Senior Year: Return to the Hill

IMG_2967-1Hello again! It’s been a while since I posted—the semester was busier and more stressful than I anticipated. With one exam and two papers behind me (plus a story revision for creative writing that remains to be finished), I’ve finished classes and I’m back in Texas for the break! Now that I’m done, I can take a minute to write a quick recap of what my second-to-last semester of college has been like. Continue reading

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Some Updates

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The wife and me

Because this ain’t my first time at the summer-in-NYC rodeo, I haven’t felt like I’ve had a ton of blog-worthy updates. But of course, that isn’t true. My summer has been pretty different — well, more like entirely different — than last summer. So if you’re wondering what I’ve been up to this time around, read on! Continue reading

Cheers, Oxford! Hello, New York.

teaI start too many posts by saying it’s been too long since I last wrote. In this case, it really has been much too long. Since my previous post, I finished my year at Oxford, and though I wasn’t doing a lot more than I had done in other terms, Trinity was very hectic, mostly for personal reasons. Since I’m still processing the experience, as it’s a big one, I intend to write one or two post-mortems about studying abroad once I’ve settled in a bit more. There’s a lot I want to say–I just have to find the time to say (write) it. For now, I’ll focus on my adjustment from Oxford to NYC. Continue reading

One Last Term

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Edinburgh!

Trinity term, the last of the academic year, is in full swing: it’s week 4 here at Oxford. Right now, the air in is a little tense–finalists (seniors) are all taking exams, and these are a big f*in deal. At Oxford, your marks (grades) in tutorials and on collections (prelims) don’t count toward a GPA. Exams in your final year are the only things that determine how well you do on your degree. High stakes, high pressure. Luckily, since I don’t have to take exams, I’m just doing what I’ve been doing all year here. Visiting students: we do a lot of work, but we have a pretty sweet deal. Continue reading

Swiss Road Trip

IMG_0969After Spain, the last leg of my grand spring break began. From Nimes, France, Sonja, her mom, and I began our road trip through Switzerland earlier than anticipated because of an unforeseen circumstance: Sonja rolled her ankle thanks to the high sidewalks in Nimes, and was prescribed crutches and some weird-looking compression socks. So after one stressful day in France and another for recovery, we piled into her mom’s blue stick-shift for a few days of driving through the Alps. Continue reading

Siestas and Churros and Tapas, Oh My!

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In the Alhambra Gardens

Oh, Spain. Beautiful, sunny Spain. Where to begin? Because I prefer grey skies to clear ones most days, and almost all architectural styles to the Spanish styles I’ve seen in America, I didn’t think I would love Spain. But soon after arriving, I realized that Spain would probably be one of my favorite legs of the trip; I realized that as immediately as I fell in love with Budapest. It was a pleasant surprise to discover that Spain ended up being one of the standouts for me. Continue reading

From Austria to Czechia

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Church of St. Barbara in Kutna Hora (and me!)

Greetings from Barcelona! It’s now been over two weeks since I left Oxford for my epic European spring break extravaganza. That means I’m halfway home! Having seen five countries and seven cities in just 15 days, I’m glad I didn’t choose to continue traveling for the entire five/six week break. It’s incredible to see parts of the world that are new to me, but fatigue is setting in, and I’m looking forward to slowing down for a bit back in the US. First, though, a recap on the second half of the first leg of my journey–confusing, I know. From Budapest, we went to Vienna and Prague. Did you know that the Czech Republic changed its English name to Czechia? Apparently, a lot of the people who live there didn’t know either, so you’re not alone. Continue reading

Bucharest, Budapest, What’s the Difference?

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Kyoka and I in front of the Hungarian Parliament!

Because transportation seems to be the only significant free time I have while traveling, I’m writing this post on the train from Budapest to Vienna. It’s been almost a week since I left Oxford with my friend, Kyoka, for our obscenely long spring break. With two cities behind us and two more ahead, the first leg of the trip is halfway over! Read on for pictures and whatnot from the first two stops: Bucharest and Budapest. Continue reading

New Habits

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Jamie and me in front of the new entrance to LMH!

The last week here in Oxford has been a quiet one. Since I last wrote, I’ve spent almost all of my time working through David Copperfield. One highlight, however, was showing my fellow llama Jamie around Oxford! I got to play tour guide for a day, visit a few of my favorite food spots, and of course, catch up with a friend. As there’s not a whole lot going on and I’m closing in on the end of my second term abroad, I figured I’d share some of the new habits I’ve picked up since coming to England in the hopes of inspiring similar self-improvement ventures. Continue reading

Halfway Point

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The British Museum in London

Despite my impressive productivity at the beginning of the term, I let half of Hilary go by before writing another post. Though the initial burst of energy has waned, it hasn’t disappeared completely. I have, though my infrequent social media updates might suggest otherwise, still been getting out and doing fun things here in Oxford. As we are entering week six of term two, I’ve now completed over half of my abroad year! Oh, how the time flies. Here’s what I’ve been up to in the last few weeks. Continue reading