Starting to settle

So much is happening in my life right now, it’s hard to know what to put on a page.

Starting week six of the program, already more than halfway through the first term! It’s incredible what they can teach you in that amount of time, the information just comes hurtling in on a daily basis. Two tests already this week, thank heavens I studied anatomy in undergrad!

IMG_2345

A few stats:

Courses: 10 (5 lecture, 5 lab)

Credits:Β 21.75

Classes per day: 2-3

Distance from home: 1.8 miles

Exams completed: 7

Exams looming: 10

Avg class size: 18 or 100

 

This past weekend I got to move into my new home. Two helpers and three trips to storage. Now I have more of my things and a bedroom of my own, to organize in the coming weeks. Besides a desk and a dog, I think I have basically all I need.

IMG_2416

Adventure 1: Eugene

First adventure of the year: HOME!!

As the first half of second term was winding down, and my week off was getting closer and closer, all of the ideas were swirling: Stonehenge, Folkstone, Calais, Paris, Wales. As I pondered, each got vetoed for one major reason: I don’t want to travel alone. I considered going home, but I’ve already been there, is that an adventure?

By the end of the week though, I realized that I wasn’t going anywhere unless I Continue reading

Neighborhood walking

I am still constantly finding new things to look at each time I walk around my neighborhood. I continue to take new routes and wrong turns, and end up with my mouth open, mandible to femur, whipping out my camera phone so that all the passers-by can see that I’m still a tourist. Yesterday I decided to photograph my walk to town center and back to share my neighborhood with you.

I took this just down the road, practically behind my house and across the tracks. Starting to get used to the architecture, but something about the light/clouds/church caught my full attention.

This is Church Street, which dead ends literally into the town center, on King Street. Lovely homes. I was speculating what the one on the left used to be when it was built in 1873. The Β left half seems like the livery, right half the home. Trying to picture it pre-asphalt.

The house on the end gets to hold the street sign. Alternately can be found on fencing, stone walls, and not found at all. ;)

Ah yes, the house under speculation. You can just see the barn doors past the grass.

This church and the building on the immediate left, the old hospital, are both residences now. Quite interesting to see a cafe in a church, but I guess if they’re every mile or two, it becomes a desirable use of space. Just out of sight around the corner of the old hospital is where Geyser, our favorite charcoal-grey VW golf zipcar is parked. Took it for a spin earlier in the month, sunday driving in the countryside. Very convenient and easy.

This is the opposite side of church street, opposite the livery-house, church to the left, complete with osteopathic and chiropody office. This street gets a fair bit of traffic, but every time I pass by I walk a little slower, look up and appreciate the view.

I just love this one! This house catches your eye the moment you turn onto the street, such a gorgeous winter hedge, and so well established and maintained!

And here we are, back home again on Holland Road. I walk up and down everyday, and still find things to stir my curiosity. At first I thought all the houses were the same, but now I start to pick out the sweet, subtle differences. A blue or red door, a wrought iron gate, a palm tree in the garden, bay windows. I’m happy here.

Holland Road – Month 3

Changes continue to happen around here, although the pace for me has slowed. Having help over the past few weeks helped get the ball rolling faster again. I can only take minor credit for the latest developments, but I’m really excited about…

Coat hooks!

Keeps the back of my bedroom door from looking like I’ve hung a body from it, puts coats and helmet near the door where I want them, and such a better use of space! I’m so glad it wasn’t up to me to put anchors and screws into the sheetrock-stone combo of that wall.

The entry and exit got make-overs as well. The visionary moved the gravel, rubbish, and leaves, so that the threshold can be crossed leaving the outside outside.

Also got a set of dressers. I can’t show them to you as they are being utilized now, due to clutter and mess, but I’m sure you can picture them stacked with books, candles, and cards as you view them circa a couple of weeks ago. ;)

Thought it might be time to share with you “doing the washing – UK style.”

The resolution is bad, but I think it’s clear that this rack is layered with practically a whole load. The only reason this works is the heated rack, which I thought was awesome in theory, and is exponentially more useful in practice.

The lovely man bought me gorgeous flowers. Shelley, I warned him…

I owe you before and after pictures of the garden, but those will also not have credits to me under the photos. We made it to the back half before the landlord, sans machete. The path leads through the long narrow “lawn,” through a gate, past the tool shed, under an arbor, through a tree, around a bush, past a pond, through the roses to the back fence, where we can watch the high speed trains go by like ninjas. That is not a joke, all of that is really out there. It’s only half a jungle now, but still wild. :)

Productivity

What is today, Wednesday? Somehow it doesn’t feel like it.

After a busy, fun-filled weekend, and filling my Sunday night with too much phone time, I’ve put myself too far behind on sleep already. After only two days of lectures this week, I still manage to feel like it should be Friday. It’s amazing what sleep-deprivation does to a person, especially an 8-hour-per-night person like me. But last night after another (long) phone call, my morale was given a kick-start back into productivity. I caught up on emails and little notes that have been cluttering my mind. Today I filled in my course reviews, checked on the status of my pillow delivery, and attended the Staff Student Liaison meeting. Now I’m able to sit down with my blog, (almost) guilt-free, bathroom smelling of clean laundry that’s hung to dry, agenda-notes email sent off to the class, dishes washed, contacts out.

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving, arguably the best American holiday of the year, and although most of my classmates don’t celebrate regularly, a few of us are having a dinner. I will be hosting 5 of my classmates for a “traditional” meal of roast duck, mashed potatoes and carrots, stuffing, yams, cranberry sauce, and Spanish pumpkin pie. We are a diverse group from different backgrounds and nationalities, but I am excited to celebrate, not only the day, but the people I will be sharing it with.

I’m thankful to be on this adventure to England. I’m thankful for the wonderful friends I’ve made, who will no doubt be friends for life. I’m thankful for my partner, who I won’t have to miss anymore in a few short weeks. I’m thankful for a program that challenges and excites me all at the same time. And I’m thankful that tonight I will go to sleep before 2am.