ALNfeels., ALNthrowbacks.

AyaWasLikeTotally30…

…3 years ago. Yesterday I got one of those ‘Facebook memories’ reminders of a picture of my personal best dressed faves; Inge, Dylan and Amanda dressed as the iconic trio from Clueless, at my 30th birthday party in July 2015.

I really just wanted to do a young throwback of this just so I could share this invite I made for the party. If you know me well, you’ll know this is one of my favourite films EVER and it had turned 20 years old when I was turning a whole 30.

I still remember being about 12 years old in boarding school and tagging along to the video store to hire the weekend movies. This was like ’98 so trust it was VHS upon VHS. Lord knows who I was with, but I forced them to hire Clueless among two other typical boy movies like Naked Gun or some hyper masculine action or sport film (those were all the rage back then – Kevin Costner I’m looking at you!). I had obvs seen the movie like a million times with my cousins so I was already fluent in eye-rolling, saying “what-ever” at every turn and pretending to know what Cliff notes or Haiti (said Hadey) was.

The movie played on a 51cm colour TV that sat suspended at the top right corner of the overcrowded hostel TV room with it’s wooden framed cushioned sofas, screaming red and gold floral carpets (which gave the worst f-ing carpet burns ever), oppressive white walls and it smelled of shampoo, soap and puberty. We had all just showered ten minutes before. I was obviously having the best time! Quoting every line and doing the whatever double hand gesture the hateful Amber character abused at almost every classroom scene. Surprisingly everyone else really liked the movie. Most of them commented on how they finally got all the random crap I always said. Even for a little bit I felt totally understood and happily continued to flip my non-existent hair over my shoulder whenever I crushed a maths test. Which was hardly ever to be honest. I was more of stage queen back then.

Wow. This post turned out to be a whole lot more than I intended it to be. Lol. Writing it had me go down memory lane to some really fond experiences at my time at D.V. Taylor House. Experiences with my then closest mates who actually always had my back through and through now that I think of it. Until high school came of course… then there were all sorts of plot twists and melodrama. Shout out to the OG dorm crew Senzwa, the two Mawandes, Dyasi, Anda and Phiwe.

Here’s the email invite I modelled after Cher’s speech:

ayaisliketotally30-invite

The rad flyer I made on PowerPoint:

AyaIsLikeTotally30

What a glorious moment during one of the darkest times of my life. Just 3 and half months before my mother passed and never got to see me turn the big 3-0. I know that I had to continue. Celebrate my life. Remember her influence and always know that I come from a place of love. It has certainly taught me to not cling onto big ages or events that occur in my life but cherish the joy and love every day offers, being authentic and honest, trying to be present, making the most of this temporary thing called life and even more so to be grateful for it.

Now at 33 I can say I live in gratitude of this body, this mind, my amazing friends, family, this earth and it’s beauty and of my gorgeous life giver who did the absolute best she could.

It’s all like TOTALLY great you know? 30 was a good start.

xo,
ALN.

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I haven’t done an ALNthrowback in a minute so here is a recent one in gallery format. While I was at Afrika Burn I met one of the kindest, loveliest, most beautiful and severely talented photographer from Mexico, Mariana Martinez de Alba. We instantly fell for each other and showered one another with love and appreciation… Oh and took the most insane pictures ever!!

It was so easy to perform, come alive, express and just be my gender bending self in front of her lens. The product was Brutal! The name of this series of photos was inspired by Ceci, Mariana’s sister. Ceci reacted to one of the photos we had taken by yelling out “brutal!!!!” in Spanish (Pronounced broo-tal). We all instantly died and I had to know the meaning as I wasn’t sure if it was the same in English. It was the same and much more. Basically savage, fierce, sick! It’s all in the way you say it.

My fellow hunty in brutalia Treyvone is also featured in the shots. I’ve been gagging to unleash these. I hope you like them as much as we do.

Brutal Motion

Brutal Xscape

Brutal Glam

Brutal Twilight

Follow this gorgeous gem of a human on her Facebook fanpage for more of her Afrika Burn photos and other work. Gracias Mariana, mi amor. ❤

ALNlewks., ALNthrowbacks.

BRUTAL: Aya x Mariana

A beautiful and unintentional collaboration with the talented Mexico based photographer Mariana at Afrika Burn. This is Brutal.

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ALNgoes., ALNthrowbacks.

Going BIG at Little Gig

For my first post for ALNgoes I decided to go back and throwback to not so long ago when I went to the Little Gig 24 Hour Festival 2018. It was my first time attending this relatively young fest, but it certainly wont be my last. After putting up some pics on Instagram I got a few DMs from friends asking about the fest, where it is, how it was and how I even got to know about it. So here you have it!

Little Gig is held in a foresty farm about 40 minutes from Cape Town. Basically Stellenbosch tbh. I probably first heard about it from a Facebook ad – we all know how they are all up in our activities. I wasn’t fully convinced until I watched the recap video of last years festival… It just looked so great. The venue, vibe and style. Paired with the insane lineup which included personal faves; Nonku Phiri, Bongeziwe Mabandla, Umlilo & The Stash Crew, Kid Fonque and Kenzhero there was no way I wasn’t gonna go. Some people thought that it was crazy to go all the way down to Cape Town for a festival, but let’s be honest we’ve all flown across the country for much less exciting things. My bestie was celebrating a birthday and we made it a thing. Simple.

It was AH-MAZING! It was totes a thing! It’s literally 24 hours. You do with that time as you wish. The fashion was out of control, in the best way. It was safe. I felt safe. I was pretty much dressed in a doily and some high waisted shorts all day and people thought that was cool. I liked that. Most would look at the ticket price and think it’s way too much, but for what you get from it – honey take it ALL! The bars were flowing all day because it’s all inclusive so no tapping of cards or counting coins. Food was non-stop gourmety and delicious goodness. A Vida e Cafe popped up on Sunday morning for that first cuppa to activate the senses which may have dimmed after all that day drinking And get this… There was a ‘Free Store’ were you could get anything from toothbrushes, cigarettes, tampons to cashews and some gum. All Woolies babes! Mahala. I naturally raided the store on my way out the next day. Padkos vibes. 😉

The crowd was a decent mix, probably more diverse than previous years but still very white (obvs Cape Town nice things). I was just really happy to see so many  of my beautiful happy queer family there doing all the things.

 

 

I didn’t think it could get any better at one point but when the sun made it’s way to the other parts of the world, the party really kicked in. A basketball court was converted into a stage where Black Motion played a killer set. Then much later a secret after-party was revealed at another part of the farm which was a jump! Doowap kicked things off with her always welcomed high energy set and was followed by more interesting DJs. Oh and the bar was still running with a slapchip stand to grease everyone up before bed.

After a full day of drinking, the morning after wasn’t as bad as I had anticipated. No major hangover, but a great breakfast spread and fresh juice certainly helped to keep me stable. Samthing Soweto sang the blues while everyone eased themselves back into reality with mimosas in hand.

I can’t account for everything, but just know that I had a blast at Little Gig. Shout out to my crew Jerri, Siya, Abe and homegirl from Namibia Wendy. You guys really made the fest that much better. Let’s do it again next year gang!

 

Check out more snaps on the Little Gig gallery and also According to Jerri for his gallery post on the fest.

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