10 so we were quite in a rush. Luckily, the restaurant was near the train station so we ran just to be there in time. When we got there SURPRISE , our reservation didn’t go through so we had to find something new.
After another 20 mins of just walking around , trying to find a decent place to eat (With burgers- Raluca’s request), we decided to visit the Art Gallery in Leeds.
They even had a section where you could create your own art!
It was really nice visiting the gallery (the 3rd time). Meanwhile, Raluca’s stomach was begging her to eat something. We looked around that area and we found an amazing place called ‘ Turtle Bay’. It had a reggae vibe , with awesome design and music. She ordered two cocktails and a burger and I ordered a smoothie. We had a good chat and we enjoyed the atmosphere in the restaurant.
After we finished our drinks/food , we went on a walk. It was really pretty outside because it was a soft light which complemented the buildings’ shape and colour really well.
We finished the day with some shopping and a good laugh. It was a really nice day with a lot of nice places.
Friday morning… After a night out full of joy and good jokes, we decided that we needed a girls’ day. Leeds seemed like the perfect location, giving the fact that there are plenty of charity shops and pretty coffee shops. Adina was looking for vinyls and maybe some books, Raluca was looking for clothes and I was hoping for the best.
We jumped on the bus and waited to see what that day was going to bring us. I was a bit hopeless regarding the charity shops because lately I have not found anything nice, worth buying. The plan was : visit as many charity/vintage shops as we can and after that enjoy a nice and hot coffee.
We got to Leeds. The air was cold and the wind… The wind was awful! We looked for shops on Google Maps and we found some around us (there were charity shops everywhere). We went to a vintage shop first. It had all kind of Levi’s jeans and pretty sweatshirts but they were all a bit expensive, giving the fact that they had been worn before. We headed to our next destination: a charity shop. With a lot of disappointment, we left.
Finally, we went to a British Heart Foundation charity shop and there, I found the treasure at the end of the rainbow: three designer bags! A black Louis Vuitton, a Gucci and a Chanel. I paid less than £70 for all of them. They have the serial number, and everything else! I double checked because it was too good to be true.
Adina found some nice vinyls and Raluca a nice coat and a puzzle. Everybody was happy so we decided that our next stop was going to be the coffee shop. We saw a nice place on our way to the last charity shop : Pieminister.
What can be prettier than a walk in a rainy day, just after the sun shows it’s shy face for the first time in the last couple of days? Just walking on the pavement on which the raindrops performed their last dance? how about that smell after rain? What about that experience plus some great views and nice music (and someone you love to share that experience with *ahem*) ?
I think that’s a pretty intimate way to end January and to start February , giving the fact that February is supposed to be the month of love. Speaking of , am I the only one who noticed that shops are pretty extra when it comes to V-day ? All the coffee shops and the stores have that red-heart theme going on ( which is pretty annoying when displayed a month before, sometimes more).
ANYWAY, going back to the views… The city that I decided to explore today was Wakefield , the city that I live in. It can be pretty generous when it comes to views and nice buildings. I tried to capture some of my favourite places in the city (majority of them are shops so nothing interesting there , hehe ) .
Good luck with exploring and lots of love ( it’s February 😉 )!
What can be more exciting than going on an unexpected (but carefully planned) trip , exactly after uni? After all , your attempts to stay awake during lectures must be rewarded in some way or another ( you deserve it)!
So, we went in Manchester. We planned going there since the beginning of January but we were caught up with our exams and after finishing them we decided that we need a break so we just chilled and did nothing ( and it was awesome).
Nothing fancy, we jumped on the train and just enjoyed the 2 hour journey while debating the name origin of the ‘Canadian Goose’ and eating a cheesecake KitKat. After that engaging discussion, we finally arrived. The first thought that I had when arriving in Manchester Victoria was ‘ Oh, that’s an ugly train station’ ( at least it’s not like the other train station in Wakefield -Kirkgate- which seems to be dragged out of a post-apocalyptic movie). Outside the train station things were nicer. The first building that we saw was the Football Museum ( it’s Manchester, what did you expect? ) which I believe it was filled with precious Manchester United items. After a bit of walking we decided that our trip has no purpose and that we are lost BUT we made the most out of it.
After a bit of walking , not much, we saw a mall -VICTORY-! We went in there but we were not amazed : same shops, same food, same people ( and some high-street brands). With a bit of disappointment we agreed that we want to do something different ( it was more like ‘where do you wanna go?’ ‘I don’t know’ ‘Say something!’ ‘I’ll do whatever’ ). After moaning about the fact that none of us knows what to do , we realised that we are hungry so we looked for a place to eat . We went in HardRock Cafe and it was an amazing experience. Besides the amazing ( but quite expensive) food, the music and atmosphere were really the main attraction.
We also admired the beautiful combination between modern and Anglo-Saxon architecture as we were wandering around, just enjoying the views.
After a couple of miles, we found something that looked dodgy at first , but turned out to be the most amazing place ever. A vintage-ish sort of shop, which had all kind of things : from Harley Davidson vintage boots to old-school magazines… Everything you can imagine! We spent there maybe more than 30 minutes trying to find something worth buying but we were not successful (maybe because we had such a variety of things to choose from).
After visiting this amazing place we noticed that it’s kind of dark outside and that we should go back home-and that what we did!
In the end we enjoyed our trip and I personally think that we needed it!
Have you ever thought about the fact that there are some places in your city/town that you did not explore? You’ll be amazed by the beautiful things that you can find, stuff that may seem like taken out of some fancy travel magazines. Maybe you are looking for something else, maybe you are more keen on feeling the vibe of the city, it’s pulse…
My advice? Go out and have fun (even if you are alone ) ! You can take pretty pictures which you can add to your private ‘art portfolio’.
I did have fun tonight just exploring Leeds, which is basically right next to me (12 mins train journey). Leeds was for me just a city with a huge shopping centre where I can go to satisfy my urge to spend money on stuff that I don’t need ( I can’t be the only one, right?).
SO WHAT DID I DO DIFFERENT THIS TIME?
After having my all time favourite: smoked salmon bagel (Wetherspoons I love you ), I just walked and walked and after walking for a while, I walked even more. Even if I had heels and my feet begged me to stop torturing them , the urge to explore this amazing city was too big. I had the privilege to see amazing buildings with a breathtaking architecture , unique bars and shops and at the end, to relax while admiring the river (hint: it was dark outside 😉 ).