There are five weeks left in the semester before finals and for the last two weekends I have had such a hard time getting myself to do any schoolwork. I know I have quite a bit of work to get done over the weekend and even though I know I will regret putting it off, I just can’t seem to stop procrastinating. Today I’ve read 25 pages of nearly 80 for one class and have yet to start my 8-10 page paper that’s due Monday or whatever reading I have due for my night class that day – I’ve been so unmotivated that I haven’t even checked yet exactly what I’m supposed to be reading. I also have an annotated bibliography due in just over a week for a research paper that I haven’t begun and I’ll have to email a primary source from it to my professor early this week for discussion in our next class and a paper due Friday I haven’t started either.
I know I’ve had phases like this before but I’m really not sure where this is all coming from and I really wish it’d go away. I don’t like putting off work but right now I can’t seem to get myself to just do it. I hope I can get out of this because I don’t know how well I’ll get through the next month, at least 3 papers and an exam, and two days a week of being up at 6 (to spend 3 hours in a middle school) if I keep putting things off.
(I also did laundry three days ago and haven’t even been bothered to fold it yet. What is wrong with me?)
Of course the evening I plan to do my laundry the entire system goes down. Like, not just the card reader is broken, the entire system we use is down across the country. Awesome. Great job esuds.
The last three years I’ve taken the train into DC to spend Easter weekend at George Washington with my sister. Even though we’re only an hour apart we don’t really have time for lots of visits during the semester so being able to spend that weekend together has been nice. I don’t know what’ll happen next year since she’s graduating in May and might not still be in DC next spring. My younger sister will be about an hour and a half away at school in Pennsylvania so maybe we’ll be able to spend Easter together next year. It’s been especially nice that I’ve been able to spend Easter with my sister because I can’t really go home for the weekend. (I could, it’s possible, but spending at least 6 hours at airports/flying for about two days at home is a bit stressful.) I think it’s gotten a bit easier to be away from nearly all of my family during Easter but it was really difficult freshman year. I remember starting to cry while talking with our chaplain (who is really a terrific woman) on Ash Wednesday that year about Easter and Holy Week before I was sure I’d be going to DC. I had never been away from my family during Easter and it made me sad to think that I wouldn’t be home to go to church with them during Lent and for Holy Week like I’d been doing my entire life.
For as long as I can really remember I’ve loved the time around Easter, particularly Holy Week, and I think a lot of it has to do with the priest we had at church for most of the time I was growing up after we moved to Maine. He always stressed reverence and during Lent and Holy Week he also emphasized the solemnity of the season before the great joy of Easter. The solemn rituals of the Lenten season and Holy Week most of all I really came to enjoy and find very meaningful. Unfortunately I don’t think I realized that appreciation until he was moved out of our parish and we were given a priest with a rather different style. I hope that someday I will find a church wherever I end up where I find that solemn Lenten reverence again.
I was on spring break two weeks ago and I kind of wish I could still be on break. So far I’ve gone home every spring break and it’s always nice to spend a week at home – even if I still have piles of work I should be doing while I’m there. And every year it seems like a week at home is such a long time but then it’s over way too soon and I’m never quite ready to go back to school. Mostly I hung out at home, not really doing much (or any) of the work I should have been doing. I did get to see a few of my friends from high school. It’s always great to catch up with them and hear about what’s been going on at home while I’ve been at school.
There are about six weeks left in the semester so we’re just more than half done and I’m so ready for summer. I want warm weather and sunshine and summer camp! Summer gets to Maryland before Maine so that’s nice, even if it means I have to be in class while it’s super nice outside.
Five weeks into the semester and (until now) I have yet to write any posts. I doubt I’ve been leaving an awaiting audience, but I still feel kind of bad – more because I don’t want this to become something else that I started and said I was going to continue but then didn’t. It’s not that I haven’t thought about writing some posts…I just decided to watch things on Netflix instead… (hey, West Wing is on now and although I’ve been watching it for years, there are still pieces and entire episodes I haven’t seen) Basically I have a procrastination problem, but I’m pretty sure I’ve mentioned that before.
So far my semester has been going well. I’m taking five classes for a full load of 18 credits. Plus between the admissions office and tutoring I’m working about nine hours a week on top of all the reading I’m supposed to be doing. I’m not really complaining. I love both my jobs and I’m enjoying most of my classes. And just what classes am I taking and loving (or not)? Well, here you go:
Yesterday my parents & I drove down to Maryland to move me (& my piles of stuff) back on campus. We left around 4:30 am and 9 1/2 hours & four stops later finally got to Goucher. I usually sleep for a good chunk of the drive but I think this time I was awake for more of it than I have been before. Part of that is probably because there were very limited comfortable seat options. The back seat of a Wrangler isn’t the best for car sleeping but I’ve managed to make it work many times before. But for this drive I had much less space. With 2/3 of the back seat down and loaded with storage bins the space I had was about the same as an airplane window seat, but with a wall on the other side of you.
I didn’t have my key yet and the office wasn’t opening until 6 so I had to wait for public safety to let me in. Really though, who opens their office for students to get keys at 6 pm? It took about half an hour to lug my things up a flight and a half of stairs from the car but then there was the business of unpacking it all. I did do a lot yesterday, with some help, but there are still a number of things that need to be organized and put away. Over the next few days it should all get figured out.
I’m also super excited that my roommate is back from Honduras & we’re actually living together, instead of just talking about how great living together will be. Campus has been pretty quite so far but it won’t last long with everyone else returning from winter break today. I did get to see one friend last night and I’m sure today and tomorrow will be full of running around trying to see everyone – many of whom I haven’t seen since last May when we all left for the summer.
On another note, I will keep writing over the course of this semester but post will likely be fewer and farther between than last semester. My life on campus in Baltimore isn’t quite as exciting as living in Scotland for a semester.
And also, most of you reading my blog are complete strangers, I don’t know how you found this, but thank you for reading it.
So far being home after this semester has been pretty much like winter break the last two years. Except that I think I was a bit jet-lagged the first few days. I’m not sure if it was jet lag or just me not having gotten much sleep but the first couple nights I was home I went to bed around 9:30 and was actually really tired, and then got up around 7:30 in the morning. The other morning I forced myself to stay in bed another hour and now I’m pretty much back to my regular sleep schedule of staying up until 11ish and sleeping until 9 or 10.
I still haven’t unpacked all of my stuff but I’m sure that’ll get done over the next week – probably after Christmas. I haven’t seen most of my friends from high school (that I’m still friends/in touch with) yet, but that’ll probably also happen after Christmas when people aren’t quite so busy.
I was so excited that it started snowing (mostly sleeting) as soon as we left the airport in Boston and wasn’t even that upset about having to shovel a few inches of snow the next day because it gave me hope of a white Christmas (and Maine just isn’t quite the same in the winter without snow), but then it rained the next day melting almost all of the snow! And what little was left is totally gone now after the crazy rainstorm we had today. It’s possibly that we could get some snow tomorrow and even some on Christmas and I’m really hoping for that now.
Other than my sisters and parents I haven’t seen any of my family yet but we’re doing Christmas with my mom’s side of the family on Sunday and my dad’s mom will be with us on Christmas and I’m so excited to see all of them. I always miss them when I’m at school but there’s something different about being more than 3000 miles away instead of 500.
It’s strange now to think that a week ago I was in the midst of my travels home. It feels like I’ve been home longer than a week.
Last Friday I left my flat at 3:30am to get a ride to the airport with my friend so I didn’t have to pay for a taxi and try to lug almost 100lbs of luggage down two and a half flights of stairs. Her flight was at 6am, mine was at 8:30. PM. So I spent almost 16 hours in Glasgow airport. It ended up being a little less since my flight got cancelled and I was put on an earlier flight to London. Apparently flights from Heathrow had been delayed or cancelled all day due to weather and because they were short on aircraft because of this, they cancelled my flight and merged us with the flight to London about two hours before. That flight had been delayed almost an hour (so scheduled for a bit after 7) and ended up taking off later than that.
My last day in London I went to St. Paul’s Cathedral after I checked out of the hostel and left my bag there while I went out. I took the Underground from Baron’s Court and was planning to get off at Canon Street but apparently that station isn’t open on Saturday mornings so I got off at Monument, which is the next stop on the District line. It was a bit of a walk but I’d done a lot of walking so that wasn’t a huge deal.
Like Westminster Abbey, St. Paul’s doesn’t allow photography inside but I’m not sure any photos I would have taken would have done it justice. It is absolutely incredible. There are statues and monuments around the interior, but not nearly as many as Westminster and the painted ceilings are amazing. There was quite a bit of standing, looking straight up while turning in a circle. Behind the main altar there’s a chapel dedicated to Americans who died in World War II in addition to a few smaller monuments. The crypt downstairs wasn’t what I was expecting. I was expecting something much more like the catacombs I visited just outside of Rome four years ago. There were some stone effigies but it was mostly plaques and other monuments to those who had been killed in various wars and conflicts. I also went up to the Whispering Gallery which is in the lower part of the dome. It is possible to go further into the dome but it wasn’t open. And I’m not sure how much I would have wanted to do that. I’m not a huge fan of heights and I was definitely satisfied with the few hundred spiral steps I climbed to get to that first gallery.
I got started on my day quite a but later than I had intended, but I think it ended up working out just fine. I probably could have done some other things, particularly if I’d gotten out earlier; I ended up only really doing the Tower of London. But I did spend a few hours there and saw pretty much everything so it was worth not really doing anything else that day.
After getting something to eat I bought my admission ticket and walked down to the entrance of the Tower – just inside there’s a meeting point for tours led by Yeoman Warders (aka Beefeaters). There were a ton of people on my tour but at every stop I managed to get close enough so I didn’t have trouble hearing. The tour guide was pretty amusing, which always makes these sorts of tours better. We didn’t go into any of the buildings except for the chapel, but the White Tower at least has its own tour. There are actually almost two dozen towers within the Tower of London complex and several have held notable prisoners. At Traitor’s Gate, where many (if not all) of the prisoners would have entered from the Thames, our guide made a joke about the water gate (because that’s what it was originally called) and how this was another instance where the English were ahead of the Americans. Most of the crowd didn’t seem to get it.