It seems like only yesterday that I moved to London, triggering what would be a lifelong obsession with the big city, reveling in the street entertainers who would breakdance outside tube stations, while children munched on refreshing ice lollies. At night the office drones would no longer be chained to their desks; instead they came outside and joined in the fun that was happening outside, the sound of gurgling laughter making passers-by smile, turning their frown upside down. There would be food shows and hotel stays, restaurants, bars and cafes too, a city that would allow me to indulge in gluttonous greed and thirst. That was almost two years ago that I packed my bags and moved to the city of bright lights, moving from ‘room to room’ until I found the room that I am renting now, tucked away in East London, a stone throw away from all my favourite hotspots like Shoreditch, Stratford and of course the cult classic Indian Restaurant Dishoom, whose curry never ceases to take my breath away. But despite feeling at home in London, I have made no secret of the fact that London is an expensive city for someone who has no money. And it’s the same for my foster mum, whose dream shopping basket of ‘all the things she would like but cannot afford’ would include a holiday abroad, a new car and home improvements such as making her home more wheelchair friendly, for my sister who is classed as being disabled.
My foster mum has worked hard over the years to fight for my disabled foster sister to have a downstairs toilet that she can access to toilet train as well as a downstairs conservatory expansion that would allow her to have time out when she is feeling overwhelmed by sensory or people overload. But there is still so much that we need to do to ensure that my foster sister has the best quality of life that she can possibly have and I do hope that one day she can make her dreams come true. Speaking of making dreams come true, now that my foster mum is nearing towards retirement, she had been looking at SunLife for her dream retirement plans inspiration, which led me to imagine as to what I would personally like if ‘money was no object’ and I was able to live out my wishlist, through a dream shopping basket which was especially tailored to me.
- In My Dream Shopping Basket I Would Have A ‘Round The World Trip Abroad’
Remember how I said that 2017 would be my year of travel and ended up being another ‘traveless year’? Well it turns out that 2018 ended up being my year of travel instead as I not only went to Tuscany and other neighbouring regions, but I also went to places I had never been to in the UK before including Canterbury, Margate, planned trips to Cornwall and possibly some press trips abroad which is all very exciting considering my five year dry spell. What I will say though is that the reason why I would put a ’round the world trip abroad’ in my shopping basket is because I have only been to three countries (Madeira, Sweden and Italy – four if you include Lisbon Airport-) and would like to broaden my travel horizons. If money was no object I would like to feel the sun beaming down on my face, as I raced through the seas on a magnificent pirate ship. I would eat from street market vendors and pick juicy fruit ripe from the trees. I would sample the finest hotels but feel most at home living with locals, a life of simplicity but full of culture, splendour and wonder. There would be colour and meaning in travel and I cannot wait to be able to travel more and see what the world would have to offer.
I would see a world outside of the tourist gate, exploring countries I never knew existed and wrapping my tongue around languages that were dormant so long ago. I would traipse around museums with my camera in tow, a snapshot there, a snapshot here. It would be magical.
- In My Dream Shopping Basket I Would Have A House In London
Since moving to London nearly two years ago I have moved three times within London and have experienced the good, the bad and the ugly that London has to offer in the property market. Which is why the thought of having a house in East London to call my own would be an absolute dream come true. No more having to listen to couples have arguments and fights, no more tension, no more stress, just your own private haven in your favourite part of London. You would wake up each morning with a smile on your face, as you roll out of bed and walk around the house with freedom and delight. You would dance with the music on, speakers on the floor and sing karaoke until your throat became hoarse. And then there would be the dinner parties, you who said that they were much happier eating, than cooking, transformed into a perfect hostess. There would be disasters in the kitchen, and the occasional appliance breaking down but most of all you would feel happy in a space that was completely your own.
As much I love my room where I live now, having my own place would be far better and it would be the first time that I would ever have lived in a house of my own. So naturally a house in London if money was no object would be the perfect fit for my dream shopping basket.
3.In My Dream Shopping Basket I Would Be Able To Pay Towards A Trip For All My Loved Ones
There is nothing that I would love more than to see a smile on my foster mum’s and aunt’s face as I told them that in my dream shopping basket was a beautiful trip for them to go and travel to a destination of their choice, for a holiday of a lifetime that they will remember for the rest of their time on earth. Whether they wanted to go adventuring or wanted a luxurious beach resort trip, these two wonderful women are the hardest working people that I know and considering that they never treat themselves and are always treating others, I would like that chance to give them what their heart desires. And while material things like new clothes is all well and good, I feel like a trip would allow them to create memories and lose themselves in the spirit of the holiday season.
They could sip cocktails on the beach, while wriggling their toes in the sand and be kid free, a holiday dedicated to them and them only. They would get pampered at the spa, massaging away the knots and tension in their backs, until at last they felt like they were stress free. They would read on the beach underneath large parasols and sunbathe on the loungers cast nonchalantly on the sand. And when their holiday came to an end, they would create a holiday scrapbook with all their favourite images, to cement the year that they, my loved ones had a holiday of a lifetime.
4. In My Dream Shopping Basket I Would Give Money To Animal And Children’s Charities like RSPCA and NSPCC
For all the jokes I might make about navigating the dating world and my humored outlook into life, those who are regular readers know how passionate I am about advocating for mental health issues, child abuse and animal rights, as a social justice advocate. So naturally alongside travel and a new living space, being able to contribute to charities that I hold close to my chest like the RSPCA and NSPCC would make me feel like my dream shopping basket can become someone else’s dream as well. While there was no charities involved when I myself was abused by my stepmum and taken into care, I would love to be able to help those who are scared of speaking out through creating more confidential resources so that they can be made to feel safe even when they have been exposed to a volatile environment. And it’s the same with animal charities like the RSPCA. For as long as I can remember I have always loved animals, from looking after the stray animals I would find when back in Madeira, to giving food to homeless cats and dogs, there has always been a special place in my heart for animals.
Which is why being able to adopt animals from shelters and sponsor wild animals is something I would like to do in the future, as well as educating people on a cruelty free lifestyle- which while not for everyone, the point I would be making is that we should treat animals the way we would like to be treated ourselves. While I could add more to my shopping basket like a new wardrobe, hotel stays and setting up emergency funds, the four wishlist items below are what I would prioritize over luxuries, that while would be wonderful, at the same time to me, being able to pay off my debts and make other people happy would be a greater reward for all parties involved in the long run.
What Would You Have In Your Dream Shopping Basket?
Please note this is a collaborative post but all thoughts are my own and are not affected by monetary compensation.