Warsaurus

Lifestyle, Travel, Beauty, Reviews.


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Gotta Catch ‘Em All

By now we’ve all either witnessed the craze sweeping the nation or been caught in the Pokéball contagion ourselves.

That’s right, Pokémon Go launched and instantly turned viral thanks to the adopting nature of it’s target market; Millennials and Generation Z.

Harnessing nostalgia, GPS and VR tech has proved epidemic. 

(links to engadget.com)

I haven’t yet fallen prey to the addiction as an adult, although I was seriously affected as a child. I spent hours swapping and collecting the cards in the school playground – at least until they were banned – and afterwards caught and trained the virtual Japanese monsters on my Nintendo SP (remember those?!)

Since then I’ve become fascinated with the psychological applications of gaming and Virtual Reality tech, especially after studying a module of CyberPsychology at University.

The negativity around gaming is always focused on the violent, anti-social and obesity aspects.  Granted, there has been reports of gun-point robbery, traffic congestion and trespassing as Trainers converge on Pokémon infested lands and Gyms. There’s no doubt the dangers and risks of this are horrendous.

However gaming in general can have pro-social, cognitive distraction and psychological benefits.

The dawn of the Pokémon revival is ensuring cooperative and friendly game play, as well as encouraging physical activity as gamers explore their neighbourhoods seeking out the virtual monsters in our real world.

Plus, if you manage to screenshot selfies with your favourites then it’s a win-win situation!

Although we do need to be wary of our behaviour, I believe that any light and nostalgic relief, which can be brought to the world in this age of terror and unrest, has the potential to make even a small difference to people’s lives!
Have you caught the contagion? Or have you caught ’em all? Comment and let me know 🙂

Read more about the science behind Pokémon Go here!

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Warsaw’s Fun Guide

Near the end of June, after dissertations and diplomas were completed, Sarah and I celebrated by using the plane tickets she bought me for my birthday and spent three days soaking up the sunshine, culture, and beer of our namesake! #warsawsinwarsaw

Here’s our Warsaw’s Fun Guide to Warsaw!

Warsaw’s Fun Guide

 1. Live like a local. Travelling on the cheap, we booked ourselves in to an Airbnb apartment and lived there. Even only for two nights! The studio apartment was amazingly compact and perfect for the two of us.

2. Sample the Cuisine. The pair of us have always been big foodies, so trying the local delicacy was a must! If only to keep holiday hanger at bay. Poland’s version of traditional fast food comes from Milk Bars, which were certainly an experience! Instant service and instant uncertainty. Delicious breakfasts were found at the café To Lubie in the Old Town; hot continental croissants with fluffy cream cheese and jam. Amazing. We returned on our second morning to try the local version too!

Amazing breakfasts at To Lubie


 

3. By foot… Walk everywhere! Seriously comfortable shoes are a must, a fact I learnt the hard way. We did manage to wander off our intended path every now and then, but always found our way back. Top sights to see include the Multimedia Fountain Park, which comes to life on Friday and Saturday nights, and Stalin’s Palace of Culture and Science!

Sarah and I


Palace of Culture and Science


 
4. By train… Avid readers of Warsaw’s World will understand how much Sarah loves a good Underground system. Warsaw’s Metro is clean, quiet, and every couple of minutes; a delight in itself, especially compared to the local rail network in Liverpool!

 

5. Play the Tourist. We picked up a phase book and gave the lingo our best shot!  Everyone we spoke to pronounced words differently, so it definitely wasn’t the easiest to get your head, and tongue, around.  But gallons of fun regardless!
Play Spot the Mermaid and keep your eyes peeled for statues of the Mermaid of Warsaw, the city’s symbol, which also decorates their Coat of Arms. We managed to find four across the city! 

What fun things do you love getting up to in new places? I’d love to know any recommendations! 


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Heartbeat in Covent Garden

While in London last week, I heard about an installation by French photographer Charles Pétillion, which is in Covent Garden.

On Wednesday afternoon, we ventured into Central to see over 100,000 white balloons, each with their own dimensions and lit from within.  Entitled Heartbeat, it’s part of a photograph series called Invasions, in which these white balloons occupy unusual spaces.

Heartbeat

 

It is by Péttillion’s design that the slowly pulsating light from within the balloons, which stretch down the length of the Market Building, represents how it is the beating heart of the locality; vibrant and alive with energy!

I can certainly feel this energy; Covent Garden is one of my favourites places in the whole of London!

The installation is on display until the 27th of September, so if you get chance do check it out and let me know what you think!


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Theatre Review: The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time

For as far back as I care to recall I have held a love for theatre. I’ve seen a wide range from stunning musicals; one which originally started out as Wizard of Oz fan fiction, another an interestingly staged dark humour play, I admit I only when to see because of the star-studded cast.
But on Friday night, my theatre expectations were blown to pieces and rebuild higher than before.
I have strived to make this post spoiler free!

 

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time

For years my family has owned a book called The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time. One of those you vaguely recall enjoying as you read it, and its sat on a shelf since. However, when I found out that the National Theatre’s Curious play was coming on tour to my city’s stage, I found the book and re-read it before booking my tickets.
Good gracious.
I was not disappointed.
For those who don’t know, Curious Incident tells the story of an exciting murder mystery adventure through the extraordinary eyes of Christopher, a fifteen year old boy with Asperger’s Syndrome. He loves maths and astronauts and hates the colours yellow and brown and being touched.
Because the story centres around Christopher’s perceptions of the world the scriptwriter knew that the play would have to bring those experiences to its audience. The original author, Mark Haddon, doubted his novel could be adapted for the stage or screen, but was miraculously and very successfully proved wrong.
In 2015 alone, it has won four outstanding play awards, including the prestigious Tony Awards for Best Play, Actor, Director, Scenic Design, Lighting and Choreography. This comes alongside its seven Olivier awards in 2013!

 

 

Using electronic sound, light and dark, motion choreography and incredible performances by talented actors, the audience is drawn into Christopher’s mind as he solves the mystery of the dog which takes him so much further than the end of his street.
And you leave with Christopher drawn into your heart. Five stars!


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Photography Thursday – Three Queens, Liverpool 

My photograph of Queen Mary 2 during the Three Queens event

Over May Bank holiday weekend my local city, Liverpool, helped celebrate Cunard’s 175th Anniversary by playing host to three of Cunard’s cruise Ships; Queen Elizabeth, Queen Victoria and Queen Mary 2.  

This marked the beginning of Liverpool’s One Magnificent City – 7 weeks of cultural celebrations! 

So for this month’s Photography Thursday I wish to share the beautiful work of my fellow Instagramers and the local press!

Photo by kevjamesl19 over on Instagram – click to go to his profile!

  

Photo by Mark Easton over on Instagram – click for link to his profile!

 

Birds-Eye view from the Liverpool Echo – click for the link

  

Cunard panoramic


Find out more about Cunard at their website here

 


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Red My Lips

Ladies (and gentlemen), it’s time to harness your inner Taylor Swift and rock that red lip, classic look.  Dig out your faithful colour pocket rocket or even invest in the colour you’ve always shied away from.  April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month.

Trigger warning: This post discusses sexual assault.

Red My Lips logo

Red My Lips logo

 

 Red My Lips is an international, nonprofit campaign launched in 2012 by social justice activist Danielle Tansino.  After her own assault, Tansino was told that “Jurors don’t like girls that drink.”  Red My Lips was born from rage for justice, to raise awareness of sexual violence and to speak out against victim blaming by wearing red lipstick throughout the month of April.

The mission statement is simple;

“To transform our culture of sexual violence by educating, inspiring, and mobilizing a global community to red their lips, raise their voices, and create real change.”

Victim blaming is the society created and maintained myth that the victims of sexual violence and rape are to blame for their victimisation. Instead of teaching sons and daughters to not sexually assault someone, physically or verbally, male or female, blame is misplaced on the victim. They were supposedly ‘asking for it’ by wearing ‘inappropriate’ clothing, or walking alone at night. 

 This sickens me.

“We frequently misunderstand rape and sexual assault as something provoked by uncontrollable sexual attraction or desire…instead of what it is: an act of domination, entitlement, and violence.”

Society needs to recognise that the perpetrators of sexual violence are the only ones to blame.  It is their decision to ‘overpower and violate the body and spirit of another’. Only then can the worldwide pandemic be tackled. 

You can help eradicate victim blaming and the myth of sexual violence. Donate here, and red your lips to raise awareness this April.  

Red lipstick was chosen as the ‘warpaint’ of choice for its visibility and historical links with sexuality and attraction, making it the perfect weapon to challenge myths with.  I know I feel empowered wearing red lipstick.  It is a fun and creative way to raise awareness for a great cause (think ASL Ice Bucket Challenges from last summer)!      

Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.  -MLK

Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter. -MLK

  

If you’re interested, my colour of choice is L’Oreal’s Color Riche Julianne’s Pure Red.

  

 

Red My Lips’ WebsiteTwitter, Instagram and Facebook

All quotes are from their website. 

Further information here.     

Thank you for reading! – Rachel


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Top 5 London Activities

I spent last weekend down in the Big Smoke visiting my sister. We mostly chilled and enjoyed a little walk but having been down to the capital numerous times since she moved I have complied a short little list of paramount London activities. I have the hope that this also fulfils my Blogging 101 assignment of a different post type.

On with the show.

My London activities in no particular order…

1. Get cultured!

There is much to see and do in London and something for everyone to sink their teeth into. From renowned art galleries such as the National Portrait Gallery to paying a visit to Parliament Square and the amazing architecture of Elizabeth Tower and Westminster Abbey.

Elizabeth Tower, holding Big Ben (the bell)

Elizabeth Tower, holding Big Ben (the bell)

The Sherlock Holmes Pub, in homage to ACD's famous fictional London Detective.

The Sherlock Holmes Pub, in homage to ACD’s famous fictional London Detective.

2. Rediscover roots!

London is one of the longest inhabited cities in Europe, with archeological evidence indicating the area around Vauxhall Bridge has been occupied for at least 3,500 years.  All that history and scandal and death in one city. Take advantage! Choose to visit the incredible Historical Royal Palaces, homes of great monarchs, past and present. Or unearth prehistoric wonders in the Natural History Museum, including information and artefacts.

Hampton Court Palace, Historic Royal Palace of King Henry the Eighth

Hampton Court Palace, Historic Royal Palace of King Henry the Eighth

Tudor Rose stained glass

Tudor Rose stained glass

3. Take a nap!

When the insane hustle and bustle of the inner city and the continuously busy tube gets you down, and the only thought keeping you from falling asleep on the tube is ‘what if I dribble?’ why not retire to your hotel for a cat-nap?  Just twenty minutes can do wonders for your motivation to get back out there.

4. Eat good food!

London is a cosmopolitan; rich in cultures from around the world thanks to its millions of inhabitants.  This means, with knowing where to look, you can find almost any world cuisine you can hanker for.  For more great food recommendations, visit warsawsworld.co.uk

Covent Garden Cocktails

Covent Garden Cocktails

5. The West End!

I can think of nothing that compares to live theatre.  If you have never had the pleasure, perhaps you are dubious to the cost, I urge you to go.  Yes, admittedly it does cost that little bit extra, but really how cheap is a cinema trip these days? From stand up comedy to full theatrical musicals there is some thing to suit all tastes.  See a classic, like The Lion King, or chose to be one of the first to see a brand new show, like Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Choose something that is on permanently, or get downtown for that one show that’s only playing for a few weeks! Choose the theatre.

The Bodyguard Musical I saw for my 18th Birthday

The Bodyguard Musical I saw for my 18th Birthday

Mojo play, my best friend and I watched for three of our favourite actors!

Mojo play, my best friend and I watched for three of our favourite actors!