13th August 2015
I was woken up by my mother early Thursday morning to which I reacted with “what are you doing and why are you waking me up so early?”. So it appears that at that particular moment in time I had forgotten that I was going to London.
I met Colin and Aisling in Dublin Airport (as well as running into another good friend of mine there coincidentally). Our flight was delayed 44 mins due to bad weather in London. We landed in turbulence which was great fun after sitting on an aeroplane for two hours with a child playing the tin whistle the whole time. We arrived in Gatwick Airport and got the train (choochooo) to London Bridge. And no, London Bridge was not falling down.
From London Bridge we went to our hotel. We got the tube from London Bridge to Canning Town and the DLR from Canning Town to East India. Safe to say, London public transport is mad. Once we had checked-in in our hotel we continued our London adventure and headed back into Central.
I had a throbbing headache and the humidity in London as well as the overcrowded tubes did not help. We visited all the “touristy things”, including The London Eye, Tower Bridge, The Big Ben, Trafalgar Square, Nelson’s Column, Piccadilly Circus and Leicester Square.
That night at 8 pm ish we went cycling in Hyde Park which was definitely one of my favourite things we did whilst in England. This was my first time in London Central and I loved the experience. Personally, I’m not a big fan of all the overcrowded tourist areas (or it could have just been because I had such a bad headache at the time). Piccadilly Circus was less crowded yet still crowded, but I liked it. Leicester Square was only a short walk away and I found the atmosphere there different. I’m quite familiar with Dublin City and there’s no way that I can compare London and Dublin in any way (except for the fact that English is spoken in both cities). There’s just a special vibe in London.
14th August 2015
Creator Day at Summer in the City! Colin, Aisling and I decided to get the a cable car to Royal Victoria. If you’re ever in London and near the cable cars, I highly recommend you to go on them. You don’t get to go over the Thames everyday via cable car (unless you’re one of those London people who use the cable cars part of their daily commute).
Creator Day was by faaaaaar my favourite day. As a (slightly inactive) content creator, it was just nice to meet up with fellow creators. I met up with the other Irish YouTubers as well as making new friends. Creator Day was really chill and it was just so easy to talk to everyone without all the screaming fangirls. One cannot compare the queues on Creator Day to the queues on Saturday and Sunday. We also met Thomas Ridgewell (TomSka) as well as going on that fun fair ride where you all sit in a line that goes round and round with Dodie Clark (doddleoddle).
There were three panel rooms as well as an exhibitors hall for exhibitors and people to sell their merch. There were several panels throughout all three days but one of my favourite ones on Creator Day had to be the YouTube: PR & Media Management panel. We chatted to several different YouTubers and hoped that they would be able to understand our Irish accents (apparently I have an Irish accent, I thought that my accent was pretty neutral but apparently not). Oh, and we can’t forget the bumper cars. The bumper cars were fun. A lot of fun.
That night Colin, Aisling, Brendan, Michael and I went to The City of London. London looks quite spectacular at night. All of the buildings and streets are lit up beautifully and I don’t even want to think about how much it costs to keep everything lit up. This was also the night that new friendships were made.
We met our three new friends from Essex, Elliot, Midge and Sophie at our bench. We have claimed that bench. It is now ours. We must have spent at least 24 hours in total at that bench. You may think that I’m over exaggerating but I’m being serious. That bench was our meeting point. The place where new friendships were made. Later that night we met Jamie and Mike whom also have YouTube channels. Orla being Orla had no idea who they were but that’s what I liked about it. Even though the others knew who they were, us Irish were able to get on with them and vice versa which is all that matters.
15th August 2015
SitC Day 1 (or day 2, depending on if you considered Creator Day as day 1 or not). Our day started off with all of us meeting at the bench in the morning and spending time there until after midday. We arrived at ExCel at exactly 1 pm and spent the next 8 hours of our lives among thousands of other YouTube enthusiasts (and the scary big pikachus that were wandering around).
This year SitC decided to enforce a ballot system for the meet and greets. I got Dan and Phil in the ballot. Dan Howell (danisnotonfire) and Phil Lester (amazingphil) are very well known British YouTubers, radio presenters and just overall internet personalities. They have their own Phandom (who can blame them? They have British accents. ‘Nuff said). Now, before I have several fangirls out there who are ready to kill me, no I am not die-hard Phan fan (that sounds so weird out loud) but I do enjoy watching their videos and whatever not. In saying that, I’m not the type of person who fangirls n’all that stuff. If I enjoy their content and it makes me laugh/ smile that doesn’t mean that I’m a fan but it also doesn’t mean that I don’t like them. If I were to be a fangirl, I’m pretty sure that I’d be a Phan fangirl (let’s admit it, we all would). Upon meeting them all I can say is that wow, they’re tall. Okay, so yeah maybe everyone is tall compared to me but that’s besides the point. I asked Phan to sign my Salt Shaker which they happily obliged to and to which Phil replied:
“This is my first time ever signing a salt shaker, I won’t forget this”.
It’s always nice to know that you’ll be remembered for standing out and not doing the norm.
I got 2.5 hours sleep the night before so it was safe to say that I was exhausted. I may or may not have had a short little nap on the floor in front of the main stage because why not. It got to a stage when security told Colin and Ryan to wake me up which wasn’t very nice of them. Orla needs her sleep y’know.
After all the Saturday SitC (fangirls, panels and main stage acts) it was time for us to head back to our beloved bench. Hours were spent at that bench that night. Jokes were made, stories were shared and friendships blossomed.
16th August 2015
Last day at SitC! The bench had become part of our morning routine at this stage. If I’m not mistaken 10,000 people approx. attended both SitC on Saturday and Sunday. Am I the only one who thinks that that’s mad? That’s a lot of people. I could count all of those people with my two hands if I considered each finger as 1,000 people. #OrlaLogic
If I’m going to be completely honest I can’t remember much of what happened on Sunday. I think that Sunday was pretty similar to Saturday. However, one thing that I do remember vividly is the Smaller YouTubers panel. One of my fellow Irish YouTubers, James was on the panel and Team Ireland was there to support our #YouTubeSensation. We went on the bumper cars again and it was safe to say we were louder than loud. So loud that Sammy Paul (ICOEPRproductions) stopped his meet and greet to laugh at us. Plus that I was terrible at driving the bumper cars which made it all the more fun. Elliot, Colin, Ryan and I also handed out OreoOrla stickers to people and someone asked me to sign their Magic: The Gathering mat because of my Shake It Off Parody (there was a MTG event on in ExCel at the same time as SitC).
And yes you guessed correctly. We all returned back to our bench. Surprisingly the hotel staff didn’t give out to us until the final night. We may or may not have been slightly above the average noise level at 6 am in the morning. All in all, the bants were had. It was sad knowing that that would be our last night at the bench for at least another 363 days ish.
17th August 2015
Home time. Sad time. Whilst typing this I realised that technically speaking the majority of our bench night-time madness should actually be mentioned in the following day partially because the majority of it took place after midnight but let’s try to keep it slightly logical.
We met at our bench, which ironically isn’t really a bench it’s more a picnic table but that’s besides the point. Goodbyes were said and hugs were exchanged.
We got the DLR, tube and train back to Gatwick. And then we flew home (and yay no tin whistle playing this time). I am currently experiencing the #PostSitCBlues. Roll on SitC 2016.
Don’t Be A Sheep, Be Unique.