Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Week 1 of dream fulfillment

Guys, I’m here. Six years after I ignored jet lag, took my first look outside our Kensington flat, and promised myself that I would study abroad in London HERE I AM.

Photo cred: my dorky dad

My host mum (When I say that fast it apparently sounds like “husband,” and on the first day a girl asked if I was married, awk.) is named Maggie and she is darling; she’s an excellent cook and grows her own organic vegetables so I am going to learn to like a lot of vegs while I’m here. It’s just the two of us out here in Northwood, which is about an hour’s commute from central London. It’s a long trip, but there are textbooks and free newspapers to read. I feel like a true Londoner when I can walk fast and transition trains without a problem. (Everyone here walks fast - I fit right in!) My goal is to be able to jaywalk confidently, and I’m already getting close.

Monday and Tuesday were orientation days, and Tuesday we also went to the Tower of London which was just as cool the second time around. Those Crown Jewels...ahmazing. I walked around the Tower with Caitlin who is also a history major at UO in the Honors College, so we history geeked out together.

Houses of Parliament and Big Ben as seen from the Thames

I love that people actually live at the Tower of London.
"Hi, can you send a pizza delivery to house 6, the Tower of London?"

Today we had the first day of classes - I had “Economic Integration of the European Union” and “London: Biography of a City.” The EU class should be super interesting (nerd alert); we’ll get to go to Parliament and adopt the London School of Economics as our home base. The London class sounds easy as it’s lots of museums and tour-y walks. I’ll start the required “Modern Britain” class tomorrow and Friday I ride the tube for an hour and a half (whaat) to the first meeting with my internship director.

Also, today I went for a walk before class and ended up at St. Paul’s Cathedral, nbd.

Plan: go to choral evensong at St. Paul’s, Holy Communion in the chapel at the Tower of London, organ concerts at Westminster Abbey, and Sunday services at my local Anglican church, the Wood Green Mennonite Church, and Hillsong London. Good thing I have quite a few Sundays.

I’m still adjusting (the water here is terrible in taste and in hair-washing power, gross) but I am excited to be in London and can’t wait to get into a routine and start to feel like I really do live here.
I may be 8 hours ahead of Oregon, but I would still love to skype with everyone so let’s get on that. Mailing address to come. Sending my love stateside, Julia


  1. Love the pictures, Julia. Must be that awesome camera bringing out all your photography skills. Glad to hear all is going well.

  2. Julia! I love your posts : ) How ever did you get it so you could embed photos into the blog. You must teach me this trick!