Episode #007 – Rafael Spajic: International Street Footballer

Interview, Podcast, Travel

Welcome to the show notes for Discussed It, a podcast where myself, Herbie Hudson and my co-host Hayden Day discuss a little about a lot. Read ahead for a written breakdown of each podcast episode, photos, links and bonus content that didn’t make the cut for the podcast. Happy reading and if you want to check out the podcast where myself and Hayden Day discuss a little about a lot, follow the links below. 

You can listen by clicking play above or by searching Discussed It Inception on your favourite podcast players such as Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Deezer and many more. 


Welcome to the show notes for the seventh episode of the Discussed It podcast. We are very excited to invite our third guest onto our podcast, Rafael Spajic. Rafael is a street football player from Croatia and over the course of his career has become very successful in his field. Rafael has secured 3rd place in the 1vs1 European Championships and 3rd place in the World Cup 3vs3. He is also the founder of Pannalicious, a street football training website. I hope you enjoy listening to our conversation as we touch on a range of topics throughout our time together. 

We will also be finishing off the show with our ‘Thing’ of the Week, where Rafael will be letting us know what ‘Thing’ he has found interesting and exciting and is happy to share with Hayden and I. Make sure you stick around for that!


Within this episode, we:

  • Talk to Rafel Spajic, an international street footballer who travels the world competing and performing. 
  • Discuss our ‘Thing Of The Week’
  • and much more…

Below I have outlined the general gist of the questions that we asked Rafael to answer. However, throughout the episode, we go slightly off-piste with the conversation but we cover a range of topics that relate both directly to Rafael’s journey and sport in general. 

If you fancy finding out what Rafael’s insightful and interesting comments in reply to these questions then head over to this podcast episode and give it a listen. You won’t regret it! We go off on quite a few tangents in this week’s discussion so to hear answers to those bonus questions that arose go and give the episode a listen. 


  1. Would you be able to tell us a bit more about yourself, where you’re from and what is that you do?  
  2. Tell us about the journey within the younger years. At what age did you move from Switzerland to Croatia and how did you feel that move affected your life? 
  3. From there can you take us through the following years in which football became such a big part of your life? 
  4. What was it that made you lean towards street football rather than 11-a-side? 
  5. Who was your inspiration in terms of street football was it someone already playing within the game or someone who played in a different configuration of football? 
  6. Motivation is so important to be able to compete at the very highest level, how do you keep yourself motivated and hungry for that end goal? 
  7. What is your end goal, what is it you want to achieve?
  8. How would you describe your style of play? (3 words) 
  9. What do you do to relax outside of training? Can it be a struggle to get that balance?
  10. What would you say is your greatest achievement so far? 
  11. Following on from that what would you say is your favourite memory of football? This could be you playing or watching football? (most memorable)
  12. Do you enjoy watching all forms of football or do you lean towards watching one kind more than another? 
  13. You are quoted saying that ‘regular soccer has become so robotic’, do you feel that street football allows for more creativity and freedom? 
  14. Do you have any advice for someone who wishes to give street football a go? 
  15. Do you think it practising skills required for street football can be transferred to regular 11-a-side football? 
  16. We see you have worked in association with a number of clubs and companies such as Coca-Cola, how have these opportunities come about and what has been your favourite?
  17. How would you like to be remembered? 

‘Thing’ Of The Week

As I am sure you know by now within this section of the podcast each of us will choose their favourite thing that we have seen over the week. This could be absolutely anything ranging from a product, food, architect etc. that has stuck in our minds. Most probably our ‘thing’ of the week will be utterly useless to yourself, but you never know. Of course, when we have a guest on the show we love to invite them to join us in this recurring segment. Read ahead to see what the three of us come up with and see whether you would be interested in any of them. 

To kick off the proceedings I will reveal Rafael’s ‘Thing Of The Week’. He chose to give us two ‘Things’ Of The Week but in a rather unorthodox way which I like. He chose a positive and negative ‘Thing’ Of The Week. The first was the recollection of the incredible backheel assist by Karim Benzema to Casimero to give Real Madrid the win over Espanyol. Follow the link if you fancy giving this goal a watch. 

Rafael’s second ‘Thing’ was less positive and is the unfortunate rise of COVID-19 cases in the city that Rafael is currently residing in. We hope that the situation improves and our hearts go out to anyone affected. 

My ‘Thing Of The Week’ was a sport that I have been introduced to this week. This sport is windsurfing which is a combination of surfing and sailing and I have a friend who will be taking me out and showing me the ropes. In preparation for this experience, I have been watching YouTube videos to try and grasp some of the basics but we shall see how it goes.

And to finish off this week’s ‘Thing’ Of The Week segment we have Hayden. Hayden’s ‘Thing’ was in fact “Manchester United” and this is thanks to the successful return of the United football team in the Premier League. Hayden is enjoying this string of positive results and I think he is less nervous in the team’s abilities at the moment. Long shall it last! 


And, that wraps our episode featuring our third guest. Hayden and I thoroughly enjoyed having Rafael on the show and I am sure we will have him back on the podcast. 

I hope that the show notes have provided a further layer of communication between the two of us and you, our listeners, by providing additional information, but I’m sure it won’t beat listening to us chat away first hand. We hope that you enjoyed listening and will consider subscribing and making the Discussed It podcast a part of your weekly routine. 

Happy listening, everyone! 

Episode #005 – Oliver Pritchard: GB Triathlete Interview

Advice, Education, Interview, Life in General, Podcast, Travel

Welcome to the show notes for Discussed It, a podcast where myself, Herbie Hudson and my co-host Hayden Day discuss a little about a lot. Read ahead for a written breakdown of each podcast episode, photos, links and bonus content that didn’t make the cut for the podcast. Happy reading and if you want to check out the podcast where myself and Hayden Day discuss a little about a lot, follow the links below. 

You can listen by clicking play above or by searching Discussed It Inception on your favourite podcast players such as Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Deezer and many more. 


Welcome to the show notes for the third episode of the Discussed It podcast. We are very excited to invite our second guest onto our podcast, Oliver Pritchard. Oliver is a profoundly deaf athlete who is seeing great success in his sport – triathlon. He competes internationally with Great Britain and is going from strength to strength. As a deaf person and budding triathlete myself, I was looking forward to this conversation and I hope that you will enjoy it as much as I did. 

We will also be finishing off the show with our ‘Thing’ of the Week, where Oliver will be letting us know what ‘Thing’ he has found interesting and exciting and is happy to share with Hayden and I. Make sure you stick around for that!


Within this episode, we:

  • Talk to Oliver Pritchard, a profoundly deaf athlete who is seeing great success in his sport – triathlon
  • Discuss our ‘Thing Of The Week’
  • and much more…

Below I have outlined the general gist of the questions that we put over to Oliver to answer, throughout the episode we go slightly off-piste with the conversation but we tried to allow for a chronological narrative that works through Oliver’s journey to date and then looking forward to the future. 

If you fancy finding out what Oliver’s insightful and interesting comments in reply to these questions then head over to this podcast episode and give it a listen. You won’t regret it! We go off on quite a few tangents in this week’s discussion so to hear answers to those bonus questions that arose go and give the episode a listen. 


  1. Would you be able to tell us a bit more about yourself, where you’re from and what is that you do?  
  2. Let’s go right back to the start, what were your first encounters with sport growing up and what effect has this had on you going forward? 
  3. Were there any individuals that motivated you to get active? 
  4. Moving on from the earlier days, what made you look towards triathlon which brings together a number of disciplines rather than just focusing on one? 
  5. You studied at Cirencester’s Royal Agricultural University. How did you find studying at university and how did you balance your academic studies and training? 
  6. It was during these years that you managed to find your way into the GB squad. Can you tell us more about how this opportunity arose and how it has affected you?
  7. Motivation is so important to be able to compete at the very highest level, how do you keep yourself motivated and hungry for that end goal? 
  8. It is a difficult time to remain positive at the moment due to the restrictions but do you think anything beneficial has come from this period of slowing down? 
  9. You completed the London2Paris 24hr cycle raising money for the NDCS (National Deaf Children’s Society). Do you have any plans for another endeavour like this one?
  10. I know that you have this mantra ‘it’s abilities, not disabilities’, would you be able to expand further on what you mean by this?
  11. What do you do to relax outside of training? Can it be a struggle to get that balance?
  12. It seems as though that even on your holidays you remain active. Would you prefer an active holiday like skiing above a week lounging by the pool?  
  13. Staying with the topic of holidays I was wondering if you could give us your top three destinations and why you chose them? 
  14. What would you say is your greatest achievement so far? 
  15. Where do you see yourself in 10 years? Is a professional triathlete something you aspire to become?
  16. Is there a particular sporting event that is high up on your bucket list? The Kona World Championships has been something that has always interested me but I have a way to go before I get there! 
  17. How would you like to be remembered? 
  18. So Ollie, if people want to follow your journey or get in touch, where can they find you? 

‘Thing’ Of The Week

As I am sure you know by now within this section of the podcast each of us will choose their favourite thing that we have seen over the week. This could be absolutely anything ranging from a product, food, architect etc. that has stuck in our minds. Most probably our ‘thing’ of the week will be utterly useless to yourself, but you never know. To change it up this week we have Kyle joining us for this particular segment. Read ahead to see what the three of us come up with and see whether you would be interested in any of them. 

To kick off the proceedings I will reveal Oliver’s ‘Thing Of The Week’. He chose to give us two ‘Things Of The Week’. The first was ‘Carpentry’. He then explained that he’s been doing some work with a carpenter and feels that he has learnt some invaluable skills during this experience. His second ‘Thing Of The Week’ was an Instagram page that he has had a big part in setting up. This page is called @silentspeedsters and the idea behind it is to create an online community for deaf people all around the world to come together and have a place to communicate and connect. The Instagram page bio reads: 

#deafpower

An upcoming sports club, with deaf individuals in mind.

Our dream is to create a community easy to find.

I like this idea and I will get involved with this as it can be challenging trying to find deaf individuals to have a chat with. I have included the link below for you to check that out. 

https://www.instagram.com/silentspeedsters/

Moving on, my ‘Thing Of The Week’ was a podcast that I have been listening to a lot recently. And that is “the Joe Rogan Podcast” and over the last week I have listened to over 5 hours worth of Elon Musk on the Joe Rogan Podcast and it has opened my mind up to what is possible and allowed me to learn more about Musk and what he is like. I also listened to some of Brian Cox’s episodes as well as Neil deGrassse Tyson which are both cool people. Highly recommend checking those out, I will include the links below. But make sure you give this episode a listen before heading over there. 

http://podcasts.joerogan.net

And to finish off this week’s ‘Thing Of The Week’ segment we have Hayden Day. Hayden’s ‘Thing’ was in fact “Brownies” and this stemmed from the fact that Hayden had made some during the week and felt as though he had perfected the recipe. If you do fancy making some brownies I have included a link below, happy cooking. 

https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/best-ever-chocolate-brownies-recipe

From this, we go off on a discussion about nutrition in triathlon which was an interesting one and is some bonus content that sits outside the main body of discussion. 


And, that wraps our fifth episode featuring our second guest. Hayden and I thoroughly enjoyed having Oliver on the show and we look forward to having him back on to see how he’s getting on further down the line and see how he is doing in the world of triathlon. Unfortunately due to COVID races have been cancelled but we hope that he can get back to competitive racing as soon as possible. 

I hope that the show notes have provided a further layer of communication between the two of us and you, our listeners, by providing additional information, but I’m sure it won’t beat listening to us chat away first hand. We hope that you enjoyed listening and will consider subscribing and making the Discussed It podcast a part of your weekly routine. 

Happy listening, everyone! 

Blog Post #013 – Corsa Camper Conversion

Art, Life in General, Travel

This week’s blog post is centred around a project that I undertook over the last couple of weeks. This particular project I am calling the Corsa Camper Conversion. 

Confused already? Let me explain. 

I have always toyed with the idea of wanting to live out of a campervan and travel with this. These dreams mainly stem from listening to stories of my Dad doing this in Australia when he was younger. I actually have the number plate from that very campervan up in my room. When I first looked at buying my first car I did look briefly at vans for a possible conversion or campervans and realised very quickly that this route was very much out of my budget at 17 years old. 

Also, Instagram feeds like these only fuels the fire even more!

This then saw that dream put to rest for a while, until a couple of weeks ago. It came to me almost out of nowhere. I think the genesis of this project is partly down to the COVID pandemic and the cancellation of several holiday plans this year. I was troubleshooting how I can get to travelling as soon as possible. 

That is how I concluded that I would convert my 2010 Vauxhall Corsa into something that I could live out of for some time. In my mind, these periods may consist of two different circumstances. 

1

When I move to Nottingham to study architecture I am situated near the Peak District. This project would allow me to drive out there, park up at a campsite and disconnect from normality, even if it’s just for one night. I see this as a way of dealing with the stress I may experience at university but who knows.

2 –  

I am also aware that France and Spain openly welcome ‘wild camping’ and I feel that a road trip through these countries would be very high up on my To-Do List when restrictions are relaxed. I would also be much more comfortable driving than having to make my way through an airport and boarding planes. 


Before I set out on these adventures I am going to need to put my ideas in practice and carry out my very own van conversion but on a Corsa, hence the name ‘Corsa Camper Conversion’. 

I enjoyed the process and I do feel that I surpassed my expectations with my level of woodworking ability. I have my Grandpa to thank for these skills that have been taught to me from a very young age. I tried to keep this project on a budget and within the images and descriptions below you will see just how I managed this. I was also conscious of the limited size of the car in question so storage played heavily on my mind and I feel that I have been able to achieve a substantial amount of storage.

Without further ado, let’s get into the process of this project. 


To achieve enough space for this conversion, I removed the back seats which was easy enough but I have ensured that I can remove all modifications with ease and return the car to its original state if I require space for more people in the car. 

With that completed, I started to construct the bed frame. This was built using wood purchased at my local B&Q for around £50, this ultimately became the only large purchase I have made so far on this project. This frame sits in the boot space and is elevated off the floor of the car to allow for additional storage. 

To create the length required for a mattress I extended the structure as shown and added horizontal slats for added strength. The white board is removable and is only screwed down when the front two seats are fully pushed forward which increases the length of the sleeping space which I very comfortably fit in.  

I was kindly gifted a mattress that was to be thrown out by a friend so at no additional cost I now had a mattress which snugly fits atop this wooden structure and is remarkably comfortable considering it is in the back of a car. 

Now fitted with a duvet, pillows and cushions I am now looking forward to additions that will make the experience more enjoyable. I am looking at purchasing material to tint the back windows, a solar shower and potentially a fridge of some kind. However, these all cost additional money but I am happy where I am at the moment and I’m looking forward to spending my first night in my new ‘humble abode’. 


Throughout this process, I practiced both my creative and practical skills which always need to be exercised to improve. It also makes you realise that small spaces designed well can be extremely comfortable. This experience has opened my eyes to the world of micro-living and minimalism which is something that I wish to explore further. 

So there we have it, another one of my ‘Lockdown Projects’, not sure what’s next but whatever it is I am looking forward to it. 

Till next week, have a good one. 

Blog Post #008 – My Travel Bucket List

Life in General, Travel

‘To travel is to live’, a quote coined by Hans Christian Andersen and is one that resonates with me. I have been very fortunate to have explored outside of my home country and experienced the different cultures, architecture and landscapes of many countries. However, when calculated I have only travelled to 4% of the world’s countries. It makes me think about how much there is still to explore. That is why I have decided to compile a travel bucket list of places that are top of my list to visit if I got the chance. This list most probably is not the same list I would have made if I had thought about it yesterday and is likely to change tomorrow. But it’s a start. 


Destination #1 – The Great Barrier Reef, Australia 

Photo by Jeremy Bishop on Pexels.com

My first destination on this bucket list had to be visiting the Great Barrier Reef in Australia. This has been on my list for years and ever since I became a qualified scuba diver and discovered a whole new world underwater it has only reinforced my desire to visit. This reef that is visible from space is built by one kind of animal: the tiny coral polyp. Thes polyps grow together like building blocks to create modular colonies – corals. I find this natural process phenomenal and its ability to support such a diverse range of life within its structure.  

The desire to visit also stems from my father telling me about when he spent a year living in Australia on a dive boat. His stories sound incredible and only fuels the fire inside me to get on a plane and visit. The sad thing is it sounds like the Great Barrier Reef’s golden days are limited thanks to global warming and ocean acidification. We must take steps to preserve this wonder of the world. 


Destination #2 – Barcelona, Spain 

Photo by Vitor Monteiro

I must admit that I have technically visited Barcelona, but before you ask why it is on my bucket list, I feel I haven’t visited as it was simply a facilitator for an activity, this meant that I did not explore the city and discover the beauty it has to offer. I have also seen the incredible architecture that it has to offer and it captivated my attention. It is the architectural style Modernisme influenced by Antoni Gaudi at the turn of the 20th century that I have heard so much about and wish to see with my own eyes. 

I am also a lover of the sea and this city provides both city sights and sandy beaches so it’s a win-win situation for me. I am also an avid rink hockey player in the UK and I would love to watch one of the top professional teams, Barcelona play a game at their arena called Palau Blaugrana. 


Destination #3 – O’ahu, Hawaii 

Photo by Braden Jarvis

Aloha!

I have to be wholly honest with where the inspiration for this particular destination stems from. Thanks to the long-running remake of Hawaii Five-0 of which I am a huge fan of, is strangely enough set in Hawaii. In particular the island of O’ahu. The television series depicts Hawaii as an amazing place to visit and of course, I may be viewing the place through rose-tinted spectacles but it has to be in my top 5 destinations. 

The diverse landscapes displayed through my television screen excite me massively with its sunny beaches and thick rainforest. It seems to be a perfect location for me, I think I might need more than just a week here to get my fix. 


Destination #4 – Athens, Greece 

Photo by Patrick Evmerrxas

Again this is, in fact, a location that I have already been to when I sailed the Greek islands and flew into Athens airport. But I feel that I saw nothing of the city apart from out of the window of our thankfully air-conditioned taxi from the airport to the port. 

This particular city is steeped in architectural history. The most famous piece of architecture in Athens has to be the Acropolis, which sits at the highest point of the city. This steep-sided, flat-topped structure of limestone rises abruptly 100m from its surroundings and has become central to the city that builds up around it as every modern city does. 

This heart of the city is somewhere that I want to visit, I am not overly sure what I will feel when I step onto the grounds and explore but it just feels right to be in my top 5. 


Destination #5 – Machu Picchu, Peru

Photo by Tomas Sobek

This particular destination choice owes it inspiration to a school friend of mine who visited Machu Picchu rather recently. She spoke very highly of the experience and motivated me to take a closer look into the location.       

Machu Picchu offers one of the most substantial legacies of the fascinating Inca civilisation, an empire that once stretched for 4000km. However, the thing that captivates me is the experience of making your way to this location. As my friend did most tourists travel on foot along the paved, former Inca road known as the ‘Inca Trail’ or the higher-still ‘Salkanty’, which climbs heights of up to 4600m. It does not sound like a stroll in the park but that’s what I like, I prefer the adventure of a trip. I will not settle for a week of sitting around the pool.        


There we have it, my travel bucket list, it was hard to narrow all the amazing places in mind down to just 5 but I feel rather content with the above list. Of course, visiting any of these destinations will not be as easy as it was previous to the pandemic. But can anyone be blamed for having some dreams of where they would like to go when it is safe for us to travel? This gift of time is simply making my mind wander and dream of the 96% of the world that is yet to be explored. 

Keep dreaming. 

All the best. 

Blog Post #005 – My Experiences of Paris

Travel

Paris, often referred to as the City of Light is one of the most romantic, beautiful cities on Earth. Littered with pockets of irresistible culture, it is a city that should be on everyone’s bucket list. I was extremely lucky to visit this particular city in the summer of 2018 and basked in the beautiful weather, food and architecture that the place has to offer. I thought that I would take the time to pen my experiences of this magnificent city, exhibit some of my photography of the city and to offer recommendations on what to do and see if you ever get the chance to visit. 

Fun fact that I learnt in my research for this post, the reason that the nickname ‘City of Light’ was coined is that Paris was one of the first European city’s that adopted gas street lighting on a large scale to light the city’s boulevards and numerous monuments. Moving on let’s get straight into the thick of it. 


Location #1 – Visit the metro system 

The Paris Métro is, of course, a rapid transport system responsible for the movement of over 1.5 billion people annually. The metro system is seen as an identifying symbol of the city and is known for its distinct architecture and unique entrances influenced by Art Nouveau designed by Hector Guimard. It was the signs adorning the entrances that piqued my interest as I walked the streets of the city and encouraged me to document their intriguing appearances. I highly recommend seeking these features out and taking a trip down into the metro. Some of the underground stations are beautifully designed and worth seeing. 


Location #2 – Walk the steps to the Sacré-Coeur

If you don’t fancy taking the stairs when visiting the world-famous Sacré-Coeur may pose a slight issue thanks to the 222 steps up to the entrance of the building. But trust me it’s worth it when you get to the top, the view across the skyline of Paris is incredible and the building up close is beautiful. The Sacré-Coeur is a Roman Catholic church and minor basilica, dedicated to the Sacred Heart of Jesus. It is an iconic example of ancient Roman architecture, Byzantine architecture to be exact. If you can visit Montmartre which is steeped in artistic history, situated 300m from the Sacré-Coeur. This is where you come if you want a classic Parisian caricature. 


Location #3 – Visit the Musée de l’Orangerie

For the avid art lover or keen tourist, the Musée de l’Orangerie is a must-visit. A collection of paintings named the ‘Water Lilies’ were offered to the French state by the world-famous painter Claude Monet on the day that followed the Armistice of November 11th, 1918 as a symbol for peace. As a lover for architecture, the extra intrigue came from the knowledge that Monet designed the building in which the painting had to be exhibited, this was because he carefully calculated and designed the way that light would enter the rooms and affect his paintings. He believed that the lighting was crucial in aiding the message he wished the painting to impart on the observer. You will not be disappointed with this particular art gallery.   


Location #4 – Make sense of modern art in the Centre Pompidou

I must say that this particular art gallery was a change from the classic galleries of The Louvre and the Musée de l’Orangerie but a welcome one at that. This particular art gallery is the Centre Pompidou. The building was designed by the architectural team made up of Richard Rogers and Renzo Piano who wished to create a futuristic, high-tech building. And they have achieved just that, it is so different from the majority of the classic Parisian architecture that is commonplace throughout the city. This art gallery is the largest modern art gallery in Europe and you could easily spend most of your day walking the exhibition rooms. To be perfectly honest, some of the installations were interesting, to say the least, and took some thinking to make sense of the artist’s intentions. But I guess that is the point of these thought-provoking, layered artworks and I came to like various pieces throughout the gallery. Take a trip to the 6th floor and soak in the incredible panoramic view of the city, it is not to be missed.


Location #5 – Take a trip up the Eiffel Tower 

Of course, a trip to Paris could not be completed without a mention of the world-famous Eiffel Tower, an iconic symbol of the city. The Eiffel Tower is a wrought iron lattice tower with a height of 324m. Its construction took a remarkably short period of two years, two months and five days between 1887 and 1889. It was constructed to commemorate the centennial of the French Revolution and to demonstrate France’s industrial prowess to the world. Stood proud by the bustling waterway of the River Seine it is an unmissable piece of Parisian architecture. It is equally as impressive come darkness and transforms itself into a stunning light display. 


So there are my top five locations in Paris that captured my imagination and the experiences will stay with me forever. I think that the current situation allows us to reflect on the experiences that we have had and increase our level of gratitude for being granted them. At the present moment, travel is so restricted that sightseeing is out of the question but I think when as a planet we come out of the other side and movement increases we must take the opportunities to see as much as possible because you never know what’s around the corner. 

Au revoir!