Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Paris and Grading and Mothers Oh My

I appear to be getting worse at this, oh dear. Another month gone and we're approaching the end of term. It's insane. If I were only here for a semester, next Friday would be it. So thank god thank god thank god--I really have just started to feel fully settled within the last month, I would be beyond upset if I had to leave now.

I know my earlier posts gave the impression that I bummed around a bit at the beginning of the year, and that's because I did. But within the last month I've become incredibly busy. I had a midterm essay, another presentation, and I've been rehearsing like crazy.

British grading is different--the B to A range is 57-69. So an A+ is a 70 and above, and according to IU's handbook it's rare to get a 70 or anything higher. I didn't know what to expect for the midterm essay, especially since (a)my teacher had made it quite clear that she thinks (typically) Americans are crap at writing essays, and (b) I finished mine the day before. So I was pretty surprised when I GOT AN 80!!!!! I did a little dance. And I'm sorry, but I bragged. My head is a little bigger. I also got a 65 on that initial in-class presentation, and I need to go get the feedback for the other presentation (which was for my child development class, it was on attachment).

I did celebrate bonfire night--the picture is at the top. Oli took me to the bonfire on Tyler Hill, which was insane. I have never seen such a large bonfire, and it had a Guy Fawkes dummy in it (which was super creepy). But it has been getting dark so early that the whole thing was over by 9pm. Nice.

I've also been a bit busy with travel. Paris was incredible. It was beautiful and romantic and everything you expect it to be. Our first day we got on the metro and a busker stepped on and played the French horn accompanied by a tape recording of an accordion. We saw the Arc de Triumph, the Eiffel Tower, the Champs Elysées, the Louvre, Shakespeare and Company, the Notre Dame, and the Moulin Rouge. We ate croissants, escargot(!), crepes, plaits de fromage, quiche, macaroons, and creme brulée. And we drank cappuccinos, hot chocolate, and various wines. And we all came back feeling about 20 lbs heavier, but totally satisfied.

My mom came to visit this past week, and we started in London. We were both so tired, she had arrived at 7 am on Saturday. But we powered through and saw Westminster Abbey, walked through the Christmas market along the Thames, and walked Tower Bridge. We also went to Oxford Circus and Camden market. In Canterbury we visited the Cathedral and explored the town a little bit more.The madre got me fairy lights, some socks, and a really cute vest. We also had Hanukkah dinner with my friends and housemates on the second night, where we made latkes and lit a makeshift menorah. It was all very lovely.

Now I'm prepping for this show. It's tonight! I also need to start researching for my 4000 word term paper due next Friday. I'm an idiot. IU chose me as an overseas blogger, which means I'll have to be writing at least 3 posts a month--I dunno if my life is interesting enough for that, but we'll see. Wish me luck! Xx