Friday, October 24, 2014

Cambridge, Amongst Other Things

It has been a while since my last post, and I'm not going to apologize for it. I have literally been reading and writing essays for the past few weeks with little time to do anything blog worthy.

However, I will give you a brief recap of this past week, because it was awful. This week was "reading week" so I didn't have classes. Now, I know what you're thinking, "Paris, how could your week be awful if you didn't even have classes?!" Well, you're in luck, I prepared a list for you!
1. Because my professors decided to give us extra things to do this week to make up for our lack of classes.
2. I had a paper due Monday.
3. One of the things I had to do for class was go to an awful art exhibit at a gallery way across town. To get it out of the way first thing, I went Monday. Well, guess what, it's closed on Mondays. So, I had to go back AGAIN across town (which isn't cheap) and the only thing I enjoyed during the exhibit was this one neon wall text saying thing:

"The Last Great Adventure is You" profound right?...
4. My bank account reached $0.00 (my American keyboard doesn't have a pound sign) yay being a poor grad student on meager student loans and a rapidly dropping savings account.
5. I received feedback on my paper (the one due Monday) and it was the WORST I think I've ever done on a paper. From her feedback, I'm surprised my professor didn't fail me (yes, it was that bad apparently), however, this is the class I most despise, so I don't know how much I actually care.
6. Today my face decided to go through middle school puberty again (I love it when it does that) and explode in breakouts, not to mention grow a HUGE pimple RIGHT when my nose piercing is. Which means all day it looked like I had a MASSIVE amount of puss oozing out of my nose ring (can I die yet?!) (mom, please don't comment, I know you hate the nose ring).
7. The small amount I've been able to read Harry Potter this week has only deepened my state of depression (The Deathly Hallows isn't the happiest book on the planet)

8. In my feeble attempt at growing out my hair I have reached the do-or-die phase which means bad hair days everyday. At this point, I guess I'm committed.

I think that's it.. I'll probably think of more as we go on, slash maybe they were too awful I just blocked them from my memory already.

Now that I have thoroughly humiliated myself, I shall take you through the small rays of light that shined through my otherwise dark and dreary week:
1. I got a HUGE package from my friend which contained chocolate, cheez-its, and candy corn (yum)

It also had fun pics of my friends that I hung on my wall :) now my room feels like MY room
2. Going to that dumb gallery put me right by Borough Market, which means twice this week I ate YUMMY Ethiopian food that was cheap and kept me full the rest of the day.

3. Borough Market is located near other things in London, like Tower Bridge, St. Paul's, and the Tate Modern, so I had one of those "Oh my gosh I live in London" moments, which was much needed.

Bubbles on Millennium Bridge
St. Paul's Cathedral
4. My friend MADE me get out of bed yesterday and go for a run, which was much much needed and long overdue, and we ran through Brompton Cemetery, which is stunningly serene.

5. I went to my first internship appointment this morning and it reminded me why I'm doing all this awful grad school work. It will be worth it! (hopefully)
6. I got to see an old friend and make a new friend in Cambridge today.
7. I saw the MOST AMAZING concert tonight by the Royal College of Music, which one of my friends performed in. It was, by far, my favorite concert I've ever been to.

So, now that I've given you the basics, let us dive deeper into my insanely busy day today. Shall we?

So, I woke up at 7am this morning (still can't believe I got up with the first alarm, who am I?) to make my internship meeting, then rushed to Kings Cross Station to catch my train to Cambridge.

Kings Cross always finds a way to blow my mind!
Here I met a dashing young man by the name of Blake, who swept me off to Cambridge. Our meeting today is a perfect example of just how small the world actually is, long story short, Blake and I have many mutual friends and are both from the Amarillo area, he happens to be studying his masters in Birmingham and we both know Austin, who is an old friend of mine and is studying in Cambridge. I'm super excited to have another friend over here from the Texas Panhandle.

Anyways, thankfully Blake had been to Cambridge before because I didn't look up any of my usual trip advisor recommendations to sight see and Austin had class until 1. So, Blake took me to the market square, and Kings College, where they have an AMAZING chapel.

The market in the square (reminded me somewhat of Prague for some strange reason)
Entrance to Kings College
AMAZING chapel
Interior of AMAZING chapel
Interior of AMAZING chapel
We met Austin and got lunch, went to see where Austin lives, walked along the "backs" which is where the punting happens (kind of like the gondolas in Venice), went into a few more College Cathedrals, and to an Art Museum (to appease me). Then we got afternoon tea and I jumped back on the train to London. It was a SUPER short visit in Cambridge, but I'm sure I'll be back. Plus, I got asked for directions by some lost tourists while on my way to the station, so I think it's safe to say I fit in quite nicely!

Another College we walked through (they all started to blur together)
Strolling along the backs (I think that's how you say it)

Bridge of Sighs, modeled after the bridge in Venice.
ITS FALL!!! Be still my beating heart.
I went back to London so quickly to catch a concert at the Royal College of Music. It was brilliantly mind blowing. I don't know how to talk about classical music academically or critically, so I feel like I can't do it justice. However, it was hands down the best concert I've ever been to. They had an Orchestra, and a Chorus, and Opera singers. It was phenomenal. For all you music gurus out there, they played Aurora, by W Lloyd Webber, and Symphony no 2 'Resurrection', by Mahler. Mind. Blown.

The brilliant concert at RCM
With that being said, today was insanely packed, but it is always such a relief to get out of London. For some reason, I quickly forget how relaxing and refreshing it is to get out of the city (and meet up with familiar faces). It was exactly what I needed before my busy week ahead. Hope your week wasn't as awful as mine! Thanks for helping me remind myself of all the good things that happened this week too!

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