12 hours in London

June 11th 2017

Yesterday was definitely one of the best days of this year so far.

Hamdah and I went down to London, early, tired (already) because of the lack of sleep from the excitement of leaving Sheffield (at least for a day anyway) and of course, our plans to meet our London friends.

The wonderful Micah being one of them.

And of course, our favourite Landaners – Chynna and Mutay.

Micah

Once we arrived, I first went to meet Micah. We decided to meet up at a cafe, Half Cup, just by St. Pancras station.

Isn’t it super cute? Y’all know how much I love cafes.

Having only had a protein shake and Mikado (oops) for breakfast, I was STARVING. I usually have a fruit acai smoothie in the morning, sadly I didn’t have time to make it before leaving that morning. I seriously was craving it – does anyone else get HYPED by fruit smoothies or is it just me? 😆

I decided to order an acai fruit bowl and Americano. Once Micah arrived, she had the same (after I spent a good 5 minutes raving about how great acai/fruit smoothies are haha)

I’ve known Micah for years and we regularly stalk each other on social media (I was that person who turned on post notifications when she went on holiday because her photos are bomb asf and need to be appreciated!), read each other’s blogs and have just really related to each other over the years.

Seeing her yesterday, sharing stories and experiences, relating to each other a lot and just interacting exactly how we interact online all these years was just another reminder to me of how friendships shouldn’t ever be restricted to what’s convenient to you (i.e. location or people you see everyday work, school or uni) I know I’ve never been one to restrict my friendships ever since I was younger, but it was an awesome affirmation after today.

Micah has always been one of my biggest supporters not only with my success but also failures and bumpy roads. I honestly don’t think I would’ve snapped out of a bad time a few months ago and grown the way I have in the past year if I hadn’t had such an overwhelming amount of love from everyone – but especially Micah who continued to remind me of my self-worth 💖

I enjoyed getting to know her more and confirming what I already knew: she’s so freaking genuine and humble, has a glowing personality, is so prettyyyy (seriously, make up ON POINT, have you met anyone who is always Instagram ready before? No? Meet Micah) and is just as inspiring and empowering (her drive towards everything is #goals) I’m looking forward to seeing her again and continue watching her grow and achieve her potential – because she has so much of it.


Also: People who understand the importance of lighting and framing to obtain quality photos are the type of people you need in your life.

You can find Micah at:

Blog: Micah Lee
Twitter: @MicahALee
Instagram: /Micah.A.Lee


Chynna & Mutay

In the afternoon, Hamdah and I got on the tube to Victoria. On my trip to London last year, I mentioned how much I love the tube and I can confirm that that’s still the case. Super busy. And I loved it. ⚡️

Meeting Chynna and Mutay was like catching up with your childhood friends. I felt instantly comfortable and it was like we resumed a conversation on WhatsApp or Twitter 😆 The first few minutes we all found ourselves saying things like, “omg, I can’t believe you’re here” “omg, are you real? Can I touch your face? *touches face*” (this was Chynna) “omg, am I dreaming?!” “Omg, you’re so pretty. Omg, I totally would!!!” We might’ve attracted a lot of attention with our excitement but it was hilarious.



Chynna kindly booked us a place to eat for brunch – M. Incredibly fancy. It was the type of fancy where you’d pay £11 for water (that’s exactly what happened) and even more for food that were tiny portions. I’ve had my fair share of tiny portions up in Sheffield but M was shockingly small – Hamdah and I weren’t used to 😂

This was actually the first time I was meeting old-school blogger friends. I had previously met up with a local blogger earlier this year but it definitely was different meeting Chynna and Mutay who had been reading my blogs for years – ever since the days I would blog about my hair, Korean-pop obsession, boys I declared my love to (and gave wooden roses) and High School Musical (which was a lonnnnnggg time ago!)

Just like meeting Micah, I was instantly comfortable with them both and enjoyed learning more about them, confirming things about them e.g. I can confirm Chynna is petite and has size 3 feet. Just. Like. Me. Soulmates or what? And the fact that they are both EXACTLY how they’re like online 😍

I’m always overwhelmed by the love I receive from both of them online (throwback to August last year where I phoned Chynna for the first time and broke down 🙃) but in real life, I was even more overwhelmed and just filled with so much appreciation, love and positive vibes towards them.

After paying the bill (£127 – yikes! But in Chynna’s words: That’s London for you m8), we headed down to Notting Hill. On our way there, we went into a tea shop, T2, where Chynna rightly mentioned Georgie’s love for shopping there.

As we were browsing, I mentioned to one of the shop assistants, Helen that we were bloggers and that we had just met over an hour ago. She was really shocked by this because she thought we had been friends for years (which is true but 😆) It really shows how well we all just clicked!

Notting Hill


“Can we go to Notting Hill so I can take cute photos?”

YES.

You need people like this in your life.

Chynna and Mutay got to experience mine and Hamdah’s bomb photo taking process. Chynna even got really into it and yelled the famous, “#whenwillyourboyfriendever” as Hamdah was taking my photos 😂

It was my first time in Notting Hill and I had built up expectations based on Instagram photos – beautiful and empty. It was beautiful but definitely not empty. But this is London. It is all about the shot, after all 😉

Holland Park


We initially started walking up to Holland Park because Chynna had thought it was “just around the corner” but we ended up catching the bus because Google Maps had failed us. Although we tried to avoid hills, we had to walk up a hill to Holland Park where Mutay and I had a race. NOTE: I let her win this time (or *cough* I don’t do cardio *cough*)

Although we didn’t see any tulips and it was a little underwhelming, I do love walking around in parks. Chynna commented on my excitement as I was walking ahead in excitement to see some green space – imagine me in a week’s time in Central Park! 😁

Something a bit different for dinner: Italian food

“I bet you that Pauline is going to get risotto” GIRl YOU’RE NOT WRONG.

*continues to spread Italian food obsession to everyone I meet*

Hometime 😭

Yesterday was a good day.

I had so much fun meeting these beautiful ladies and can’t wait to see them all again. Thank you all for the best day out in London! A big thank you again to Hamdah for coming along with me and always looking out for me, I can talk about her for ages but now you can read all about her here.

I’m exhausted but I am so damn happy. This experience has definitely made me want to meet other bloggers!

Chynna highlighting what we all feel like after the italian food

Keep rocking gals! 💪🏼

You can find Chynna at:

Blog: The Invisible Child
Twitter: @ChynnaWebley
Instagram: /chynnashley

You can find Mutay at:

Twitter: @OhMutayy
Instagram: /mutayy


Posted under: Hamdah, Life, Travel


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21 comments

  1. Tara says:

    Yay for all these meetups 🙂 I’m so happy that you got to meet all these people, especially Chynna! I hope to meet her and you one day! That would be so, so lovely!

    That is a lovely cafe you met Micah at. The acai fruit bowl looks delish and healthy! I’m with you on not restricting friendship to location and such. I made and met so many online friends over the years. There’s something fascinating about meeting people we’ve only interacted with online all these time!

    But dude, I was more interested in reading your meetup with Chynna, and yay! I’m glad you two instantly clicked, and that you guys finally met after YEARS of being blogger friends. That’s funny the shop assistants found it surprising that you guys met for the first time today. And damn, that’s one expensive lunch! But it’s worth it, from what I can see 🙂

    All those places you guys went are great. I love the photos of all of you, and I am so glad you met and blogged about this! ^_^

  2. Holly says:

    I’m going to get on a train to Sheffield to come and see you ASAP!

    It sounds like you had a lovely day in London. I’m very envious of you meeting Chynna and Mutay!

    That’s one expensive brunch. You could probably buy a restaurant for £179 up north (well…almost haha!).

    Notting Hill looks so beautiful! I feel like I need a little trip to London as I haven’t been for years, and I’ve only ever explored the centre of the city.

  3. Batsheva says:

    This was such an awesome post! I recently met up with a blogger friend for the first time from Vancouver– it was so surreal. I think the first thing I said was “we’re the same size!!!” (cuz we’re both, like, really tiny). It was crazy being able to put a voice and soul to the words I usually read every week. I loved the photographs here and this great snapshot of london! Always wanted to go.

    http://cynicalduchess.com

  4. Eena says:

    This post makes me so happy, Pauline!! I met two of my closest friends from Livejournal in the past six months and it was such a fun experience – it’s like catching up with a childhood friend. And you’re definitely right that friendships shouldn’t be restricted based on location. Go make more friends, people!

    Glad you guys had fun. You all look so happy – warms my heart ♥

    Also, on point on needing friends in life who know the importance of lighting & framing – definitely a necessity!

  5. Fads says:

    Your photos look so beautiful, love them! I’d love to go to Notting Hill because it just looks so gorgeous in pictures. Your blogger friends sounds like they give good company, and I’m glad you had fun with them.

    Love, Fads
    Instagram • Twitter

  6. Anca says:

    The park and the buildings are so beautiful, lovely weather and great company. Sounds like you had a wonderful time. I was reading what you did and I though how different is from what I usually do in London. Although I do like the tube too. :))

  7. Wow, that sounds like so much fun! Meeting people from online sounds scary, but not in this case!

  8. Rezina says:

    I’m so jealous you got to meet Chynna! And I’m so jealous of Chynna that she got to meet you! Haha xD That last photo of the four of you is my favorite! In all your pictures together you guys look so genuinely happy that it makes me happy too. Notting Hill and Holland Park look super pretty. Also – Hamdah sounds amazing.

    Your photos makes me want to visit the UK! Maybe one day.

  9. Michelle says:

    I envy your adventures and meeting blogger friends all the same 😀 Glad you had a great time!

  10. Nancy says:

    It’s so cool that you got to meet Micah, Chynna, and Mutay in person! I laughed when I saw: “Get nude now” as a sign. It’s definitely reeling me in for some goodness there. UGH I love fruit smoothies (especially when it’s loaded with chia seeds). Come to me 😉

    You and everyone look so adorable! The photoshoot was so on point. ++++++ points when others can take legit pictures of you ;). I met Chynna last year and she is so real! You four can EASILY pull off the squad look 😉 ;).

    I love how you found a house that matches with your outfit. Let me tell you this, a guy is crap if he treats you wrong. You’re intelligent, beautiful, and an overall nice person to be around. Don’t let anyone say otherwise (unless it’s more good things). Glad to see all of you having so much fun!!! 🙂

  11. Kya says:

    Awww, this post made me smile so much. It’s absolutely fantastic that you all got to meet up and what is even better is that you all clicked so well. 😀 Hopefully you will be able to do it again very soon!

  12. Liv says:

    Come to San Francisco girl.

    But WOWWW! 😀 This is so awesome! I’ve met several blog friends and with each one it’s always been *omgosh are you real* because it feels like you’ve known them forever yet never met them. That’s so great you live close enough to be able to meet up (I’m guessing, but I don’t know UK geography hehehe). I’m jealous of all the bloggers who live in Sydney or other places. Somehow nobody lives in New York (or San Francisco now).

    All of these photos are so lovely! Your outfit is amazing too. You all definitely tried your hardest to take great photos – that’s what friendies are for right? Hehe. I love that photo of you and Micah it’s framed and lighted perfectly!

    I know a few people who only have friendships / connections / relationships to what’s convenient to them, and I think it’s just toxic. Because when circumstances change, it’s over. In this day and age, it’s probably more common to have close friends who aren’t in your everyday life! I’m not the best at keeping in touch, but I would never pass up a chance to see my friends again! <3

    Also … those houses in Notting Hill are so skinny! They look like San Francisco architecture squished.

  13. Ah this is so precious! Reading about this made me so happy, and I can’t imagine how it must have felt in the moment! I don’t have any IRL friends who blog, and although I have met some local bloggers in my city (and even done a few collabs!), I’ve never met anyone from my own blogging community, but I’d really love to do that one day! It’s so much fun when your friends understand your need to photograph everything 😛 -Audrey | Brunch at Audrey’s

  14. Dabin says:

    This post just made me smile:) Such a lovely&friendly post you’ve shared in here. And Notting Hill and Holland Park look so beautiful(just blew my mind). Thanks for sharing Pawlean! xx

    Dabin

  15. Georgie says:

    dUDE DUDUEEEEE. A day is NOT enough. 😭 I hope you all get to meet again, seriously. 💖 I love that you had the best time and that you all got along just as well as you’d imagined. I’ve met a bunch of people before that I knew through blogging or social media, and sometimes we were just a little awkward in real life. It depends how you are online, but if you are super close, I can imagine it would have worked out well, and exactly like how your day turned out!

    Is that a matcha latte cos it looks deliciousssss!

    I wish I lived a little closer to some people I know in Australia, because Australia is just huge. I know you live outside of London but obviously the trip is much easier for you compared to me flying to another city in Australia haha. 😆

    I do love smoothies. When some places make really good smoothies I DIE TO GO BACK. In Perth there is a place that does these awesome vegan smoothies with coconut milk or coconut oil… and they are the best I’ve ever tasted, gah. I need to make my own. 😜

    I love skimping on early meals because that means I can have a big brunch! 😆

    Ugh, T2 is ~the shit~ 👏 Chynna was not in London when I was there so I didn’t get to meet her 😞 But one day I’ll go back, haha.

  16. Chynna says:

    I am still reeling from how amazing this day was. I can’t believe you captured my nose sniffing, as well 😂

    I CANNOT WAIT UNTIL WE MEET AGAIN. I am so excited that Hamdah is doing her internship in London, so it’s just more excuses for you to come down 😉 Of course, Mutay and I will come up to Sheffield as well – we gotta see your alpacas, yo!

    I mean, I still don’t get why you love the tube but ehhhhh. LOL. Each to their own. I am such a weirdo, IRL. I swear 😂 Omggggg, the wooden roses post! I remember tweeting you saying I would give you a wooden rose, haha.

    I love that we got to see the behind the scenes of your photo taking and now I can take them tips and apply them to my own photo taking!

  17. Kandice says:

    I’ve always wanted to meet my online blogger friends! glad you guys had fun. I’m in love with the happiness in the pictures 🙂

  18. Amy says:

    So happy that you got to meet Chynna, Mutay and Micah! That’s so cool! And it’s great to hear you all got on so well too!

    Omg I can’t believe you paid that much money for food. When I go to London in September it’ll have to be McDonald’s every day if those are the prices. Or I’ll have convince my landlady to let me live here for free! The food must have been great though! And I hope that water was made of actual gold.

    I love the photos of you guys! They’re so cute! Do I have to prepare for three hours of photo-taking when we meet up? I’m so terrible at photography haha, such a bad blogger!

    So glad you all had an amazing time!