Tuesday, 10 March 2015

Let's call the whole thing off

Hello my lovelies, I've got some news for you.

I've been wrestling with my feelings about my place in the world of blogging for a while now, and I've finally come to a good conclusion. Funnily enough I didn't think my very uninterested boyfriend would be able to give me any sage advice about it, then he dropped this analogy on me....

If you're a jazz musician spending all your spare time writing and playing jazz, but you know that it's never going to sell or support you financially because the masses want x-factor songs and Pitbull, would you quit? Would you give up your integrity and join the corporate machine? Or would you carry on as you are because you love and need that music in your life?

He is a wise boy sometimes. He is just describing his own struggle in life but on this occasion it was actually quite relevant.

He asked me if I wanted to have a career related to my blog. He already knows the answer to that question. Fuck no. I adore my job and it is a job that some would give their right arm for and I would never ever give it up for clothes, I worked very hard for a long time to get to where I am, and I know I can't work on this blog in the same way... wouldn't want to even if I had the time!. I have said no to many opportunities I have been offered which would make me and my blog more recognisable. It's been my choice to keep my real work and my blog persona completely separate and it's been quite tricky on occasions! I've always known this would create a ceiling for where I could go with the blog. I've found blogging more of a chore than a hobby recently and the urge to give it all up has finally won-out. I want my beautiful readers to know that I'm very happy with my decision to quit this second job of mine!

 I'm going to go from this ^ 
 To this ^

Blogging has bought me some genuine happiness, mainly via the women I have inspired, through my lovely loyal readers and from messages I get on my posts.... laughing at terrible clothing or lusting after beautiful things. The thing is that despite those nice bits I know I was happier before I had this blog. There was far less turmoil and pressure in my life before I had an internet presence, before I had these two lives!. I want to go back to my internet-free life and focus on things that are important to me and the people I love, so that's what I'm going to do.
My Twitter is no more, my Instagram will be going soon and I will no longer be updating this blog as of next week. I'm keeping my plumpparsnip email address though, so I'll still be contactable that way. Thank you so much for reading this, and trust that I will continue to style it out in the real world on a daily basis. I hope you will too! Xx

Monday, 9 March 2015

Boa Vista Island

Boa Vista has beaches. Many many beaches. But not much else. Even the capital city is tiny and to western eyes looks tin y an sometimes abandoned. Apparently the local population generally don't have running water or electricity. In terms of history there isn't that much - Cape Verde was colonised by the Portuguese but is now part of Africa. There isn't much in the way of historical sites to be seen on Boa Vista (I believe there is more on some of the other islands) but there are seasons where you can wale watch and see all the turtles that come to lay their eggs on the beaches. Boa Vista is all about beaches.
 Before I forget, I have to tell you about Boa Vista Airport! It is the smallest airport I've ever seen - the building looks like a mini sandcastle, is about the size of a Sainsburys Local (or a Minimart, for those in the U.S!) and doesn't have a roof. It was pretty lovely to wait for our flight home in a lovely sunny little courtyard!

Night time
Back in the hotel our evenings were pretty low-key.....
Jumpsuit 24 - Asos Curve
Jacket & Bag - Primark
Flip flops - Ipanema

We went to one of the hotel restaurants every night. There is the main restaurant and 3 specialist restaurants with limited seating that you have to book. We tried all 3 of those. The Cape Verde specialist fish restaurant was awful. Inedible seafood in a seafood restaurant is pretty disastrous but we'd eaten so much on the holiday that it didn't matter! The African one was very similar to the main buffet. The Asian one was nice. There were some very odd dishes (sultanas in spring rolls anyone?!) but nice sushi and some decent ribs & noodles!
There was entertainment of the hotel variety and bars so we could just sit around and quaff!

Dress 24 - Anna Scholz White Label
Poncho - Boohoo
Bag / shoes / earrings - Primark
We quite enjoyed the African themed entertainment, great dancing!
Loved this big mirror in the bathroom!
Think he looks better in it?!
The flash does crazy things sometimes!
Off for some dinner.
Jumpsuit 24 - George
Bag & shoes - Primark

We are adventuring, we are adventurers....
We decided to go on a full day tour of the island because we're not really the sort of people who are happy to never leave the resort! Look how uncomfortable my boyfriend looks.... it cracked me up! Our hotel was right at the bottom of the island in the south, so we went for the full day north east tour.
We chose to go with a little company called Giggling Gecko (run by a Scottish couple who moved to the island some years ago) for the tour rather than Thompson. We just thought it would be less corporate! I'm a bit sad we didn't stop in this abandoned fishing village because I really wanted to take pictures, but never mind, I just about caught it from a way off!
Salt pan.
A nice unspoilt beach (Curral Velho)....
Sensible sandals for me!
And another beach (ervatao), this one is where the turtles come to lay their eggs.
I picked up some little shells and bought the big one off the very old man who lives alone in the only house by this beach. He's over 80 and helps out when the conservationists arrive to help with the turtles!.
Another beach, from a height!
Old lighthouse (Morro Negro) up a very steep hill. 'Twas hot and I was out of breath but if I can do then I reckon most people can!
It was so overcast on this day - perfect for roaming about in rather than sitting by the pool.
This might be my favourite snap that my camera-phobic boyfriend took of me - he's not so good in low light 'cause he is a bit unsteady but he got some nice shots during the day huh?!
 T-shirt 20 & sunnies - Priamrk
Trousers 24 - Boohoo
Sandals - Nike
This photo is a pretty accurate description of 80% of the terrain of Boa Vista. Volcanic rock.... I'll come back to that later!

 We were taken for lunch at a local restaurant to try the local dish. It was a basic place as expected but was rammed and the food was lovely.
Goat, beans and veg all locally grown and very delicious!

Another go-round on the back of the truck. Not the easiest ride but I thought it was super fun!
The nicest village we saw on our trip for sure, but sadly I don't know what it is called!
Now then, back to the terrain. Thing is with Boa Vista is that it is pretty uninhabited for the most part and there are very few proper roads. What that means is that most of the vehicles have to be suitable for off road driving, and to say it's a bumpy ride is a massive understatement. If you get travel sick then it's going to be tricky to go on a tour of the island! Because the terrain is so rocky the driver has to go very slowly and carefully, that meant that we spent at least half of the whole tour just driving through dust filled rocky land, most of which was pretty uninteresting. I'd didn't mind even when I was on the back getting dust violently blown into every orifice, but I think there are some who would rather not bother and wouldn't enjoy the sights enough to make the travelling worth while.
We visited Rabil and the community project pottery. No electricity here either by the looks of things so I hope they don't have to work very late in the day!
Quite a typical view in the North of Boa Vista.

I had to get something even though I really don't have any trinkets in our flat!
A turtle obviously!
This is the thing I wanted to see so it was a good way to finish the day. It was a bastard to get too in the truck!
Mysterious bubbles coming out of a rock!
The Cabo Santa Maria shipwreck won't be there forever, so I wanted to see it. It's quite a modern shipwreck (it crashed on Praia Boa Esperanca beach in 1968) and if you google it you can already see how much of it has been lost to the elements.
It's made of steels so the waves will take it eventually.
Lovely snap taken by Jen of giggling gecko. That was that. Back to the hotel for a bloody good scrub... seriously, we were caked in red dust and after all the wind and sea spray I had to condition my hair for about 5 minutes!

Dressing up
Bit more glam than my earlier outfit!
I mainly wore this dress so I could wear my new necklace. I love big statement necklaces but I just can't wear anything round my neck that is heavy or cumbersome - I love fabric necklaces and this one is so deliciously light!
I got it on Ebay and I suspect it is one of the necklaces I wanted from the V&A Hollywood Costumes exhibition shop. Some of you may remember that I have the matching earrings (in yellow) that I bought when I went to see it and I remember trying one of these on but deciding it was too expensive. Well chuffed to have found it for £20 on the old net!
I felt very good in this outfit - you know how I love a maxi dress!
Necklace - Ebay (random seller!)
Dress 20 / shoes / bag - Primark
I'd wear this all the time if I could, but it doesn't suit lots of outfits. In fact it kind of looks best when I'm topless but I felt that would be inappropriate for dinner.....
On the subject of necklaces, I got some lovely ones from the African jewellery shop in the hotel, along with a pair of beaded earrings that look like coral reef!
Vest XL - H&M
Trousers 24 - George
Jacket & necklace - Primark
Flip flops - Ipanema
working head-to-toe uniqlo in a silly manner!
I wish I could show you how amazing the sky was in the evening - this was taken while lying on sunbeds by the pool at night!
I was determined to check out the hotel disco (Pasha!) so I put on my sparkly cape and some feather earrings!
Dress 24 - George
Cape - Boohoo plus
Feather earrings - ebay
shoes - Crocs 'Lady'
We were actually a bit tanned by this point but the camera doesn't want you to see that!
The 'Criminal Jazz' show was hilarious. It was Chicago and the dancers mimed to it. Thoroughly enjoyable and all the dancers (both male and female) were lovely!
As you can see, Pasha was BANGING! Pretty unbearable music to be honest. Once Pitbull came on we gave up and went back to our room!
After a few G&T's!
Our last night was low key and lovely. We both agreed that we could happily have stayed for a few more nights before we got bored of the lovely sunshine!
Dress 24 - Asos Curve
Cardi 24 - George

Saying goodbye to the option of swimming everyday. WAH!
The most delicious smelling flowers surrounded all the pathways. Boa Vista was a lovely Island to visit and the Riu Touareg was a great hotel to lounge around in. We had such a good time. So good in fact that we both felt a bit miserable after we got back. Happily the sun seems to be shining again in the UK and the cold gloom we had been experiencing before we went away seems to be behind us so that is helping us get back to our normal happy life!

The end(!)