Saturday, September 29, 2007

Its getting chilly

Greetings Friends,

So, the last few days have been slower than the service at the Indianola Dairy Queen. (Which is slow, if you've never been there!)

Friday was the beginning of the weekend. I'm pretty sure I can handle this no class on Friday thing,and of course I spent my time wisely, sleeping, playing on the internet and shopping!

We found this freakin' amazing shop on Oxford St. called "Primark" and its CHEAP CHEAP CHEAP, I'm talking 4 pounds for a t-shirt. BUT the place was busier than times square on New Years. I'm not even kidding you, I swear the queue to check out was a mile long :( and the store was a wreck with piles of clothes everyone and it was ridiculous. BUT worth it. I also finally found the messenger-type bag I was looking for and got it for even cheaper than I was going to at the market.

We hit up a new club last night called "tiger tiger". It was fun, with different rooms with music and big chairs and couches everywhere, best part is it was free cover until 10!

Today was another jam packed day of excitingness. I slept in until 1, got up , did dishes and attempted to clean our super nasty kitchen that our lovely janitors never seem to clean,ate some food and then took a nap. After my nap I got up, showered,ate again, played on the internet and then decided to do some more city walking. I walked around for awhile, rode the tube a bit and it was PACKED :( and did some grocery shopping. I bought a bulk bag of pasta for like 1.40, and seriously, it will probably last me until the end of October. I also bought some sauce and other things so I don't just eat rice and butter and spaghetti and butter all the time and end up dying at the age of 21 because of clogged arteries.

Back to the nasty kitchen. Seriously, it gets gross at times and its not even because we're a bunch of slobs. It's because our cleaning people never sweep or mop. OR if they do, they'll just mop without sweeping or anything,so then we get a WET dirty floor. Also, our bathroom where the shower is has mold growing on the wall and when someone asked if it could maybe get cleaned, since yea, last time I checked mold gets you sick. They just painted over it. So, yeah, we're pretty much living in the Ritz Carlton.

BUT, to be fair, its not 100% all bad!! We have our fancy little garden and the kitchen area and we get our sheets washed once a week which is a heck of alot more times then they would get washed if I was back on campus.

The weather is finally and unfortunatly turning into London weather :( The last couple days have been cold and wet and Oh-so-not fun. But, its not horrible. It hasn't been a downpour and luckily when I have went outside its still warm enough to just wear a sweater. So,I could handle it like this, if it gets much colder I will probably get a little angry.

Room G2 (Chelsea, Dana, Meghan and Emily) have recently adopted a new pet, Steve-the snail. He is currently residing in a bowl and they feed him fresh leaves from the garden everyday and then tonight they found him a new lady friend. Apparently though, last night Steve escaped and ended up on a shoe I had left in the room. So, I can't wait to see how long he lasts. Lets just hope no one feeds him tortilla chips.

I got a little dishearted today, while I was on my London city adventure. I'm standing near the doors of the tube and its already packed and yet people would still push and shove their way on and I even got hit by one ladies bags and NONE of these people were like "excuse me", "sorry" or even/god forbid "Oh,there isn't room, I'll wait for the next train." It upset me bacause, and I know its more than just this city, so many people are just about themselves and what they're doing and where they are going and can only see that goal and don't give a care about anyone else, and it made me sad.

But, I think thats about it for now. This entry is getting about as tiring as reading about Britney's latest mental issue, so I'll retire for the night.



Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Virginia Woolf, television game shows,more commuting adventures, and I should warn you this ones a novel

Greetings Friends,

So, I must admit I feel a little special knowing I have somewhat of a loyal fanbase to my blog. GRANTED, a majority of the readers are either caring and loving parents checking up on the sons/daughters adventures in London, or amazing admissions people back at Simpson checking to see how their favorite overseas ambassador is doing. Its nice all the same to know I'm getting read.

Yesterday marked the official beginning of classroom time here in London. The first 3 weeks had all been a part of our "British Culture and Society Class" and learning about its history(hence all the musuem visiting), culture differences etc. Now that class is over, we're adjusted to life here in the city,for the most part and its time to get back to class. Lucky for me, on Tuesday/Thursday I only have the english class "Virginia Woolf and the Bloomsbury Group." Which while I have been excitied for it, I still really wasn't ready to start classes, I mean who is? But, it turned out to be pretty swell. I realized how long its been since my brain has actually had to think and link things together and get involved in an actual intellectual discussion and I enjoyed it *pause- as I push up my nerd glasses*.

After class I came back and it was nice because the house was quiet and empty. In the afternoon class on Tues/Thurs the econ class goes on and there's only 4 of us that are NOT taking it. So it was good to get a break from people around the house and have it sorta to myself. Thats another thing with this trip is its a CONSTANT being surrounded by people. You room with other people,hang out with other people, travel with other people,shop with other people, the streets, tube and bus have LOTS of other people. Sometimes it nice to just try and escape and hear your own thoughts again. But, for the most part its nice and I haven't gotten too stressed/bogged down by other people,homework,the city.etc.

Today, we had our art class and it was another stimulating brain exercise. We visited the "Tate Modern" museum which is one of the largest modern art museums in the world. We looked at a Piscasso painting and James (our prof for the course) told us some of the symbolizm and etc. that Pableohad put in there and it was pretty interesting. We also looked at a couple works of his rival "Matisse" and even some advant garde type sculptures, like a urinal that had been placed on its side and signed by the artist and is now world famous.

After the museum it was lunch time and then we had to hop on the tube to try and find our way to another part of the city for our afternoon meeting with the volunteer agency we are working with for our service learning course.

The meeting turned out to actually be a waste of 3 hours of my life. We went there and expected to find out more about what we'd be doing for our community service, some of the areas we could work in etc. We had filled out forms on-line for the agency that listed our interests and what we wanted to do and the like beforehand. WELL, turns out there was a bit of miscommunication and the lady from the agency made it sound like it was going to be close to impossible for us to find volunteer work without getting a background type check, which takes forever to do. As well as the fact that most places needing volunteers want them for at least 3 months and we're only here until December. So, we mostly listened to her trying figure things out and tell us what we wouldn't be able to do. Luckily, JP had done some other contacting and a few us got things set up. I get to help build a fundraiser from the ground up with 4 of the other kids on the trip for a homeless shelter. I'm pretty pumped about it and think it'll be great. BUT yea, after the 3 hour meeting we headed back to the flat, so we could get directions to our next stop for the day.

We had seen in the papers an ad for "free tickets to a taping of "Golden Balls" which is a television game show. Chelsea e-mailed them and got 4 tickets to the show. So, we figure out where we need to go and head to the tube stop to hop on. After waiting for 10 minutes to finally get the train we hop on, sit there for like another 5 waiting for it to take off and then we hear a voice over the speaker system. "Ladies and gentlemen this train has been taken off of service, please clear the train. Sorry for the inconvenience."

Well, we're already pushing time as it is, its around 5:40 and our seats were only guaranteed until 6:15, then they'd give them away. So, we finally catch another train that would take us to the next stop, where we could switch lines and get on the circle line, which would take us up to "notting hill gate" where we could switch off again to get on the "central" line which would finally take us to our destination. So, we get to High St. Kensington and the circle line train is PACKED and we definitally couldn't fit on. BUT luckily, a minute later a train showed up that would take us to notting hill. We jump on there and get to Notting hill fine and then switch lines and we were a okay. Turns out we ended up being fine on time and we got there at like 6.

But it just reminds me about how lame the tubes can be sometime. ESPECIALLY the stupid district line, it is officially my least favorite line. It's always slow,really bumpy and had all sorts of issues.

But, we go the show and it was alot of fun. It was most definitally interesting to see how a game show is taped and how NOT SMOOTH its actually taped. There are lots of stops and starts and etc. They had a "warm up guy" who kept us entertained and told us the worst one-liners ever. It was also funny to see how perverted the brits are. There were alot of dirty jokes/comments made by the warm up guy and a few by the contestants. Of course, I took no offense and it found it entertaining.

Anyway, the gameshow was called "Golden Balls" and it was sort of like a game of poker with different amounts of money, and you vote eachother off like on "Weakest Link". Its really hard to describe and so I won't even waste your or my time. BUT it comes down to the end and you have these two people trying to build up this "jackpot" with all the money they've collected throughout the show and they dont want to get any "killers" because they take off alot of money. WELL, at the end they had like 26,500 pounds in their jackpot...then the big moment comes. The contestants can either choose to split the money or steal the money and thats the trick. If both people chose split, they split the money. If one person chooses split and the other steal, the person who chose steal the money gets it all and the person who chose spilt gets zilch and then if they both choose steal, everyone loses. So, they get to the end. Its this old guy, a retired taxi driver and this mom in her 50's. The mom pretty much dominated and won them a majority of the moment and they were both like. LETS SPLIT THE MONEY and etc. So, it comes time to reveal their decisions and the jerky old guy chose steal and the lady chose split and so she lost and I felt really bad for her :(

After the show,we hopped on the tube (no issues this time ) and got back home . I did my english homework, talked about more weekend trip plans, ate and now im writing this blog.

SO, yea that catches you up on whats been going on.

The weather is getting colder here and its starting get a little lame :(

BUT, I need to hurry up and publish this post before my computer dies ,which its about ready to do.

Hope all is well.


Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Monday, September 24, 2007

A Philisophical Conversation

SO, my minds been busy the last few days with a bunch of random thoughts about different things and etc. and I got to thinking about the whole "fate v destiny" debate.

I got to thinking about it with a few things. Like, I personally do believe in the motto/phrase "everything happens for a reason." But, if a person believes in that, is it possible to believe that you're in charge of your own destiny? Where's the line?

Also, if everything happens for a reason, does absolutly everything happen for a reason? Is every single second of our lives pre-planned out and we really have no control over it. So, when we think we're making a decision, we actually aren't, but rather just following the steps of a pre-determined path set up for us by whatever deity we choose to believe in.

Are there only certain pivitol points in our lives that are pre-determined and so when we say "everything happens for a reason" we're talking about the big things. Like, breaking off an engagment, death, who we get married to, etc. Then all the little things in our lives are our own choice and have no actual effect on the outcome of life. Sort of like, reality TV shows. Where they cut out "certain portions of the game,which have no effect on the results".

So, if you stick with the former mode of thinking; that everything happens for a reason and really our lives are essentially a movie pressed on play the moment of our birth, then its kind of pointless to get stressed, because you have no control and things are going to happen the way they are no matter what you do.

Then going off that, I really have work to do, because I stress ALOT. about things, like mad. About anything and everything and yet, I do believe that everything happens for a reason. I think it's partly a security blanket type mantra, because by thinking that, you feel better because you know that everything will somehow be okay in the end.

Its kind of like when you get gut feelings about things-good or bad- and something is going on in your life and its really driving you nuts and stressing you out and you worry about it ALOT, but deep down you know its all going to be okay. But then you wonder if you really feel and somehow know its all going to be okay, is it because it is going to turn out alright. OR are you thinking you feel that way because you want to feel that way and console yourself a little?

BUT, anyway. Sorry for this random thoughtful blog. Its not really London or college related, more life in general things. But yea, it was just a whole thought pattern that crossed my mind when I was on my walk tonight.


Another Day In London

Greetings Friends,

It was yet another day in London and this one was most definitally not exciting, not that its a bad thing. Just it was a lazy day.

I woke up at like 11:30 and then had to wait to take a shower (yay for sharing 1 shower with 9 people :( ) After the shower, I had some spaghetti and then tried to work on homework.

We had to take a trip over to JP and Elyse's today to visit with them, just kind of as a round-up of our first 3 weeks of sight seeing, as an end to our first class "Introduction to British Culture and Society". AND once again we had a commuting adventure.

We get to the tube station and see a ton of people walking out and then we hear a loudvoice speaker saying "Ladies and Gentleman, May I have your attention please. Due to a reported emergency, will everyone please leave the station immediatly". NO CLUE what was going down, I'm sure I'll get to read about it in tomorrows paper. So, we then had to walk/find our way to another tube stop, which we ended up doing just fine and we were A-OK from there.

Our little discussion group thing was okay. We sat around and talked about Englands history and the culture differences and etc. etc. and then had pizza and then they showed us where we will go for classes, which start tomorrow.

Then I got back to the flat, ate some ice cream and had some chicken tikka masala from a packet. lol..Turns out its DISGUSTING! After that I've just sat around and wrote in my journal, blogged and the like.

Till next time


Sunday, September 23, 2007

{and another whitty title goes here}

Greetings Friends!

The last couple days have been decently busy without being too overwhelming.

Yesterday we helped out with a "Race 4 the Cure" event. It was a minor event finding the place. We got to the actual site just fine. It was only 1 tube stop and 1 bus stop away from home.BUT we get to the park and the track we thought the event was at, but didn't see anything saying it was going on. No big ballons or banners or tiker-tape parades or anything. So we go into the building that was at the track and tell him we're there for the Race 4 the Cure event, and he gave us this complete blank stare and acted like we were stupid. SO, we leave and walk around for alil bit, before running into our other Simpson friends and JP and Elyse and turns out that the race WAS at the track and the receptionist was just an idiot.

Then we had to stand around for awhile before the lady who ran the show finally showed up and told us what to do, and we just did a bunch of random jobs to help set up for the event; making goody bags,putting up flags,banners etc, blowing up ballons, setting up tents and etc. It only lasted a few hours and the weather was nice and I felt like a good person for the day.

After we got back, I went to the Camden Market to look for a better bag than the one I have and found nothing,except a bunch of creepy punk-wannabe's.

When I got back I showered and got all cleaned up and then finished my Simpsonian article, (check for it on on Thursday!) Then went to "The Rocket" to meet up with everyone else and get some food. WELL, turns out they shut down the kitchen at 6 on the weekends, which makes no sense, when they close it down at 10 on the weekdays and the weekends are even busier on the weekends. So, I was minorly bitter. BUT I went to Burger King and I got a Sweet Chili Chicken Baguette, and it was delicious.

TODAY we made a trip to Thorpe Park whpich is an amusement park and it was SWWEEET!! They had some super amazing awesome roller coasters. My favorite was the one called "The Stealth" and its kinda in the shape of a big oval, and one end goes up 200 ft in the air. But it starts you out and takes you up to 80 mph in just 2 seconds!! It was a nice break from the city and relaxing and alot of fun.

The rest of the night I've sat around and wrote,wrote,wrote. I've realized I write a whole lot. I write here on my WONDERFUL BLOG which I absolutly LOVE doing (no really, I really do enjoy it...promise), then I write in another journal I have, then I have to do journals for class and homework. But, I don't mind it. I just feel like I get a bit repetitive.

Tomorrow is going to be spent doing homework and catching up on that and then we have a group thing over at JP and Elyse's flat and have pizza!!

So, thats essentially it. Lots of exciting times going on in the city of London.


Friday, September 21, 2007

A theatre nerds dream

Greetings Friends,
Today was a dream come true for Chelsea, Anne and I; we visited "The Globe Theatre." Truth be told, for me at least, it wasn't super,awesome,crazy, amazing or anything. There weren't angels singing and a glorious light, like I imagined BUT it was intersesting when I sat back and actually thought about where I was. Our tour guide was fun and she told us some interesting things about the space and then we got to walk around and take picture of everything.

After that a group of us made the trek to Paddington Station so Chelsea and Meghan could get a Paddington bear. Then when we got there we found out the stand was closed for at least another week, so we headed back to Earl's Cout. I then took a nap for a little bit. After the nap we worked on our fall break plans and found flights etc. Which turned out to be alot of NOT FUN and too much work. But we're almost set. As of now,we're going to Munich for a few days,flying from there to Venice, spending a few days in Venice and then getting to Brussels(how and when is to be determined).

After that we sat around and chilled and relaxed and i am now working on my article for The Simpsonian and then hitting the sack, because tomorrow we GET to help with a "Relay 4 Life" event.

-Leading supermakets are facing up to hundreds of millions of dollars in fines after it was found out they've been ripping off customers when it comes to dairy and egg prices. It is assumed that they started doing this is 2002 or 2003. by sharing confidential information with eachother and then keeping prices artificially high without passing on profits to the farmers.

-Britney Spears has been told by a Judge that she must go to parenting classes if she wishes to maintain custody of her children. the judge also told her and K-Fed that they must lay off the drugs and booze for 12 hours before handling their children.


Thursday, September 20, 2007

And the walking never seems to cease

Greetings Friends,

Wednesday we decided to swtich things up and do some more museum visiting...oh-wait... We started the day off by visiting Wesminster Abby, which to be honest, was a bore and a half. It was minorly interesting and pretty to look at BUT our tour guide gave a few too many details and talked a little too much and I found myself falling asleep while standing up. The most ineresting thing there was finding out that alot of notable people are buried there; Charles Dickens, Rudyard Kipling, TS Elliot, and a few others. They also had a statue honoring William Shakespeare in there and a stone honoring Charles Darwin. Its semi awkward though ,because these "graves" are on the ground and these big stones that have the name of the person engraved are right there under your feet, SO technically you're walking over the dead bodies of these great people from history and I felt a lil guilty.

After the tour of Wesminster,Dana, Chelsea and I headed back home to have lunch and grab a quick power nap before our tour of Parliment. This turned out to be pretty interesting and I enjoyed it alot. It was neat getting to see how another country's government is ran and seeing the room the queen gets ready in for the opening of parliment and etc. Our guide was nice and efficient and told us the facts w.o being too detailed and boring.

When we finished with parliment we walked a bit around the southbank area of London before heading home. Then Chelsea and I went in search of a mobile with no success :(

The rest of night was spent doing a whole lot of nothing, when I really pry should have spent it doing homework.


Today was another fabulous day in the great city of London. The weather has become a bit more London-esque, chilly, windy and a bit on the moist side, but good nothing too ridiculous. Today we went to the Tower of London which is infamous for the torturing and imprisoning of prisonors who were notable (ie: kings, queens and people who have committed treason). Its also home to the crown jewels of England. We spent a couple hours here just walking around looking at everything.

After that we went to Oxford Circus and did some minor shopping, then we went to a Thai buffet and it was actually minory gross. Then we came back home, took another nap and then went to see an AmAZING show...WICKED. I had already seen in it in Chicago a couple years ago and was uber excited to see it again and it was absolulty FANTASTIC!

Then the rest of the night has been alot of lounging around again and i've did a bit of catching up on homework.


This week is recruitment week for Greek Life and its minorly depressing not being able to be there and meet all the new freshman and it'll pry be super awkward coming back into the house and not knowing any of the new neophytes/pledges. but I most definitally wish my brothers the best of luck tonight!!

-Some 14 year old decided to run away from home and make a break for London to visit all the museums. Sources say he was really advanced in school and they think that he ran away,emptied his savings account and bought a 1 way ticket to london and they think he's visiting all the museums here, becuase apparently he's a nerd like that ( they didnt say that, thats my personal twist on it).

Thats about it my dears.

Hope life is still treating you grand!


Tuesday, September 18, 2007

More Museums and the London Dungeon

Hey Friends!

Yesterday we got more museum time yea :S! At the Museum of London which was semi-interesting because it was more child focused and so it was fun things and lots of computer game type things and interactive things we could do, which was great when you have an ADD personality like myself. We also went to the Imperial War museum which was alot more intense and serious,but great never-the-less. The exhibit that definitally impacted me was the Children at War Museum. It was an exhibit dedicated to the children of the war and the kids that got moved to the country or USA so they weren't in the city for the war and how they left home and wouldnt see their parents for YEARS and I just can't believe that. I mean, im 19 and am having trouble knowing I can't see my mommy for 13 weeks, let alone being 5 and leaving your mom for who knows how long. It was just really crazy and sad to read about.

Then the rest of Monday was lounge around and nap time,again. We also went grocery shopping and I now have groceries that should last me for awhile .Mainly carbs; spaghetti,rice,bread,etc. I did splurge though and buy candy and sausages.

Today was a fine day as well. I woke up at like 1:00 and then we went to the LONDON DUNGEON and it was a great time. Its a half amusment park half museum type place. Its all decorated all scary like with gargoyles and gross wax figures and such. They have actors all costumed and make up uped. And you walk through and we learned a bit about the tortue things they used way back then,the black plague, jack the ripper, the great london fire and a few other things. We also rode a couple of ride type things there. it was really cool and a great way to spend the afternoon. After that we chilled for a while before going out to eat at our new favorite hang out "The Rocket".

NOW, we're back and its time for bed, so Drew can get up and go visit Wesminster Abby and the Houses of Parliment.

-London is getting its own Bungalow 8 and it has a super serious strict guest list, some stars have even been rejected.
-Its London Fashion Week here and new steps are being taken when it comes to models. 1) All models must have a written doctors note saying that they have no eating disorder. 2) All models must have proof that they are above 16, no models under the age of 16 are allowed.3) A majority of the shows are now providing the models with boxed brunches that have a well balanced meal, so they models know that eating right is okay and they are still able to stay skinny.

Have a good one.


Sunday, September 16, 2007

We now continue with our regularly scheduled blogging

Greetings Friends!

My apologies for the lack of blogging the past couple days. I wish I could tell you that I have been busy seeing the sites and sounds of London and making friends with all sorts of celebrities and becoming the talk of the own. But I'd be lying. No, instead, while I have done my bit of sight seeing and city touring, I've also just been super lazy the last few days, but I've enjoyed it!

We had Friday off because JP and his family went to Scotland for the weekend. So I got to sleep in and it was sweet. Then most of the afternoon was spent sitting around doing nothing until my friend Anne and I decided to go vist Convent Garden. She had already been there a few times and I hadn't so we were going to visit the shops and see some of the street performers and such. WELL, we get there and remember that CHICAGO is playing at the theatre there and that Kelly Osbourne is in it. So, we check it out and find that tickets are only 20 pounds and decide to go. Turns out Meghan and Emily saw the flyer and decided to go to and they ended up calling Chelsea and Dana and so we all ended up going to CHICAGO and it was amazing. Kelly Osbourne was deece in the show, but the ensemble ROCKED!

PS-When we were out at the clubs Thursday night I was sitting outside getting some fresh air and who pulls up at the stoplight? Kelly Osbourne and she turned and waved at us! I felt special!

After the show we ate out at a cute little diner called "Ed's" which is pretty much a 50's buger joint. I got the Atomic American Fries, which were fries with sides of; salsa,guacamole,sour cream,nacho cheese,chili and ketchup and they were DELICIOUS!

After dinner we went back to our flat and chilled for awhile. Then Dana, Chelsea and I went out and walked around and hung out at a few clubs and places.

Saturday I slept in for a bit, then we went to a couple markets. The first one was very unique. It was home to all sorts of rebel/punk/alternative clothing and music and etc. People had the faux-hawk/mo-hawk thing and colored hair and lip/nose/eyebrow tounge rings, the baggy pants and yeah, the "normal" ghetto-punk-I hate society look. Not, that Im being stereotypical or anything. After we got done looking around there we hopped on the tube to go to the "Portabella Road" market, WELL turns out that they had closed part of the tube for planned work and we had to get off before our original destination and had to walk around 30 mins through the city to get to the market, once again getting our exercise. I've decided that I need to look into getting one of those pedometer things so I can actually see how much I've walked during the semester.

Well, the Portabella Road market was alot different from the Camden market. This one was just set up on the street and had all the shops and such plus all the stalls that people set up. It was full of antique dealers and just random things, plus the veggie and food vendors. Chelsea and I tried cocount water and it was pretty tasty.

Our way back from the market was another adventure. We tried to find a tube station and couldnt so we decided to take a bus to kensignton and from there we could walk home. WELL, we dazed off on the bus forgot where we were going and ended up in some shady part of London, not even close to home. We then had to walk around and find a bus route that would take us to where we could find our way home. So, we found a bus that went to Oxford Circus, which allowed us to jump on a tube to home. So, in short, a ride that should've taken 30-40 mins to get home, took us 2 hours-ish!! Oh,well, now we can say we've been to a new part of London. And then the rest of night was spent once again lounging around the house.

Today for me, was an EXTRA lazy day. I slept until around 1, got up for an hour,visited a little and then felt tired so I went back to bed and slept until 5, got up,showered,ate and then have sat around! I did however go see some fireworks with Chlesea, Meghan and Paige down at the Thames River. They had some festival thing this weekend and it concluded w/ fireworks. It was a deece show. BUT ONCE AGAIN, getting there seemed to be a challenge and we ended up going to direct opposite way we needed to go. Oh, London commuting adventures.

Tomorrow we are visiting the London Museum, hopefully we'll have no problem getting there this time.

I think thats it for now.

Hope all is well!

PS- no, London news this time because I haven't read a paper for a couple days.


Thursday, September 13, 2007

Should've packed the hiking boots

Cheers Mates,

Today, I did enough stair climbing and walking to last me until at least the end of 2009; and its not even close to coming to an end!

Today's sight to see was St. Paul's Cathedral. I can't deny at first I wasn't too stoaked to spend another 2 hours getting a tour of yet another ancient building thats been around since forever and hear about the people who built it,when it was built, etc. etc. etc. But, turns out St. Paul's was pretty interesting. For staters the cathedral is gorgeous with sky high ceilings, amazing mosiacs that catch the sun and glitter and gorgeous marble floors.

We started out our tour in one of the chapel areas of the cathedral and believe it or not, my addiction to America's Next Top Model (ANTM) marathons actually taught me something, besides how to take a picture without showing off the ugly squinty eye I have when I smile. There was a statue in the chapel that had to deal with some bishop guy and the 7 deadly sins and the tour guide asked us if we knew which sin the lady in the statue represented. WELL, in one episode of ANTM the girls did a photo shoot where each of them represented one of the deadly sins, and I remembered that one of the girls had dressed up all sexily and been "lust". SO, I answered lust and was right!! Thank You Tyra Banks!!

Another stop on our tour was that of the a beautiful spiral staircase in one of the towers, besides looking AWESOME Chris (our tour guide) told us that they used the staircase in Harry Potter 3!
Since St. Paul's is still a working church, every hour they recite the Lords Prayer, which turned out to be a neat experience. Being in a church in London with people from literally all over and for 2 minutes we were all united, saying one prayer we had in common.
Little did I know that I would also be getting a workout while visiting St. Paul's. Up at the top of the cathedral they have what's known as the "Whispering Gallery". To get there you have to climb up a few hundred stairs that are tiny,cramped, and made of stone . Anyway, the Whispering Gallery is a big round balcony type thing and you're supposed to be able to stand on the opposite side of the balcony and whisper into the wall and it'll carry around to the other side and people can hear you. WELL, either the wall is broken or I don't know how to do it, because I tried whispering to some of my mates and they couldn't hear me.
And then the climbing continued, another few hundred stairs (a total of 434 from bottom to top)we were at the top of St. Paul's and the city was laid out before us and you could see pretty much everything and it was awesome, but scary, being that high off the ground.
Ever been impressed with your Simpson tour and how your tour guide can rattle off random Simpson facts. Such as Wallace hall is the second oldest building on campus and it was built in 1889 or that Simpson has around 1500 full time students and 4-500 part time students with a student to faculty ration of 16-1 and an average class size of 20-25? WELL, our tour guide at St. Paul's put me to shame. This guy knew so many dates about when what was built, redone, fixed, burned down. When this guy died and that guy designed this and yea it made my head spin and I was impressed that he could just rattle it out, without even having to pause and think.
For lunch, Dana, Chelsea and I wanderd around London in the search for chinese but instead found a Pizza Hut and had some good old fashioned American Pizza Hut buffet and it was DELICIOUS! Even though we were getting silently judged by the wait staff there for hanging out in there for a good hour and a half.
A big shout out and thank you goes to Dana and Chelsea's parents for the formula and chart to figure out how to convert celsius to farenheit! It'll definitally come in useful when deciding how to appropriatly dress for the weather here in London-town.
So, while London is AB-FAB, I must admit there has bit some tidbits of drama going on in the house. *insert gasp here* Silent squabbles have insued over people NOT DOING THEIR DISHES! This has included posted notes, nagging, and silent glares. Personally, I find it halarious and have felt a couple times like I'm back in high school. But no worries, things are getting better, as long as well all do our own dishes and put them away, we will all be happy.

I now have a new goal for blogging. London loves giving out free newspapers; The Metro, The London Paper and Lite are the 3 papers you can pick up at any tube stop or on the street and they are most definitally interesting. But anyway, my new plan is to include a little bit from one of the great articles in my blog. So you too can keep up on London news.
Today's headlines
-It is rumored/assumed that David Beckham has cut our beloved Victoria's (Posh to you die hard Spice Girls fans) wardrobe budget. As she was seen wearing the same dress for an ENTIRE 12 HOURS while in New York. The fashionista had changed her outfit twice in one day while attending the New York Fashion Week.
That's it for today!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Lets Play Catch-up

Greetings Friends,

So, it has only been one day since I've last blogged but the last two days have been full of great adventures and fun times.

Yesterday began with a trek to the British Library which was home to a few minorly exciting events for the day.

We. began by exploring the ancient scrolls of Judaism,Christianity and Islam. We saw blinged out Bibles, written in fancy gold with all these pretty designs and everything, as well as pieces of the Dead Sea Scrolls.

I got accosted by some random person who was also visiting the exhibit. He began by asking me where I was from and if I was studying in London for the term etc. You know, normal conversation. Then he switched gears and got all religious on me and asked if I believed in God, how often I practiced etc. MINORLY AWKWARD. Luckily our group was leaving so I had to let him go, but it was pretty weird.

Our tour guide got yelled at too, while she was showing us the exhibit. She was trying to explain to us one of the books and this man standing near us was using one of the headphone tour things and he yelled at her and told her to quiet down because he was trying to hear.

We also got to see the manuscripts of some great British works like "The Canterbury Tales" and "Beowulf". Finding our way around the library also turned out to be a challenge and we get minorly lost in the,Emily and I then hung out in the library the rest of the afternoon and I finally got caught up on my homework and wrote 4 journals about all the fun educational things I've learned at the all the fabulous museums and galleries we've visited.

After our day at the Library we went to a lovely little pub called "The Rocket" and got some tasty food for CHEAP and we made friends with some locals,so I am now officially facebook (which it makes it real in real life too) friends with people that live in London!!

Today we hopped on a train and took it to Hampton Court, which is just outside of London and visited the palace of King Henry the VIII and saw the extremely huge kitchens they had and the dining hall as well as the queens chambers. Anne and I played in the hedge maze too.

The rest of the day today should be pretty low-key more homework finishing then we're thinking about going to see Spamalot or something. OR not.. Not really sure

I've already becomed accustomed to the way people commute around here and have ALMOST mastered the art of dipping,diving and stepping around people, as I try to get to where I need to go. People here don't stop for nothing and I've learned to do the same. It's going to be a pain though, because I'm going to get used to walking around like that and the zero personal bubble people seem to have in London and come back to America and people are going to get mad at me for cutting them off or being all up in their grill when I talk to them.

The weather here has still been FANTASTIC and been like 18 and 19 celsius (no clue what that is farenheit) but its been sunny and super!!

Thats the news for today. I guess its not a whole lot, but I hope you find it entertaining!

Until next time!



Monday, September 10, 2007

A lot about alot of nothing

Greetings Friends,

Not too much exciting news to fill you in on.

We went to the Courthauld Galleries today and looked at pretty paintings from the impressionist movement, including the self-portrait of Van Gough.

After that a few of us walked around in Picadilly Circus and went shopping, I didn't anything too exciting or major; just a shirt to layer with. What I really need to get is a blazer, everyone seems to have them here.

Once again today has been just chilling after the gallery. I really should probably try and work on homework and do my journals I need to do. But I kind of like to procrastinate and do things at the last minute. But I will probably work on them later today.

I just finished a really super good book called "Everyone You Should Know" its written by the same author who wrote "Devil Wears Prada" so yea, I highly suggest it.

The weather is getting a bit chillier here. Last week was really nice and a few locals we talked to said it was really nice weather for this time of the year. Now, its getting a little cooler, but luckily its nothing ridiculous yet.

So, thats about it for the report. I ran to the store earlier today and picked up a bunch of candy, I had a wicked craving for chocolate going on and fell in like with a new candy bar. Its called "crunchies" and they are AMAZING!!

anyway, catch you later my friend.


Sunday, September 9, 2007

More London Photos

Greetings Friends,

SO, instead of loading my photos 1x1 and then taking up an extreme amount of space by putting my London photos on here, I'm sharing my photo album link so you can just click on that to see all my photos.


Market to Market and the disco club, plus being lazy

Cheers Mates,

Yesterday was another day full of walking. We went to the Burrough Market over near London Bridge and it was quite an interesting experience.

It pretty much all food there and Im so glad I didnt bring money with me otherwise I wouldv'e spent way too much on all the delicous things they had there; sausages,pastries,candy,fruit,veggies,all sorts of meats and the list goes on. Its actually London's biggest and oldest market and has been running for over 1,000 years (according to JP). But seriously, at first we were in just one little part of it and was like "man this blows,how is this so amazing?" but then we walked through a little allyway and found this huge bustling place. Full of people and vendors and smells and yea. it was pretty sweet.

We also walked down the block from the market and went to the "Seafood and Oyster Festival". It wasn't quite as exciting as the market but we saw all sorts of seafood and smelled delicious jumbalyas and looked delicious. Chelsea and Dana tried oysters for the first time too and it was funny watching their expressions as they ate the chewey,awkard substance.

We walked around London Bridge area for a bit more, went down to the Thames and walked around and then finally headed back home.

Most of us took nice long naps yesterday afternoon and it was great to finally just sit around and be lazy for a few hours and do nothing!!

Then Chelsea,Dana and I went out on the town in London. We took the tube to Leicester Square and walked around looking for something to do and ended up finding a club called "Sound". It was pretty fun. It was had 3 floors and there were all sorts of people there.

...and that sums up my Saturday...

Today,its been another AMAZING lazy day, the first since I got here. I slept in until 1:30 and since then have just sat around and played on the computer and worked on cleaning up the mess I've made in the room.

OH ps.. I was pretty proud of us last night, we actually found our correct bus and where we needed to go on the first try!! Instead of running to 3 different bus stops asking for directions! I was pretty stoaked about it.

We also happened to share a bus last night with some other American students and I just hope we're not as annoying as they didnt talk to them, but just over heard them talking and being annoying and i really hope thats not how we've looked to other people :S

but thats about it for now.

With the way today's going I'll pry write more later on.


Friday, September 7, 2007

Some other interesting things that have happened

Cheers Mates,

So...I'm just sitting around chilling and thinking about the whirlwind that has been my life for the past 5 days and I've thought of a few things that have gone on and I figured I'd clue you in.

1) Apparently its ovbious we're Americans.
-We were on the tube back to Earl's Court and dana and chelsea and I were silently sitting there reading our papers (ps they give them out FREE btw!!) and Chelsea speaks french and overheard 2 little french boys talking about us saying that we were being "loud with our actions and etc. " and that they could totally tell we were americans and I just thought it was funny ,because I thought I was actually figuring things out here and fitting thought it was funny..

2) Clubs are pretty intersting here in London..We walked around a part of the city looking for things to do the other night and found a club called "The Ghetto" and it most definitally was. It was in the basement of a bulding that was in the middle of an ally in the middle of the city. It was dark and minorly scary..BUT the music was good and we ran into other americans.. it was a fun time.

3) I forgot to mention this in my blog from like an hour friends and I went "punting" today.. and NO, its not kicking a football ( I originally thought that too) but rather, it was riding a little mini boat and having a person steer it for you (think the boats they use in Vienna) but anyway..we took one of those boats in Cambridge and got a tour of the city and a tour of the college and everything. It was really relaxing and nice..i actually took a nap on it. We also haggled for it...and worked people down from 10# per person to 20# to take 3 of us on one boat!

4) People are "agressive". From what I heard, people here where more laid back and lasseiv fair and whateve.. Well, NOT SO MUCH...people walk fast and in a hurry and don't move for anything. Seriously, I could be standing within a foot of a wall, and then have 3 feet on the other side of me and a person could be walking towards me and they would walk the foot between me and the wall, rather than the 3 feet of free space because its less for them to move over.. It gets intense at times especially when in the queue(line) or walking down the sidewalk.

but yea.. thats the only things that come to mind right now.


I think my feet have fallen off

Cheers Mates,

Today we visited Cambridge and we walked and walked and walked and walked. BUT it was an enjoyable time.

We visited 3 of the colleges there, apparently there are 31 colleges that make up Cambridge University. They were all super gorgeous and neat and classy looking and its just crazy to think that they were all established and built 200 years before our country even began!!! They look alot like the harry potter movies really. With the coutryard and grass EXCEPT in real life only professors(fellows, is what they're called at Oxford) are allowed to walk across the grass.

We also just walked around a whole bunch and toured the city and visited the shops and marketplace.

For lunch I ate at a place called "Mana Mexicana" and it was DELICIOUS and cheap. Only 3# for a burrito that was HUGE!

We rode the train there and back and got to visit platform 9&3/4, so that was fun too!

But yea, thats about it for the day today. Nothing too extravagant. Tomorrow we are going to one of the marketplaces in London to hopefully do some cheap shopping and eating!

I'm having a bit of difficulty with my bank account :( I forgot my pin number go me!! so I have to get a new one mailed to home so they can let me know what it is,so I can get cash again. But im pretty proud of myself, 180 pounds has lasted me about 4 days and half of it was spent on my tube pass for the month.

PS, the tube is so great. Its so easy to navigate and it gets you to places fast. Except at times you're cramped on there with a ton of other people and no breathing space.

Also, the drivers here are ridiculous and I'm surprised I haven't seen any hit pedestrians or wrecks with the way they drive, but apparantly they all know what they're doing.

I have alot more pictures to put up eventually, from the past few days, including more of Orlando and the colleges I visited, so be on the lookout for those!!

But yea, thats about it for what I have!



Thursday, September 6, 2007

Lets take it down a notch

Cheers Mates,

Today was a little less busy than the previous few days have been. We didn't have anything until 2:30, so we got to sleep in, which felt gr8!

We did get up though to go back to the British Museum so we could do our homework assignment. The place is ginormous and it was hard to decide where to even start. But we browsed around and found some interesting things to look at and even a few dead bodies from egyptian tombs :S.

Then the afternoon was spent at the National Gallery and learning about neo-classicism,impressionist and post-impressionist art and it was pretty interesting. We looked at portraits and talked about them. We saw Van Gough's "Sunflower" painting or whatever the real name of it is. Turns out though, its his most famous work.

After the gallery Chelsea, Dana and I walked around London and went down by Big Ben and the houses of parliment and then went grocery shopping at Tusco's (its essentially our Hy-Vee) and bought a few necessities AND then we got lost trying to find our way home, like hard core lost we did find a new shopping/walking around area! =)

My new diet now consists of bread and a variety of condiments (bread and peanut butter, bread and butter,bread and marmite) and then i also found the britain version of Top Ramen, YAY!!

Tonights plan is just to walk around and explore some more. This city is ridiculous,im sure I won't even see half it while I'm here.

SO, I keep talking about London and half failed to go back to life in general and Simpson things.

Life is swell..ovbiously.. i've pretty much just been living up London and all that...I've thought about home a few times and I really miss a few friends and my mommy and such....ALSO I need to work on finding out the pin number to my new debit card,because I have no clue what it is and im going to need more cash SOON!

so yea. That's about it for the current happenings in Drew's life!

I've taken more pictures and stuff of the house and am going to get those up someday.

peace out



Wednesday, September 5, 2007


I was within 10 feet of Orlando Bloom tonite.

here's proof.

that is all.

Still Going Strong

Cheers Mates!

London is still treating me kindly and its hard to believe its only been 3 days.

We're starting to feel our way around and starting to know where to go and how to get from place to place, but i still hate the bus system here, its the most confusing thing in the world AND i've also decided that you should NEVER ask a bus driver for directions. WHY? Because everytime we go to take the bus and ask them if this is the right one for wherever we're going, they tell us NO and to take another one..when really our original idea probably works. So, from now on we don't ask bus drivers for directions! BUT good news! The tube strike is "suspended" so we got to use that today when we went to the museum.

So yea. We went to the British Museum today and it is HUGE!! O to the MG... We were there for like an hour and only looked at 2 exhibits..But thats because our good 'ol tour guide (who's also going to be co-teaching our Modern Art class and helping alot with our British Culture and Society class) gave us really in depth info on the exhibit we saw. Which was on all the ancient greek sculptures and stuff and pieces of the parthenon and WOW it was awesome.

We also got our first assignment today :( We have to find 3 pieces in the museum and write about them; why they interest us, the history, etc. I've decided I'm going to do the main gallery, the museum istelf (hello! It was built BEFORE our country was!) and then a third thing. not sure what yet.

Right now is break time for the first time since we've been I'm just chillin' at the flat, plan on doing some e-mailing and reading and etc...and then we have a very special event planned tonite!!!

We are going to see our first theatre show in London tonight. The show is called "In Celebration" and its about a family reunion and the bad things that happen (its a drama =( ) and the leading man in the show is *drum roll please* ORLANDO BLOOM!! AWESOME!! I know! and the ticket was only 15 pounds (3o american dollars!)

So, thats the exciting news for today!

In general everything is good. Everything is so expensive here :( but I'm learning to deal, the weather is nice today, and yea.. things are just great.

One of my new favorite past times here is now people watching. It's really interesting to see the kind of people that ride public transportation or what they wear and etc. and how people act in general. London has such a mix of people. I can walk a block radius and hear conversations in english, spanish, chinese and indian. No lie..its amazing.

So, I'll stop for now. It's only 3 o'clock here (about 9:00 AM back home)which is something else thats really crazy.

But yea, hope all is well for you my friend!!



Tuesday, September 4, 2007

London Photos-Day 2

London photos from the past 2 days!
Victoria Station, where the "Bourne Ultimatum" scene was filmed.
So, there was about a foot between our bus and another bus. London drivers are CRAZY!

Model Time

Me on our boat tour in front of "The London Eye"


This is the real London Bridge!

Contrary to popular belief. This is actually TOWER BRIDGE!


A picture from the top of our tour bus

This bathroom was tiny.. I hit my head on the ceiling (and im short)

These are painted on every crosswalk and VERY useful (no seriously, it gets confusing)

Picadilly Circus Square

And the adventure continues...

Greetings Friends!

Today the adventure continued as we toured the great city of London.

The buses were jam packed due to the strike that is currently going on with the tube :( and according to the papers (a few of which they give out for free YAY) its supposed to continue until Friday :( Which means packed buses,angry commuters and longer travel time.

Anyway, we took a guided bus tour of the city today and if you've heard about it, we saw it today; the globe theatre, Buckingham Palace, London Bridge, St. Paul's Cathedral and the list continues and I took some fabulous photos of a majority of it and will try to get those up soon! PS though, the pretty bridge that lifts up and has the towers and is in all the movies actually ISN'T London Bridge but rather, Tower Bridge. The real London Bridge is boring and plain.

Anyone a fan of "The Bourne Ultimatum"? You remember the scene at the train/bus station where the reporter runs and gets sniped and dies? WELL, we went there today!!! Yea, so I was at the place they shot a scene of "Bourne". YAY!

A friend and I did a little exploring too..of sorts. We were on the bus and saw a grocery store and so we hopped off and went and did some grocery shopping and decided to walk back and we were pretty sucessful at it and only almost got lost!

I don't really think its fully sunk in I'm in London for the next 13 weeks, it still feels like I'm just here for a few days.

PS, public transportation is pretty entertaining. I've seen some interesting people,saw how angry people get and heard some interesting conversations on the bus.

That's where I'll end for today. I'll do my best to get pictures up ASAP.


Monday, September 3, 2007

From Across The Pond

The garden that's in the back of our building

My home sweet home for the next 13 weeks

Greetings Friends,

WELL... I'm finally in London!!! I can't believe its really here and it hreally hasn't sunk in that this is where I'll be living for the next 13 weeks of my life!!!

The trip over was pretty uneventful, no exciting people on the plane or anything. Our airplane from Cincinatti to London was HUGE though . I was used to the little puddle jumpers that have 4 seats in a row, this plane about 40 rows with 7 seats per row it was HUGE and they fed us like every two hours with snacks and meals and it was interesting.

I've probably had about 4 hours of sleep within the last 48 hours...we arrived here at like 9am London time (3am Iowa time) and hit the ground running. We took a tour of our neighborhood, went to lunch at a restaruant nearby and then went grocery shopping. We took some time to take a power nap and then a group of us went to Picadilly Circus which was FABULOUS. We managed the tube pretty well..BUT apparently it will be closed down tomorrow because all the workers are going on strike..OH GREAT 4 me!!

But we just walked around and looked at all the pretty buildings and such. It was fun to people watch too. All the brits dress so nice and classy. You barely saw anyone wearing just a t-shirt and jeans and DEF no shorts or sweatpants!

Anywhom..London is fabulous already!! We're touring the city tomorrow by bus and it will be exciting. The building we're staying is pretty nifty. I'll try and take more pictures to put up on here.

Until Next Time


Sunday, September 2, 2007

A gumbo of emotions

Greetings Friends,

So, in a little more than 24 hours I will be in London!! and right now I'm not 100% sure what to think :S

Don't get this kid wrong, I am totally stoaked and ready to go and know I will have an AMAZING time, but the actual fact that I will be clear across the ocean for 13 whole weeks and that I won't get to see my family or close friends at all, is minorly depressing me. :( Its just hard to believe that I won't have some of my best friends that were either 2 doors down or a quick walk across campus as go to people..sorta..yea, they'll just be a phone call or e-mail away, but its still saddening that I won't be able to see their face sit with them and talk and cry and have fun with for 13 whole weeks!! But, I do need to remember that it is only 13 weeks at the same time. That I will be back in December, things will pick up where they left off and everything will be A-OK!

Im 90% done packing too, which is actually minorly shocking. I finally started doing it today around 3:00 and it was a bit of a chore. BUT the good news is that I got about 90% of my clotes into 1 suitcase, and the other one will be plenty empty and I'll be able to fill it up lots of great London buys!! haha..I still need to make a to-do list of things that I need to get done tomorrow. Like,charge the iPod, get the iPod charger,finish packing, visit grandma, and say good bye to everyone, make sure everything that I'm not bringing is loaded up in the car, so it can make it home etc. Which means I need to get to bed ASAP so I can get some sleep.

BUT enough about London..

Today, one of my besties, Kathryn and I went out on the town. We ate at a DELICIOUS Indian restaurant called "India Star" and then went and walked around the mall and I got a few things for London. After that we came back to Simpson and grabbed our friend Elsabeth and went to a FREE movie (thanks CAB!!) we saw "The Nanny Diaries" and it was way good! After the movie we went to Wal-Mart so I could get my 2nd suitcase for the trip and grab some snacks for the flight, a phone card and some great trashy tabloids to read on the flight too!! Which leads up to where I am now..sitting at the computer and blogging :D

EXCITING NEWS.. I found out that the building we are staying in at London has free wireless internet which = an up-to-date blog for you to read as well as a resource to feed my facebook addiction!

So, yea.. continue to check this blog out because this is where I'll posting during my time in London!

You have a great day my friends and I'll see you round

a few hours till London!!