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Friday, November 9, 2012

SO Many Words

Ladies and gents, it's been too long! I can't even remember where I left off with my blog updates. Opologies, opologies, opologies (yes, opologies; that is how I've decided to announce 'apologies' in my head for the time being).

I've been back in Bangor for nearly two months now (time flies), and life has been swell. Wet, yes. Cold, yes. But horrible? Nay, t'is been swell.

Here's a tip for folks needing to get to Bangor from another country: do not fly into London airports. This time around I flew into Manchester, and boy howdy was that trip way more manageable than flying into London. First of all, the train ticket to Bangor was about 45 quid as opposed to nearly 80. Second, I did not have to take the tube (WIN). Third, Manchester is better than London. Just a fact, you know.

My flight was relatively uneventful, but it was long. Since I was flying from the west coast of the U.S. it added a couple of hours to my travel time. I flew from Pasco, WA to Salt Lake to Atlanta to Manchester. It was a long day, and I was grateful to finally get into Bangor. Luckily for me, Carla got into town a bit before me, so we had the keys to our house and didn't have to worry about being locked out waiting for the landlord. I slept well that night!

Then after getting into Bangor (on September 13th) we didn't have internet in our house until November 2nd. Sweet heavens of mercy, that was the longest time period of my life. Just kidding, but it was long. Classes started on October 1st, so that just made being a student even more difficult than it already is. Luckily we are a mere 5 minutes walk (tops) from the Main Arts Library, so it wasn't too bad heading over to use the wifi. Still, there's nothing like being able to access the world in the comfort of your own home where you don't have to wear trousers.

Just kidding, by the way. I don't walk around the house without my trousers. That would just be awkward since I live with 4 other girls. Oh, and just saying, I have the best housemates ever. Brooke (temporary housemate), Carla, Jess, and Alex are amazing, and I have loads of fun with these gals.

My American amigos y amigas, just a note about British culture when it comes to houses, or more specifically, student houses. They may be called houses, but they are small. Yes, we have 5 bedrooms, but that's most of the room in the house. (Plus James and I are convinced that my bedroom is a front room converted to a bedroom... it's pretty big and has a fireplace; I am spoiled! But that's what you get for getting first pick... I do feel a bit bad). Anyway, the front room is kinda small, the kitchen is very small (you can pretty much only fit 2, maybe 3, people in there at most), and the house is always cold. ALWAYS. (The British have no idea what proper heating is). Then again I am used to it being extremely warm... TEXAS!

Then you've got the fact that the water pressure in the shower is like a trickle, we have a zoo of spiders, some windows don't open, some windows don't close properly, and a bunch of other stuff. But it is a student house! Very different from the concept of getting a flat, which was the norm in Austin. Plus the flats that I'd been in were always really nice. And warm.

Right. So this semester has turned out to be pretty busy. I've gotten involved in research (again, because I'm a nerd!), became a course rep for Sports Science, aaaaaand have classes. Oh! I also joined squash because I am too much of a sissy to brave the Welsh weather and play tennis. I do love racket games. I'm pretty psyched, though, because this upcoming week is reading week which means... no lectures! I am living the high life. The next country on my list to visit was going to be Denmark during reading week, but I'm required to be here for my Italian class (ugh, don't even want to take that) and for research. Alas, no exploration for me. I'm really bummed! However, I do have a bit of time in January free during which I'm going to take a 2 day trip to Copenhagen. I took Danish for a semester in Austin and fell in love with the language, so I've been dying to visit ever since. It'll be cold and miserable, but I'm up for the challenge! Then, get this, there is this amazing website I need to share:

You make a profile (22 euros for 2 years) and then can find work experiences in countries all over the world. The template is you work 5 hours a day 5 days a week in exchange for food and a room. I'm not going back to the US this coming summer, so my intentions are to work abroad in (preferably) a warm country like Italy or Greece. I'm really hoping for Greece. I also had the idea of working like 2 or 3 weeks at each place (there's no minimum amount of days you have to work in one place) and doing a bunch of different countries. We'll see what happens.

Yeah, that's life back in Bangor. We've had some pretty scary weather. Well, not hurricane Sandy scary, but freezing scary like hail that doesn't melt... well, it did after a day. Then it's just been cold, but it's always cold to me.

I'm thinking that's about it for an update. One quick thing though regarding British culture:

They are obsessed with American politics. First thing Wednesday morning, my lecturer asked, 'Who stayed up to see the results of the election?! I stayed up until about 3am!' My days. I'm American, I voted, and I didn't even stay up to hear the results. I don't mind so much, but what really irks me is when they have a strong opinion about everything that is wrong in the States, but they haven't even lived there. That is obnoxious. Ha, but yeah, everyone has an opinion with no valid reason... just kidding, some folks really do have a good reason for their opinion.

Not gonna lie, my head's not in and my energy is next to dead, so this post is really lame. Opologies! I'll do my best to get some exciting tales to share.


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