Sunday, 17 October 2010

If only the British Isles were tropical...

I can only think of a few things that would make Oxford better and right now tropical weather has moved up to number one on the list. It's been about 50 degrees all week, which the Connecticut native in me says is really not that cold, but when you've lived in a place that gets to be 100 plus degrees in the summer, anything less than 60 seems like you're in the Arctic. Worse yet is the realization that it will only get colder. Nevertheless, I still plan to travel to the various Scandinavian capital cities after terms ends. Under Armour should do the trick.

The other thing that would make Oxford better would be if they actually sold long sleeve t-shirts that said Oxford on them. You can buy Oxford tees or sweatshirts, but no long sleeve shirts. I've only seen one so far and it was ugly. I really want a long sleeve t-shirt though because, as anyone who has seen the inside of my closet can attest to, I have plenty of t-shirts and hoodies, but very few long sleeve shirts. I asked one of my teammates here about it and her response was that people don't wear them here, which is why she stocked up on them the last time she visited the States. If I can't find one soon, I guess I'll go back and buy the ugly one. Maybe it will keep me warm when I go to Sweden.

It's been a pretty full week this week. I had my first French tutorial on Friday night. Basically every Friday night for the rest of term while most people my age are getting ready to go to the pub or go clubbing, I'll be walking to French class. It went well. My essay was well recieved, so on the way home I treated myself to a "Texican Sweet Chili Wrap" from Burger King. Yes, you read that correctly "Texican." I'm not sure whether or not that is the British term for Tex-Mex, but it sounds kind of catchy and it tasted really good.

I went to Robert Muchamore's presentation at the Cheltenham Literary Fesitval on Saturday. I've never actually been to a literary festival before, but it was a really fun atmosphere and I'd love to be invited to speak at one someday. For those who don't know, Robert Muchamore is a famous British YA author. His Cherub series is incredibly popular with teen boys. I think the part of his speech I enjoyed the most was that he saw a need--books that would appeal to teen boys--and he tried to fill it. Though I have not yet reached his level of fame, I understand the senitment. He explained that he once offered to buy his nephew a book and his nephew informed him that there were no good books out there. In an attempt to prove his nephew wrong, they went to the bookstore, but as it turned out, all the books were either for a younger audience, for girls, or fantasy based. This inspired the creation of the Cherub series, which to put it very simply is about orphan spies. I can kind of relate to this because growing up I always wrote books that I thought kids like me would want to read. I was bored with what was out there, so I wrote my own stories. I think that's why Picking up the Pieces is so special to me. I was a sporty girl growing up and there really weren't any books about sporty girls. It seemed like all YA sports fiction was for boys, so I'm my own way, I saw a need and tried to fill it.

No other major plans for the week ahead. The Cuppers track meet is next Sunday. Hopefully everything will go smoothly with that. I also really want to go to the movie theater this week to see Life As We Now It. It's funny because some of the movies come out here the same week they do in America, like Life As We Know It, but others are a couple months behind. I'm pretty sure Dispicable Me premiered here sometime within the past couple weeks here and I'm pretty sure it came out a couple months ago in the States.

Also, if anyone wants a glimpse of British television, I'd recommend 8 out of 10 Cats. Karina and I first watched it at the B&B last weekend in Scotland and it was really funny. We looked it up on Youtube tonight and watched some more episodes. It's hard to explain the premise because I can't think of any American shows like it other than the The Soup or Chelsea Lately, but even those don't fit it exactly. It's a late night program with two teams, the captains are the same each episode, but the other panel members are guests and change each time. They basically guess the most talked about topics in the UK for that week, but the commentary is usually pretty funny. I think Jay Leno would make a good guest.

I think that's about it for now. I'll check back in later in the week. Thanks for reading.


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