So I have now officially been in London for one solid week. Sure as heck doesn’t feel like I have. I can’t decide if I feel like it has been longer or shorter. Maybe a mix of both. I feel like now would be an appropriate time to reflect on the past week and all I have learned. Have some deep meditation and inner dialogue with myself. …yea, I got nothing.
I learned that I am great at walking around aimlessly but not so much with accomplishing sight-seeing goals or anything of that sort. I’m also excellent at not reading the books I brought with me to try and “get ahead” in my courses. Most importantly, I’ve learned apparently no one in London serves drip coffee. I have yet to go into Starbucks and check, because it seems silly to do since I am in London. I can get Starbucks anywhere. Regardless, I want my dang drip coffee. Every time I say “black coffee,” meaning, no fancy-shamancy latte business, I get an Americano. I no want Americano. I no want espresso. Gimme dat plain ole drip coffee. They don’t do half and half here, either. Psh, Brits.
Today started out pretty much like all my other days here have. I woke up late, I laid in bed longer than I should thinking about everything I need to do but likely won’t, and then finally got my fat arse up and in the shower (British bonus slang word. I’m becoming so acculturated). My main attraction for leaving the house today was brunch. Yes. That’s all it takes to get me raring to go. Brunch. I tried to hurry to meet Marina at The Breakfast Club in Soho, but it takes me an hour to get anywhere. Luckily for me, the queue for eating there was out the door and a wicked long wait. So I wasn’t late! We finally got settled in, I had my “All American Veggie” dish, which consisted of pancakes, eggs, potatoes, mushrooms (not sure where that comes into an American breakfast, but whatever) and veggie sausage. Naturally, it was the largest dish on the menu. Alongside the full-meat All American. I do my country proud. Marina and I ate, sipped our coffees (an Americano for me, of course *grumble grumble*) and caught up with what has been happening with each other as of late. The whole two days we haven’t seen each other – believe it or not, a lot happens in that small time frame. Marina’s life is a bit more exciting than mine, but whatever. She patiently listens to my stories of being lost and that’s all that matters.
After brunch, Marina was kind enough to go shopping with me and give me fashion advice. Tuesday is my induction and I, in the lovely way I always do, have over been overthinking all of the possible outcomes of the day. Am I supposed to be dressed up? What if I show up wearing business clothes and no one else is in them? If I wear jeans, will I look like some slacker and make a bad first impression with my teachers? I know they say you can never be too dressed up. However, I disagree. I am sure if I showed up in a prom dress I’d be very out of place. I know I won’t be wearing that, but the business clothes I brought are rather…stiff. Not really cute stylish ones. I am aware this thought process is more than a bit vain, but you know what? I am. I’m not even going to attempt an excuse other than vanity. So there.
Marina suggested I could compromise with trendy clothes that can teeter the line. So we went in search of them.
Trying on clothes is always a disaster. Trying on trendy clothes, even more so. Currently 90s-esque fashion is in. I love it, because who doesn’t love the 90s? That being said, this particular era of fashion is not curve-friendly. All 90s girls must have been waifs, easy to knock over with a slight gust of air. These baggy clothes and straight dresses (or heck, even the tight, knit ones with spaghetti straps) only serve to accentuate the parts I’d prefer to keep under wraps. For the heck of it, I tried on this fitted dress from Bershka to see how it worked out. I looked like a slutty flight attendant. Perfect. For Halloween. Probably not so much for induction.
I did end up getting a cute romper, which is weird because I don’t usually wear stuff like that. Marina convinced me I didn’t look like a cow, so I went for it. I need to get tights to wear with it, though. I know, Internet, you’re just drooling over all this fascinating information I’m giving you. Here it seemed I was writing a blog about London and all the wonderful historical experiences I am going to have. HAH! Fooled you.
Marina and I decided to go to watch the latest Bridget Jones movie after we shopped some. If you haven’t seen it, do so. Right away. It is hilarious. For some reason I found myself tearing up at really weird moments, though. Maybe I need a good cry. If something was a little sad, I teared up. If something was funny, I teared up. If something awkward happened, I teared up. Maybe I need my hormones checked.
What was super awesome abut the whole movie thing (other than the movie) was that now I get a student discount. Woo-hoo! It’s the little things in life.
Apparently the people who operate or work on the trains (or something to do with all that) are striking. I’ve no idea who it is specifically or why they’re doing it. I could look it up right now… but let’s all be honest, we know I’m not going to. So, dear Internet, if you’d like to look up London train strikes, have at. Let me know why these people are messing me up right as I am getting the knack of this whole tube station/train station thing (well, sort of). Since only some of them are striking, the trains were down in only a few spots. Trouble is, I needed all those spots to get home. They were all on the way to MY station. I could have taken the bus. But I didn’t wanna. The bus bothers me for some reason. I panic thinking how I have to press the button at a specific time to get off. I can’t handle that responsibility and pressure, it’s too great. In the end, I decided to play train roulette. I tried to take the train I thought would get me closest to my home and go from there. Turns out the closest I could get was Balham. From there it was a 30-40 minute walk. I’ve walked further, I could use the exercise, and so I went for it. There was one point where Citymapper lead me through a dark park and I wondered if it was secretly leading me to my doom, but we got through it. Yes, dad, I know that it was very unsafe and dumb of me. I will do better. Probably.
I got home safe and sound and decided to partake in some of the croissants Marcin (Polish physicist roommate) made. They had nutella inside. I wish I had had the chance to eat them warm. I also wish I had the drive to be a genius physicist who is randomly good at baking. Instead, here I am. In all my awkward glory. An American girl drinking Americanos and eating All American brunches whilst in London. Classic.