Danielle Perry is a radio presenter at Absolute Radio, a band manager, DJ, podcaster and writer for Q Magazine. She’s also a new mum to baby Etta. Although life has changed somewhat, there is a common ground between everything and that’s what she’s going to be writing about in this new column, 'Me +1'. She’s not going to be banging on about sensory classes or Peppa Pig – but the way our interests, styles and passions shift throughout our lives and how it is possible to not lose any of your identity or fun with the impending feeling of being a proper grown up.
One of the things I’ve really noticed over the past few months is just how serious I’ve become. This being-a-grownup really is one big to-do list isn’t it. Rent, mortgages, careers, travelling, friends, love, lust, films, music, festivals, holidays.. all whilst practising mindfulness on the daily commute to work. STRESSFUL.
Having baby Etta has actually made me STOP. No longer can I accept every social invitation; agree to every trip; or even find time to stress about trying to get on the property ladder. In those important pockets of time that could be really well spent I am now blissfully (the majority of the time) singing Horsey Horsey, or pretending she’s the snowman flying through the air around the lounge whilst trying to imitate Aled Jones. Your role now is entertainer and sometimes you have a really tough crowd.
I’ve been having a whale of a time though. Inhibitions have dropped; I’m quite happy to make an arse of myself on a daily basis, but also re-live my childhood too... the first trip to the swings was monumental for both of us; I’ve never swung so high.
My point? Whether there are children in your life or not, that feeling of letting go and having a bit of fun is SO under-rated. Here are a few cherry picked ideas for releasing that stress and dumping that to-do list, for today in any case.
Secret Cinema: Immersive cinema experience with a hefty price tag but a bucket full of experiences and memories. Get a group together you feel comfortable with as your best companions.
Good old fashioned sleepover: If anything will remind you of the good old days, it’s old friends in pyjamas lying in a sleeping bag right? The days when you stayed up late watching terrifying films (Children of the Corn 3, never got over that).. there’s an honesty about replaying this in the now.. forget meeting for dinners and drinks. Order in a pizza, stick SATC on and just properly catch up.
Bloomsbury Bowling Lanes:(or indeed any place with a bar and a microphone) There are four private karaoke rooms at this basement bowling alley under a hotel in Bloomsbury. You can’t get much more catharsis than from singing infront of anyone, so top up the drinks and take a hint from me: Beyonce’s ‘Crazy In Love’ is not a good choice of song. No matter how many g&ts you’ve had, you, nor I, will ever come close to Bey. It just highlights that point, more than it did before.
Go Ape: Ridiculous notion really but I look back on that day I had with my best mate there very fondly. I was lucky enough to be invited by the company to go one weekend. We rose early on a Saturday. I took the sportswear dress direction too far, but her laughter soon turned to my nervous giggling as I announced at the top of one tree that I was afraid of heights. Quite amazing timing. I definitely wasn’t thinking about the rent at that point.
Crystal Maze: This is actually a thing. The actual Crystal Maze. The actual jackets. The actual dome at the end. I’m yet to go but everyone who I know that has, has rewound about 20 years.
Listen to Absolute Radio at absoluteradio.co.uk and catch Danielle Perry 4-6pm Weekdays on Absolute Radio, and on The Sunday Night Music Club - 8pm - 12am.