Thursday, January 20, 2011

"If You're in a Tragedy, Don't Drink Anything!"

So I realised that even though I told you about my birthday, I didn't show you! So here are some pictures from the day of my twenty-first:

The package my family sent.

The cool thing about the package (besides all the yummy food and the ostrich) was that it came while I was Skyping with my mom, so she got to see me open it! (She also got to see me go to sit down at my desk, miss my chair, and fall on the floor :p) My friend Laura also made me some delicious chocolate chip cookies!

Outside the gift shop at the Titanic exhibit

My delicious replacement for alcohol! (I've got much less than that left now!)

The best garlic bread in the entire world.

And now for some random pictures I took yesterday:

An ad on the tube that makes me laugh every time I see it.

Poetry on the tube!

Don't you just hate it when your cough is all tickly? :p

I'm almost done with my second week of classes- one more in two parts tomorrow. I had Adaptations today and while really love it, four hours is just a really long time to have a class. But I did have fun today- it was a smaller than usual group, as some sort of sickness seems to be going around and other people had to drop the class, so we had a really good discussion about the play we were reading, starting with dissecting the title and the different connotations it would have today and then going through definitions of words we had to do for homework and finding moments in scenes from the play that matched it. Then after tea we discussed the articles we were supposed to read. As it happens, because our teacher skipped around a bit, I read a few articles too many, but it taught me a lesson, anyway. I had underestimated the amount of reading that needed to be done, thinking it could all be done in one short shot... but as you can see from this list, it was a little too extensive to sanely do in that timeframe.

So while I did get it all read in time, my procrastination meant that I was up until the wee hours of the morning reading and then got up an hour early to finish.. after not being able to fall asleep for a long time and having to be in class at nine. So never again!

I thought the booklets we got for some classes were a little weird, but after using mine, I actually quite like it. Instead of handing us articles to read each week, they're all in the booklet. Not only is it very neatly put together, but this way it's easy to refer to past articles. I found it a very good resource- not to mention that all of the articles we had to read for class today were really interesting (well... save for one.) Here's what my booklet for Adaptations looks like:

And on the inside:

So I'm really finding that handy. I also felt like I could hold my own in the discussion today. I think our orienters kind of exaggerated the differences between the English students and us; they made it sound like our English counterparts would eat us alive in class and we'd feel dumb all the time. But I contributed a good amount to the conversation, got some "that's a really good point"s from my teacher, and made more Shakespeare references than I even knew that I knew (my class loves to reference Shakespeare.) The quote in the title was said in our discussion; since so many people are poisoned in tragedies, we feel it's a good rule to follow in general. So so far, I think I'm doing all right in my classes.

Random fact of the day: here, you don't just call your teacher "professor" because they teach you. In the UK (and perhaps all of Europe), professor is actually the highest rank, and you have to work up to it. So while it's not an insult if you accidentally call your instructor "professor," they like to be called by their proper title (I suppose much like addressing an American professor as "doctor"- they usually correct you and say that they're not a doctor.) So while some of my teacher may be professors, others will fall into the following categories: Lecturer, Technicaly Director, Senior Lecturer, Reader, or Performance Supervisor. Now if I could only figure out which of my teachers fall into which category...

Oh, also... apparently, the weight of another year of life is too much for my body to handle. Halfway through my birthday festivities yesterday, the muscles of my right knee decided to completely spaz out, leaving me hobbling around and unable to climb stairs like I was 121 instead of barely 21. Now they're still quite painful and I don't know what's wrong with me. Getting older is FUN! :p


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