20 December 2005

First (of many to come I'm sure) Party in Camden

Me and Hunter (the first person I met in London!)
A Brit Practicing Being a Cowboy
(already a donut - ha!)
My Super-hero Friends
Lindsay and Shawn - Fast Friends
(would you have known they just met a few hours before?)
Lindsay, Mark and Mara - Chillin Late-Night at the Post-Party

A Little (or a lot of) DCFC In My Life

So most of those who know my music tastes - or hang out with me for a few hours and I am near my laptop - know that I love Death Cab for Cutie. So... what felt like a late last night (still getting over jet lag... I got up at 6:30am today! not a usual day for me)... I indulged myself and bought two tix to go see them in London in March.

See... when I was a sophomore at university a friend offered me tickets but I couldn't go because I had Feminism 101 midterm to study for... what was I thinking?!

Then this summer Amanda and I tried desperately to get tickets to their show in NYC even though I had a volunteer night (don't tell Mike - or Chris either... who I would have had to BEG to cover for me!) Alas it didn't work out and I've tried to get tix but it always seems that I am moving away from whatever city I was living in right as they were coming...

Anyway... so I'm super stoked and am not quite sure who I should offer the other ticket too. I would like to see some more comments on here - or perhaps even a guest blogger or two - so... I thought I might offer this other ticket up as a prize or something... though I guess you either have to live in London (or the surrounding area) or pull some transatlantacism (brownie pts to whoever got that!) and get yourself over to Londres....

Anyway - just putting it out there!

Check out Plans... a fabulous new addition to their collection at www.deathcabforcutie.com.... once you open the site it also plays you continuous, shuffled songs so you can enjoy their music just by opening their website and then carrying on whatever you were doing - brilliant!


I just got home (back to Cali) last night after a hellish 14-hour venture on the same plane... it was supposed to be a 10 hour flight but over a 3 hour delay made the trip seem even that much longer.... However I was able to catch up on my movies by watching 3 of them - ha!

On the drive back to Auburn my mom and I stopped off for Mexican food in Berkeley which made up for it and then I proceeded to crash out as soon as I got home and gave my little sister a kiss... woke up throughout the night being really confused but got up early this morning and felt good. Still feeling twinges of culture shock... but nothing so bad yet.

Made myself breakfast this am (an egg, homemade bread, coffee and fresh mandarins from the local orchard) and took my mom to work so I could steal her car for the day... then spent the rest of the day working out (I LOVE having a free gym membership!), making lunch for Kath and her boyfriend, and wrapping presents.

My older sister gets in late tonight from DC and I think this week is just going to be all about chilling with the fam, finishing up Christmas shopping, catching up with emails and what not (and blog-posts!) I think more than anything I am just looking forward to one-on-one time with my fam... I feel like that hasn't happened in forever. Eventually I have to start writing my essays - but I need a few days before I can even work myself up to that.

I already have a few days planned to be in San Francisco - including New Years - in which we are going to a 1930s Cocktail Party at Swing Club with a bunch of people I went to university with - so that should be fun. And we have at least one Kings' game and a snowday on the agenda... so I'm looking forward to that as well.

There is just something I miss about California- maybe the fact that I was walking around last night in just a sweatshirt; went to the gym in shorts and a long-sleeved t-shirt... quite a difference from English weather. Caught a great sunset tonight and will have dinner with my mom... tomorrow hanging out with my grandparents and helping my grandmother with her computer and then having dinner at my dad's.

I don't have a cell phone here (nor a car) - so my social life will be a bit limited - limited at least to last week in London which was filled with a bit if Christmas debauchery (pictures to come). I am also waiting for Matt to send me shots of our week in London doing the touristy thing and of Ireland. Guess what I'm getting for Christmas? A digital camera for all of your viewing pleasures :)

For those of you in the States - give my mom's house a call - and happy holidays!

13 December 2005

Last Week In London

Back from Ireland and back in school mode (or getting there). After taking a few days off reading and writing - I feel I am getting thrust back into it out of pure necessity.

All I want to do is get my flat sorted, go Christmas shopping in SoHo, hang out with my mates before they journey off around the world and myself to California. BUT - this week instead is going to be spent at the library trying to get enough reading and research done for my upcoming essays... or at least which books I need to take with me back to California.

I met with both of my professsors this week about my essays that I just got back and my upcoming essays that are due as soon as I get back from California - meaning I have to do them there. Two of my marks were very good, while two were ok... which leaves me frustrated; though I know I should be motivated. I also had presentations yesterday and today... argh. Anyway - off to the library! I don't have internet at the house yet... so call my mobile if you need me!

09 December 2005

In Ireland!

Blogging from an internet cafe at the prodding of a committed reader - ha! Meanwhile a protest demonstration marches by.... which incidentally closed down Dublin's entire public transportation system. We were meant to go to Howthe, a small coastal city north of Dublin to have lunch, go hill-climbing and walk around... but alas, we are going to have to reschedule for tomorrrow.

So instead our afternoon will consist of lunch here in town, going to the Dublin castle, taking silly pictures and ending up at the Guinness Storehouse (awww yeah). Tonight we are going to go see an Irish indie movie, grab dinner and go out for drinks (maybe an Irish car bomb is calling?)

The city is great so far and I have been really enjoying it. I am here with my friend Matt from the Kerry/Englin/Corzine campaigns after a few days doing the touristy thing in London. I am always impressed what a small city Dublin is and yet there seem to be an endless amount of funky little streets each filled with its own legendary pubs and restaurants. We've been fortunate to sample quite a few so far and have had a policy of not getting more than one drink at each place so we can see as many as possible.

The first night we went out to dinner at a very chill bistro in Temple Bar, the Elephant and Castle... then last night went out to have traditional Irish food at Gallagher's Boxty House. Matt had cornbeef and cabbage; vegetable and potato pie for myself that was immensely enjoyable.

We have also been trying to try as many different kinds of Irish beer as possible - which means a lot of half-pints and sharing. Kilkenny is a personal favorite so far :)

It's been fun to learn my way around the city (anyone that knows Matt knows he is still working on it!) and get a feel for the place. The people here are genuine and warm, with unbeatable accents and firm handshakes. It's also been fun to wander down O'Connell street (shout out to the fam in Jersey!) and see some history.

Yesterday we went and saw the Book of Kells, the Long Room (a fantastic old library) and Trinity College. It's amazing to see the sweatshirts that say 'since 1562' when UCSD was established in 1960 and my country in 1776 - ha! Guinness (and most other Irish brews) are also older than that!

We were also able to go to St. Stephen's Green - a beautiful park just south of the city centre that is great to stroll along in and get lost in the maze of park benches, birds and wanderers. Grafton and George streets are filled with musicians and street entertainers, shops and great for window shopping. It's especially cool becuase whole streets are decorated with Christmas lights, trees, carrollers and the like... which is helping me get in the mood for the holidays! And for those of you living in Auburn... you'll get a few fun things from here as well as I indulged in starting my Christmas shopping.

Alright... as Mark says... it is almost beer o'clock! Cheers!

01 December 2005

Pictures from Scotland!

1) Mara and Shawn re-united!
2) Matt, me and Shawn scotch-tasting..
3) Suzie and Shawn with our chocolate soup in Edinburgh - yum!
4) Me, Shawn, Venu and Matt in St. Andrews
5) Shawn showing me the ways of the Scots :)
6) Mara, the boys and whiskey: what more could a girl want?

Halloween at LPH

Hey - better than never - right?

The Crew

Jillian and Mara the 1970s Ping-Pong Player

Pre-Party in My Room (Dorm-Style)

London Girls

Some people sing about Deutsche girls
And girls from California...
They might be alright
For a night alright
But don't trust them I warn ya
I've been to the east
And I've been out west
And I've been the world around
But I ain't seen no one anywhere near
A girl from London town

Give me a London girl every time
I've got to find one
I've made up my mind
Give me a London girl every time
I want a London girl
Marry a girl from London town
You know that you can trust her
She'll darn your socks
And wash your--
Even then your trousers won't bust 'em, yes
And they're all good cooks
And they've got good looks
And they won't lead you down
Said I gotta find a London girl
If I ever get to have a chance

Oh give me a London girl every time
I've got to find one
I've made up my mind
Give me a London girl every time
I want a London girl
London girls are the best in the world
There ain't no doubt about it
If you can't find a girl from London town
You're better off doin' without it
They don't grate
When you come home late
And you're crawlin' up the passage floor
They won't mock about you
When you're going out
With the geezer from the house next door

Oh give me a London girl every time
I've got to find one
I've made up my mind
I said honey give me a London girl babe
Every little day
Your legs turn to jelly
And I got a little smelly
But I know it's just what I want
'Cause I need a London girl
Oh, every time
They've always got a pound
To buy their round
When it's their turn at the bar
Tori Amos - "London Girls"... Pictures from Impromptu Girls Wine Night