Monday, August 27, 2007 


I apologize, dear readers, for such scant writing this past month. I think I'm finally ready to admit that I'm in a moderate mode of depression, and that state of mind is not conducive to creatively writing cheerful quips about the very great city I live in. Not to bog you down with my troubles, but essentially my supervisors have decided that despite the fact my three years are now over, my PhD is not finished, and are thus forcing me to extend my time in the lab. This obliges me to turn down a very good job offer and prolong my continuing state of financial ruin, not to mention wonder about how much longer they plan to keep me at their mercy. This is one of the joys of academic life, I've been sarcastically told. There is no HR department, no contracts to sign, no rights whatsoever. They hold the keys to my completion, and so why shouldn't they use that to their advantage? The moral of this story (at least how I'm honestly feeling at the moment, hopefully this will change in the future) is, "never get a PhD."

Enough about that. Since I don't have anything pleasant to add at the moment, and certainly don't want to neglect you, I'll leave a quote from Bill Bryson's most excellent book Notes from a Small Island. This was a Christmas present from my father (thanks Dad) and I've been saving it until the end of my time here, as a way to start the heart-wrenching process of saying goodbye. That moment appears to have been indefinitely postponed since I started the book, alas. But I am still absolutely loving it. Here's his bit about London:

"I can never understand why Londoners fail to see that they live in the most wonderful city in the world. It is, if you ask me, far more beautiful and interesting than Paris and more lively than anywhere but New York--and even New York can't touch it in lots of important ways. It has more history, finer parks, a livelier and more varied press, better theatres, more numerous orchestras and museums, leafier squares, safer streets, and more courteous inhabitants than any other large city in the world.

And it has more congenial small thing--incidental civilities, you might call them--than any other city I know: cheery red mailboxes, drivers who actually stop for you at pedestrian crossings, lovely forgotten churches with wonderful names like St. Andrew by the Wardrobe and St. Giles Cripplegate, sudden pockets of quiet like Lincoln's Inn and Red Lion Square, interesting statues of obscure Victorians in togas, pubs, black cabs, double-decker buses, helpful policemen, polite notices, people who will stop to help you when you fall down or drop your shopping, benches everywhere. What other great city would trouble to put blue plaques on houses to let you know what famous person once lived there, or warn you to look left or right before stepping off the curb? I'll tell you. None."

Hear, hear. I still can't figure out for the life of me why Londoners always seem to dislike London so much, but they universally do. I guess they never see it from the eyes of an outsider and take it for granted. I know now that there certainly are frustrating aspects of residing here for long periods of time, but it's still, hands down, the most awesome city I've ever been to. And the mere thought of that is actually cheering me up a little.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007 


On the way back from Bath, we just had to stop in Oxford. It was beautiful and peaceful. The buildings are so amazing. Almost makes me wish I weren't living in London!

Christ Church, University of Oxford

Now I know where Harry Potter eats!

And as an added bonus we stayed in a hotel that used to be a prison:

Yes, it looks cool, but it actually kind of freaked me out. I wasn't really comfortable in the place, despite it being a very fancy luxury hotel and all.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007 


Today someone showed up to work wearing a Washington Redskins shirt. Totally random, and made me very homesick. Didn't stop me from singing the fight song however, which I learned in elementary school choir of course.

Ooh, I've been busy busy busy. I am all set to be done with my lab work in a month or two! Looking for a job, because in even less time, one month, I have to move out of the dorms and into some proper accommodation. Yes, this 30 year old is finally getting her own place. (And by "own place" I mean flatshare!) Not cheap, and so to afford this extravagant new lifestyle I will be needing some sort of income. This is harder than it sounds; I've applied to over 30 jobs, gotten 2 responses, and only one interview. It's a nightmare. But no matter what I am looking forward to moving outside the King's College bubble and experiencing London on a more real level.

Cool chick

Torrid Travels

Hot off the presses

Powered by Blogger
and Blogger Templates

Locations of visitors to this page