Cardiff

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If you’d told me a year ago, that I’d be in a stadium in Wales, in a crowd of 70,000 to see One Direction… I probably wouldn’t be surprised actually. I’m too predictable. Although to be fair to whoever would have told me, I only bought the ticket 2 weeks before. So I might have been surprised. Maybe.

Anyway, off I went on my £7 MegaBus, with my hastily booked Airbnb confirmation and my prized concert ticket tucked safely in my bag. The bus ride was uneventful, although I remember crossing a really big bridge. Could have dreamt that though. My Airbnb was conveniently just across the River Taff from Millennium Stadium, perfect for scurrying home after the show. I checked in and charged my phone and then set off to squeeze some Welsh culture in before the show.

I learned about Wales and the preservation of the Welsh language in linguistics papers at uni, so it was neat to see it in action. The example that stood out most to me was the bilingual signage in Poundland. Every aisle labelled in both English and Welsh. If only New Zealand could do that.

After Poundland and other Welsh cultural delights, I headed back to the stadium. The city was heaving with merch clad fans, 1D’s music spilling out of shops. I was excited! I was pumped! I hadn’t seen a One Direction show since October 2013 and I was READY!

McBusted opened the show, which was incredible. They were the perfect pick because they really got the crowd excited. At least, they got me excited. The kids next to me couldn’t care less. Air Hostess, Star Girl, Year 3000. Hit after hit. After McBusted, there was a far too long gap before One Direction took the stage.

I’d never seen 1D without Zayn before, but they never disappoint. The atmosphere in such a big crowd was incredible and hearing Don’t Forget Where You Belong live for the first time in Cardiff, Wales of all places was bizarre.

The next day, I went for a coffee at a cafe in the gardens and to the National Museum. I wouldn’t recommend the National Museum unless you really like pinecone displays and taxidermy foxes. That’s seriously all they have there.