Thursday, 28 May 2015

BETWEEN - Episode 1: School's Out


Between is a new Netflix series that is based on the spread of disease through a small town of Pretty Lake. This isn't like a normal plague however, as only those over the age of 21 are dying. Read on for the main happenings in the first episode.

Key Points

The Main Characters
Wiley - pregnant daughter of the minister.
Adam - computer hacker.
Chuck - rich kid who is the son of his powerful father.
Ronnie and Pat - working class brothers.
Gord - the farmer's son.
Mark - mysterious prisoner.

Episode begins Adam sneaking through the woods towards a large fence with armed guards. We are introduced to a Wiley, quite heavily pregnant with the father of the baby being a bit of a mystery. Next we see Ronnie and Pat fixing their trucks tyre by the side of a road who are then nearly run down by a Chuck in his sports car.

It switches scenes to a prison with an apparent altercation between two prisoners, one of which being Mark, which settles down with suspicion of future problems between the two. Moving to another character introduction, we see a Gord joining up to the army at his local base. The first time we see the disease is in a church where we see the priest dead on the floor with blood dripping from his mouth.

We see the next death as Chuck is tracked down by Pat he nearly hit, and while Chuck's father is arguing about the damage to the car, his wife starts coughing up blood and collapses. This is followed by the death of Gord's father.

After these deaths the outbreak has been noticed by the government and the town is soon quarantined with a large fenced and guards. The residents get told that are to stay within the town and any attempt to escape can result in lethal force being used as they want to prevent the spread of disease.

Adam hacks into a government website and soon notices a pattern in the deaths, anyone over the age of 21 is dying. Later on after realising they have free roam in the town, Ronnie and Pat decide to go and steal from a car garage. This is owned by Chuck's dad, who is a very powerful man in the town. After tracking the vehicle and pulling a gun on the two thieves, he tries to start almost torturing them, until a resident steps in.

Over in the prison, with nearly all the convicts dead, the prison guard has had enough and throws the keys to one of the prisoners in the fight earlier, who ends up with a gun and nearly kills Mark. In the end the armed prisoner is shot by the other prison guard still alive and she orders Mark back to his cell.

Wiley goes into labour and luckily gives birth to a healthy baby. We finish this episode by going back to the scene at the very start. After Adam gets close to the fence, he is spotted and ends up running and getting shot.

Episode Thoughts 
There seems to have been a mixed reception to this new series, however I think it can often take a few episodes to get into a new series and you can't judge it by its first episode. This episode is mainly about introducing the characters and giving us an insight into the village being plagued by the disease. Although we have seen series similar to this before, I think its definitely worth watching as it will be interesting to see whether it turns into a zombie type or survivors style series. The only downside is that we have to wait a week for each new episode!

Andy.
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Sunday, 24 May 2015

Day Trip To Tynemouth

Seen as there was such nice weather at the weekend it was a perfect opportunity to take a trip to the coast. Me and Laura drove out for the afternoon to enjoy the sunshine and go and explore. The view in the photo below is Tynemouth Longsands and as the name suggests it is a huge beach to enjoy. 


Getting There
We drove to Tynemouth from Newcastle and it only took around 20 minutes with little traffic. If you don't have a car you can easily get there from Newcastle or surrounding areas using the Metro, which is around £4.50 for a unlimited day ticket that will get you all the way to the coast and back.

What There Is To Do & See







There is a castle looking out to see that is owned by English Heritage. You can pay around £4 for students although as it is a derelict castle that has partly collapsed, you can see most of it without actually paying to go round. There are quite a few nice areas around the castle to sit and enjoy the view. 


This is the second beach at Tynemouth which is smaller than the first but is contained in its own little cove. Another great area to enjoy the sun, and even some people who braved the cold water!


As the coastline looks out onto the North Sea you often see boats and ships passing which seems to give it that typical coast view.


We also drove just up the coast to Whitley Bay and went to the St Mary's Island Lighthouse which is worth a visit to go and see. There are a few car parks close to the lighthouse so you go and get a great view.

What To Eat





We went for the obvious choice when going to the beach and got a takeaway Chippy. We won't to Marshall's Fish & Chips shop and we were very impressed with the food. A lot of other people seemed to have the same idea as we were queuing out of the door! Even if you have to queue its worth the wait and you can beat taking them up the street to sit with a great view.


Of course you can't go to the seaside without getting an ice-cream.

I hope you enjoyed this post and might consider taking a trip out if you are ever around the Newcastle area.

Have you ever been before or anywhere near?

Andy.
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Thursday, 21 May 2015

10 Tips To My Younger Self


Looking back over the past few years I thought this would be a good post to show what advice I would give to myself as a teenager.

1. Putting the effort in revising really will improve your grades 
Everyone would tell you that revising and putting time in to your academic work will help and sometimes as a teenager it was hard to accept this. Thankfully I did manage to listen to other people about this and did realise that my grades I managed to achieve were well worth the hours of revising, but knowing this at the start might have given me more motivation to get up and start it.

2. Try and save your money - don't decide what you are going to spend it on before you get it
I always seemed to be very low on money while being a teenager. First it was pocket money which I seemed to have spent before I'd even received it. After getting a part time job at 16 which I have held ever since, I thought I would be able to save loads, but my spending just started to match my paychecks. If I could go back and do it again I would be sure to put some money away 'for a rainy day'.

3. Don't let other people bring you down - especially those claiming to be 'friends'
This will happen to most teenagers through school and the people you associate with. You will encounter people that seem to enjoy bringing others down and wanting to be able to tell you what to do. You will experience so called 'friends' who will sometimes want to get you to do something to benefit them. If it's not what you want or that is best for you, don't waste your time with them, you will be much happier to walk away from it.

4. Listen to your gut feeling, you often know better than what other people try and tell you is right 
You are often told what is best for you and that certain people know best. The best person you can trust is yourself. I found that your gut feeling will more often than not be right about what you want and people trying to tell you what to do don't necessarily understand that it's your life and therefore you should decide what you want in life.

5. Don't always do something just because 'everyone else' is doing it
You will have heard this plenty of times but it does ring true. When people jump on the bandwagon about something it doesn't automatically mean that its what you want to do. If people try to peer pressure you in to do something, they might say that you are too scared to try something. Surely standing up to the majority and not following the crowd takes more guts than just giving in to what others want.

6. Do what makes you happy, if you enjoy doing something then stick with it
When you enjoy something, whether this be a hobby or activity in school, it can be quite daunting if few others do the same thing. This might put you off, but if you really do benefit from what you are doing, don't give it up just because it's not necessarily what others may enjoy.

7. Change things if you are not happy
Sometimes as a teenager I was guilty of just letting things drift along even if I wasn't happy with the situation. If you are in a relationship where you know you're not happy, don't let it bring you down when you know its not what you want. You will probably waste valuable time making yourself unhappy.

8. Be honest and open, don't bottle things up and let them get worse
If something is bothering you its all too easy to just accept it and keep your emotions locked up inside and not to tell anyone. If you have got a problem, even one that you think is so stupid, open up to a close friend or family member and talk to them about it. You will find that your 'huge' problem that has been getting you down can be resolved just by talking to someone about it. If you keep things bottled up it will just get worse and worse. It will be a lot easier to sort it at the start before it gets out of control.

9. Don't be scared to try new things - meeting new people can seem daunting but its not that bad
I was quite shy throughout my teenage years and it would be intimidating to go and do something you haven't experienced before. I found that once I had starting my part time job at 16, my confidence really started to grow after meeting new people and having to deal with customers regularly. Even if the idea of doing it scares you a little, the benefits of going for it will be worth the nerves before hand.

10. Don't worry if you make mistakes - you will learn from them and things will workout
You will often be told what to do and what the right thing to do it. Sometimes in life you need to try things out for yourself and make decisions based on what you truly believe is the best for you and what you think is right. From time to time you will make mistakes about things, but this is fine. One of the key things about growing up is learning from your own mistakes. You need to learn from what decisions you make, and not what other people tell you. Make sure to always take the experience from your mistake and things will always work out.

That's my 10 tips I would give to my younger self if I had the chance. I hope you can relate to some of these and it will give some reassurance if you have experienced any similar situations. Let me know what advice you would give if you could.

Andy.
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