2017 Bucket List: #GOMO

How many times a week (or day if you're me) do you find yourself saying there's nothing to do. Slumped on the sofa at 2 in the afternoon, with a mug of something hot in one hand and your phone in the other. Or maybe you're in bed with your laptop open in front of you, scrolling addictively through online shopping websites or watching YouTube make-up tutorials for looks you'll never be bold enough to re-create yourself. As young people, I think we all spend far too much time complaining that we're bored and have nothing to do, when in reality the world is literally at our fingertips.

If you study at university or if you have a full time job, it can often feel like your life is your work. Maybe you're thinking about exams all the time or worrying about a spreadsheet you didn't have time to finish before you left the office today. Maybe you work part-time in retail like I do and you're bombarded with targets and flashing fake smiles to rude customers as your shifts tick sluggishly by. What I'm trying to say is that, yes, life can be dull - but you can choose to make it brighter.

I was contacted by Eventbrite to create a post as part of their Going Out More Often (GOMO) campaign and as there are so many things I would love to do this year, I was immediately inspired to create this! I'm going to be letting you in on what they are with a snapshot of my 2017 Bucket List. As it's a Friday evening, hopefully, this will inspire all of you to do something different with your weekend - or at least start planning to!

1. Go on holiday - anyone that knows me well enough will know that my passport has been expired for the past two years. The last time I laid on a beach somewhere was in 2010 with my best friend from secondary school in Florida. 7 years later, I am absolutely aching for warm sandy beaches and beams of golden sun. So thankfully, I took the plunge a couple of weeks ago and applied for my passport to be renewed. Yay!

2. Go to a concert - believe it or not, I've never been to a concert in my life. Which is surprising because I absolutely love music and have so many bands and artists that I would love to see live. The Fray, Coldplay, The Weeknd... This May I'm going to see Ed Sheeran with my housemates and I couldn't be more excited. Any thoughts on his latest album, leave them in the comments section below!

3. Join a gym - gym memberships are expensive but I'm graduating in July and with any luck, I'll have a good graduate job with enough money to afford a gym membership. When it comes to exercising, I hate cardio. I've tried running, cardio workouts at home, the treadmill... none of those are for me. I love using the machines or the mats to do floor exercises and if you do enough reps, it can turn into a kind of cardio/strength workout anyway. I've been invited to play badminton with some of my friends next week which should be fun. Just don't ask me to run, because although I give it a damn good try, I am truly terrible.

4. Get a new phone - you might think this slightly defeats the purpose of this post because I'm meant to be encouraging you to go out and have fun experiences. However, I had a terrible phone for two years (an HTC Desire 620) and it meant that I was barely able to document any of the experiences I had. Thanks to one of my good friends, a couple of months ago I managed to get the Samsung Galaxy S7 for a good enough deal and now I can't stop posting pictures on Instagram of all the beautiful things I see. A new phone means memories of new experiences, so technology is not all bad!

5. Go to a music festival - similar to concerts, I've never been to one! Wireless would be insane, I just need to find somebody to go with. 

6. Visit somewhere rural - since moving out of London to university, I've developed a real obsession with the countryside. I absolutely adore all the rolling green hills, beautiful houses and historical architecture. I would love to visit somewhere like Scotland for a weekend and just go on a nice walk to enjoy all the views. One of my housemates who lives in Wales has invited to me to spend a weekend with her during the summer, which honestly makes me so excited as country living is honestly such a luxury for someone like me, who has lived in the city all their life.

So those are six of the main things I would like to go out and do this year - half of which, I have either booked or already done, so I'm really not doing too badly at all.

Eventbrite have created a really easy to use (and free!) resource that helps you to plan group events and days out. You can manage all your events in one place, no matter how large or small and it's designed to help and encourage you to make more memories. Using the promotion tools and RSVP tracker, Eventbrite have made sure that managing and creating upcoming events couldn't be easier. You can check out their event management tool by clicking here.

If you have any bucket list ideas for this year then I would love to hear them. You can tweet me @TanyaMS_ or follow me on Instagram @tanyatigerella if you just want to have a peek at the things I'm getting up to this year.

Come To Work With Me At The Guardian!

If you've ever wondered what it would be like to work as an editor, then I'm about to give you all the inside information. Not that there's anything sinister or shocking to discover. This is more just the excited ramblings of a very, very lucky girl who once got to spend two weeks working with one of the most prestigious newspapers in the world.

One of the first things I noticed about The Guardian/Observer offices, after gawking at the beautiful architectural structure, was that it is very high security. Compared to other offices I've been in, where you literally just need a lanyard with your photographic ID on it, The Guardian takes its security very seriously. Everyone has little swipe cards and there are huge glass barriers that restrict access to the official offices, the toilets, the lifts... There are no paper passes or a person that can come and sign you in. It's simply, no swipe card? No entry.

The offices are enormous and there are a lot more people working on the paper than I could have imagined. I didn't expect it to be small or quiet, but it honestly felt like I was working alongside a million other people across all the floors. I was therefore surprised to find that I was given a computer login and real editorial tasks to get on with, within an hour of being there. Yes, that's right. I was not expected to sit and gawk at the editors, I was invited into their personal space to work alongside them. If they were doing tea runs, I was asked if I would like them to make me a cup of tea. If somebody had a pack of biscuits, I was offered one. Contrary to what many sources will tell you, I really wasn't treated as an invisible.

I was lucky enough to be invited into several conferences in the editor's office throughout the week - on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays. I was working specifically with The New Review team of The Observer, who are all such absolutely lovely people, its difficult to imagine where the stereotype of standoffish, very elitist editors even comes from. I got to sit in the Editor's office (John Mulholland) along with all the other important editors as they discussed plans for the upcoming issue. There was a round table in the centre of the room and huge glass windows with spectacular views overlooking Regents Canal, It was all very much like something straight out of a film and I felt so, so lucky.

The atmosphere in the conference was anything but tense. Everyone was very relaxed, with lots of jokes bouncing around the room, laughter and just easy discussion about relevant news items and suggestions for different interesting things that viewers might want to read about.

If anyone manages to pick up a copy of The Observer this Sunday, or last week's Sunday issue then you'll be able to see two things I worked on! I got to conduct an interview with a Swedish graphic designer for the Snapshots section of the paper, transcribe it and then write the text to go with the images. For this Sunday... well you'll just have to wait and see. The online version of the graphic designs can be viewed (and shared!) here and my second Snapshots feature will be out this Sunday 5 March! It's a very small section of the paper but it is still a huge achievement and massively exciting!

On Fridays, as the week draws to a close, the editors get a lot busier and things start getting a lot more hectic. I had to transcribe a number of recorded interviews and work on a few research tasks for the next issue. Research tasks can be from finding the most popular speed reading apps and writing up how they work, to teasing through different strains on the web for contacts who we could potentially interview about renowned historian Yuval Hurari.

One of the other tasks I got to do might sound boring to people who don't love books, but I actually really enjoyed it! The literary editor for the paper works three days a week, so whenever she wasn't present, I got to open all the packages that were sent to her. Oh my god. Being surrounded by so many new and exciting books that haven't even been released yet was like an actual dream come true. Some of them were proof copies, some of them were the paperback versions of ones that have already been released in hardback. But honestly, getting to be around so many new releases was just amazing. I got a sneak peek into Paula Hawkins upcoming release Into The Water and I even found the time to read my seminar leader Alex Preston's upcoming release, As Kingfishers Catch Fire: Birds and Books which I will be reviewing on this blog shortly!

The most important thing I learned, is that no two days at The Observer are the same. It's a diverse role, where you can go from being chilled out and chatty to rushed off your feet in the space of twenty four hours. And I love that because it keeps things interesting! I had the most incredible time working for the people on The New Review. I've gained so many valuable skills and I know that this is definitely what I want to pursue as a career now. So if you are able to gain work experience, even if you're a third year like me, then it's really never too late!