Nikita Mur­ray, 20, starred in two sea­sons of ‘Tal­lafor­nia’, the TV3 re­al­ity show. She has just com­pleted a re­cep­tion­ist course and also does a bit of mod­el­ling and tele­vi­sion work. She lives in Clon­dalkin with her mother and two sis­ters

Sunday Independent (Ireland) - Life - - WAKING HOURS -

I’ve re­cently fin­ished a course for re­cep­tion and cler­i­cal skills. When I was do­ing it, I had to get up at half six. I live in Clon­dalkin with my mum and my two sis­ters. find it very dif­fi­cult to get out of bed early in the morn­ing and I can’t eat at that time. I’d have my break­fast later on, around half ten — prob­a­bly a huge fry with toast, rash­ers, pud­ding and eggs. They’re usu­ally the main cul­prits.

I used to get the bus into Bal­lyfer­mot for the course. I got all dis­tinc­tions in my ex­ams. I did it sim­ply to keep me oc­cu­pied. It lasted for 15 weeks and the hours were half eight un­til a quar­ter to four. In the class they knew me from

Tal­lafor­nia, but they didn’t men­tion it, which was great be­cause you don’t want to be talk­ing about it 24/7. It’s great when peo­ple treat you as the per­son you are.

Right now, I’m look­ing for a job, not nec­es­sar­ily as a re­cep­tion­ist, but lots of peo­ple would turn you down be­cause of the show. Tal­lafor­nia was ba­si­cally a re­al­ity show about a bunch of peo­ple thrown in a house to­gether. You get them to party and see what hap­pens. I did the au­di­tion for it and I got through. It was an amaz­ing ex­pe­ri­ence and I wouldn’t change it for the world. I don’t know why I au­di­tioned for it — you just had to. I didn’t want to be fa­mous. I sup­pose I just wasn’t think­ing. I thought it’d be fun to be record­ing a re­al­ity show be­cause I knew the likes of Jersey Shore. It was like en­ter­ing an­other world and it was such a great laugh.

The first time they put us in a house was in Ci­ty­west and the sec­ond time it was in Santa Ponsa. I pre­ferred Santa Ponsa. What peo­ple don’t re­alise is that even though the cam­eras are on you, you don’t even no­tice them. You are so used to them, it’s like they are not there at all. You’re just drink­ing and par­ty­ing.

The whole con­cept of the cam­eras went over my head. I did some­thing drunk­enly on a very stupid night out. I gave a fella a lap dance and slept with him, on tele­vi­sion.

It was broad­cast months af­ter­wards. I com­pletely was aware of what I was do­ing at that mo­ment in time, but the con­cept that this was go­ing to be shown at home went over my head. Fuck it. I think I was one of the very few peo­ple in the house who wasn’t fake. I don’t put on this per­sona. I am who I am and you ei­ther like it or you lump it. I wasn’t self-con­scious and I would have been the same whether there were cam­eras around or not. My mother saw it and she slagged the life out of me. We watched it to­gether, so we were sit­ting there hav­ing the ban­ter. And as for my nanny, she’s a bit old-fash­ioned. It took her a lit­tle while longer to get used to it. Of course, she gave out to me. Your nanny al­ways gives out to you for some­thing like that. My life com­pletely changed af­ter

Tal­lafor­nia. If I go for some­thing to eat or I go to the pic­tures there are peo­ple con­stantly stop­ping me, go­ing — ‘Oh my God, is that Nikita off Tal­lafor­nia?’ Or they’ll run up to you and scream in your face, ‘Ah, Nikita. Can we get a photo?’ It’s a mil­lion times worse in night­clubs be­cause they’re stand­ing there in groups. I ac­tu­ally get a bit stand-off­ish be­cause, al­though I did the show, I don’t like at­ten­tion on me. Since Tal­lafor­nia, I did a few photo shoots and I was on the

Repub­lic of Telly too. I’m named af­ter the El­ton John song

Nikita. When my mum was preg­nant on me that song was on the ra­dio. Ev­ery time it came on, I would kick her stom­ach 90 miles an hour, so she knew that if I was a girl, she’d def­i­nitely have to call me Nikita. I was the only Nikita in

I’ve never had a boyfriend and I never will. I’m go­ing to be the 68-year-old on the party bus. I don’t like re­la­tion­ships

my class in school but nowa­days you’ll find a few more peo­ple with the name. I love the song but I read on­line that Nikita isn’t a girl and that he’s singing to a male Rus­sian sol­dier. I thought, ‘No way!’

I don’t want to be a re­cep­tion­ist at all. I just did the course to keep busy. It hasn’t fully dawned on me that I need to find some­thing else now.

When I come home in the evenings I au­to­mat­i­cally get food into me and then I prob­a­bly do a bit of ex­er­cise or I go see my friends, de­pend­ing on my hu­mour. I’ve never had a boyfriend and I never will. I’m go­ing to be the 68-year-old on the party bus. I don’t like re­la­tion­ships — they’re just not for me. I might chill in front of the tele­vi­sion. I love the re­al­ity show Geordie Shore. Some­times I think, ‘Why are they do­ing that? Do they not know that their fam­i­lies are go­ing to be see­ing this? Are they not think­ing?’

When I walk down the street fel­las shout ‘lap dance, lap dance’ at me but they never ac­tu­ally come up think­ing that I’m go­ing to be an easy ride. I’m not like that at all. I’m ac­tu­ally very re­served.

I have a record of ev­ery sin­gle news­pa­per ar­ti­cle that was ever writ­ten about me in a scrap book. The only time I read a news­pa­per is if I am in it. I have all the Tal­lafor­nia episodes recorded on my Sky Box. If I ever have kids, when they are old enough, I’ll sit down with them, show them the se­ries and ex­plain it all to them. I’ll say, ‘I made my mis­takes and I’ll help you through yours’.

If I go out with my mates, it’d be to Nando’s and then cock­tails, or we might go to the pic­tures.

I’d love to study crim­i­nol­ogy and foren­sic science be­cause I’d love to learn how the mind works. What pushes some­one to com­mit a mur­der? I’m plan­ning to do a course on this next year and I want to fin­ish up do­ing a de­gree. I’d love to do pro­mo­tion work too but TV work isn’t some­thing you can count on. It’s not re­li­able so you need to have a back-up plan. Mine is foren­sic science. I could be the next Ho­ra­tio Caine, like in CSI Mi­ami.

Some­times I’m in bed at nine o’clock and other nights it could be two in the morn­ing. I used to be a great lit­tle book­worm, but nowa­days I don’t get much time to sit down and read a book. I’m al­ways on the go. I can’t sit for hours. I need to get up and do some­thing, even if it’s just clean­ing. If I be­come a foren­sic sci­en­tist some day, I’d say I’d be re­spected a lot for the fact that I went from Tal­lafor­nia to that. Not many peo­ple would do that.

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