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A holiday to me means new experiences — whether they are local or global. Every month I lived in Canada I chronicled my working holiday in Expat Updates. Now I am back in Australia, I have created Hayley Lately. At the end of each month I talk about my life lately, my blog posts, what I’ve been reading (both online and for my reading challenge) and my writing. I hope you enjoy learning about my new home and Melbourne moments.
July was here and gone in a flash. I didn’t venture outside Melbourne but tried to get out and see a bit more of the city. Turns out it was also the coldest July Melbourne has had in 20 years. Figures. I continued my usual writing assignments, worked regularly on the weekends and secured a second casual job at the end of the month. Although I would eventually like to work for myself, I decided this month I needed to get out of the house, make some more travel money and meet people. I think working in a coffee shop should tick these boxes for me.
So what else happened in July? I met other students in my travel writing course and visited Chinatown for the first time. I saw Magic Mike XXL, which was way better than the first movie in my opinion. I went to two different theatre performances thanks to my role as a writer for The Australia Times. I also ventured to Collingwood to eat and write for Feast Melbourne. We visited Easey’s Burgers, which is all about serving American-style burgers in a train carriage four floors above the ground.
• #HipmunkCityLove: I wrote three posts as part of the #HipmunkCityLove campaign this month. Firstly, a glimpse at Ocean City in Maryland, then My Favourite Sunset Photos from around the world and a Lower Manhattan Ladies Day.
• Why am I an Advocate for Solo Female Travel: I wanted to share my solo travel journey and hopefully inspire others to travel alone too.
• A Vancouver Day Out in Stanley Park & West End: One of Vancouver’s major attractions, and rightfully so. Stanley Park is a must-see when visiting the Canadian city.
Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty
Challenge Completed: A book with antonyms in the title
I had heard a lot about this book prior to picking it up at the library. It was a great read and I enjoyed the narrative structure. The reader finds out about a murder at the beginning and then the story follows the events leading up to the killing. Obviously everyone will have their theories, but I knew who I wanted dead. They did end up being murdered but the murderer was the surprise. Moriarty is a fantastic Australian author.
The Wrong Girl by Zoe Foster
Challenge Completed: A book with bad reviews
I love Zoe Foster, but this was definitely not my favourite book of hers. Personally, I have a thing against editing errors in books and The Wrong Girl had quite a few. Like missing words and blatant spelling mistakes. I also found the characters in her other novels more likeable and relatable. Nevertheless, it is a very easy read for people looking for a little romantic escape.
The Mime Order by Samantha Shannon
Challenge Completed: A book with non-human characters
The sequel to The Bone Season, if it has been a while since you read the first book I would recommend a refresher. I kind of forgot some of the storyline/characters, but I figured it out in the end. Shannon is two years younger than me, but the details in this book and the interesting futuristic world she has created blows my mind. If you like fantasy novels, check out this series. Apparently there are many more books to come.
Leah from The Mochilera Diaries has been sharing some seriously amazing photos from Greece over on her blog lately. Check out parts one and two. Meanwhile, Jayne from Girl Tweets World visited Melbourne last week and shared the five things she is currently loving about my home. I am now definitely going to check out some scrolls this month and perhaps pay 1000 £ Bend a visit too. Nomadic Matt shared 28 phenomenal places to visit in the United States. A lot of my favourite cities made the cut. I also really enjoyed this book list Audrey from The Love Assembly posted, to inspire fellow entrepreneurs.
I have started watching iZombie, in anticipation of seeing its creator Rob Thomas later this month. I have also been getting into Bones, which I have obviously heard of but never watched before. It is an interesting concept and the fact it is now in its eleventh season means I will have plenty of episodes to keep me busy over the coming months. I also finished watching Canadian TV series, Rookie Blue last week. It’s unsure whether there will be the seventh season, but it was definitely a good show while it lasted.
I have continued writing for Copypress and Article Writers Australia this month. I also wrote the two theatre reviews for The Australia Times. Furthermore, I wrote a guest post on my beloved Vancouver over on travel blog, Norway to Nowhere too. However, I didn’t progress any further with my travel writing as I mentioned last month. But I am still browsing different writing boards daily for future possibilities.
Saltwater cures all wounds.
I love this quote as I believe a little time by the sea can make the world of difference. Does anyone else agree?
August includes starting a new job, continuing with my other job, venturing home to Magnetic Island for some major defrosting and another visit to the theatre. What are you up to?