Sunday, August 2, 2009

Update from London.

I realize it's been a week now since my last blog post, and unlike everyone's favorite blogger and my arch nemesis/partner in crime hayleyghoover, I didn't think to hire stand-ins or whatever.

I've been too busy getting used to London time, spending my first week here with Alex, and trying to build Lego houses. Blogging took the backseat.

But as a particularly witty commenter said before I left, "DFTBA: Don't Forget to Blog Abroad!"

So here I am.

Tonight I am moving into the flat I will be staying in at the University that my exploration seminar is having class at. It's been nice staying at Alex's house, but it will be kind of nice knowing I will definitely be there for 4 weeks, so I can unpack a little. :) I find it really annoying living constantly out of a suitcase. I find myself just wearing whatever happens to be on top.

I feel like after being here for 6 days I should have all sorts of funny anecdotes and commentary on English customs and things, but I haven't been writing anything down. I'm sure I'll get better about this when I am with my class, going on field trips and generally being around people I don't know as well. When I'm with Alex we just get caught up with trying to lick each other in public or something and it slips my mind. xD

One thing, though, that I started to pick up on the last time I was here but keep finding it more and more the longer I am in London is that there is a WHOLE BUNCH of stuff that I only knew existed within the confines of Harry Potter, but as it turns out, most of that stuff is just standard London things.
I can't think of many examples right now, but the main one that comes to mind is the Grimmauld Place sign that Eia and I bought from Whimsic Alley at Portus (they sell loads, like Knockturn Alley, Privet Drive, etc.). This is how signs ACTUALLY LOOK here. Who knew!
Also I made a comment to Alex about just generally hearing the word "platform" thrown around at train stations - I am AWARE how sad this probably sounds to British people, but it was funny for me. I half expected to see the Weasleys carting their kids off to school.

Alex just reminded me that we spent my first day here watching British television, and I got to see Deal or No Deal. This is a ridiculously intense, light dimming, edge of your seat, banker in sillhouette and girls in sparkly dresses type gameshow back home, but the British one was much.. cuter. I actually really liked how the other DonD contenstants are the ones holding the red boxes (they're sleek silver money briefcases in the US) which makes the whole experience a bit more personal I think. The people feel really bad when they have a high number in their box, whereas our US girls are probably just happy to have a few seconds on TV.

Anyway, I'm in London. I just hooked up my UK phone so I can recieve calls and texts for free but dialing out will literally destroy my bank account, so that's fun. I was supposed to meet with Molly but it was a "facepalm situation" so that hasn't happened yet. I did an interview with this guy called Colin who is studying at a school in London (I had a nice chat with him about what it's like studying here; he's American too) and I can't wait until Emma and Rosi get back from America because I want to see themmmm.

Okay. I promise it won't be another week until I write next.
Also I'll explain the Lego house soon.


Charly- The Alton Towers Nerd said...

You were at the Lego house building! That's awesome! How did it turn out in the end? I read about it on the BBC News website, but I live too far away to get there for myself.

Martin K. Smith said...

I already know about the lego house.. :)

They changed the format of DoND in the UK specifically to fit daytime television.

The idea being that if you watched constantly, you'd get to know the contestants holding the boxes, get to know their stories, and really be invested in whether or not they won the money.

Personally though, I can't stand the show.

What do American's call platforms?

RhianonLives said...

It sounds like you've been having fun xD Great to hear about your trip! It was also fun to see you in Alex's last vlog hehe

Laura said...

I love hearing about the stuff you are surprised by, the stuff I never realised was different in america. What do you call platforms by the way?

I hope you have a good time in England, and I'll look forward to hearing all the other differences you notice!


Joy said...

I've only recently read Harry Potter for the first time (I know, bad me ), but as an American who has lived here in England for 9 years, I did wonder how many of the cultural references and 'British things' American readers really catch. I appreciated a lot of the British things in the books only because I've learned them from living here! I'd be interested to se what the do/don't change in the Americanised versions...

On another note, I'm SO jealous you went to the Lego house building project! I wanted to go, but it didn't work out!

Haha and I so know what you mean about the differences on Deal or No Deal. I thought that too! :o)

nicoleeeyyynyquil09 said...

I've missed all the stories :(. Glad your having fun in sounds very exciting.

hayleyghoover said...

Arch nemesis. LOL.

Word of the day: synestor.
-A combination between "synthetic" and "ancestor," used to describe a famous person you pretend to be related to.

safi said...

Haha. It's strange to hear you talk about platforms and street signs like that. I never really considered the harry potter angle.

Steve said...

haha i love being in different countries (heck, even going to different cities within England) where there is stuff that is completely normal for everyone else and you're amazed by the most mundane things.

Also, so jealous you're doing the lego house project. I was surprised to read that there will be a working toilet and shower, i'd like to see how that works out =S

Caitlin said...

Lego! I have so much lego in my house.

You should watch Mock The Week and QI. Or anything on Dave for that matter xD

Anonymous said...

I'm re-reading Sorcerer/Philosopher's Stone right now, which I don't think I've done since I read them all before DH came out (*gasp*, I know!). I was quite annoyed actually to discover that they changed silly things, like "Mum" to "Mom". Whaaaaat? I can understand "football" to "soccer" to avoid confusion, but I'm American and I often call my mother Mum!

One thing I did catch after going to Britain earlier this summer: The words "erm" and "er" are basically English versions of "um" and "uh". Pronunciation wise. They don't sound nearly as funny when they're said the English way.

Nally said...

It's weird hearing what makes you laugh about England. I'm English so I didn't quite realise what you meant about signs and platforms being strange until I thought about it. I can't wait to go to America to see if I think anything is weird over there :P
Hope you have an awesome time in London!

stephanie said...

I noticed the DonD thing too. It seems much more intense and the host is meaner than in America. XD
Have a good time in London!!

Anonymous said...

I'm English too. And it made me laugh - have you been to the Camden markets before? I think you might like them if Alex will take you.

Han :)

the apple that astonished paris said...

so, okay, here's my idea:

go hack into the fiesta movement website and put up a mission that involves kidnapping a fellow american (preferably named lacey) and bringing her somewhere out of the country with you. take me to england. we'll get to know each other on the way, and then i'll be like, "see, i TOLD you we'd be bffl" and you'll be like, "whatever, i knew that and just didn't SAY anything," and then alex will pop in and be like, british.

i think that sounds like an extremely successful life decision on your part.

Catherine said...

Can you PLEASE go to Kings Cross on September first? PLEASE. I think it would be a splendid trip.

shecaptain said...

I'm studying in London this fall and I don't leave for another month. Reading this has made me realize it's so far away!!

ginger jones said...

England sounds New Zealandish. God save the Queen.