Thursday, November 13, 2014

Real London Life

It has come to my attention that some folks here believe all I do across the pond is travel and party. I have come to set the record straight: those claims are false. While we do travel loads and go on many adventures, there are also countless hours spent writing papers, studying, and reading as well as attending class. I would be lying to say it was the same extent as going to school on campus, but it some ways it feels even more overwhelming here because London is calling right outside the front door. There are always a million things to do and places to see on top of twelve credit hours of class and homework along with church callings, day trips, and then trying to keep in touch with family, import/sort through photos, emails, write postcards and letters, grocery shop, exercise, and just do basic life things like laundry.. Our schedules are jam packed. More often than not I am up until well after midnight reading for class and then get up at 6:30 to go run and shower before class. After that it is go-go-go all day long. I am not complaining or trying to convince you that my life is too hard in any way, shape, or form; I just want you all to know that it is still real.

Yes, there are days it feels like a dream (and it is my dream).
Yes, every day I find myself in awe of how lucky I am that this is my life.
Yes, there are days--sometimes several in a row--where I stay in all day and do homework.
Yes, there are many nights I am stressed and up late trying to finish things with no idea how it will really happen (and yet somehow it miraculously always does).
Yes, I am in love with my life. It is full of all the best things this world has to offer: the most wonderful people, constant exploration and learning, loads of laughter, self-discovery, and traveling through some of the most beautiful countries and cultures known to man.

Now that we are done with the real talk I'll tell you what a general week here in London town is like.
Monday: classes
Tuesday: day trip
Wednesday: classes
Thursday: London excursion or classes
Friday: classes
Saturday: free (aka catch up on homework/laundry/go to markets for lunch/maybe see a show)

The days we have classes they go from nine to noon. After having lunch I will typically go to museums for homework or work on papers or study for tests or run to the store/laundry or do site visits or London walks or whatever else. Day trips we spend the day going by coach to somewhere, such as the Isle of Wight in the past or last week to Hampton Court and this week was to Cambridge. For London excursions we go to sites within tube rides such as the Tower of London or Westminster Abbey; you get the idea. Often another night of the week we have another thing planned by the program like an Evensong or last week we went to the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra to hear Beethoven's No. 9 Symphony in D minor (which was incredible AND we spotted Royalty)!

The last few weeks have been such a blur of school and outings and late nights and everything in between. Here are some views from visits:

Hampton Court


Just a few of my favorite people

Careful with the Swans.. They all belong to the Queen and to hurt one is high treason.
You think I'm kidding? ...
The last guy to kick one while drunk back in 2007 is still in jail. 

Fun Fact: You get to wear fantastic capes around Hampton Court if you want. 






 

Have I ever told you that I am obsessed with gold? No? Oh. Well, I am obsessed with things that are gold.

Greenwich


Boat ride down the Thames to Greenwich! 

Our bff Big Ben lookin' fan-freaking-tastic from the river. Always the show-off. 
Straddling the Prime Meridian. Am I am in the east or western hemisphere? ... Nobody knows.

Royal Naval College
Favorite Chapel I've been in.
And I have been a good number of chapels in my lifetime.

 

Found some aebleskivers at the market! Score. Obviously Lauren and I had to get some. 

Firmly believe that different is beautiful too.
Stratford-Upon-Avon (Shakespeare's home)


 

Did we creep on this guy helping the elderly out?
Yes. Yes, we did. No shame.

 

We <3 Shakespeare! And wandering cute towns in the rain and seeing Much Ado About Nothing performed by the Royal Shakespeare Company set in the 1920's and looking like Downton Abbey.

Portsmouth


You haven't lived until you've had a Magnum Bar.  
Yes, that is my Professor jumping with us in the middle. He's pretty cool.
Camden Market

I seriously am obsessed with markets. Utah needs to get on it because they are the bomb.com
 

Ever heard of the cronut? Let me educate you to its brilliance. It is a croissant donut. Need I say more? The one featured about was bought (and shared, don't worry) at Camden Market. It's Apple and Cinnamon with some crumble thing.. So essentially it was heaven in my mouth.

Is there anything more beautiful then a donut cart? Donuts are my weakness. Weird, I know. I can say no to everything else.. But a good donut? There's nothing better. A bad donut? Nothing worse.

Running Scenes

This view is what gets up early every day. 


Cliffs of Dover and Dover Castle


I dare you to come at us. 


The throne suits me, don't you think? 
Royal Philharmonic Orchestra ft. Beethoven's 9th Symphony in D minor

You see those box seats behind us? Yes. That is Prince Charles of Wales, aka the next KING of Great Britain.
NBD guys, NBD... Just a normal Monday night in London


That Awkward Time we showed up at the Tate Britain and they asked us to be in a Movie





Canterbury Cathedral




coolest book shop ever in Canterbury. I can't lie; it was actually really hard for me to walk through the door. I felt off-balance in a way I can't even explain. 

London Centre Scenes

Me doing homework. Obviously I am ecstatic.
My Shakespeare Analysis after 4 hours of work... 
My current view of the drawing room 
It's all about the details in the dining room.
(to my left) the beginning of the stairstand front entry behind it
 Why do I say the stairs ominously?
I'll show you:

this is what I walk up 12+ times a day to get to my room/the lou.
No I am not kidding. This is real life. It's fine though; I will just have killer legs by the time I leave (or I'll ask for a refund).
The pathetic part is we all keep thinking we will get used to it and it will become easier.... And it doesn't 

Memes I Make when I can't Handle Any More Homework. 






Well, that is it for now! Sorry I have been neglecting the blog. I promise I have every intention of catching up (hopefully this weekend!) with Halloween pictures and a review of my trip to PARIS! Stay tuned; don't give up on me. I'm just holding on and pushing through some papers and school stuff. 

Love Always, Aimee 

Remember that one time we got day-of student tickets to the front row of WICKED for 25 pounds?
Yeah. That was a fantastic and beautiful day.

#cheerstodyoulondon