Saturday, October 25, 2008

One month later...

I've been meaning to post for a while now. I had the idea that on the 16th - exactly one month after I arrived in England - I'd do this big elaborate post with lots of great anecdotes and a little bit of "what it all means." Clearly, that did not happen. It seems the homework gods finally got word that I'm back in school, so I've been stuck in the library/my room doing lots of educational reading. The schoolwork is actually a welcome change most of the time; I had forgotten how much I love school.

So anyway, now it's been officially more than a month. I got my first jolt of "time is passing so quickly" when I realized that I'm halfway finished with my classes (I know!), which incidentally means that I'm more than halfway finished with college, but that's a whole different can of worms. All of the other Americans that I know are leaving in the beginning of December to go home for Christmas and start classes at their home universities in the Spring, and they're also freaking me out with their talk of how large that moment is looming. I forget sometimes that I'm here (meaning Europe) until August, but even so, I have the feeling that before I know it, I'll be de-planing back in the US wondering where the year went.

Monday, October 6, 2008


I was doing a lot of thinking last night, but I'll get to that later.

It's officially fall here, something I haven't experienced since elementary school. It's already colder than it ever gets in Charleston, and when I opened my window this morning, I could smell a wood fire burning somewhere. I love that smell.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Things I love about England

1. I can no longer go to, only to

2. Some guy gave me a flyer on the street to day for a place called "Currys R Us."

3. I meet English people who think it's cool that I'm American.

4. This place:

Wednesday, October 1, 2008


So, already I've been lax about my blog... But here I am for a long-winded update, going day by day (as best I can remember):

Day 1 -

My flight arrived sometime around midday, right on time, but that was the end of my travel luck. I was supposed to get to Nottingham via a school-provided coach, but when I got there, they didn't have my name. I had to wait in a long queue (a necessary induction into English culture) to buy my own bus ticket, and then I had to wait for approximately three hours for my delayed bus to finally arrived at Heathrow. I should mention that by this point, it was early afternoon and I hadn't slept or eaten since before my flight. The bus ride was also about three hours long, and I was lucky enough to sit in the back by the toilet. Mmm, mmm. Got to Nottingham city at around six pm and took a cab to the university. I was sorely tempted (bad pun intended) to abandon all of my belongings as I dragged them a good half-mile to my temporary lodging, and frankly, I'm still surprised that I didn't. By the time I got to dinner that night, I could hardly lift my fork! Despite all that, I managed to make some friends and eat some notoriously bad English food before turning in, quite happily, for the night.

Day 2

I woke up to a really perfect English morning: cold, misty, and green. This was the first day that I was able to walk around and get a feel for the school, and I did just that. I met a few people, but by and large I kept to myself so that I could see everything that I wanted to see and really get my bearings. I met up with my friends from dinner the night before, and we got a drink in the hall cafe. It wasn't a terribly eventful day, but I really enjoyed it.

Day 3

The third day was pretty similar to the second; I had a lot of informational sessions to attend, and a lot of solo walking. I got bundled up - it was another chilly morning - but by the time I'd gone to the first session, it was downright hot. I took a nap (ahh...) and changed into something cooler. The school was busing the international students into the city for the day, so I headed into Notts again with some friends. It was a fantastic night. We had some great, cheap Indian food and learned our way around.

Day 4

Looking back at my schedule, I don't think I actually did any of the school's activities on day four. I was jet-lagged and sufficiently well-informed by that point, so I just trekked over to Broadgate Park, where I live now, to pick up my key. It was another warm day, and we went back into Nottingham for dinner for another great meal. I felt a little bad about missing my last free meal at school, but the food was so terrible in the halls that the feeling was short-lived.

Day 5

I was finally able to move in on Saturday, which unfortunately meant more lugging of bags, but I was so happy to be in my own room again. I met my flatmates, then spent most of the day napping. Not very exciting for readers, I know. I meant to go grocery shopping, but by the time I was up and about again, it was getting dark and I didn't know where the grocery store was, so I went into Notts again for dinner.

Day 6

Sunday was another slow day, but I did go grocery shopping. I went into City Centre with one of my flatmates, Katie, and her friend, where I discovered Primark, the most wonderful store after Ikea. Susanne, my flatmate from Tuebingen, moved in.

Day 7

I don't remember what I did on this day :\

Day 8

Tuesday was mostly spent waiting in another queue to get into my history modules. I went with Katie to the bar in the student centre and met a lot of cool international students.

Day 9

Another day of waiting in line, this time for German.

Day 10

I can't remember this day either. I think I played poker with some friends.

Day 11

First day of class - From Serf to Proletarian: A history of the Russian peasantry. Went into the city at night.

Day 12

Cadbury factory!

Day 13

Had to go to the grocery store again.

Day 14

German class.

Day 15

Blood and Treasure! My history class on the Vikings. It rained a lot, but then, I am in England. Went into the city centre to see a movie. Oh, and I actually cooked a meal.

Day 16

That's today! Class again, homework, and soon I'll be heading over to the annual Nottingham Goose Fair.