2014/08/28

Work: The Work Experience #4

I’m back!
Okay, I didn’t want to make it sound as if I haven’t posted here in months, but three days are three days. Didn’t feel like typing any more because this week has been eventful in the office.
Many people to talk to and many problems to solve. I did quite well though, I would claim.

The people are what I want to focus on in this post. Obviously, they are contributing to the working atmosphere and I’d become desperate if I wouldn’t get along with them. The boss is a complete jerk, but since everyone thinks so (except of him, ha), it’s fun to share glances and roll with your eyes because you’re annoyed of his work ethic. For instance, he thinks making a big story out of a mentally ill person is going to be a good one. Are we the boulevard press? No. Are we keen on sensations, no matter how it would affect several people? No. Only he is.

I pretty much like everyone in the office because they’re great, funny and friendly. My mentor and I talk to each other as if we were friends (sort of, I guess) and running the online office works fine with her.
Then there’s two guys who I absolutely adore, don’t ask me why. Although…actually you can ask me why as I can definitely tell you why.

The first one is an editor in the mid-fifties (I’d say, maybe he’s already 6-something). He always calls me his little darling because I help him fix internet-related issues or explain him how functions in programmes work that he doesn’t use as often. In return he always reads my drafts of articles and gives me detailed feedback about them and also, he shares his jelly with me. He tends to get the Haribo Colorado Mix from the automat and since he loves liquorice and I hate it, he gives me all the „average“ gummi bears. I just love him, haha. Oh, and he’s also making funny comments all the time.

The other character I want to talk about is an important person in the photographer’s office. Everyone says he’d be a very difficult man, depending on his moods, but to me, he’s always friendly, comes up to my desk in the mornings to say „Hello“ and ask me what’s on for the day. In addition, I don’t have to go on my daily walks to his office because he checks up on us and tells us about pictures we need for the articles that go online.
I think we’re getting along really well. He’s also kept a rather angry reader on the phone from me and put him through to my mentor because he wanted to spare me this conversation. Thank you, aha.

All in all, I love the position I meanwhile have in the office. Lunchtime is less boring now, as everyone includes me into their conversations and asks for my opinions and I don’t have to sit on the edge of the table anymore. Now, I sit right between two others.  Sometimes, people even give me a ring because they need help with something.
I like to be seen as an equal, competent colleague rather than a stupid intern.

I’m sorry fort his long post about people in case you don’t like people.

I’m simply amazed and really happy about working here.

2014/08/25

Live: The Week #4

Thumbs up: Walking through forests. The air is great, the sounds are great and it's even greater when you're not on your own...
Thumbs down: ...but the snails are terrible. Because Sarah hates snails and she's scared of them.

Discovered: Driving on a motorway with four tracks is like being in a horror movie without being are of it that you're in a horror movie, only if there's some idiotic driver who reminds you of it.
Planned: Seeing a soccer match at the stadium. Huge crowds of people, but yeah, pretty sure I want to do that at least once in my life. It's all about taking chances, guys! (I could preach that, couldn't I. I bet I've mentioned it at least three times this week.)
Waited: to visit one of my favourite people and it was amazing. Doesn't particularly count what we did, it just mattered that I was with them.

Quote: Stop waiting for friday, for summer, for a boy to fall in love with you. Happiness is achieved when you stop waiting for it and make something of the moment you’re in right now.
Music: Snow Patrol - Chasing Cars. It just never gets old.
Food: Pizza! Especially pizza with pepper (yeah, pepper, haha)

2014/08/23

Inspire: Interior Design Picks

Want that shower with that view.
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Cutest night table I've ever seen.
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Let's not focus on the bed, let's focus on the book shelf formed like a W.
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Being close to the world outside, yet cut off the hubbub.
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Moving on to the living room, I like maps.
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I'd probably hang the light bulbs higher.
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Light some candles and it's perfect.
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Didn't spot any kitchens I liked, so here we go with a balcony.
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2014/08/22

Explore: Travel Bucket List #1: Peru

Yeah, this is Peru.
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I'm probably the weirdest person ever when it comes to travelling. I feel wanderlust so badly it hurts and I want to discover all the beautiful places on this earth and explore interesting corners but (surprise, surprise) mental issues are (were) holding me back.
I guess I'll just jump into cold water next year after I've finished my internship and after I've learned Spanish and go to Peru for three or four weeks. Nothing's decided yet, I simply want to prove myself that I can do it and that the world doesn't stop turning if I take chances and throw myself out there. On the other side of the planet. Yep.

How cute is this Peruvian girl? Oh my.
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I love cultures and places who are severely different to the ones I'm 'used' to in Europe. Here, everything's different yet it's all similar.
Obviously I can't show you my own pictures as I haven't been to Peru (yet), but I will. I promise you, I promise myself that I will go there at some point next year. Gotta begin somewhere, right?

I wish I could hop on a plane right now.
Cusco, everyone. That's actually the place where I'll stay if I take part in that programme. We'll see.
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You probably wouldn't be able to get me and my camera away from there once I am there, ha. Machu Picchu, aye!
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2014/08/21

Review: The Perks of Being a Wallflower

I sucked in the words on every page. Wouldn't have minded if there had been more.
If you haven't heard of this piece, then I wonder where you've been in the past year(s). The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky is one of only few books I would consider an essential piece to read as a teenager - and even as a parent.

The narrative perspective gives the reader easy access to Charlie's mind and you can instantly connect with him. This strong connection might have been the reason why I felt upset and restless for a while after finishing this book. It left me wordless (No, I did not want to say "Speechless" because I didn't feel like talking afterwards). And I don't think I can capture what this book does now, months after I first read it. It's unbelievable.
But I'll try.

Charlie's a freshman who's been traumatized in his early childhood. The marks this has left shaped his mind, his thinking, his view on people and life and he has trouble connecting to others. I don't want to take away anymore of the plot, so that is it.
What I want to say though...When it finally occurs to you what happened to him, you'll feel like a rock has hit you. Sit down. And breathe.
The reason why it has hit me like a rock simply is the closeness to reality this few pages manage to create. Charlie could be anyone.

I also love the book because it's not about growing up and the first world problems of a teenager, it's deeper than that. It's about growing up and the problems of a teenager with a mental sickness. And I think mental sicknesses are what people love to ignore since they don't understand. They don't understand because they pretend mental sicknesses are nothing compared to physical sicknesses like cancer or else. While in fact some mental illnesses I'd even call worse.

I won't start rambling now, go and see for yourself why this book is a masterpiece in my eyes.
It gets a gazillion/10 from me.

2014/08/20

Explore: Flaming Stars Festival

If you're from Germany you might know that the 12th International Fireworks Festival called "Flammende Sterne" (which translates to "Flaming Stars" as you could probably guess) has taken place in Ostfildern this weekend.
The festivity started on Friday with the fireworks by Dubai, went on on Saturday with Costa Rica's performance and found it's closure on Sunday when Germany competed.

My parents, my best friend and I went there on Sunday (because we didn't have any time on the other two days) and I have to say, I was terrified in the beginning. I had absolutely no idea how many people I was going to face, how big the crowd was going to be or how I would handle eventual panic attacks. Thanks to (I'd say) my current rather stable mentality, I didn't have to deal with anything of what I feared and I enjoyed walking through the park, watching the Orchestra (They played Bastille's Pompeii quite amazingly!), strolling through the sea of stands and looking at the stuff they offered. I talked my best friend into going on the Ferris wheel with me so I could take pictures from the top and eventually I couldn't resist to buy myself some sweets which accompanied me during the actual fireworks. There was a laser show at the beginning, quite impressing, but the fireworks were absolutely amazeballs! I'm a total sucker for fireworks but these ones would have blown me off my feet if I wouldn't have sat on the ground already. Music and effects was perfectly coordinated and I could have stayed there for longer.

By the way, Germany won. I would have liked to see the competition as well, however I totally see why my country made it on the first place.

Sharing my favourite moments with you now, you can check my Flickr in case you want to see more.
The weather was absolutely perfect for the occasion.
I loved this crowd.
Could you have resisted?
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All in all I had a fabulous day and I'm so glad I've ignored my doubts and went there in the first place because I wouldn't want to miss this experience anymore.
P.S.: Please excuse the awful quality of the videos, I had to convert them cause there's an MB limit on here :/

2014/08/19

Inspire: Just Look...And See

There'll definitely be book stacks and picture leant on the wall in my future apartment.
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Blueish grey hair would never suit me but I like its looks.
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I'd guess this was taken in Venice on the Piazza San Marco
(At least I think that's what it's called?) but who knows.
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I would so wear this to bed because lace.
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Most interesting section of this camera? The landscape reflections.
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Grand Canyon is incredible.
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2014/08/18

Work: The Work Experience #3

It's Monday, everyone! Who doesn't love the beginning of the week? (Not sure if I mean this ironically or not because I just cant decide whether I like today or not.)

I'm completely on my own at work and literally everyone with internet issues wants me to help them out. It's great to be in charge of everything and have all the power, but I never expected to be confronted with as many problems during one day.
For instance, there's a woman who's found her name in a PDF file on google, because she happened to marry the day when a part of a series of articles went online. How to solve it? Set up every single part of the series (there are 9 in total) with a picture and the text as average articles instead of PDF files. Can you imagine the amount of work. I don't even want to think about how long I've spent searching the articles in the archive because they were published back in 2011.
Don't get me wrong, I definitely enjoy being the head of the online section (even if it's just for one day), the tasks are on a different, more challenging level which means I gain more experience than I normally would.

Despite all the joys, I'm glad my mentor will be back tomorrow. She'll lift some pressure and responsibility off my shoulders.

- Rather short entry today because I still got a lot to do, then go home to eat and then leave the house again to go to the movies with one of my best friends. Up to some point I love being busy and not being a lazy potato who's laying in bed all day, but I miss spending time with my hobbies. No idea, when I'll have a few moments to go through the photos I took of the fireworks yesterday, or when I'll be able to read more than 20 pages of a book at once or watch more than a few minutes of a series in one session. I'm 60 videos behind in my youtube feed. Don't despair, Sarah. Says the Sarah who started talking to herself in unobserved moments. -

2014/08/17

Live: The Week #3

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Thumbs up: Making out. It's great if it's the right person.
Thumbs down: Wearing jumpers in August. Don't get me wrong, I love jumpers, but I hate freezing in summer.

Discovered: I can start studying English in the summer term and then add Psychology in winter. Should work out.
Planned: to take part in a photography contest. I'm not expecting to win, but it's the taking part that counts, right!
Waited: for the fireworks this evening. I'll try to get some nice shots I can share with you.

Quote: Don't lose yourself just because you've found somebody. I'd never want to be too dependent on anyone else.
Music: Anything by Avril Lavigne, really. I love her.
Food: Chicken Quesadillas. A Spanish dish I really want to cook again. It's incredibly tasty.

2014/08/14

Dress: The Fashion Edit

I have to admit, I'm not the most fashionable person because I prefer comfortable, handy clothing way over being in style and completely up to date whenever I leave the house. Too much effort. And I wouldn't feel like me if I suddenly started to wear high heels instead of Vans, fake fur instead of snoods or chinos instead of jeans.
What for would it be anyway? Where I live, you stick out if you're really into wearing the latest fashion. I'd feel overdressed if I'd go to work with a similar outfit to what people have seen on the catwalks at Fashion Week.
Nonetheless I like looking at fashion and while I find some trends pretty, others belong in a trash can in my opinion. Starting with crop tops and mixing the wildest prints, what even?

Here we go with a few looks I like. Emphasizing the like, I wouldn't wear all of them, haha.

Can we all appreciate her hair colour?
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No idea how Alexa Chung does it, but I find she always looks awesome.
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If leather jackets would suit me, I'd probably give them a shot. But I don't feel cool
enough to wear them.
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Part of me hates peeptoes but part of me finds these ones incredible.
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A plain shirt and necklace(s). Effortless chic.
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I love squared/Tartan print on scarves, I own one myself, it keeps me so warm that I
often feel like I don't even need an additional coat. Brought me a few colds last winter...
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The Olsen Twins, do I have to say anything else?
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I'd certainly never wear this dress but there's something about this look that
intrigues me.
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This picture shouts "Me." Because it looks comfy.
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Best comes last. I love hats. If someone else is wearing them.
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Could you tell I've discovered Pinterest for me?;)

Think: Liberty of the Press

Guess what? I think freedom of the press is one of the most important human rights. I've recently even written an article about that, just waiting for it to go online. The organization "Reporter Ohne Grenzen" yearly publishes a book in which one picture in each country illustrates the domestic situation of the press freedom. I've found a few of them in this article in the Süddeutsche Zeitung (obviously it's in German because I tend to read German newspapers, aha).
I've decided to show you the photos I find most felicitous and summarize the subtext.
Turkey. This street merchant holding flags of his country got arrested on July 6, 2013 for selling them to protestants.
Russia. Two Russian soldiers guarding the entrance to a command centre. Many young recruits are getting abused.
Vietnam. Pictures of homosexual couples are very rare in Vietnamese media.
The whole book of ROG is available on Amazon and I'm probably going to purchase it as soon as I get home from work. Amazing photographs, amazing message. (I'm not trying to advertise this book here, just loving its general message because people should be aware of it that human rights aren't granted everywhere).

Live: Passing Time

What does Sarah do when she's done with all her morning work, done with writing her article and waiting for new tasks?
Surf!
I'm surfing on the waves on the Australian coast, breathing in the salty air, feeling my wet hair cling to my head and crashing into the water once I've lost my balance.
Oh wait, that's the other kind of surfing.

The Interwebs is full of interesting articles and sites you can spend hours on. Not surfing on a surf board, but on pages, ha.

Here's an intriguing article about Edward Snowden, his life, his motives, how he became a whistleblower etc. Just in case you're interested. I also think the photographs are taken really well.

Additionally, I've found a blog about Palestine. There's not simply information about the conflict itself, you also get to read posts about life in Palestine and impressing pictures. It really is worth a click. Or more. Rather more, I'd say. My general feeling about the Middle East is that a lot of people flinch from reading or hearing about it because they automatically associate it with terrorism, Al Qaeda and assaults. Danger.
What most of them seem to forget is that the Islam is a fascinating culture and there's a lot to learn about it and about the countries where it's prevalent. Sure, the Islam worships different values than Christianity, for instance, but different mustn't be equal to worse. Shouldn't, at least. Christianity doesn't convey only positive values either.

Eventually I've also had the time to think about ideas for blog posts for the next three weeks, so you can be sure to get regular updates! Have a great time (because I don't know whether you'll read this in the morning, at lunchtime, in the evening or at night, you know ;)).

2014/08/13

Inspire: I would own Hundreds of Cameras if I could

I love the vintage effect older cameras add to a picture. It creates a completely different mood.
Source: Unknown.
I want to visit NY once in my life for a few weeks. I've been to London already and I can say it's really easy to feel insignificant in such a crowded place. And New York is no comparison to London...
Source: Unknown.
I'd love to live in a house like this.
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There's something about the Sea that fascinates me. I'm not a sucker for beaches where you can actually go into the water, I prefer just wandering through the sand with the waves crashing against my feet.
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Guess who's really hungry right now...
Source: Unknown.

2014/08/12

Advise: Being Happy

 
Guess what, this picture I've found on Pinterest inspired me to this post. I'm in danger to become slightly hypocritical now because I'll attempt to give you tips on how to be happy and you can definitely bet on it that I myself don't follow all of them. We'll see. Maybe you can guess which ones are harder for me.

a. Ignore people who think they know more about you than you do. Obviously your friends and family know you really well and that's not far from bad, but in the end, you are your best (and your worst) judge.

b. Learn from your mistakes but leave them behind you. Don't dwell on the past, focus on the future. Humans aren't perfect, everyone makes mistakes, but we can grow as a person if we learn out of them.

c. Live in the moment because these moments are your life. You're eating pizza? How does it taste? Is it hot? Rather cold? Do you taste the tomato sauce? Cherishing every moment and every experience makes you feel more alive. Feeling alive is nearly equal to being happy in my opinion.

d. Dress for how you want to feel. Sexy? Wear your favourite lingerie. Relaxed? Get in those pants and the big shirt. Professional? A blouse always works. See what I want to tell you?

e. Be someone's element of surprise. Happiness is even bigger when shared. Actively contributing to someone else's happiness (sometimes even without aiming for it) is such a great feeling.

f. Remember that you're never alone. We can probably all relate to how being alone feels. But let's be honest, are we actually alone or are we simply telling ourselves we were alone because we enjoy being in this big black puddle of negativity? Exactly.

g. Stop comparing yourself with others. I find this is one of the most important tips. Everyone is struggling with something, nobody leads the perfect life. Some people might seem to be completely content with their life on the surface, but believe me, they are not. Even if it's just a struggle of how to pay for a new refridgerator because their old one broke.

h. Accept the fact that others' opinions about you will differ. You want everybody to love you? Stop it. There will always be people who dislike you, because they envy you or whatevs. There are only several people who count. Focus on them.

i. Smile. Except of the fact that your body spills out endorphines who'll automatically make you feel better, you'll get smiles back. A few smiles a day keep the doctor a way! I'm talking of the shrink. Bad joke, I know.

j. You're unhappy with something? Change it! There's nothing in the world that's as constant (not even rocks!) to be impossible to change. You're unhappy with your work? Say goodbye and look for a job you enjoy. Unhappy with your room? Redecorate it or move furniture around. Or move out. And so on.

In F. Scott Fitzgeralds words The world only exists in your eyes. You can make it as big or as small as you want. It all comes down to your way of thinking. Think positive and even rainy days will seem brighter. And you'll feel more happy. (Not being hypocriticial right here, that's what works best for me!)

2014/08/11

Review: Gone Girl

Got the German version as a present, otherwise I'd have read it in English. Story length: 575 pages.
This is going to be a challenge, but I'll try to give you a review of this book without any spoilers.

The blurb says: "What're you thinking right now, Amy? That's what I often asked her. What're you thinking? How are you? Who are you? How well does one actually know the person they love? That's exactly what Nick Dunne asks himself on this sunny morning of his fifth wedding anniversary. This morning, his wife Amy disappears without a trace. The police instantly suspects Nick. Amys friends report she was afraid of him. On his computer, the police discovers strange mails. What happened to Nick's marvellous wife Amy?"

I want to be fair, the reason why I wanted to read this book in the first place was the cover. I don't like neon colours, but this neon orange/pink/whatever it is title just captured my eyes. And the design is amazing in general, because the Gone Girl is leaving on the front...at least I suppose that the white parts on the cover are hairs, so it's like Amy was rushing out.

The book's only got 575 pages and I wish it had had more. I devoured the sentences in no time because it was thrilling from the beginning on. I was surprised about how much psychological depth you can find in there. I would even say that Amy's disappearance isn't the main plot, rather Amy's and Nick's behaviour, their communication, the events that lead up to what has happened and is happening and then - of course - their past. Nearly every answer to questions you as a reader might have can be found in their past.
Also, Mrs Flynn manages to ingeniously manipulate your mind. What's truth, what's lie? The borders begin to blur pretty soon. You get to decide which side you are on. Do you believe the police? Is Nick a murderer? Or do you believe Nick? If you've read some books about psychology, this task might be easier for you.

All in all, I'll give Gone Girl a 9/10. I hate "open" endings. It's not as open as in other books, but it's not as closed as I was hoping it would be.

2014/08/10

Live: The Week #2

Thumbs up: Being productive on a daily basis. Not doing anything in particular for a while after I've finished school was great, but I've felt useless after a month. I'm so glad my week is more structured again, so that I can fully savour the weekends to refill my energy.
Thumbs down: People who can't drive without endangering others. I wonder how they got their licenses, probably because the driving examiner was sloppy or wanted to get it over with to go for lunch. I've driven past a car who randomly stood on the roadside and suddenly they decided to start driving again without indicating. They didn't even check if a car (in that case -  me) was next to them. No problem, the contraflow wasn't that close. Sarcasm.

Discovered: Social media sides work best if your posts are about sorrowful destinies or people who get ridiculously drunk.
Planned: how I might decorate my future apartment. I strolled through furniture shops with my parents this weekend because we're looking for new ones in the parlour. I've picked-up so many ideas, I can't wait to move out right now, haha.
Waited: for my first article to be published. This happened rather unexpected on Friday when there was a disturbance in the train traffic. I was sent to report about the happening. The article was published online and in the newspaper and I can't quite describe that feeling *.*

Discovered this old-fashioned camera in a furniture shop and I bloody love it. Originally, it's
supposed to be a coin bank, but it looks pretty nice standing on my shelf ^.^
Quote: Don’t give in to your fears. If you do, you won’t be able to talk to your heart. - The Alchemist by Paul Coelho. I think I'll have to read this book. I've let my fears keep me from experiences I wanted to make, people I've wanted to let closer to me and places I've planned to visit but never did. It's hard work to ignore them, but I'm getting there.
Music: John Legend - All Of Me. Beautiful song, beautiful voice, perfect.
Food: Pizza because pizza. Due to my wisdom teeth I wasn't able to eat pizza for two weeks (which felt like years because I tend to eat around two pizzas per week).

2014/08/07

Advise: Realize you're into Someone (For Dummies like Me)

I'm not into poetry but this poem is exceptional.
And it triggered the idea for this post, so...
Source: Unknown


You want to sleep in to their "good night"-message and your mood is outstanding in the morning if you wake up to their "good morning"-message.

You constantly check your phone in case you've received a new text and you're disappointed if it's not them.

You update them about your day, even if it's just when you're drinking a coffee or taking a break from whatever you're doing in that moment.

When you're with them, you can look at them or listen to their words and never get bored.

Being in a bad mood, remembering something sweet they said to you cheers you up immediately.

Their laugh sounds like freshly made pizza to you. (I know this is a bad simile but I couldn't come up with a better one, I just thought of pizza because it's one of my favourite things.)

You miss them whenever they're not around, whenever you can't reach them on the phone and you count down the weeks/days/hours until you can contact them again.

Now I'm done with this cheesy text post, don't expect a similar one in the next weeks, I need to get over what I've just written, haha. But I swear, this is all me when I'm like somebody. A lot. Alotalotalot.

Because we all love pizza.
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