A Trip To The South Downs and The Noughties

I have previously written about how I decided to tick off the ‘learn how to DJ’ from my bucket list. For some reason, people have assumed that I am now an actual DJ and I have been asked to do a ‘gig’ (much to my amusement) for the charity RefugEase. I would lose some of my ‘doing my bit for the world’ brownie points if I turned down an invitation to help a charity, so I agreed to spend an hour playing some of the finest tunes from the ‘Noughties’.

My only problem? I couldn’t stand the Noughties (or so I thought). In my head, music from this decade consisted of terrible school discos, or songs that initiate evacuation of the dance floor with their compulsory wedding slot. But then I remembered that I did not attend a school disco in the Noughties. I forget how old I am, and that Steps, Backstreet Boys and Bewitched were actually from the 90’s (yup, we are talking 20 years ago now).

On Saturday my friend and I went for a drive in the countryside and headed to the South Downs National Park armed with a picnic blanket, and our books. I wasn’t expecting to go walking, so I felt a little silly prancing through the fields in my espadrille wedges (you would have thought I had learnt about appropriate dress after my trip to the Peak District). We found a Noughties playlist to give us some inspiration, and we were instantly transported to our teens with our cringe worthy memories, many involving my Mother. As we drove through the picturesque countryside shouting out lyrics by Missy Elliot, Kanye West and Snoop Dogg, it wasn’t until my friend said ‘Remember seeing Nelly?’ that we started to reminisce about each song. While Nelly rapped about ‘smoking Ls in the back of limousines’ during one of his concerts, my friend and I were bopping along in the audience, with my Mother.

We further heard some classics by Mis-Teeq, Ms. Dynamite, Craig David and Daniel Beddingfield, and both agreed that all of these songs reminded us of my Mother. But the most embarrassingly perhaps (sorry Mum) was her obsession with ‘Thong Song’ by Sisqo. She would proudly sing along to each lyric blaring out of her red Nissan Micra, which had been ‘modified’ with the addition of a ‘Ferrari’ badge which replaced the ‘Nissan’ badge.

My initial disdain of music from the Noughties led me down a path that I had forgotten about, a time full of blissfully bonkers situations that summed up my adolescence. We found our spot on the South Downs whilst reflecting upon the power of music and the importance of appreciating time. Sometimes we all need to stop, and remind ourselves of past memories (no matter how cringe-y), and to savour the present before we start measuring time in decades. I know that in a few years’ time my friend and I will remember ‘that afternoon spent reading on the south downs, when we attempted a hike which was abruptly terminated due to my inappropriate choice of clothing’.

It turns out that I can stand Noughties music after all. I have an abundance of brilliant memories which had been slightly buried by life and now that they have resurfaced I can play these songs with legitimate enthusiasm… thank you Mum, we did have fun.

If you fancy a trip of nostalgia with your loved ones, then come to The Forum in Tunbridge Wells on September 17th to support the brilliant charity RefugEase. (Just make sure you wear your earplugs while I am playing).

Embrace Life. Love Life… YOLO