Friday, 30 December 2016

My Favourite Places of 2016 in Review (and an annual playlist.)


Everywhere I go resembles or reminds me of a film or television show scene, a book and or a song. Likewise, how each film or television show I watch, each song I listen to or each book I read resembles or reminds me of those places. Just how on a school trip to Dublin recently, I sat on the bus thinking of parallels between some of the people I know and the characters, incidents, etc. in films, television shows and or books they enjoy. Sounds strange but it really is, in many a situation, art imitating life except the art in question is not one's own. But to get back on topic, when I visit these places, I always want to keep a record of them for future reference - whether that be for artistic or personal reasons. Head-screwed-on Grace tells me to "live in the moment". Kermit Grace hisses "no. Take the bloody photo". And no, Kermit Grace, is not Judi Dench as James Bond's M in disguise. Anyhow. Usually an amicable, in-between agreement is reached, consisting of a sneaky and therefore, blurry photograph and or a later vividly-written entry in the form of a list of bullet-points. Comparable to this afternoon when Head-Screwed-On Grace protested, "You have ten days until term, Grace !" after Kermit Grace suggested dying a few sections of strands of hair pink to relieve boredom. (sorry mam !)

My 2015 into early 2016 was what everyone else's 2016 has apparently become. Horribly overwhelming for all the right and wrong reasons with a clear beginning, development, climax and conclusion. After this, perhaps I became over-critical of myself, just how perhaps, I had been too ignorant of myself up until then but my point is that its okay to realise that we all sometimes act like tossers (i'm trying not to swear. this is v difficult.), especially when sixteen years of age when  everyone acts like a tosser since (danisnotonfire-or-some-strong-London-accent-here.) the sooner we all acknowledge that and move on the better ! Lets all take a leaf out of Cady Heron's book, minus the cheesy crown-breaking scene.The sibling  turns sixteen in 2017 so I'll just proceed to burn some incense and hope for the best. Or just act whatever the eighteen year old version of a sixteen year old tosser is. My 2015 could be summarised in the pages of an almost five month long quote book (I still blame the karma of ending it a week too early for my subsequent stupidity.), the mobile phone photos of my favourite bathroom to panic in ("The Office" opposite 106, u da bom xo.) and my melodramatic doodles (guurl, you must have spent all of 2015 taking off that tear-proof eyeliner.).

In 2016, I didn't record as much since I fooled my superstitious self into thinking that I'd screw up again or something so I don't have many recorded memories from the past twelve months however, I am still sure that it was one of the best years (for me.) yet. Cheesiness (that has rambled on for longer than my normal 'feck me, I'm tired and un-motivated' blog posts.) aside, lettuce carry on to reviewing some of my favourite places from 2016 from left to right of badly-sketched above. Also, I generally describe scenes in quite a vivid and formal manner so if you receive second-hand cringe from that kind of thing (I receive it first-hand so ...) here's warning !

The Kitchen

I hadn't actually to include this until I realised that I hadn't noted any places which revolve around memories with family. Oops. But come to mention it, I really love our kitchen ! I mean before we even consider any other factors, the food is there ! And the kettle ! During golden hour - especially during the wintertime - there is such a colour to the room as the sun shines through the blinds which creates a striped pattern of shadows on the opposing wall. It makes for such interesting photographs, especially candid-style. Really, its just a 'family' space which sounds so 'duh' but still ! Even though, I do enjoy eating breakfast there alone at 6.30am in the morning, it is where we watched the news airing the aftermath to Brexit and Donald Trump becoming POTUS, where birthday presents were opened and where my mam made multiple attempts to wash her hands of my pink hair dye (thanks mam. sorry mam.). Super alliteration there.

The Outdoor Gym Area

Every time I'm here, I feel such an 'adolescent'. From the outset, it resembles loitering as if there isn't much going on but that generally isn't how I remember any length of time spent there. Like I said at the beginning, places remind me of scenes so the seats in this area remind me of the ones in the park in Skins and the time I've spent here, Richard Linklater scenes since it could be seen as quite mundane or boring, but its also a reminder that days don't need to be eventful to be memorable. On one occasion, we met a friend of a friend and it was so 'random' and therefore, funny since everyone just decided to shake hands and some of my friends with beaming confidence started chatting to them as if they had known each other for years - it was brilliant ! On another occasion, I sat around the outdoor gym with other friends at night where I remember the town being so dead but so alive and so quiet, but so loud with cars speeding up, down and around. More recently, I sit on one of the seats to reflect or write. There's a Christmas tree to the top-left right now. Also, if one leans to the right, the lampshade in front appears perfectly centered to the building behind a wall.

Friend's House

It feels inappropriate (or at least I feel uncomfortable doing so.) to mention houses where I do not live, let alone describe it so obviously the latter will not be done. All I will say is that I have got to know such amazing friends here, from whom (I should probably water down the formal tone.) I've learned a lot here and I fell off an orange folding chair on the day of my birthday here. I really perfected gliding into my seventeenth year with class.

Beach by the Woodlands

My two friends and I do this thing where we experience first-hand cringe by merging our three names together and then, spend a day walking off the cringe. The first occasion of this was essentially from one seaside to the next, through woodland, beaches and rocks. All of which I had never encountered in my life. Its also worth noting that being ignorant to the kind of route we would be taking, I wore a skirt. Big oops. One of the first stops we made was to a small stretch of a beach next to the woods. It was basically one of the most beautiful and photogenic sights I had seen. The blue skies, silhouette-like trees and absence of other visitors only caused it to resemble an even prettier scene. It also reminded me of desert island images - idealistic and empty. I actually miss it so much, we didn't stop for long enough ! I want to go back !

Sunrise at my Bedroom Window

On two occasions at the end of Fifth Year, I either stayed up late or woke up early enough to catch a sight of various colours and shadows decorating my room due to a gorgeous sunrise, the orange blob being the sun shining through the blinds. The first day was a Tuesday, I think, making it the third last day of the school year which is probably why the details aren't so clear in my mind. However, the second incident - being Friday, the first day of summer - is much more of a vivid memory. Me being over-whelmed and very much awake from the previous day as a whole, didn't sleep until 6am by which stage I had procrastinated the entire early hours of the morning through but had watched Grease : The Musical so that counted as slight productivity. I took so much more photos of the sunrise which was beaming off everything at 5am in golden and grey shadows - from my bedside to my wardrobe. The ever-changing hot pinks, lilacs, blood orange and warm yellow shades of the sky were so intriguing. I could have watched them all day if the impossible had happened and the sun had never fully rose.

The Seaside in Galway

One of my favourite memories from the school trip I went on to Galway was when the majority of us went down to the seaside during dusk. The sea and its surroundings, which included many rocks and a full moon, were so serene and enchanting. The sound of stones plunging into the water was strangely peaceful in a way too. It really summed up the objective of the trip as a 'retreat' for me and it was just so settling to be there.


Above is this year's annual playlist. The quality of uploaded photos is still unfortunately grainy but we may move on ! My pen, my hand-writing size and my ideas were really competing for space with this A4 refill pad page this year. I really did go for it this year, in terms of listening to a ridiculous amount of music, some of which I had almost forgotten about. Listening to music is so important to me as when I do, I feel some kind of emotion from it - whether that be sadness, passion or happiness. Listening to music often results in me feeling even more emotionally exhausted than I was to begin with and that's what I love about it. It is also what I link to every memory I can think of and I am forever fascinated by the idea of a scene from a certain time coming to life in one's head due to a certain melody or particular lyrics being heard. 

So that is two round-ups of aspects of 2016 wrapped up. 2016 has been a fairly horrible year for the planet as a whole but personally, it has been one of my better years and I am so grateful for that. Thanks to anyone who has been a part of my 2016 - whether that be offline or online - and thank you to anyone who reads Dainty Sprinkles !

Here's to the incoming 2017,

Grace x

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