My First Tattoo

September 13, 2017

Who knew I'd be the one getting a tattoo on my latest trip to London? I must admit, it was on the cards as soon as we booked our flights down, but a part of me didn't think it would happen. If you asked me just over a year ago, I'd have said no way would I ever get a tattoo... But after a shot of sambuca, its actually happened.

I've always loved other people's tattoos - shows like Tattoo Fixers, Miami Ink.. even Tattoos After Dark have always been on my TV planner so that I can watch the artists amazing skills and look at the incredible designs. But I've always said that there wasn't a design I loved enough to have tattooed on my skin for the rest of my life.

So why did I get one?

A couple of drinks and a very convincing Danish chap convinced many of us last year while I was in Italy for a dig that getting a trowel tattooed would be a great idea. After spending time designing the right trowel, we couldn't find a place open where a bunch of 10 of us could get it tattooed. It was probably for the best, considering the after care instructions would have been pretty hard to follow on an archaeological dig. But this idea kept niggling away at me, and remained in my mind for the last year.

What does it mean?

I've got a small trowel tattooed on my right wrist. To many, this seems a bit lame - and many have laughed at the idea. But this is perfectly me. For those of you new to this blog - I'm an archaeologist, a career that I've pursued for the last four years at Edinburgh University, and lusted after while watching Time Team from the age of 7. Archaeology has always held a huge importance in my life. I've spent the last four years getting more and more archaeological experience, and my summers spent on the dig have been some of the best times of my life. I've made the best of friends, and love the whole experience.

This trowel is there as a reminder of the hard work I've put in through the years of my undergrad degree, and that to come in my masters, as well as the incredible experiences I've had during the digging season.

Where did I get it?

It's become somewhat of a tradition that each time one of us jets off to London, we reappear with something new. It first started with my nose piercing, and has ended up with almost all family members with new earrings of some sort. So my summer trip to London was the perfect opportunity to get my tattoo.
I was tattooed by Jac at Kinky Ink, Clapham Junction. He was really lovely with me, considering I was super nervous about it. He talked me through the whole process, and gave me time to decide what size I wanted and the exact positioning. The place was super clean and sterile, so I felt safe and comfortable getting it done here.

Did it hurt?

There's no denying it hurt a lot. For such a little tattoo, I struggled a lot - and almost collapsed afterwards (but lets keep saying it was due to the heat and not the fact I held my breath the whole time). I've got a pretty low pain threshold though, so I was anticipating a lot of pain from the start. It lasted around a minute, so it was bearable - I sat with my eyes closed and sang a song in my head until it was over.

Will I get another?

Before getting this tattoo I was warned - tattoos are addictive. Already I'm starting to think about another tattoo. I have no idea what design I'd want, but I think its quite likely that I'll end up with another at some point.

So that's my tattoo story! I can hardly brag about it, considering its a very small tattoo and isn't very complex. But its something that I love, and holds a lot of meaning to me.

Do you have any tattoos, or thinking about one? Share your tattoo stories with me!


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  1. What a cute tatoo ! I always think small tatoos are super cute !

  2. Tattoos are definitely addictive! I have two myself and I'm thinking about my third one already :)

    This Damsel Loves Blog

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