While last Friday was my first core course, today was my first real class. I felt like Billy Madison. “Back to school, back to school, to prove to dad that I’m no fool.” Complete with me being ten years older than everyone. Awkward.
I kicked off my day by walking down the hill (as per usual) toward the station. A bit past my street, I passed a work truck of some sort parked at the side of the road. There were two men inside, and one of them leaned out the window and started making kissy noises while repeating, “Give us a kiss, then!” At first I was really confused and taken aback. I did a triple-take and stared bemusedly at the man as I walked by. Then, I snapped out of it and thought, “In what world does that work?” How many women have been like, “Hey, yea, this seems like a good idea and like he’s really into me. I am going to go kiss this stranger.”
Despite that sort of weird start, I popped into the bakery and the Beatles were playing. For those of you who don’t know already, I am a HUGE Beatles fan. Looooove them. I’ve seen Paul McCartney twice and would go many more times if the opportunity arose. I figured this was a good flag for how the day would be set to go. It can’t be a bad day if it starts with the Beatles, right?
RIGHT! Because shortly after I received an email that said CONGRATULATIONS, CHILDREN! YOU WERE ALL ACCEPTED INTO MY COURSE! It didn’t say it quite like that, but the gist is there. The professor for our classical art of the body sent out the notification saying congrats, see you soon, bring your passport, etc. Which means I’ll be going to Greece for four days in December. Fo’ free. And I’ll get to go into archaeological sites that most people don’t get to go into (insert that emoji face with heart eyes here). But mainly it means that I managed to get all the courses I really wanted this year. I feel like that’s a bit of a “hallelujah things are working out” moment. Maybe I’m reading too much into it. But even as I was applying to schools and getting everything ready, things sort of fell into place. Not flawlessly, and certainly not without any work on my part, but they still had a tendency to work out. It makes me feel like I made the right decision coming here. That somewhere it is laid out in my life plan that I need to be here for at least a little while. Here’s hoping that thought process doesn’t blow up in my face.
I ran into Julianne on the way in to school. As I was walking up, I made eye contact with a girl who looked familiar. I was 95% positive it was her, but I was terrified I was wrong. What if she was looking at me because I was staring a her, and not because she also recognized me? I smiled and she had a look of recognition, so I figured I was safe. I stopped and talked to her for a brief bit, until she had to get to class. Last I had spoken with her, all of her classes were on Monday. Non stop. She let me know she dropped/moved around courses. I think that was a wise decision.
On Mondays I have Beginning Ancient Greek from 2-5:30. The class was small, but larger than I had expected. Maybe around 15 people? I assumed most people would already have Greek or Latin, but a handful of people are taking it as a refresher, and the other portion haven’t had Greek yet. So I feel like I’m not too behind. Well, sort of. The professor seems very nice, but her voice is soothing and our classroom is very warm and stuffy, so it is conducive to nodding off. Thankfully, I fought it off for the most part. We learned the ins and outs of what to expect for assessment, and then jumped right into the book. My professor explained we were going to try to do grammar and vocab fairly quickly so we can start using what we’ve learned in practice for reading. Part of me thinks that makes sense, and the other part of me is terrified because I need time! She already let us know that every Monday we will have a vocab test. I see many flashcards in my future. Now, when I say we jumped in, I mean it. There was a section in the book that had English words written in Greek letters. So you’d sound them out to see what they most closely resembled. It reminded me of katakana, which is the writing used in Japan for foreign words. They didn’t always sound exactly the same, but close enough. We went ONE BY ONE and each had to read our word out loud. I definitely had a panicked look on my face (shared with my new friend, Abby) that the teacher saw. By some miracle of design I was at the other end of the classroom, so I had time to count ahead based on how many people it would be until it was my turn. I kept mumbling what I thought the words would be, and the poor girl next to me (who HAD had Greek) was stuck listening to me struggle and ask, “Is that right?” repeatedly under my breath.
I mentioned Abby. Abby is my saving grace. We are in all the same classes. We are both American. We both do not have Classical background (she did Art History at Berkeley – so she’s still pretty much a genius). We both are living off loans and a prayer. We are both left handed. We are both interested in femininity and gender roles in Grecian culture. We are both older (well, she’s only 25. But still not fresh out of college). I have attached myself to her whether she likes it or not. She is my built in best friend and she will have to deal.
Monday timing is pretty awesome because Claire, Abby, and I all get out at the same time. So we decided to go to dinner together. Technically, Claire and I had plans and I invited Abby along. We could all use more friends, right? It was a nice time. We went to a pub and I got tea, since I’ve been sick. It felt weird getting tea in a pub. We chatted about a lot of different things during dinner, including but not limited to:
– Thanksgiving plans (we are having an American Thanksgiving in London and I’m in charge of dessert. Send me your one-of-a-kind delicious recipes now so I can start practicing. This is not a drill. I’m serious, people).
– Cannibalism (I mentioned the dissertation of the guy in my course, then Claire let us know that when she worked in the psychology biz, she dealt with an adolescent who felt they had cannibalistic tendencies).
– Vampirism (After the cannibal story, Claire told us about some of her other fun cases. Including a person who was convinced they were a vampire).
– Homicide (There were a lot of disasters each year Claire lived in Virginia. It’s convinced me to never live in Virginia – just in case).
– Book writing (I let them know about Wattpad, one of my favorite places to read amateur writing)
Also, I feel I should note that Claire didn’t give any specific information that would violate HIPAA laws.
Now I’ve begun dosing myself on various British equivalents of US medicine. I’m biased and convinced it doesn’t work as well. I’ve been drinking this liquid stuff by Beechams that is supposed to be good for fever, cough, mucus, body aches, etc. It tastes like a fake sugared lemony-menthol nightmare, but if it works, I’ll do whatever it takes.