Josh and I don’t watch TV. We have a television, but we decided against buying an aerial lead to hook up to free to air channels. Both of us are pretty susceptible to excess screen time so we felt this would be a step towards being more selective with our time. We figured we might watch less if we had to make the effort to choose and physically put a movie on, as opposed to mindlessly watching whatever popped in front of us. *Did anyone else not watch the magic bullet and latest mop, vacuum, exercise machines ads for hours?* So usually when someone asks, “hey did you watch ‘insert show here’ last night”, the reply is usually, “nope, I don’t have TV.” Simple, and it was for quite some time. Then last year, Josh and I graduated and lost our access to the honey pot of free wifi at uni. An annoying month of line testing later and our home finally moved into the 21st century. We had a modem. And access to online streaming. From free to air channels. Truth be told it took me a good two or three months to remember I could watch stuff online, but I eventually did. I’ve never been a big one for reality TV shows, especially ones that I would call trashy, just because really I could be spending my time doing better things. But curiosity got the better of me, and soon my days became full of washing up, ironing, and folding while watching the latest episode of ‘Married at first sight.’ Sometimes I found it interesting, and other times I couldn’t help but laugh at the way post-production would try and manipulate audience reactions. Pretty far into the season, I was watching one episode where all the couples were going on special dates. One of the couples ended up at Luna park and I thought, yes! Let’s do that! I hadn’t been since I was in high school and it felt like something Josh and I would never think to do pre-nike list. I jumped on the net and started doing some research, to shortly find that it was going to be a pretty nice chunk of change for transport and tickets. A not really worth it chunk. Suddenly, my brain clicked into amazing-random-idea drive and I remembered that the Royal Easter Show would be on in the next month. I hadn’t been to that for a good few years, and the two of us had never been together. Research mode fired up again, and I was happy to find that, with transport included in the ticket, we didn’t need to go rob any banks to get there. So with another episode of ‘Married at first sight’ watched, and the flick of a pen, I added number forty seven… head to the Easter Show.
Last year was my final year of uni studies (fingers crossed) and there were a few mandatory courses I had to take. In one of them it talked about the need to cater to the various types of kids that we might find in our classroom. The lecturer tried to demonstrate the point by calling out different types of preferences/characteristics and assigning them a colour. I was a green. We greens like to plan. We are the ones with neatly organised desks, have procedures for things that would probably be fine without them, and like to be places way before ‘on-time.’ So you can only imagine how much fun I had planning this day trip. Josh and I were keen to make it more of an occasion so we got our heads together with my sister and her fiance, and made it happen. Thankfully, my sister is also more on the green, than the yellow side, otherwise we could have had some problems. Ha, and phew!
The event brought some learning experiences on how to best enjoy our time. So for my fellow greenies, here’s some of my Do’s and Do Not’s. For my loved and misunderstood yellows, continue in your spontaneous, risk taking ways, and have a laugh at how heavily us greens ‘over-think’ things.
Do prepare for comfort…
On any given day, if you gave me a pen and paper, and asked me to list every item in my handbag, the list would come up long and most likely incomplete. Am I right ladies? Just only a week ago, I removed a spoon and a box of tissues from my handbag – yes, a whole box. When it comes to whole day events like the Royal Easter Show, ditch the bag with the never ending supply of just-in-case items, the fancy shoes and the new, but super uncomfortable pants. If you’re going to commit to a full day of walking around, you need to eliminate any unnecessary forms of discomfort. Start with comfy shoes. You’ll be relying on your feet all day, so be nice to them. I recently learned about shoes with memory foam, and I was converted. I wore my memory foam bad boys for the show and I was a happy camper allllllllll day!
I also didn’t want the festivities to be overshadowed by the pain of my over-the-shoulder handbag, so I swapped it out for a comfy backpack… only including the necessities, mini first aid kit, sunscreen, sunglasses, hat, water, tissues and my wallet. It is an interesting challenge to dress for an entire day, hours away from home, so I opted for comfy pants that I could roll up if it got too hot, a loose shirt and a hoodie to wrap around my waist until I needed it. Comfort level: 10.
Don’t buy all your food…
I am pretty savvy with money. Josh and I only go out for paid dinner dates every two or three months, if that. Most of the time I’d rather make a cute dinner and dessert at home, for the same price it would cost to pay for the both of us to eat out. It can also be nice to treat ourselves every now and then, so I figured we could do both in the one day. We decided to go fun crazy and get to the show early and stay after dark. The day started with a smart breakfast at home – hello, love for energy giving smoothies – and opted for a home packed lunch and plenty of snacks for later on. Once we got to the show we were super glad that we’d prepared to just pay for dinner. Looking at meal prices, considering the $30+ each we’d forked out for tickets, and our desire for show bags, we’d easily saved about $70 between the four of us (and that’s not even including those who are fond of paying for ride tickets). And if you’re anything like the group of us were, you’ll be glad to only pay for one meal otherwise you’ll have spend a lot of your time playing the ‘dodge the deep fried meals’ game. Hangry level: 1.
You may not need the Art of War, but us greenies thrive on strategies, so form one that works for you. The night before, Charlotte and I downloaded the app (seriously, everything has an app these days) and started flicking through the different shows and sights, making a note of what we might like. This ended up being super handy later on. We set so many alarms for the events we wanted to see, without actually noting which event the alarm was for. Luckily, the next day we learned the app sent off notifications specifying our events, always a good 30 minutes beforehand.
As soon as we got through the entrance we found the lady handing out show maps which had the list of events for the day. This can be an overwhelming process, but my tip is to pick your “must see/do” items and work your day around them. Also make note of any “maybe see/do” items because they’re a great fall back when there’s time to kill between the musts. After a group huddle, we had a general plan of attack. We were keen to start with show bags so we would miss the rush of afternoon buyers who didn’t want to carry their bags around all day. Unfortunately, we underestimated the weight of adult show bags full of food samples. Ouch. After a few hours of convincing ourselves we were happy to add ‘weight bearing’ to our exercise for the day, we checked out the paid lockers. At $2 for the day, we were cheering to ditch our excess goodies and secure one of the last available lockers. Strategy satisfaction: 7.
Don’t rock up to events on time…
My first day of uni, I rocked up to my class a good 30 minutes early. I was happy to sit alone in that room reading, above the idea of rocking up late. Once I became a little more confident with the campus layout, I got pretty comfortable with getting to lectures on time, AKA, two seconds before the tutor started addressing the class. When you go to events like the Easter show it is easy to be happy-go-lucky with your time. This is all well and good – even for us green types – but when it comes to your “must see’s,” take after uni-newbie-me, and get there early. We were in the middle of different events and didn’t have anything planned right before our number one “must see” for the day – under 21’s wood chop relay competition – so we walked over early. We’d previously checked the schedule and found there were wood chop competitions literally running from the start to the end of the day, so we figured we’d just watch some of the other comps. I mean, is there such a thing as too much wood chop?
We got there about 20 mins early and watched the next comp. Interestingly enough, it was a relay… and all the competitors looked pretty young. We didn’t think much of it. It was one heck of a race and our my cheers were only a tad on the loud side. Clean up from the comp began and we checked to see how much longer we’d have to wait. 4:20 pm. The time our event was to start. More clean up. No new competitors, and more clean up. Until, it finally dawned on us – we had just watched our event! First reaction was: Ruuuuuude! What if we had rocked up at 4:20 pm when we thought the event was to start? Totally would have missed it! Thankfully our greenies ways saved the day. Timing success: 9.
Don’t be afraid to be kid-happy…
I love observing children’s attitudes and outlooks on life. A kid gets to have ice-cream for dessert, “This is the best day of my life!” A kid gets to take the train for the first time, “This is the best day of my life!” A kid gets to pat a goat, “This is the best day of my life!” I was all about this mindset for the show. Pet a pig? Heck, yes! Make a floral headband? Uh sure! Until, I realised all the cool things we were keen to do were only for children. Literally. The event descriptions had age restrictions outlined. Sad face. Uber sad face. We walked around trying to be excited about the ‘grown up fun things’ like automatically chilling washcloth demonstrations. *Insert bored face here* Aimless exploration lead us to the nursery. THE NURSERY! It was a child’s paradise… and mine! And it didn’t have any age restrictions! There was goat poo everywhere, and why? Because goats were everywhere, sheep were everywhere, ducks were everywhere, and I could pat them all!! All the pretty animals were free for the touching! Eeeeeeeek! We got to see chicks less than 12 hours old and ducklings slide a slippery dip into a pond. Oh my goodness! AHHHHHH! The little kid in me was screaming, “This is the best day of my life!” and I wasn’t too afraid to let everyone see. Animal selfies taken: 4
Do have fun, whatever that means…
Josh and I were keen to go to the show by ourselves, but we figured more people meant more experiences. and more chances for fun, and it did. We checked out things we probably wouldn’t have if just the two of us, and had more heads to bounce ideas off. One of my favourite fun-havers was watching people complete the ‘torture test’. Let me explain… remember in high school for P.E there was a list of physical tasks you had to complete for testing? The beep test? Stretching against a box to measure flexibility? Hanging from that dreaded pole with only your two hands? Great. That last one? That was the torture test that people were lining up try. I seriously couldn’t understand it. People were paying $10 to hold on for 2 minutes… something that so many dreaded doing at school, free of charge. At first, I was just amused by the people that thought it was worth $10 and their time. None had done successfully, and my amusement levels rose. But I did actually get pretty invested when a couple of people looked like they really had it in the bag. Sadly, at around 50 -30 seconds to go each of them would give in. To some, watching this would be about as interesting as watching a chicken defrost, but for us it was pretty fun. Just find what works for you. Successful torture testers: 0.
By the end of the day, I was so glad that we had decided to go. If it was suggested a year ago, I can pretty much guarantee that it wouldn’t have happened. We wouldn’t have worked in the cost or the time. I may have seen others post about going and wish that we could have gone. Not because I envy all good things that others get to do, that I don’t, but because it would have been something that I wanted to do that was also well within in our reach. We would have only needed to put in the effort to make it happen. We would only have needed to look at all the things we fill our time with, and decide that it’s okay to spend some of it doing fun things.
I am so glad that my life experiences have brought me to this place where I can start thinking like that. I can only imagine what more life learning will do for me and my approach to living. Fun time is important for keeping us up during our work time, so take a short moment today and think about what fun thing you want to do that is in your reach, but is just waiting for you to make happen.