Greetings all! Still in the UK, still at Oxford, and still mad as ever haha. The past few days have just been a whirlwind of catching up with old friends, making new awesome ones, and of course FISH AND CHIPS!!!!
This past Sunday (9/20/15) I took it relatively easy; did a more proper grocery shop (meaning more than just diet coke and Kettle Chips). And I swear as much as I try to curb my Minions obsession, Tesco’s keeps thwarting me. Case in point: MINIONS CUPCAKES!!!
As I walked back from the store through my usual shortcut (the cemetery), I got the most wonderful surprise as I ran into Maria, a D.Phil student I knew last year. She is so lovely she actually ended her phone call just to stop and chat with me. She will still be living in the same accommodation as I will this year, so that’s fantastic! See: hanging out in cemeteries clearly has its benefits 😛
Later that night I met up with one of my best friends from last year Lid. She is the literal personification of a fire cracker and it’s impossible not to feel energized just being near her!
We walked around the city for a bit (god it’s so beautiful here at night) and then she showed me where she is living now. After being totally jealous that she now has an actual bathtub, which she agreed to let me use for £100 (SO GENEROUS!), I was reunited with the things I had to leave behind when I left last year. Lid along with Jenny, my flat mate from last year, saved everything for me. I can’t even begin to describe how awesome that was of them and how much it meant. I am so so lucky to have friends like this <3
The next day (9/21/15) was the first day of my pre-term Latin course which meant I had to get up to catch the bus at 8:30 AM (FYI not a morning person!). The class seems like it’s going to be pretty intense but we’ll see how it goes. YIKES!
There are two sessions a day for the next three weeks (9-10am and 1-2pm) so after the first hour I went to college, which is luckily right up the street from the Classics building, to study in the common room. Official registration of new Freshers doesn’t start til next week so it’s still relatively quiet around here.
A little before noon I walked up the street to one of my favorite places in Oxford, Greens Café, for some lunch and tea. I love this place not just because of the free WiFi but it has this really cozy upstairs area where you can just sit and eat and read for hours if you want. Absolutely peaceful.
After enjoying my time, I journeyed back to make it through the second hour of Latin (once again YIKES!). Afterwards I had plans to meet up with another old friend from last year, Genevieve, and of course we wound up at Greens. We had coffee and sat upstairs chatting for easily 2 ½ hours. Needless to say we are both just awesome at conversation haha 😛
It was so nice to catch up with her: along with being American and sharing my love of tattoos, she is just a brilliant human being. At this point it was a little after 5PM, and we both had to get back. I had plans to meet a couple of people at the local pub in Cowley at 6PM.
I caught the bus a little before 5:30PM and this is where that brilliant literary tool called foreshadowing took a stroll into reality. The bus was packed and I ended up sitting next to a guy who was 50 shades of green (hence the foreshadowing). I was in a rush and didn’t have much of choice on where to sit so…yeah.
I met up with my new flat mate (we’re currently the only two living on our hall) for the first time, even thought we’d corresponded over FB a few times. Ah technology. She, a friend of hers who is also living in Stonemason (once again they don’t know I’m writing this blog so I won’t reveal their names until I’ve asked them), and I all walked to the City Arms, a great pub right on the corner where we live, to have a pint and some awesome, greasy pub food.
One pint turned into two and then two-and-a-half (god I love the UK) and we sat there, talked, discussed various relevant political topics, and basically just got stupid in the best possible way 😛 I’m definitely looking forward to living with them over the next year.
By about 9:30PM we parted ways: they walked back home and I walked a couple blocks to Yulia’s for chocolate and banana cake as well as the beer I had forgotten a couple nights ago (I swear this has never happened before!).
As with all conversations with Yul, the one we had this night was incredible. We talk about everything: politics, religion, our courses, our lives, everything. She is quite simply the best person to talk to.
I also learned the most brilliant phrase of my life: “when the crawfish whistles on the mountain.” It’s a Russian expression equivalent to “when pigs fly” but I like this one a million times better!
And before we knew it about 4 hours had gone by and it was 1AM. We parted ways, me with cake in my stomach and beer in my hand, and Yulia making me promise to message her once I got home safely.
I walked home, vigilant and with my key in hand, secured between my fingers in case I need to improvise a weapon (the sad reality of walking home alone at night as a woman). But I got back safely, Skyped my family in the US, and then crashed.
And here is where the foreshadowing reaches its conclusion: I woke up early the next morning with terrible stomach pains and that special kind of sick sweating ie that green bastard on the bus spread his love UGH!! It’s not really his fault although I will have to find and kill him.
Thus today was spent dividing my time between my bed and the bathroom. So not fun, and I hate getting behind in Latin especially since we’re covering SO MUCH that each class is like a week’s worth of info. But I’m pretty sure my classmates wouldn’t be too keen on me turning our room into a petri dish!
I’m starting to feel a bit better, and we’ll see how I feel in the morning. Fingers crossed for me
But hey if you’re going to be sick, is there really any better place to be sick than Oxford?