I haven't even started this post but I know it will be long and I only have photos from the first day at the moment so we shall just begin there! Last week I went to Marseille with some girlfriends and we have been on holiday a few times before but we have never quite timed it right so almost all of us could be there. I met this group of gals in college so we have known each other for over six years now! I'm always really inspired when we hang out as they are all confident, high-flying ladies and the only non-single one actually met her partner on one of our holidays, so we know when we go away together we just have a blast and see where the wind takes us. Many of us have lived abroad, are far into our careers, and through the ups and downs of being twenty-something, we all hold ourselves highly and strive for that work/life balance.
Finally we almost all booked similar time off work despite our very varied jobs, from nursing to medicine to engineering to teaching. Some of us don't live in the same city but a few million Whatsapp messages later, we had all booked a holiday to Ibiza. Then they rang us saying the price would be going up by £50, we all had a break down, one of us found £15 flights to Marseille, and we just booked up!
We have been to more off-beat places before shall we say, as our first trip was a few of us off to Madrid where we had no idea what to expect. As all of us are 24, we were avoiding 18-30 party destinations at allll costs so we favour city breaks but on the cheap. Madrid turned out to be great because you meet locals rather than British tourists and you have no expectations so it's a total adventure! Marseille lived up to this because it is the second biggest city in France, but sadly it isn't known for the nightlife. We set off for the airport at 4am and were soon stuffing our liquids into teeny clear bags at security and dashing to the plane. I had had a few days off work before but it still came around very quickly and to stay on a budget, I didn't splash out on anything new; I just took my current favourite clothes and makeup.
We stepped off the plane to a relatively warm morning and discovered our GCSE French was not going to get us far. We had baguettes and pastries as we couldn't check into the hotel yet and shopped around Sephora and Zara, before hunting everywhere for some cocktails and having a nap! I had printed off loads of info about clubs and bars as you end up asking local people but you never quite know if it will be the right recommendation. Now my friends and I dress UP and hilariously said the first night would be for our 'most casual outfits', but we were all in bodycon midi dresses and damn high platform heels. When we came downstairs I think the receptionist nearly fainted! We hopped in a taxi to a recommended spot but made a u-turn towards the port, something which Marseille is famous for. We had a contest to see who could meet a captain first!
We soon realised the bars and pubs along the port were 90% men and we certainly stood out. We fell into an Irish bar where my friends pushed me to ask a handsome stranger where the closest club was (he wasn't my type), but he stood up and was literally 5ft tall! I think it was him that took us into the second Irish bar, where we met some cool barmen and took way too many photos on our disposable cameras. You can't delete the photos that way, you see! The French men were literally ALL over us, they wouldn't leave us alone! It is possibly a city where groups of girls do not visit for partying but the language barriers were hilarious as we just could not get the message across that we were not interested in these slimy guys! They would just hang around our group like rent-a-crowd but really we would rather party with just us! We did move onto a club which we packed into like sardines, somehow walked straight into the VIP section, and danced until close. By the end it was just my bestie and I, and we were maybe the only girls on the dance floor, maybe the whole club! We found our way back to the hotel and gathered together for gossip in the morning, but of course that is under wraps!
The next day we ventured out in delicate groups and sought food and water, before hitting the port in the daytime and admiring the boats, views and a few museums. It was a gorgeous day and let us cheat autumn for another week with warm sunshine, forgetting all about our office desks as we strolled around and simply admired. We spent a long time hunting a decent looking restaurant among the tourist haunts but our choice was terrible, so we headed back to the hotel to get ready for the night again while playing Sunshine Anderson and half watching what I believe was the French version of Geordie Shore on an island! I'll pause here until tomorrow, the best is yet to come! I wore a Topshop crochet dress (remember my crochet post?) to match my white nails with Topshop rose sunglasses as I don't think I'll be able to wear this until next summer, sob!