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MELBOURNE > ABU DHABI> LONDON: Travel hacks and truths

Restless doesn’t even begin to describe how I’m feeling right now. It is currently 10:27am Australian time and 4:27am Abu Dhabi time and I have been on this plane since 10pm. To say that I am absolutely DONE is an understatement.

On the bright side, in an hour and 39 minutes we should be landing at our first stop over before we reach London, and I am more than ready to get the hell off of this plane. Really, I shouldn’t complain, I got the window seat which is super roomy, I’ve got a killer playlist going, decent in-flight movies, and I conquered the entire Etihad Airlines Tetris leaderboard. It’s funny what you can get done in 14 hours.

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Oh, did I mention I slept for maybe a total of 20 minutes? Yeah, I’ve gone a little more than 24 hours without sleep, I am so agitated that I am grinding my teeth and my butt is so sore from staying in the one place for so long.

I think one major thing that people forget to mention when they talk about the glamour and splendour of travelling is the ridiculously tedious trip you have before arriving at your destination.

I haven’t travelled in over three years, and I completely forgot about this part. I mean, that’s probably a good thing, right? that the holiday itself stuck in my memory and the discomfort didn’t, but let’s be real, this is not a fun time.

However, I feel that, from my experience, I can pass on some tips to those of you who have yet to travel, or have and still haven’t figured out the best way to go about enjoying the flight.

Firstly, do activities that will keep your mind buzzing. For me, this was playing Tetris and beating the high scores of everyone who has flown with Etihad this week, though it’s good to keep in mind that too much screen time will really strain your eyes, which is what happened to me, so I needed to take an hour or two just to listen to music and shut my eyes.

Secondly. test our your meds before you leave. My friend and I have sleeping tablets with us, but we haven’t taken them yet because we weren’t sure how it would affect us, and we don’t want to risk being drowsy in an unknown international airport when we’ve only got an hour to board our next flight.

Thirdly, when in duty free, make sure that you either buy a bottle of water or bring a bottle with you for the hostess’ to fill on the plane. This has honestly been my saviour this whole time, especially because I’ve taken sinus tablets to make sure my ears don’t hurt and it leaves your throat and nose super dry.

Fourthly, If you know that you have trouble flying, make sure you prepare yourself as much as possible. For me, the only trouble I have on flights is the pressure in my ears, which hurts so much that I could faint. Knowing this, I had a chat with a pharmacist who recommended I take sinus tablets as well as a nasal spray. Thankfully, I have had no discomfort and am super happy that I was prepared.

Some people also get anxious or experience travel sickness, and if you know that there may be a chance that it would happen to you, I 100% recommend talking to your GP or a pharmacist and asking their opinion on what you might be able to take on the flight to ensure you have a comfortable and pain-free trip.

I think that in any trip, the best thing to do is to be prepared for anything, and to make sure that you’re organised well in advanced. That means bags packed, carry on luggage sorted with the essentials, and a game plan. I’m all for spontaneity, but not then it comes to travelling. Make sure you know your luggage restrictions and that all of your liquids and gels are 100ml or less, and can comfortably fit into a clear plastic zip lock type bag.

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For example, in my backpack I packed my laptop, my travel journal, travel wallet, meds, and my little zip lock bag. In the zip lock bag I put my favourite Maybelline Baby Lips lip balm (trust me, lip balm is a must on long flights), hand sanitiser, my LUSH Cosmetics bubblegum lip scrub, Victoria’s Secret Bombshell perfume, a Proactiv Solutions moisturiser (not my usual moisturiser, but it’s the only one I had under 100ml), as well as toothpaste and a toothbrush. Think about it, if you’re landing at your destination and are meeting up with family or friends, the last thing you want is to feel gross.

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Another super important travel hack that Maddison and I have been trying to do is to avoid jet lag.

We left Melbourne at 10pm, and instead of sleeping after take off, we decided to stay awake as long as possible so that we can sync our bodies to European time. I had a short nap at about 4am, and have been awake since. We are due to land in Abu Dhabi around midday (5am Abu Dhabi time), and then we have another eight or so hour flight to London, which is where we will be catching up on sleep, because we land in the UK at 12:30pm London time. Sounds confusing, but I think this will work.

So, it’s currently 11am Australian time and 5:10am in Abu Dhabi, and we will be landing in about 20 minutes. The view from our little window is gorgeous, and I can’t believe we’ve made it this far already. This trip still feels so surreal, it still hasn’t hit me that In a matter if hours I will be in the city that I’ve dreamed about since I was 6 years old, with one of my best friends, getting ready to explore Europe. Exciting things are ahead, and I’m glad I can share it will all of you.

Much love.

MUST HAVE: WINTER DRESSES

Being a student, my life at the moment is pretty hectic, and while I spend my nights doing assignments (at the last minute, of course) I catch up on sleep in the mornings (roughly an hour before class starts) so instead of rushing like a mad woman trying to come up with a decent outfit in the 15 minutes I give myself to get ready, I just put on a chic winter dress and run out the door.

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Thanks for a fab year, 2015

Where do I even begin to describe 2015?

2015 was the year that I met amazing people and made friends I know will be around for a long time.

2015 was the year that I worked my ass off and reached my goals.

2015 was the year that I got a taste of the real world and thrived from it.

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Strictly Ballroom The Musical!!!

There isn’t much more to love than an iconic musical, directed by an Australian artistic legend, with an incredibly talented cast, captivating numbers, along with breath taking costumes designed by said Australian artistic legend’s equally legendary, four time oscar winning wife!

I was lucky enough to be given the opportunity to attend the Strictly Ballroom The Musical media call! This meant that I got to watch (and record) three numbers from the show, meet director Baz Luhrmann and his wife Catherine Martin (costume designer) and speak with the cast! I was also given a backstage tour and got to have a look at the [enormous] set pieces and gorgeously detailed costumes!

I feel as though I should also mention Phoebe Panaretos and Thomas Lacey who play Fran (Just Fran) and Scott Hastings, who after running through three numbers twice like ninjas, stuck around to chat to us! Not only were they open to questions, but they seemed genuinely passionate about what they were doing with their interpretations of their characters and weren’t fussed that we lined up for photos!

Director Baz Luhrmann said that “I can honestly say this, for no other reason than it’s the truth. This cast started great, but they have never stopped evolving their performances, developing their instruments, pushing detail, trying to be everything they possibly can” and this is evident through their performance!

For a world renown director to also say that he is “so damn proud” [of the cast] for “not stopping for a single second in trying to make those performances everything they can be” just means that the cast and crew of Strictly Ballroom The Musical truly will blow you away!

Here’s a quick run down of the long history of Strictly Ballroom:

Strictly Ballroom started off as a musical in 1984 before it’s film adaptation in 1992, both pieces were acclaimed for their unique story, character development and creative direction. When Strictly Ballroom was first shown in Czechoslovakia, it received a 30 minute standing ovation!

Now, Strictly Ballroom has returned to theatre, and after closing in Sydney, it has opened in Melbourne’s Her Majesty’s Theatre!

Take a look at my favourite numbers from the show!

Time After Time: Strictly Ballroom The Musical!

Strictly speaking, make sure you catch Strictly Ballroom The Musical before May 3rd! You can book tickets by clicking here

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#StrictlyBallroom #StrictlyStage