How I Finished 2015

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2015 was a darn amazing year. Yes, there were times it sucked, but I had great friends who let me cry all over them and talk to them when I needed, so that’s ok. I survived and blah blah blah. If you’ve been reading my blog, you basically know what I’ve been up to all year. I went back to Wales, played basketball and netball, finished my degree, started my first grown up job and then I went back to Wales because I missed everyone. Well, after Wales I went to Edinburgh and fell in love.

Edinburgh is easily my third favourite city in the world after Paris and New Orleans. Once again, I fell asleep in a new city and woke up having no idea where I was. It took me a few minutes of looking around my tiny bunk area before I clued in that I was in Edinburgh and I was getting a tattoo that day! After dragging myself out of bed, grabbing a quick bite to eat, I was off to meet my tattoo artist and get some new ink!

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Gemma at Edinburgh Ink was my artist that day and she did a phenomenal job! Thanks, Gemma!

After my tattoo I met up with a friend who is from Scotland and we did touristy stuff around the city for the rest of the day. If there is any city in the world that does Christmas right, it’s Edinburgh. There are Christmas markets spread around the main area of the city that you can visit, plus lots of lights, bag pipers playing Christmas songs, and there is even a CHRISTMAS TREE MAZE!

I loved the Christmas Tree Maze!

I loved the Christmas Tree Maze!

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Edinburgh knows how to do Christmas. I did a happy dance seeing this.

On our way to the maze, I couldn’t stop skipping and hopping because I was so excited. Apparently I am a five year old. The maze wasn’t as big as I had hoped, but it was still fun to go through it and find Santa’s Workshop. My friend and I toddled through the maze while I giggled and couldn’t stop smiling. Basically, everything we did after the Christmas Tree Maze was a bonus. And there were a lot of bonuses! We wound up exploring the Scottish National Gallery, one of the Christmas Markets (we were looking for gnomes), and then he made me try a deep fried Mars bar, which I thought was very American, but it turns out it’s a Scottish thing. It’s basically deep friend diabetes and it was like chewing on Heaven.

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I was supposed to go and see the castle, but wound up on Portobello Beach. I can now say that I’ve put my feet in both the east and west coast waters of the UK!

Edinburgh was amazing. My last day there I woke up with a really bad cold so I had an easy day exploring used book stores, and then I met a guy from north Wales in a pub and wound up having lunch with him. Once he found out that I had studied in Wales he said that he’d buy me a shot for every Welsh word I could say correctly and he wound up buying me exactly 5 shots. We spent the afternoon drinking and laughing until it was time for him to go meet his friends and I decided to explore the city some more.

A sleeper bus is basically full of human sized cubby holes for people to sleep in.

A sleeper bus is basically full of human sized cubby holes for people to sleep in.

Eventually 10:45PM rolled around and it was time for me to board my sleeper bus to go to London for my last night in the UK. When I woke up the next day, I was in London! Later on that day I met up with Raz and Alex! I got huge hugs from both of them. At that point my cold had gotten worse so my excitement was killed by my asthma. We spent the afternoon handing out with each other and catching up. I couldn’t believe how much I missed them even though we picked right back up where we left off.

After a great afternoon with those two, I flew home the next day.

When I got home I jumped back into my regular coaching routine with my sister. Even though I loved my time in the UK, I missed my little sister the most and I’ve spent a lot of my time at home making up for the time I missed with her. We’ve been coaching Jr. Girl’s sports at our local high school together and had a successful volleyball season, and are now on our way to coaching a successful basketball season.

Merry Christmas from the Bowser siblettes!

Merry Christmas from the Bowser siblettes!

Christmas came and went in the Bowser household and I was happy to be home with my family. I was also happy to not have to worry about school for the first time in years. It was also Goliath’s first Christmas with us and he loved opening presents with Thumper.

Then before I knew it…LISA WAS IN BC!

My gremlin was with me so that meant I was back to crouching and slouching for our selfies.

My gremlin was with me so that meant I was back to crouching and slouching for our selfies.

I went down to the coast to visit her and Haylee and I couldn’t believe that it had been 5 months since I’d last seen my shorter half. I arrived on the 4pm bus. As soon as I stepped off the bus I ran to the bathroom because I really had to pee. I also needed to change out of my woolen long sleeve shirt because it was like springtime. When I was done I walked back out into the main area of the bus station and I saw her. My gremlin.

Before I knew it, we were hugging for the first time in forever and I couldn’t have been happier to see. I’d forgotten how tiny she was and…my arms were getting tired. Why were my arms getting tired? Why did Lisa seem taller than she normally did? Normally when we hug she nearly gets smothered by my boobs, but this time her face was at my shoulder level. Was the weirdo wearing heels?

Nope to all of the above.

I didn’t realize it, but I had picked the little weirdo upĀ and was holding her off the ground while we hugged.

Mel, Haylee, Lisa, and I went out for a much needed night of dancing and shenanigans.

Mel, Haylee, Lisa, and I went out for a much needed night of dancing and shenanigans.

After I put her back down, we went off to get food and spend the day hanging out until Haylee got off work. Even though I’d forgotten how small she was, I didn’t forget how easy it was to be around her. Or how much fun Lisa, Haylee and I could have together. Yes, I’ve visited Haylee a few times, but I had missed the three of us being the three of us. One of our friends in the UK said it best about us, “A night with the Turdettes is always a good night.”

Like I said, 2015 was amazing. It started with a bang and ended with a bang. Mostly because my family has the yearly tradition of shooting off our rifles every year at midnight. This was also my third year in a row where I finished my year off taking a poop and started my year off…still taking a poop. I have no idea what 2016 is going to bring about, but if it’s anywhere near as amazing as 2015, I’m in for a great year. But 2016 shouldn’t feel like it needs to compete. If I have a quiet year, I’ll be ok with that as well. 2016 should just be itself and I’ll appreciate it for exactly that.

Gone Again

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I woke up snuggled up to a little old lady with curly white hair peaking out from under her hat. I wasn’t just leaning against her, I had shifted in my seat so that I was huddled against her with my face pressed against her shoulder. She was 5’3″ if she was lucky. My almost-giant self had cuddled myself around her. According to her I’d been huddled up to her like that for the last two hours. My bad.

Honestly, when I woke up, I had no idea where I was. I was on a train and…why was I on a train? Where was I going? My eyes hurt, I felt dehydrated, my throat was sore, and I was cold. Where the hell was I?

I sat up, stunned, and checked to make sure I hadn’t drooled on the little old lady and started the slow process of waking up and trying to remember why I was on a train.

He might have let me win that one pool game...

He might have let me win that one pool game…

Then I remembered! I was on a train to Manchester! I’d just spent the last week in Lampeter with all the friends that I hadn’t seen since June. Way too much happened in that week for me to write about. Needless to say, I had a great week with all the people that I’d missed and the new people that I met. I danced, I drank, I hung out, and I beat Pumba in two games of pool! The first game, I won on my own, but the second game I won because Pumba knocked the white in when he put the black in. I’m still happy that I actually played an almost decent game of pool.

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I can’t ever thank this one enough for my awesome week with her!

My last night in Lampeter was the Winter Ball. Instead of going to bed, I stayed up until I had to go catch my bus at 7am. From there I hopped on a train and promptly passed out in my seat. My week in Lampeter was nothing short of amazing and I can’t ever express how grateful I am for the people in my life who made my visit what it was. Especially Victoria who let me take over her room for the week. I got to see a lot of the guys that I’d missed during Old Boys, and I got to spend a lot of time with both Pumba and Josh over the week.

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We both went to the Winter Ball in our flannel tops…

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Molly! So stoked to have met this beautiful woman!

12321626_10100572631519803_4594441068180685522_nIt had been a busy week and I was exhausted. My next stop was a two hour stop in Manchester! I’d heard conflicting things about Manchester so I was excited to arrive and spent a little bit exploring the city while I waited to catch my next train. Except I wound up lost after walking around for 5 minutes and spent the next half hour trying to find my way back to the train station. Basically, I went down a street, got turned around, and suddenly had no idea where I was. With no wifi, I couldn’t figure out where I was and was thankful for all of the nice people who helped me find my way back to the station. In the station I found a Starbucks, ordered a hot chocolate, and sat down with all of my stuff. Within minutes a guy had sat down with me and said that I didn’t look like I was from around there. He was a local who worked in the station and we wound up talking until I had to leave to catch my train.

Hungover, but still ready to explore. Until I got lost.

Hungover, but still ready to explore. Until I got lost.

It wasn’t my train though. Two trains were leaving from my platform. The first train was going to Liverpool and I wound up on it. Thankfully a friendly gentleman asked where I was going. After I said I was on my way to Edinburgh, he was nice enough to tell me I was on a train to Liverpool. I couldn’t thank him enough as I grabbed my bags and scrambled off the train. I don’t know what I would have done if I had wound up in Liverpool!

Eventually I got on the right train and at 9pm that night, after 14 hours of travel, I was in Edinburgh! Despite sleeping on the trains, I was still tired. Or I was tired until I walked out of the train station and saw all of the Christmas lights, old buildings, and…everything! Excitement took over. My hostel was a five minute walk away and I quickly checked in, thinking I would shower and then go to sleep.

16yo me would think I'm awesome.

16yo me would think I’m awesome.

I didn’t. I was too excited. Edinburgh was one of the cities that 16-year-old me always wanted to see. Instead of showering, I gave myself the excuse that I wanted to buy a razor because I needed to shave and I went exploring. I spent the next half hour wandering up and down the streets near my hostel until I eventually found a little corner shop and bought a razor. I hadn’t shaved in nearly two weeks and all my parts were very Sasquatch-like, but…I wound up torn between exploring the city some more or going back to my hostel and shaving.

My new buddy, Tim, and I were ready for bed finally. Bed in EDINBURGH!

My new buddy, Tim, and I were ready for bed finally. Bed in EDINBURGH!

By midnight I found myself tucked into a bottom bunk in my hostel dorm. I was shaved, I was excited, and I was ready to…read the book that one of my favourite authors had just released. Nine chapters later I was passed out with an alarm set for 8am the next morning. I had a tattoo to get and I wasn’t going to miss that for anything!