English Breakfasts and Touchdowns

English agreement- “yeahyeahyeah”

Breakfast with Jiyeon and Martin. My friend Jiyeon so impressed that you know and LIKE Kimchi, Mama! :D You’ll have to talk to her about it. She was telling me how all the Korean moms get together to make Kimchi for the year. She’s excited to meet you. Everyone is excited to meet all of you!

I have a list of classes we can go to if you get here early enough. If not, we can still do old ATT tower.

Also, the Queen is coming to Leicester for her “jubilee” on Thursday.

Getting into a great groove. Went running then went to dinner and scarfed down some food. Came home, took a shower and then went back to dinner. :P Brought a Tupperware container with me and packed a baked potato, two falafel burgers and corn and peas for later. The whole of the table watched me do this. I am not exaggerating. They eagerly watched and commentated on the process. :P Got a coffee, got a portable cup from the study room, which I thought myself very clever for discovering, and everyone was in awe with my carefully planned steps. Haha. I guess we have nothing better to do. Sat with Martin and Bertrand and told Bertrand to give me a new French name to call him since I have mastered Bertrand. My French name is Martin. Haha. Went to a current events politics class today with my Chinese friend, and apparently Marin is in that class too! Talked about the lecture and Bertrand and I laughed because the lecturer was a lecturer we had listened to before at a politics event. He was really pro Iraq war, and acted like he knew what was best for everyone in the world. Bertrand was like, “He has never been to Iraq, who is he to judge?” and I thought that was so true. Exactly what irked me about him too. So we reminisced about our hatred for him. Lovely dinner. :D Haha. I was wearing flip flops, and kept moving them closer to Martin’s jacket during our conversation, and he was barely participating in the conversation because he was so focused on moving the sweatshirt, inch by inch, away from my venomous feet. Haha.

Me and Bertrand going to meet at a park on our runs one of these days and have a picnic. Also, we are looking for somewhere to rent tennis racquets… (sp?)

Tonight meeting up with the girls to discuss plans. So so so stressful. Ugh. But exciting. Plans for Dublin might change as Jay found out the Koreans are going next week instead of over break. I still have to go somehow, though.

My English professor always takes up the WHOLE podium when we speaks. Arms resting on each side of the wide podium. Gives an air of authority. Appearance has a lot to do as well where rhetoric is concerned.

Elections at Leic Uni this week. Harassed ALL DAY by people campaigning. Couldn’t walk anywhere without pamphlets shoved in your face and couldn’t sit down without some aspiring politician sliding over next to you and trying to get your vote.

Speaking of gender social norms: in Charles Wilson today after lunch and saw a boy awkwardly pushing revolving door for a girl. Come inside discussing etiquette in a serious tone: “Technically the man is supposed to open the door and let the lady in first. But with revolving doors it makes more sense for the man to go first to start the door in motion and the woman can follow.” Only in England. :P

Etiquette is still SO important over here, in a traditional and a contemporary way. They DO distinguish a lot more between the sexes over here. Not sure how I feel about it. Nice to be “taken care of,” but as long as society knows women really do not need taken care of. But do we? Satire on the Daily Show last week about how women should expect either protection or rape from men. Do we need men to protect us from other men? Should we if we do? Where did the perception come from if we don’t?

Cutest little lady served me at lunch. “Alright, love.” Saw her a bit later when I got coffee (this is my 8 hour school day, Ma and Pa. Only day of the week I let myself BUY coffee… :P) and she was all cute and talkative and friendly. I hope when I get older I can fake a British accent well, because I would LOVE to be a little old British lady. Calling everyone “love” and being sassy and opinionated.

In the physics building for my Politics class. Professors with their heads down rushing around clinking tea mugs together.

TA’s in their little mini offices working their hearts out.

I know I said the other day that I think I am done with school… but you know me… today I know I am destined to be a professor.

But honestly, unless I get a really good internship somewhere exotic, I want to continue my studies. I absolutely love the collegiate atmosphere. And I feel I have really only BEGUN to learn about what I want to know about the world.

Lunch with Jisu  and then saw my Chinese friends and they ate with us and I picked up a bit more Mandarin slang. I won’t burden your innocent souls with the phrases I am picking up… :P but I can tear ANYONE apart in Korean, French or Mandarin dialogue now.

Wearing tights and skinny jeans and had to have Eva help me yank off my Wellies in the computer lab so I could focus on my work.

Eva wearing a book on her head so that knowledge will “flow into her brain,” and we are looking for topics for our English essays due before Easter break. Great English seminar. Read and discussed Fantomina by Elizabeth Haywood. Really really great discussions. Fiery gender debate throughout, restored my faith in British people’s knowledge of 21st century in contrast to yesterday morning.

Politics class great, still doing Rouseau and talked about the general good and how if you are not for the “general good” you are a “non-citizen” or a

Kicked out of the computer lab! Just when I had finally gotten situated. I refused to put my shoes back on til they were physically FORCING me outside. :P

All other computer labs full so instead Eva and I went to the oversized book section of the library and sat on the floor and talked surrounded by huge atlases of the world. :D

Anyway. Where was I went I was forced out of my oasis earlier this morning? Ah, yeah. Politics. Sorry I talk about classes so much, but I am absolutely in love. :)

Rousseau has the idea of the “general will” which says that you have a personal will and a general will, and the general will is the one that should be followed (to enhance and expand freedom), even if it is not the majority decision. Interesting stuff. Love that class. Really like my teacher. Have a lot of respect for her. We also, fittingly, discussed women’s rights today. Rousseau was extreme in his views of the domestic wife, justifying his opinion with the statement that women belong in “private,” the home, and men belong in public, otherwise known as politics. So happy we had a female politician teaching us these views. A quiet “stick it to the man moment”. :)

Earlier this morning, don’t know what I was thinking, NEVER know what I am thinking when it concerns sleep, but I successfully managed to turn off my alarm every ten minutes for two straight hours. And I even got up and walked across the room to turn it off the first few times! At least I assume I did, as I strategically placed my alarm across the room last night so I might (cross your fingers) actually wake up when it goes off. :P But to no avail. I cannot even remember getting up and pressing snooze, all I know is the alarm resumed it’s customary place right within reaching distance of my cocoon when I finally got up. Thanks to Emily. I was cranky and told her “I’m not GOING to breakfast!” but then remembered I had a 9 am today and it was already 8:30. Realized I would miss breakfast and was in a RIGHT bad mood. Actually made it to class on time today, somehow. My Latin teacher was inspiring as usual. (Or maybe it’s not the teacher and just the language that consumes me?? I was REMINISCING about learning Latin grammar in David Watson library at KU this morning. WHAT is wrong with me?? I really like Latin. And I like it more and more the more I practice it. :)

Anyway, my beautiful and intelligent Italian Latin teacher was a bit off today, and halfway through our two hour course let us know that he was playing football last night and is a bit concussed. :O WHAT? Just said it like that, I’m a bit concussed. Haha, in a dark humor way. Poor guy. He really was out of it. GO TO THE NHS!!

One thing I found interesting that we talked about in Latin today is that there is a bit of an elitist connotation with knowing Latin in England, predominantly because Latin is taught only in private schools, so it implies wealth or social class a bit. When people say they took Latin it’s almost like showing a badge of honor in a way. It had a stigma for awhile as being a sort of white supremacist subject in England as well. But it is becoming less so as we are finding it more practical in everyday life and it is being considered on being taught at public schools in the future as Latin REALLY helps with grammar. (Even if you can’t tell from my chicken scratch writing. :P) Also, Latin and classical studies are rising in popularity and necessity today as there is a resurgence in respect for the classics. In America, more so than Britain, there is a great demand for Latin teachers. Not only is it easier to understand other languages, but it is such an analytic language that it looks very good for politics, law and international relation students to take.

But I have noticed that there is a bit of a different reaction over here for taking Latin than over in the US. Maybe because we take such a variety of things back home that no one is really shocked by ANYTHING you take, but here when I tell people I am learning Latin they are either like, “WHY?” or else they are really excited and impressed.

Just got back from the library and got a copy of Lucretius’ De Rerum Natura; On the Nature of Things. I have ALWAYS wanted to read it, I love Lucretius. He was, as far as I know, an extension of Epicurean thought. :) Excited to read the book. I am going to write my textual analysis on it for Latin which is DUE IN A FEW WEEKSSSS!! I am going to have to bring a load of books with me to Germany! (As much as I can shove into my carry on at least. ;P)

Also checked out a bunch of books mentioned in our Satire to Sensibility lecture today. Interesting interesting stuff I have never ever been exposed to. And I am in love with it.

British, Nigerian, Canadian and Saudi Arabian banter during French class. Best spent money since I have been here. Love that class. So much.

You are allowed to say, “He’s a bad driver,” or “She’s a bad driver,” but you are not allowed to make offensive sweeping generalizations such as “They are horrible drivers; they must be women,” and expect it to pass smoothly. This is the 21st century, not sure where you grew up but this is as unacceptable as saying someone is the way they are because of the color of their skin. It is archaic and ignorant. Did you grow up in the Medieval ages? That’s sad and ridiculous that your did, but now you need to realize and learn about reality. Yes, it has been proved that women have worse spatial positioning than men, but it has ALSO been proven that women have less vehicular accidents than men. “That’s because there are less of them on the road.” No, people do PROPORTIONAL  studies these days. You are allowed to disrespect yourself and body but when it is taken into the public arena it becomes everyone else’s problem as well. There is a reason why it evokes firey opposition from fellow students on the street  at 7:30 am. It is NOT okay to say. Attitudes like this are precisely WHY women are held back in the “man’s world.” But you say our gender’s not held back? That we are doing as much as we ever could and we are actually stepping TOO far out of our gender roles these days? You can live in your dream but do not, DO NOT, poison the air around us with that opinion. Respect yourself as a woman. And if you can’t do that, at least respect the fact that no one else wants to hear that view in the 21st century and keep it to yourself.

Love reaching out and feeling the gates/trees/leaves/ground on my jogs. I am sure I look like a complete nutter. Have to remind and prove to self I am really across the ocean though, being able to touch the earth all the way across the world. :) Remind myself this is not just a picture on the internet anymore. Fully REAL European people walking past me on the sidewalk. Live lives on this island just as real to them as Manhattan Kansas was to me growing up. :) Can FEEL the bark of the trees rough against my palm and the ground hard under my feet. And that’s amazing for me for some reason. I remember when I was flying over on the plane, when we landed in England, the thing I was most excited about was getting to TOUCH the ground when I got off. Had never touched English earth before! Leaned down touched the ground right after I got off the plane.

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