Rainy Days

There's something about London that can make me appreciate it even when I'm walking home in the rain with a heavy backpack and two bags of groceries. I've never had this same type of appreciation while walking back to Georgetown's campus from Safeway, and I can't quite pinpoint why. Maybe there's nothing along the way to see? I don't know.

It's a rainy, cold day and I'm still in a good mood. I went climbing at the Castle today and met up with a friend from work. His name is Gabor and he's Hungarian and we both get a kick out of losing things in translation. When he was finished in the changing room, he said, "I'm worse than a bride." Number one. I couldn't figure out he said the word "worse" for a while and number two, I had to have him explain the saying. I'm slowly getting better at climbing, but I'm also noticing that the heights make my palms sweat more than when I first started. I wonder why.

I can't find normal "American" cheese at the grocery store. I went to the cheese aisle and they had blocks. This was my third attempt. Also, in fun news, I've discovered an American-ish bar is only 10 minutes from my dorm. I went to the bar (at another location) after work on Saturday night only to see the Michigan vs. Ohio State NCAA game. Pretty unexpected. Then I had to endure taunts of "Rugby is a real man's sport" by an annoying co-worker. This rugby versus American football debate doesn't actually exist. Most Americans abroad agree that rugby is cool, but to concede that it is cooler than American football is rare. They are simply different and I will leave it at that. My American pride is strong in London and I'm not about to let some arse tell me repeatedly that football players look gay in tights.

One last thing. Hold two fingers up as to signal "two beers, please." No, you just said "Piss off" or something. I forget. I hold two fingers up a lot and it's kind of a problem. Alright. That's all for now. A full week ahead and Thanksgiving! We will probably go to this pub called The Monument and order the turkey with stuffing and cranberry sandwich, since the bird flu has pushed turkey prices OUT OF CONTROL.

Also, I'm working on getting more postcards out. If your name is Grandma or Grandpa, one is coming as soon as I think of something unique and interesting to write. I've gotten no mail from overseas (ahem, parents). When my aunt gave me a some stuff from home, I half expected to see something special in there. Alas. It's not actually making me sad. That said, I miss everybody and hope Thanksgiving is a much deserved break for everyone working so hard. Talk to you soon.

Thursday Night Wrap-Up

I mentioned a few posts ago that my favorite view of London was West from the Waterloo Bridge. Well, this is it. You can kind of see everything all at once and as the bus moves across the bridge, everything is framed a little differently. Here, you can see the Golden Jubilee Bridge, Big Ben and Parliament, and a bit of the London Eye. And the clouds look pretty good as well. Eugenio took this picture, but it's what I look at every day on the bus. Jealous?

It's a bit chilly and I find myself pressing the Boost button on my heater constantly. It turns on automatically if it falls below 16 degrees Celsius (60.8 degrees Fahrenheit!), otherwise, you have to press a button every hour. That's no good for me. I am intolerant of indoor temperatures below 65, but I suppose it'll toughen me up a little. The weather is starting to cool down meaning that under no circumstances will I be dressing up and wearing skirts unless absolutely necessary. A friend of mine is in town from Oxford and he called me from a bar to ask me to meet up. I knew the bar was more bar and less pub (read: more classy, less casual), and pretty immediately turned him down. I'm willing to bear the cold for short walks to and from places. But for a half hour or more of transit? No. I'll see him this weekend anyway; I'm not that mean or lazy.

Today, I have sustained myself on two TV dinners, a bowl of cereal, and the rest of a bag of crisps (chips). I chewed two pieces of gum as well. I love gum, but when I choose to chew it here, it's a very conscious choice. "Will I eat soon and will I have to spit it out before it loses flavor? Do I need fresher breath? Do I really need to chew a piece now?" So... chewing two pieces today, in my opinion, was extremely extravagant. I'm living it uppppp. I finally did some work , probably the most consecutive hours of reading I've done in 5 months. Insane right? It's still not the workload of Georgetown at all, but some of the material is more challenging. I think they might be on to something here. I'm getting smarter, presumably, by doing less work. Amazing. I can go rock climbing 2-3 times during the school week! Speaking of rock climbing, I broke in my new pair of shoes on Wednesday. I was a little timid wearing my own pair of shoes and even more timid about having my own chalk bag... so timid that I kept my chalk bag in my locker. It was a good day though and as usual, I have big, colorful bruises that indicate I'm more hardcore than I am in reality. Oh well.

I have an interview tomorrow for a job to make some extra cash. So if I don't write about being employed within the next two weeks, it means I've not been hired. I'm excited for money, because then I can more guiltlessly do things that are fun. I want to go to concerts or something. The prices for shows are similar to U.S. prices, but then you multiply by the exchange rate of two and are instantly depressed. Alright. I need to work on an earlier bedtime. Good night.