Saturday, 11 October 2014

Top Three on my Radar

Wherever I am and whatever I'm doing, there is always something bound to be on the radar. Like those chocolate stains that somehow remain concealed on your favourite pair of jeans, what shows up on the radar can keep a low profile then, bam!, you would struggle to believe that it had never really been there - or on the sidelines. 

Although life has been occupying more than you could possibly imagine, I haven't switched off my instincts, which are pretty good at picking up on what truly matters. Of course, I might not be paying much attention to it at the time, yet it enters my mind at one point or another; believe me, you would be putting up one all-mighty struggle if you didn't bother to glimpse into your radar. 

Thus, here begins what I hope shall be a fantastic feature on Life as a Modern Teen, in which I will give you a magic key into what is going in the crazy mind of a teenager. Like leapfrog, I'm jumping from one interest to another at superfast speed (certainly much quicker than the broadband in my middle-of-nowhere village) that it is extremely easy to lose track on my wants, needs and tons of other things that teenagers impulsively crave. 

Not only is the world evolving, but so am I. Into what? One day, it could be a world-famous journalist who is constantly asked for her opinions on international news stations; the next, I dream to live out my childhood fantasy as an X Factor contestant. Until I'm at least 25 years old, my brain is supposedly going through these oh-so-important changes, so I can only expect a decade more of indecisiveness - as ever a welcome addition in the drama that is a self-confessed dramatic teenager's life. 

1. GCSE Options
What with this hovering on the radar is attached a very long story that will take up the rest of my life simply by telling it. Again.
So, I actually started my GCSEs last year while I was home-schooled, and chose English, Maths, ICT, French, Law, Media and English Lit/Psychology (my inner psycho was seriously undecided about the last two). All very decent subjects - especially as Science was nowhere in sight - and I was getting on well as I studied at home.
Then along came The Big Move earlier this year and my world was turned upside down. What with an imminent return to school, varying examination boards and coursework, I made the hardest ever decision in my life: to go back an academic year. 
This decision then involved picking which GCSEs I wanted to take, along with the compulsory ones at my new school. Suddenly, some of the choices that I'd made a year ago were forgotten about or, if I had purchased books on the subject, were tossed into a cardboard box. no longer relevant in my studies. 
In the end, I chose (including the ones I truly detested):
English Language and English Literature
Core Science (originally Btec science, but was changed at the start of September - big fat con!)
History (originally Geography, but chose the former in order to save my life from drowning in essays on rivers)
Catering (a.k.a. Cooking, but not exactly catering for all my culinary needs)
Religious Studies
ICT (not a proper GCSE, but a Cambridge National, whatever that is)
Luckily, I saved several of my original options, such as Media and French, but Law and Psychology were sadly lost causes. My best bet is to study them at a city college at A-Level, but I've since changed my mind about Law because I've lost respect for the justice system. 
On the whole, I'm mainly fine with my revised options, yet feel a bit short-changed as to what was on offer. Catering, for example, was the only subject on one list for which I had a slight preference because I wasn't interested in materials or graphics, but I would gladly swap it for Psychology or Sociology, subjects of which I cannot wait to study in sixth form. 
And ICT? Creating a website on a design programme which very few people have heard of does not address the need to use current systems if you get a job in an office; it is a waste of time.
Sometimes, I guess that you have to accept things as they are, especially if it relates to a matter as important as your GCSEs. 
Yet it hasn't stopped me from begrudging several subjects which, had I been offered more freedom when choosing my options, I would never have opted for. 
If you cannot decide at such an important stage in your life, what is the point of GCSE options? 
Really, I'd like somebody to answer that.

2. Christmas treats

Despite mostly avoiding supermarkets in recent weeks, I haven't been immune from the sweetest thing that comes with the Autumn page: Christmas treats.
You can mark my words that, within the first week of school in September, boxes of mince pies - whose sell-by date miraculously lasts into November, let alone the actual festive season - and fruit cakes will gradually enter shops and supermarkets. Albeit initially a small selection, it grows and grows until you can get your hands on more glorious treats, including the lovely Italian bread Panettone (pictured above).
Since last year, I've fallen in love with the buttery and fruity dough which defines Panettone, along with the marzipan-flavoured yeast bread Stollen, which my amateur baker is desperate to make herself. In my opinion, dried fruits - currants, sultanas, apricots, you name it - come to life at Christmas, when the flavours are enriched with alcohol or sweet doughs. 
My heart nearly skipped a beat the other day when my mum produced a tiny box of Panettone because I last saw it at the beginning of the year, one of the few leftovers to have survived beyond Christmas. Although my slice was of a Gwyneth Paltrow portion size (if she would ever dare eat such a thing), I was instantly transported to Christmas and the happiness that encaged it. 
Part of me believes that Christmas - and its oh-so-lovely treats - will remain on my radar for a long time...
3. Kittens
At a glance, you would assume that I'm wearing a pair of cool, dungeon-grey trousers that are pleasantly keeping my legs warm in a spell of cold weather. Up close, however, you will notice numerous loose threads dotted all over my trousers, especially around my lap. An atrociousity that I dread the thought of occurring, my face reddens with horror at the sight of my half-ruined trousers. 
But I assure you that it wasn't my fault. In fact, two little people - if I should even be calling them that - are to blame for creating what Anna Wintour would define as a crime against fashion (or the treatment of discounted clothes). 
My eight-week old kittens, Teddie and George, love nothing more than climbing up - and certainly down - my legs, wherever I'm completing my homework, eating a meal or sitting down. Although I adore receiving attention from my two favourite kittens (the other ones are old enough to be called cats, so I'm not offending anybody), I really don't want it in the form of digging their claws into my legs. And leaving plenty of marks on my clothes. 
George, in particular, is the lead-ringer of the duo, whose mission is to play within anything within a kitchen-long radius. This week taught me a vital lesson, which I learnt much more from than the likes of Physics: never wear a hoodie. If a drawstring is in his mighty reach, George will try to catch it or even chew it, leaving his dainty teeth marks behind. And the zip? Even his sister Teddie is fascinated with my zip, which George likes to pull down with either his teeth or paw - the very last thing I want whilst shivering to death!
Despite their crazy behaviour, I love both of them so much and miss them (like crazy, haha!) whilst stuck at school, which I experienced this week. Even when I chuck George in his room for a time out, he still wants to spend time with me - and repeat his wrongful actions at the soonest possibility! Really, I can relate to Teddie because, at times, all that she wants is to go to sleep, while her brother is wrecking havoc!
Hmm, it doesn't take much to think about who does the same towards me...

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