I FINALLY have wifi!!!!!!!
All of the international students got here last Thursday and we had to wait to get wifi until we enrolled today. Its nice to be back :-)
On Saturday, we went to Central London and saw Big Ben and Parliament and then toured Westminster Abbey. I absolutely LOVE Westminster Abbey, it is gorgeous. It seems like anyone British even remotely important was buried there. All the kings and queens have been crowned there since the 1000's and several have been married and buried there. Its the resting place of Queen Elizabeth I, Mary Queen of Scots, Charles Dickens, and kings dating as far back as the 12th century! And last but not least, its where Will and Kate were married just a few years ago :-) Saturday night we explored Piccadilly and went to a club/bar called Piccadilly Institute. It was super expensive!! But I love the area :-)
On Sunday, Queen Mary took a lot of the study abroad students on a bus tour of London. We were able to get off at Buckingham Palace and made it just in time for the end of the changing of the guards! Later on, we got off the bus again and walked around the Tower and drove over the Tower Bridge. After we got back to Queen Mary, several of us decided to venture to the big grocery store (where we learned you have to pay to use the shopping carts...) I searched for crackers for FOREVER until I realized they don't really have crackers... they have biscuits. For dinner, we ate at a place close to campus called the Greedy Cow, which was a really good burger place (who would've thought London had a good burger place?!).
Today was the first day of classes. I'm taking Abnormal Psychology, Neurobiology, Performance in History (for the theatre requirement at SU), and Architecture in London (for study abroad students because there's field trips!). Here in the UK, classes typically only meet once a week, so I only have class on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Wednesdays! I had to take the Tube to my first class (the Tube is getting easier and easier!), which was Abnormal Psych. My professor was nice and I'm really excited about the class! Every week, a new expert is brought in to speak about a psychological disorder. My next class was Neurobiology, which was interesting! I'm really scared about my exams for all my classes because your entire grade depends on one huge final exam (WOAH).
After my last class at 6, I headed into London to go to another Arcadia orientation. They basically told us a lot of the same stuff the Queen Mary people told us... The UK is a foreign country and even though they speak English, its completely different from our English, so we basically have to learn a new language. We're supposed to sit in our rooms and practice our British accents and use their phrases......
Today was Laura's 21st birthday (friend from the Arcadia program), so we went to dinner and then to a pub for some drinks. Its sad, her 21st birthday doesn't really matter here since the drinking age is 18. But we still had a fun night :-) The culture of going out in the UK is completely different from America. People go out almost every night here, but the pubs close at midnight, so they go a lot earlier and usually its just sitting around and socializing. Its really fun and a good way to meet people! I'm really not into beer... or wine... but I've discovered a Strawberry and Lime hard cider thats pretty good.