Saturday, 13 November 2010

"Mom, I'm traveling to five countries." "Okay. Have Fun" "Oh yeah, and I'm dying my hair." "WHAT?"

It's been a pretty busy week here in Oxford.

On Monday, we went to see "Design for Living in London." It was pretty good, very funny, hysterical at times, but the plot was a little contrived. If you like comedy or have an interest in plays about threesomes I'd recommend it. If not, I'd find something else to Harry Potter which will be coming out next week. Can't wait.

Karina and I went to Cardiff on Tuesday. We did a bit of sight seeing. Unfortunately, some of the sights were closed off due to a car show. (My Uncle John would have been in Heaven, but I was unimpressed.) We saw Cardiff Castle, well the outside of it, because tours were a bit pricey, then we went down to the Bay Area, which was pretty, but quite cold. I think my favorite part was see all the signs in both English and Welsh. I guess I really am an English nerd if that is what impressed me the most, but no joke, Welsh is a cool language with, shall we say, some interesting vowel combinations. Welsh words also have a tendency to have repeated consonants. I took a picture of one of the signs and posted it one facebook. Even simple words are more complicated in Welsh. The only one I really remember though was "Ffordd." I saw that on a sign by the train station.

Anyway, enough about the Welsh language. After visiting the Bay Area, Karina and I found an arcade. In Scotland it was a playground and it Wales it was an arcade. The two of us are planning a trip to Venice once term ends, so I can only imagine what we'll stumble upon there. We've promised ourselves a gondala ride though.

Right now my end of term plans are looking very adventurous. I'll be going to Italy, back to England for a track meet (hopefully, I'm still waiting on the okay from my coach) then off to Iceland, Denmark, Switzerland, and fianlly Sweden. I should have half a day in London and then I return to the States on the 20th just in time for the holidays.

In other news...

I dyed my hair today. Nothing too exciting. It looks the same, but my roots are gone. Hooray!

Other exciting news..

My parents are coming to see me in about a week. We're going to Dublin for a couple days and then I'll show them around Oxford.

On the home front, our water boiler has been serviced, the shower drain now functions properly and our recycling was collected yesterday for the first time since we've been here. THANK GOD. We filled the bin about two weeks ago and so a collection of cans and boxes formed on our counter. Not fun when your trying to cook. Bascially what happened was no one ever put the recycling bin out on the correct week, so it never got collected. At first we didn't even have a bin at all. We finally got a bin a month ago and somehow around Halloween it ended up in our neighbor's driveway. I remembered to put it out 2 weeks ago and that very week the city decided to change our recycling day to Friday. No one told us, so now finally two weeks later, our recycles have been collected for the first time since the middle of September. If my brother were here, this would never have been an issue. If Danny is good at anything, it is handling the trash and recycle. I guess I took that for granted and assumed that all men had this inherent inclination to take out the trash. Nope. Clearly my male housemate can learn a thing our two from my brother. (Random thought alert...I was just reminded that both of them use Spongebob toothpaste. That's at least one thing they have in common.)

On the academic front...

I had another creative writing tutorial this week. It went well. I've got one more left before the end of term. I'm still editing PUTP in the meantime, so once I finish that and ship it off to the two agents who asked for revisions, hopefully I will have enough time over winter break to finish the piece I started for my tutorial.

I also had another French tutorial. I had to read Bonjour Tristesse by Francoise Sagan. I think it is my favorite book I've read for the tutorial thus far. Sagan was about 18 or 19 years old when it was first published and it became an instant hit. She's written several other books, which I intend to look into in the future.

My track session with Coach Barry went well yesterday. I have gained some of my shot put distance back. I feel like I've made a lot of progress on my technique while here, so hopefully it will all come together soon. Barry seems to think it will. There are a lot of differences in the training style here as opposed to the States. In the States, I have access to a wonderful weight room at the WAC and I have a coach watching me throw at least five days a week. Here...not so much, but overall, the experience itself has been worth it. It is interesting to see the differences in the sport, but of course, the basics are all the same. My teammates are pretty awesome too. I'm going to miss being surrounded by British accents and being told nice "putt" instead of nice throw. (In England, it's shot putt, not shot put.)

And, to end the usual way, I'll include my latest British slang. My new favorite British word is twat. I've heard a couple other good ones lately, but I'll save those for next time.


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