Wednesday, 22 October 2014

How Do I Spend Fall Break in London?

I decided to stay in London for Fall Break. Honestly, I wanted to save my money for the trips I’m taking in November, but I also decided that some “me time” would be nice, too. Of course, I spent time during the day with Tess and Tyler, too. This post will most likely be a long one as I write about all the things I did over break. If you can, try to bear with me. 

Day 1 (10/16) – I woke up at 4:15AM, to help Alisa out for her trip to Paris. I made sure she had everything she needed, and that she found the Eurostar with no problems. On my way back to the flat, I couldn’t resist any longer, so I stopped by a Starbucks and bought a Pumpkin Spice Latte. (I know, why Starbucks? It was the first day of fall break). By this point, it was about 7AM, and I still had the whole day ahead of me. Because of that latte, I didn’t bother going back to sleep when I got to the flat.

Around 1PM, Tess, Tyler, and I decided to get out of the flat for a while, and headed to the Science Museum (which we had started a few weeks ago, but never got to finish). The Science Museum was really interesting. There were so many different floors with lots of different things to see. Honestly, you know you’re a child at heart when one of the best moments was playing with kid activities in the Science Museum (Ha!). After the Science Museum, we took a walk (and pictures!) by the Prince Albert Memorial and Royal Albert Hall. I finally got my cheesy, stereotypical picture of me standing in a red London phone booth, too!

I finally got my stereotypical London phone booth picture! 
After that, we came back to the flat to regenerate for a few minutes. Then we decide to explore a store called Primark (which, to me, was something like a JC Penny’s in the U.S.). I bought a pair of cheap skinny jeans and nylon footy socks to wear with flats. Primark was such an awesome store, and I wouldn’t mind going back there.

When we finished at Primark, we decided it was time for dinner. Tess’ sister had told her to try a bar called Belushi’s, and that’s where we decided to eat. It wasn’t dirt cheap, but it wasn’t extremely expensive either. All three of us decided on splitting some appetizers because it was a better budget route to go, but the food was really amazing!

After dinner, I needed to go grocery shopping because I realized I had almost no food for the entire fall break. We made a run to Tesco for all of that fun stuff, and then we were in for the night.

That, in a nutshell, concludes day one of fall break.

Day 2 (10/17) – Today was a lazy day. I woke up around 8AM (I’m not exactly why I woke up so early, but I did). I started the morning off just getting starting and getting caught up on TV shows. I got to have a short, but wonderful Skype call with my friend, Rachel, from back in the States, too! It was lovely to catch up with her, and tell her what all I’ve done here.

In the afternoon, Tess knocked on my door and asked me if I’d like to talk a walk about Westminster with her and Tyler. I decided that I should get out of the flat for a little while, so I agreed. It ended up just being Tess and I. Westminster is such a beautiful area – I got to see Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament again, along with the London Eye. We just kept walking along Westminster, until we saw a food truck that was selling ten mini donuts for just £2! We agreed that it was such a good deal. It turns out, we were right; the donuts were so good! Anyways, we continued walking along Westminster until we reached a familiar location… Blackfriars! This is the tube stop that we get off to go to the Globe every Tuesday and Thursday. I had no clue that Westminster led right to Blackfriars!

Taking a walk along Westminster. Beautiful!
We took Blackfriars back to Earl’s Court, and that concluded day two of fall break.

Day 3 (10/18) – This morning, Tess and I decided to go to the Brixton Market. Brixton is the place where we usually buy all of our produce, and now, Ramen. This Brixton trip was a quick one, since we didn’t seem to need very much there. We came back, made lunch, and then headed off to a museum.

Tess, Tyler, and I headed off the Museum of London. The museum had just opened a Sherlock Holmes exhibit (which Tess found very, very exciting). I was extremely intrigued by this Sherlock exhibit. Now I have a huge inclination to go home and read some of the Sherlock Holmes novels. It was upsetting that no photography was allowed, but we have our memories of the exhibit. Then we toured the rest of the Museum of London. This was really interesting, because there were so many different facts about London. It dated back all the way to when the Roman Empire was in London to the twenty-first century of today.

Since photography wasn't allowed in the exhibit, this is the best I could get. It was awesome! 
After the museum, we all headed back to the flat, made dinner, and were in for the night. I got to Skype my friend, Claire, from back home. It was lovely because I’ve never gotten to Skype call her before. I also decided to give my parents a call via FaceTime. It was nice to talk to people back and catch up.

That concludes day three of fall break. Two more days left.

Day 4 (10/19) – I really didn’t do much on Sunday. This was my “I’m going to start homework” day, and that’s just what I did. I began reading ‘Tis Pity She’s a Whore, which we had to read for our classes at the Globe.

I guess the only big adventure I had was that I got to meet up with an old friend from high school, Shelby. She is studying abroad in Ireland this semester, and came to London as a weekend trip with a few friends. We went to this cute little café in Earl’s Court called Café du Coin. It was reasonably priced, and quite delicious. It was very nice getting to catch up, and hear all about her adventures this weekend, and in Ireland.

Meeting up with Shelby - high school studies abroad!
Day 5 (10/20) – Monday was the final day of break, and I really didn’t do anything. I ran lines with Tess and Tyler for Comedy of Errors, and finished reading ‘Tis Pity She’s a Whore.

I waited up for Alisa and Jaime to get home, to welcome them and let them into the flat. It was about 4AM, but I didn’t mind. My break was coming to end.

Goodness, this was a long post, but I tried to incorporate everything I did during fall break. I hope I didn’t bore you too much! I promise my next post won’t be so tedious and long.

Thursday, 16 October 2014

My London Group of Friends.

I’m going to be brutally honest – I came to London extremely nervous. Mostly because it was a new city that I’ve never been to, and just figuring out everything on my own was scary. The flight itself was a new experience. Except for when I came over from Korea as a baby, I hadn’t ever flown alone. I’ll admit it; I feel like most of my life, I’ve been spoiled, but my parents always tell me that I have enough common sense to figure out things for myself too. Now is my chance to prove them right.

The other reason why I was so nervous coming to London was because there were less than a handful of people that I knew well. I’ve always been a shy and introverted person, but it’s never hard for me to make friends. However, it takes me a while to create those friendships. I find it difficult to open up to other people until I know them better, but then again that’s hard to get to know a person if you can’t open up to them. Getting back on topic, I was scared that I wouldn’t create any friendships during my semester in London.

Boy, was I wrong.

First, there’s Alisa. Now, I knew Alisa going into this trip. I mean, we put each other down to be roommates, so we had to have known each other. Since she’s a transfer student, I only just met her last fall. However, I’m glad that I get the chance to get to know her even better this semester by being her roommate, and travel buddy. Hopefully, I don’t drive her too crazy come December! Oh, Alisa – if you’re reading this, hopefully I’m not too annoying as a roommate! And I apologize if I am. Don’t be afraid to call me out on it!

Next, there’s Tess. So I was kind of excited when I realized Tess was going to London this semester. Here’s the thing: I met Tess my very first day when I moved into Hessler Hall at Millikin. She lived across the hall from me! I remember her knocking on my door that day, and then her, my freshman roommate, and I took a walk around Millikin getting to know each other. Unfortunately, as the year went on, we slid into our own groups of friends. Now, I’m glad that I get to reconnect with her, and pick up where we left off! Also the fact that she’s a LV Scholar, like me, makes it even better! Tess – if you read this, I’m glad that we’re reconnecting again, and that I get to spend a semester in London with you!

Last, but certainly not least, there’s Emily. Before London, I didn’t know this girl at all, but I’m glad that I do now. Tess and Emily are best friends and roommates here in London, so I figured that I ought to get to know her. I feel at times we have about the same personality because there will be certain things she says or does that makes me say, “I do the same thing!” I’ve never met someone with the about the same personality as me before, so as soon as I found out what she was like, I was even more excited to get to know her. I’m hoping by the end of the semester, we’ll know each other pretty well. Emily – if you read this, I’m so happy that I knew Tess so I could get to know you!

“Every new friend is a new adventure… the start of more memories.” –Patrick Lindsay

I feel better and more confident about being in London now that I know I have a small group of friends to hang out with here. I miss my best friends back in the States right now more than anything, and these girls will never replace them, but at least I know that I have the ability to hold friendships for as long as I possibly can. Hopefully, the friends I make during my semester in London will carry back to the States, where I can also pick right back up with my best friends too.

I apologize that this blog post may have been sappy and cliché, but I felt it in my heart to send out messages to the group of friends I’ve made here in London. They’re too awesome to not blog about right now.

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

London Rain - A Poem

London Rain - A Poem by Eleanor Vestal 

I love the sound of pouring rain.
Rainy days seem to keep me sane.
Gloomy days are one of the best.
Perfect for lying down for a rest.

London rain is simply my favorite.
It’s a sound and smell I will never forget.

I’m getting used to this London life.
Converting sucks, but I guess it’s all right.
Learning new things that are all adult-like.
Finding my true self – every day, every night.

London rain keeps my peaceful mind.
It’s a soothing mood almost all the time.

I do miss my family, my friends, and back home.
But I am excited to see Dublin, Athens, and Rome.
Being a tourist sometimes is perfectly fine.
This poem is becoming hard to find rhyme.

London rain is the most wonderful sound.

Tuesday, 7 October 2014

A Totally Fetch Weekend!

October 7, 2014

Since Mean Girls Day was October 3, I thought I would throw in a little Mean Girls humor in my title for y'all to enjoy. :)

I’m back to my regular blogging. Last week was just a theatre review that I had to write as an assignment for one of my classes at the Globe, but I decided to go ahead and use it as a blog post.

So I’ve been in London for about a month now. It’s still so surreal. It’s going by so quickly, but it’s also going by slowly. I will admit there are times when I feel homesick and want to take the next flight home, but then I get to do fun things and I feel happier all over again. I’ve said this before, but I’ll say it again… Thank God for FaceTime and Skype, and all the technology that has been invented in the twenty-first century.

This past weekend, about half of our class took trips to either Paris or Dublin, but I was one of the few that stayed behind in London. It was a lovely laid back weekend, I must say. All I did was spend time with Alisa and Tess, and we created a “lounge” in Alisa's and my room. Literally, we watched movies all night long. Oh, and ate. It was heavenly, and a wonderful weekend.

It was lovely until Sunday and Monday when we remembered a 2000-word (maximum) essay that was due Tuesday for Theatre History, but we were good college students and pushed through the papers.

Today was a slightly longer day than usual. Prior, our Tuesday Globe courses lasted only until 6:15. Tonight, it lasted until 9:00, which I was completely fine with because we’re getting down to the final days of classes at the Globe. [Insert sad face here] I really enjoy taking courses at the Globe because I’m learning so many new techniques that will help grow as a performer, and it’s also great knowledge to have as someone who wants to make a career in Theatre. Our acting teacher, Yolanda, is amazing. Oh my God – she’s amazing, and incredibly sweet. Don’t get wrong, I love the theatre faculty at Millikin, but all the teachers at The Globe have been outstanding, and exceed my expectations by so much.

Honestly, this blog post is just a little rambling because I haven’t blogged for this week’s Blogging London course. Next Thursday starts Fall Break, and I will be relaxing in London by myself for what I like to call, “Me Time”. I love spending time with people, but I can be a real introvert a lot of the time too. Keep checking back next week because Fall Break, I will have more time to blog, and hopefully I will be doing some fun things in London (even if it is by myself).