Edinburgh Fringe 2015 was a bit of an insane one for me; not just from the usual bleary-eyed, gin-goggled side of Edinburgh August overindulgences, but also because this year my festival has included about 1,001 shows, gigs, comics, visiting friends and mini festivals-within-the-Festival. I had birthday nights out to go to, I saw Stanley Odd both at their own gig in Summerhall and at the Book Festival’s ‘Jura Unbound’ closing party last night, as well as both Hector Bizerk and the Banana Sessions.
I’ve had three of my oldest friends come to stay, as well as two lovely buskers who have been the most charming company for the past few weeks. I’ve seen friends’ bands of the most diverse genres you could thing of, from ska to blues to folk to hip hop. It has been the most hectic and wonderful month, getting to spend time with some of my favourite people in the world as well as meeting some brilliant new friends. August was a total blast.
Now we are nearing the end of the year and I’ve started to get that autumn feeling; when the leaves start to turn I always have a hankering for a new start. Now I’m one of these people who loves a good list, I live for lists. So now September is upon us I wanted to make some changes to my life, and what better way to get a jump on things than…you guessed it…a list of wee goals for the month!
1. Drink more water. I struggle with this so much, especially if I’ve had a few nights out sipping cocktails, but I’ve noticed how shitty I feel when I’m not properly hydrated. Yes, this is a boring goal. Snoozeworthy even. But it’s super important, so here I am sticking it on my list with top priority. I’m aiming for 3L a day, so let’s see if I can keep this up.
2. Get back into running. Or cycling, or going to the gym. The one activity I managed to maintain throughout August was walking; it’s so easy to hit my daily step goal of 10,000 steps when I’m wandering around from venue to venue, and the one thing that’s helped me immensely is having a pedometer on my iPhone. I use MyFitnessPal to log steps and exercise, and it motivates me to see facts and figures in front of me. I am not a casual gym bunny.
I am going on holiday to Canada with my parents for Christmas, so I want to be ski-ready. After a sizeable break from skiing, I managed a respectable number of snow days over the last season, and I could notice a big improvement. I know this was largely due to my fitness levels, so I’d love to maintain that this year.
3. Blog regularly. I’ve not been that militant with my blogging schedule; in fact it’s pretty arbitrary when I write or post at the moment. I love writing, and so much happens on a daily basis that I’ve made notes of to go back to later. I need to quash my procrastination demons!
4. Try something new. One of the unexpected bonuses of the festival has been that I’ve been fortunate enough to experience some things I might never have thought to try. I’m also lucky to have such a diverse group of friends with interests that vary from mountain biking, all mediums of art, photography, knitting, the theatre, woodworking, to any genre of music you can think of.
New things are scary. But trying new things can be utterly exhilarating, and some of my best experiences have been when I’ve meandered away from my comfort zone.
5. Go back and try something old. Again. One thing I’ve regretted over the past few years is that I never kept up with playing a musical instrument. When I was a teenager, I was pretty musical; I can play the flute, and the piano, as well as having dabbled in a bit of clarinet. So this year, I’ve planned to go to a music workshop in Gateshead at the Sage. I’ve also been thinking of trying different types of music, as my experience has been almost entirely with classical. Traditional folk music has caught my attention, and I would love to be able to play folk flute or whistle.
6. Cook. I became a vegetarian “by accident” back in March, though I’ve never been one of those “every meal must contain meat” sort of people.
A couple months ago, a dear friend challenged me to try veganism for a week. I have to admit, I never thought I would do it, or could do it, but other than a few slip-ups with cheese I have kept to it for far longer than I thought I would. I have noticed though that I’m pretty boring when it comes to cooking for myself every day, and my meals seem to have the same components of smoked tofu, rice or pasta, a single veg, tamari and maple syrup. I certainly need to eat more vegetables, and I would love to make more interesting creations.
I can see it’s going to be a busy month!