I think we all wish we could go back and teach our younger self some life lessons - why were we so young and naive?! At 21, I know I still have a lot to learn (Young, dumb and broke anyone?) but I'm more knowledgeable in hindsight. Now I'm by no means grown up, I still struggle at adulting everyday but being a teenager could sometimes feel even more difficult than adulting.

One year that definitely stood out for me was 2010, my first year of high school and the year I turned 13. Being 13 was undoubtedly my most difficult year growing up. Teenage hormones are so real. If I could go back to that awkward, confusing time, this is what I would tell my 13 year old self.





A LETTER TO MY 13 YEAR OLD SELF


Dear Asha,

Well you've made it to high school, I know how disappointed you are that it's nothing like it looked in Hannah Montana or High School Musical. Unfortunately in these 5 years, Zac Efron isn't going to fall in love with you (And neither is Justin Bieber so PLEASE get rid of that bieberasha@yahoo.com email address because it will come back to haunt you every time you try to log onto Facebook).

On that note, you my dear self, have no idea what being in love really is. And let me just give you a hint, it's not like what you've seen in those Disney movies you (secretly) still love.  All the guys you date this year, and pretty much all throughout high school, are not worth the time or the tears.

I know you're looking at the mirror wondering why you can't be a bit thinner, have acne-free skin or flowy straight hair. I know you're trying everything to fix those "problems" you have when you really should be loving your slightly chubby, imperfect skin, curly haired self. What makes those girls in school seem so pretty is that they have the level of confidence you should have.

That time your Arts and Culture teacher in primary school called you "Painfully shy" you keep etched in your brain. You wish you didn't struggle so much with social interactions, and you wish that for once someone wouldn't use the words "shy" or "quiet" or "introvert" to describe you. It doesn't make sense to you how some people can so easily make friends while you sit alone at lunch break and have to try so hard to have a decent social interaction.

Don't worry about that girl that called you a b*tch or those "looks" those girls gave you. Don't overthink those guys you wasted precious time with actually imagining a future with (Eww). Don't worry about those times you got bad marks, mom and dad were definitely not disappointed in you. Don't worry about that little world that you're living in because I promise you it will get better.

Soon when you tell people you were so shy and quiet they'll be like "Dude, why you lying?". Trust me, you're actually gonna be the social one in your friend groups (And on that note your friends will be #squadgoals). You'll meet people you actually have things in common with, people who will inspire you, and not just classmates you're friends with out of convenience. One day you'll get over those insecurities about your body and learn to embrace yourself love handles and all (except the bad skin, because your makeup is always on point, girl).

Soon you're going to get a newly found confidence, the kind of confidence that comes from deep within. You're going to find out how strong and independent you are, and that's what so many people will know you for.

Baby girl, there's gonna be downs for sure, but you're gonna learn so much from those moments. You're gonna go on adventures and have the most mind blowing experiences. You're gonna meet people that expand your horizons and help you grow more than you ever thought you could. You will end up meeting some decent guys eventually (Actually scratch that, most guys will still suck). You're gonna finish the schooling chapter of your life on a high note and end up studying something you love (eventually, but that's a whole other story!).

You're going to laugh without fear of the future, and have hope and excitement gleaming in your eyes.

Asha, it does get better!

Sincerely, 
Asha

(The 21 year old me)





WHAT UP STALKER! This week I have so much to tell you guys I figured I would dedicate a whole blog post to all the randomness. First, I had a super successful Guest Post month in May, where some amazing people wrote epic posts for the blog. I've also been contemplating making the biggest decision ever - changing the blog name! In the meantime I've been up to some fun stuff like writing a super personal blog post owww.indirasinnerbeauty.com. As you could guess, I've been on the edge of my seat with this whole Qatar - Gulf fiasco. Despite all of this, I've also found time for some Netflix and chill (Well, just Netflix minus the chill). So here you have it, everything all you stalkers wanna know summed up in one post!

As for me, well I recently finished exams and have a few adventures planned for July (winter vacay whoop whoop) so I'm going to be posting travel posts. Confession time: I've secretly always wanted to be a travel blogger/vlogger! I thought what better time to try it out then now. It's also an awesome opportunity for me to start vlogging.


WARNING: I wrote this post as a typical young-dumb-and-broke student so don't judge.

If you're a foodie, head over to Part 1.
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Bloem is super cold and super hot. The weather knows no chill. Just when you think this is the hottest it can get, it gets hotter. Just when you think this is the coldest it can get, it gets colder. Now that it's winter, that struggle is so real. It's that time of year again when everyone's going to post "Does anyone want to be my cuddle buddy?" on Facebook. Yeah keep your cuddle buddies, all I need for food and my bed and I'm good. Do you know what else keeps me warm? You guess it, Jagerbombs!

Now Jagermeister didn't sponsor this post but I so wish they had. I mention jagerbombs so much because they're my squads signature drink. One Tuesday night after a terrible economics exam we went to No.16 Stoep and Beer Garden (Which just closed down unfortunately *sob*) and our waiter suggested we try jagerbombs, a mix of Jagermeister and red bull. In that moment our lives changed. We didn't feel so depressed about our exam anymore, for the first time that night we felt like everything was going to be okay. Hence, the significance of jagerbombs in my life.

Back to the travel guide. A lot of people I speak to, especially those that live in the city, seem to have no idea what to do in Bloemfontein! Granted, compared to other cities in the country it does seem to have a lack of fun activities but that's no excuse to not do any exploring all together. Here are some of the things I like doing in Bloem:


  • Oliewenhuis - As a creative, one of the first things I like to explore in every city I visit is the museums. The actual building design of Oliwenhuis art museum is stunning! Not to mention the front lawn, which is pretty much the only green place in Bloem all year round. They have a permanent exhibit upstairs as well as every month they have a new one downstairs. My favorite temporary exhibition was The Visionary Brusher Game by Janine Allen in August 2016. It was so creepy! I also tried out the walking/hiking trails which are fairly decent. And it used to be an awesome place to catch pokemon! Oliewenhuis also has a restaurant, The Terrace, which I'm not a fan of since I've received bad service there.
  • National Museum - One of my favorite museums ever! From Astronomy to Palaeontology to the history of Bloemfontein, this place has everything. Located right in the middle of the CBD, this place truly gives you a piece of history. My favorite exhibition is the historical street scene. According to the website, "This exhibition depicts the daily life of ordinary people in a Free State town at the end of the 19th to early 20th century." It really makes me feel like I'm experiencing life in the 19th century. Everything is so realistic, even the teeny, tiny details. 
  • Free State Botanical Gardens - the botanical gardens are located a few kilometers out of town and are definitely worth the drive. If you like plants, this will obviously be an awesome, educational treat for you but I really couldn't care less about flowers. The Botanical Gardens also have some amazing hiking trails which I can't recommend enough as well as lots of cute picnic spots. 
  • Boeremark - if you can get yourself to wake up early on a Saturday (Usually the biggest struggle for me since I always seem to be hung over on Saturday morning, I have no idea why) go to the Boeremark in Langenhoven Park. They have lots of yummy treats (Like the best pancakes ever), a George Clooney look-a-like working at one of the stalls (Mmm yummy) and really cool random shit you can buy. 
  • Cheetahs and Shimlas rugby - I know there's tons of other sport that happen in Bloem but lets be real, I only care about rugby. I'm a huge Cheetahs supporters (Although, not as much as the Sharks) and love watching them play in the Currie Cup. The vibe at the games are incredible and it's so beautiful seeing the whole town get behind their team. The Shimlas are my go to team for the Varsity Cup and you can catch their games at Shimla Park.
  • Loch logan Waterfront - you can't keep a girl from her shopping and Loch Logan Waterfront mall mall definitely satisfies all my shopping desires. My usual routine is: smoothie at Kauai; shop at cotton on; lunch at Braza; dessert at Cinnabon then a movie at Nu Metro. Yeah, you can see that I'm a basic bitch. They also have Go Karts on level M4 which are super fun.
Some honorary mentions would be Windmill Casino, where I kick butt at bowling, the arcade games at Mimosa mall, where you can relive your childhood playing Tekken, Gwen Bali waterpark about 10km out of Bloem and a day trip to Masselspoort. There are still lots of exploring I want to do, like going to Naval Hill, the Womens Memorial Monument, visit Cheetah's experience Conservation Centre, the Anglo Boer War Museum and the elude escape room.

If you're looking for a place to stay, I had an awesome time at the City Lodge right opposite Mimosa mall and would totally recommend it. Also, if you happen to fall down the stairs you can always go to Mediclinic right opposite for all your dying, I mean medical, needs.

PLACES TO GET TURNT

I'll end things off with my favorite part of this Travel Guide! Time to get lit at the clurrrrb. My favorite place to go out in Bloem is No.16 Stoep and Beer Garden. My squad has this phrase we use instead of turn up - Stoep it up. I'm sure you can guess where that originated from.

Other places that deserve honorary mention are Boho Bistro A.K.A the place where at least 5 guys are bound to hit on you in a night. I love Boho Bistro but it's just always so full and the guys there have no chill.

Patong is also pretty cool, as well as Mystic Boer (R8 wine on Tuesdays! And an amazing nachos pizza) and Cubana (The only hookah in town). The best part is that all of these places are on 2nd Avenue which means you only need to take a cab there and back. So go forth into the world and DRAAAAANK THOSE JAGERBOMBS.

I'm nicknaming this post JAGERBOMBS IN BLOEMFONTEIN.

Why? You just have to read part 2 to find out. *wink*
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Now, Bloemfontein is dry. No, like, I'm serious. So damn dry. In every way. It's only in Bloem that you really learn to appreciate water. Water is the greatest gift from God, never forget that. And you know what else is a great gift from God? Jagerbombs!


I woke up this morning and after pressing snooze 3 times realised what day it is - my second favourite day of the year (Well after my birthday that is)!


HAPPY INTERNATIONAL WOMENS DAY!





And by stupid I mean sexist, racist and homophobic; the worst kind of stupid there is.

You know that guy that always remarks that you'll never get a boyfriend because you're too much of a feminist? Or those church friends that show disgust when they see two guys arm in arm? Even those times you were right in the middle of events that show the underlying institutional racism that we have eluded (or tried to, at least) all these years (*hint*, Shimla Park)?

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