If you don’t follow me on social media then it’s likely that you don’t know very much at all about me, the girl who runs this blog. I remember when I first started blogging, I always covered my face in photos, either with a book or with my camera! I’m slightly less shy now so I thought for my 22nd birthday (which was way back in April lol), I’d answer 22 questions asked by you on Instagram!
What is your earliest memory? (afternoonswithfaith)
One of my earliest memories, that my family friend frequently teases me about, is when I was younger, I was walking home from primary school with said family friend when we came across a snail. Not wanting it to get squashed, I picked it up saying I would save it, before violently throwing it into a bush. My snail saving technique may indeed have had the opposite effect but I suppose I’ll never know xD Poor snail…
Which is your favourite singer/ band? (mel_booklover)
I can’t name one singer or band that I’m a bigger fan of than anyone else but some artists I really like include Olly Murs, Zedd, Parachute, The Piano Guys and more… To be honest I’ll listen to pretty much anything depending on what I’m in the mood for and the playlists I listen to on Spotify are either ’00s cheese’ or ‘cleaning and dancing’ music! I’m a big fan of the old school classics.
What are you working on these days? (digitalnomad123)
Really my aim right now is to not have to work at all! I just graduated from university and am enjoying the summer months before I dive into the law conversion course in October. I’m trying to get a lot of blogging done in the meantime as I’ve been building up tonnes of ideas over the past few months but haven’t had time to write them out!
What would your dream job be? (i.reads)
I’ve never been the sort of person to only stick to one thing so I guess I’ve got several ‘dream’ jobs. At the moment I’m on track to becoming a lawyer so that’s where my life’s headed. In another lifetime, I suppose I’d like to be a culture writer for a large publication or a completely self-employed blogger or the editor at a major publishing house or I’d set up my own social media marketing business. I’d like to do lots of things in life so who knows where I’ll be in twenty years time.
What is your ethnic background? (pardonmywritings )
My mum is from China and my dad is English so I am half Chinese, half English. It confuses a lot of people as a lot of English people think I look fully Chinese and Chinese people don’t think I look Chinese at all. Their first guess is usually that I’m Russian actually as they assume I’m from the border between East and West!
What was your first hobby? (foreverxbookish)
I went to both ballet and piano classes from a young age and continued them both until I was 18 so I suppose those! A lot of the time I resented having to go to those classes actually but now that I am older and have had a four year break from them, I want to get back into them!
Do you have a favourite period drama? (palomahdezc )
For now I’d have to say Medici: Masters of Florence, which is on Netflix. If you haven’t seen it yet: WATCH IT NOW. The whole show definitely has Game-of-Thrones vibes except it is not fantasy and it is centred on one city. It’s all about power plays though and which family has the most influence. The main character is even played by Richard Madden aka Rob Stark in Game of Thrones.
Why did you first start blogging? (bibliosophy_)
When I was in year 11 at school, I helped to set up a fashion magazine with some of my classmates. When the final edition went to print, the majority of my articles didn’t end up being used as there simply wasn’t enough space/money for printing. I was gutted as I think I’d written something like 24+ A4 pages worth of random articles. I didn’t want this to all go to waste so I started my blog What’s Hot? and published them all here. Yes, What’s Hot? actually began as a fashion blog!
Can you share your best and worst experience while you’re living in London? (thisislidya)
This was a long time ago now but one of the best experiences I’ve had in London was the Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows premiere in Trafalgar Square. The great thing about living in a capital city is that there are always loads of exciting events on. I camped out the night before with lots of friends and was first in line when the barriers were erected! When I came home my chest was covered in bruises from all the pushing and shoving but I didn’t care because I managed to gather about 9 autographs from my favourite HP stars.
I suppose the worst would involve men in nightclubs being creepy/constant tube strikes.
Which is your second favourite place in UK after London? (thebooksatchel)
This one’s easy! Oxford is most definitely my favourite place in the UK after London, possibly even instead of London?! It is such a beautiful city and living in the centre was super beautiful and convenient!
Having lived in another country for a year I think I’d rather stay in London for the time being but I wouldn’t be adverse to other short stints of work abroad! However, if I had to move, I’d probably go back to Paris. If you’ve been following me for a while, you’ll know that I spent a year that back between 2015-2016 as part of my degree. I had a great time there eating and drinking my way through all the cheese and wine and I’d love to go back! The vibe there is actually really, really different to London despite the two capitals being so close.
Which countries (or cities) would you like to visit? (eleta_chan)
Top of my bucket list are Japan and Korea but I’ll be visiting those this summer woo! I guess next up would be some place like Bali or the Maldives but I think I’ll be saving for a while before I can afford a trip to either of those beautiful islands
I love that London is multicultural because it means that it’s full of people and, crucially, food from all over the globe. There are very few things activities and day-to-day things that I’d want to do that I haven’t been able to do in London, which is fantastic. Of course, sometimes the price tag is a problem but assuming I had unlimited money then living in London would be a complete dream.
My favourite place in London is the Kyoto Garden in Holland Park. It’s a really beautiful space inspired by Japan and there’s a mini waterfall and a peacock! Holland Park also includes a beautiful orangery, a giant outdoor chess set, a small exhibition space and more.
My ideal day out in London would involve a trip to the Kyoto Garden, followed by a wander round the pastel houses in Notting Hill. Then I’d head off to Soho for some snacks hitting up Bubbleology for bubble tea, Bubblewrap for an Oreo bubblewrap waffle. Of course I’d also have to visit some book stores so I’d probably head to Foyles and the giant Waterstones at Picadilly Circus to pick up some new reads.
What’s your favourite thing about travelling? (cellequilitdanslanuit )
The FOOOOD! And the sun… the views… I could go on and on… I love seeing how life could be different if I’d been brought up in a different country. It’s very important to know how other people live, for better or for worse, and I don’t think you can truly understand that unless if you see and experience it for yourself. You’d think Paris and London would be fairly similar given that they’re both large, Western capital cities that are very close together. However, having lived in Paris for a year, I can tell you the two are very, very different in a number of ways.
If you were stranded on a deserted island and could only have one book with you what would it be? (kennareads)
So it would obviously have to be a book that I can read again and again and again and there are only a couple that spring to mind. I think I’d have to go for one of the Harry Potter books, though I’m not sure which one, or The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern!
What is the first book that made you cry? (thereaderandthechef)
I can’t think of the first but I know The Fault in Our Stars, Me Before You, Harry Potter all made me cry! I actually can’t remember the last time I read a good tear jerker so if anyone has any recommendations, send them my way!
What is your favourite quote? (lookingforabura)
I have two favourite quotes, both spoken by my favourite wizard:
“It does not do to dwell on dreams and forget to live” – Albus Dumbledore
“Happiness can always be found even in the darkest of times if one only remembers to turn on the light” – Albus Dumbledore
Which was the first book you read? /How did you start reading?(sumaiyya.books)
I’m not sure about the first book ever (it was probably something very short with very large and simple words :p), but the first series I remember falling in love with was the Famous Five series by Enid Blyton. My Dad got me into these and I spent a few months collecting every single book in the series (it’s quite long!). I’ve read lots of Blyton books by the Famous Five series was always my favourite.
Which book do you think every young woman should read and why? (corporatestylestory)
The book that comes to mind first of all is We Should All Be Feminists by Chimamanda as I read it a few weeks ago. Even if you’re not a big reader you’ll have time for this as it’s such a short read! To me a lot of the things she said seemed obvious but things like telling both boys and girls from a young age that they should aspire to be successful and make lots of money instead of only telling the former this are things that every woman should think about before she has children of her own.
There are lots of other books with strong female leads that deserve a mention too such as the classics Jane Eyre and Pride and Prejudice, as well as more recent fiction such as I Am Malala, to name a few!
Did you always aspire to go to Oxford University? (bibliosophy)
Yep! I remember having a “dreams” file when I was a lot younger where I’d written down some of the things I wanted to achieve in life, where I wanted to live, what car I wanted to drive etc. For university I’d listed the likes of Harvard, Yale, Princeton etc. and Oxford. From the second I set foot in Cambridge I knew that Oxford was the one for me (probably because it was raining loads) – also there are loads of Harry Potter sets at Oxford and I picked my college because the dining hall is the room the Great Hall at Hogwarts is modelled on! If you’re thinking about applying to Oxford, check out this post on how to choose a college.
What are you studying at Oxford? (liternature_)
I studied French (sole) at Oxford, meaning I only studied French as opposed to two languages, which is the norm. This meant I got to study pretty much every French author of significance from the 1500s to the present day which is pretty cool.
Pourquoi as-tu choisi d’étudier la littérature française ? /Why did you choose to study French literature? (gugulishh)
When I was deciding what to study at uni I was weighing up Economics vs English vs French. In the end I decided that Econ wasn’t for me and that although I loved English literature I wanted to do something a little different to what I’d already studied and so I ended up with French. I’m lucky I got into my top choice uni because the French course at Oxford is very, very literature heavy. This meant I was doing the same (or even more) than those doing an English degree, but I also came away with some language skills and got to spend a year working in Paris.