Long time, no blog. While last time I was just back from an apple festival and NI mountains, this time I’m just back from Amsterdam and Rome. I did Rome solo, and it was one of the best things I’ve done. I’ve never traveled by myself like that, and it was the ultimate in self-indulgence. All I did was eat gelato, look at art, and walk around. I was worried about losing my passport and being stranded in Italy, but I’m back unscathed.
When I came back, I checked my mail at Elms Reception, and had a package from home. Now, I normally live 30 minutes from home, so my parents have never sent me a package in the mail, even though there are usually little treats for me when I get home. Inside were all sorts of goodies—a new running outfit, popcorn, shortbread cookies, snowflake garland, and a little turkey. I will, of course, be gone for Thanksgiving, so the turkey was an especially sweet little gift. He’s currently sitting on top of all the poetry collections that I’m going to have to analyze. I’m not sure what I’ll do for Thanksgiving here. I know I have to go to class in the afternoon, and I think my American friends are planning some attempt at dinner, but that just doesn’t sound especially appealing to me, probably because I own one plate, one bowl, and a pot. In an ideal world, I’d just go out for a nice dinner, but we’ll see. I might opt for a movie and a special dessert instead. Or maybe I’ll hit up the Christmas market in front of City Hall. That might be more festive.
School wise, I’ve just turned in my formative essays. These are ungraded practice essays for the real thing. And all the final essay prompts for the School of English will open on the 24th. So in a few days, I’ll know where to concentrate all of my intellectual efforts.
Right before I headed out for the continent, I submitted three graduate school applications, all to masters programs in Library Information Science and Archives Records Management. I won’t find out too much about any of those for another few months at least, so I’m mostly pretending that I didn’t send them in and am trying not to think about them. But now that the admission apps themselves are in, I’ll start in on assistantship applications, and scholarship hunting. Come January, I’ll probably also start looking for jobs, because options are a good thing to have. When I think about May too hard, it gets a little scary. Not too scary, because I feel pretty capable, but still, it’ll be the first time that I don’t have a rigid plan of action.
But May is a long time off, and I still have just about two months in Belfast to think about. I’ve just past the two-month mark for being here, so I’m about midway through my whole study abroad experience. I’m going to Dublin on Saturday, and in a month my mom is coming over to spend Christmas, so I have lots of planning to do. So far we’re signed up to do a cooking class for a three course Christmas dinner—the starter is chestnut soup. We’ll also hit up the Causeway, St. George’s Market, and the Lagan Meadows. I was just in the Meadows for my morning run earlier today, and the three resident swans were hanging out in their usual spot. They like to wait around with the ducks and get fed. The British kid I live with tells me that all swans in the UK belong to the Queen, and it’s illegal to kill them. I think these swans know it, because they’re pretty haughty birds.
From McClay Library,